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Cowboys news: Dallas has several contract-year players who will be looking to cash in

Plus other Cowboys news and analyst from around the team.

San Francisco 49ers v Dallas Cowboys Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

17) Who Cashes In On A Contract Year? - Dallascowboys.com

As a part of DallasCowboys.com 20 question series, the teams staff writers dive into who will make the most of their contract year.

David Helman: One way or another, I have to assume Michael Gallup is going to see a nice pay day in the near future. Consider the fact that Curtis Samuel just signed a three-year, $34.5 million contract this spring – and Gallup already has comparable stats after three years to what Samuel did during four seasons with the Carolina Panthers. If he is healthy and on his game in 2021, Gallup should be able to angle even higher. Kenny Golloday just signed in New York for $72 million – and Gallup is on a fairly similar trajectory. With the salary cap trending back in the right direction, Gallup is in a great position to capitalize.

Nick Eatman: Lots of options here. I think if I had to pick, I’ll go with Leighton Vander Esch. That’s not to say that Connor Williams, Gallup or Gregory won’t get big deals as well. But LVE is a former All-Pro and when he’s healthy, he’s probably better than all of these guys. I think Vander Esch will be hungry and ready to prove himself. Now, of course, he has to stay healthy and that’s easier said than done for him. But when he’s out there running around and making plays, he can be as good as any inside linebacker. Something tells me he’s going to thrive in this defense with Dan Quinn. I think he gets a big contract and it wouldn’t surprise me if it’s here – that is if he’s willing to return although the Cowboys did decline his fifth-year option.

Randy Gregory is Focused on Earning New Contract - Matthew Lenix, Insidethestar.com

As Randy Gregory goes through his first real offseason since his rookie year, he is hoping his play on the field will allow him to cash in.

Contract seasons for any player provide a motivation that can fuel extraordinary performances on the field. The Dallas Cowboys have one of their top defensive players in that situation currently, Defensive End Randy Gregory. After signing a one-year extension last September that could pay him up to $2.1 million in 2021, Gregory reminded the NFL world of his talent with 3.5 sacks and three forced fumbles in the 10 games he played in last season.

A few weeks ago during mandatory minicamp, Gregory was asked about how he would go about handling the final year of his deal. The former second-round pick is taking the everything is earned not given approach.

“Same way I have always gone about it,” Gregory said, via The Athletic. “I should have already had a new contract. I was still on my rookie contract last year. That is kind of crazy to think about, but I understand it’s a contract year. It’s all about earning everything now. I’m going to do that on the field. Barring injury, I think I will be all right. I love it here. I love the owners. I love the staff. I love the players. When that time comes, we will talk about it. But from where I came from I am not thinking about a damn contract right now before the season starts. I still got a lot to do.”

Cowboys reportedly will make bid to host NFL scouting combine - Eric Edholm, Yahoo Sports

As the NFL looks to branch out for the annual scouting combine, the Cowboys will throw their name in the hat to host the week long event.

Shortly after news broke that other teams will be able to bid on hosting the NFL scouting combine, our first reported candidate has emerged.

According to the Dallas Morning News, the Dallas Cowboys are expected to enter a bid.

Next year’s combine will be in Indianapolis, the city that has hosted the event annually since 1987. This was the only year there was no combine since 1984, but that was canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 2023 scouting combine will be the first one up for grabs. Indianapolis is expected to try to keep it. Teams such as the Las Vegas Raiders and the two Los Angeles franchises, which have new stadiums and big-market cities that could expand the event, also might be in the mix.

NFL To Allow Alternate Helmets In 2022 - Dallascowboys.com

Who’s excited that we will soon get to see the Cowboys in their awesome throwback uniforms?

FRISCO, Texas – A new rule could have the Cowboys going old school in future seasons.

Word surfaced Thursday afternoon that the NFL will allow clubs to use alternate helmets starting for the 2022 season. According to a report, the rule would allow teams to use a different helmet to pair with alternate, throwback and Color Rush uniforms, provided they are properly fitted and follow league safety protocols.

This could obviously be big news for the Cowboys, who haven’t worn their throwback uniforms since 2012 as a result of league rules. In 2013, the NFL announced that it would only allow teams to wear one helmet during the season in an effort to reduce concussions.

That rule had an impact on the Cowboys, as well as many other clubs whose throwback look features a differently-colored helmet. The Cowboys’ iconic, 1960 uniform featured a navy blue jersey with stars on the shoulder, as well as a blue star featured on a white helmet. Under the old rule, the team would have had to wear their throwback jerseys with their silver helmets or not wear a throwback look at all.

Dallas Cowboys: 3 reasons why the Cowboys will have a winning season - Dink Kearney, Sportdfw.com

As Dallas looks to improve on a forgettable 2020 season, some feel the Cowboys will turn it around in 2021.

Depending on which sports network you watch, the Dallas Cowboys are either doomed to have another losing season, produce another pathetic defense, or barely win the NFC East. Those are the hot takes when it comes to predicting the Cowboys upcoming season.

Besides a few objective journalists, most of the talking heads are predicting the Cowboys to have a losing record. And if they do, that means that the Cowboys would have missed the playoffs four out of the past five seasons. My Gawd!

The Dallas Cowboys have all of the tools to have a winning season

Since these talking heads are probably saying these “hot takes” for ratings, I’ll give you three reasons why the Cowboys will have a winning season and then some.

Ready? Let’s talk about it.

Reason No.1: Strength of schedule

Dallas will play only three teams with a winning record from the previous season. Dallas’ opponents for this season have accumulated a .452 winning percentage for a strength of schedule that ranks a lowly 31. Only the buzzards (known as the Philadelphia Eagles) have an easier strength of schedule at 32.

Dallas Cowboys 2021 realistic expectations: Ezekiel Elliott - Riley Donald, Thelandryhat.com

We all hope to see Zeke return back to his dominant form, but what are realistic expectations for him in 2021?

The Dallas Cowboys have star power and draw quite a few headlines, good and bad. Aside from quarterback, Dak Prescott, there may be no bigger draw on Dallas than running back Ezekiel Elliott. This has been earned by his performances throughout his career to this point.

Cowboys fans have seen the former Ohio State Buckeye wear down defenses and gash teams for big gains. There have also been some fumbles and the question of if Elliott has lost a step. The 2021 season is a big one for the running back who has been handsomely paid by general manager Jerry Jones.

What should fans hold as realistic expectations for Elliott in 2021? That can start with the yardage outlook. Elliott has averaged just about 90 yards per game throughout his career. In the new 17-game season that would put up a tad over 1,500 yards.

If Elliott put up that monster number, I don’t think you will see many fans complain. To get there would require year-long health across the offensive line as well as Elliott himself. This number seems a little high, but not entirely out of the question if Elliott is truly in “the best shape of his life” as reports are saying.

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