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Cowboys free agency 2022: Dallas’ initial offer to DeMarcus Lawrence was a 1-year, $10M deal

The Cowboys played hardball with DeMarcus Lawrence in the beginning.

NFL: Washington Football Team at Dallas Cowboys Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

This week started off strong for the Dallas Cowboys when they negotiated a new deal with top pass rusher DeMarcus Lawrence. He is going to be sticking around this football team and that is what matters most.

At the time of this post’s writing,the Cowboys are one of the only teams in the NFL who has yet to sign an outside free agent. If you have been paying attention to this club for some time then this isn’t exactly breaking news to you. Dallas likes their guys and likes to prioritize their guys.

We have seen the Cowboys live this out through the legal tampering period. They have brought back Dalton Schultz, Michael Gallup, Noah Brown, Malik Hooker, Jeremy Sprinkle, and DeMarcus Lawrence (even though he wasn’t a free agent). They deserve credit for those things, the Randy Gregory situation was certainly unique, but it seems like the Lawrence deal almost didn’t come to be which might have made people feel differently.

The Cowboys’ initial offer to DeMarcus Lawrence was a 1-year, $10M deal

All told Lawrence’s new deal with the Cowboys came down to $40M for three years. The particulars of it are interesting, but that is the deal on its surface.

What is notable about the deal is that Lawrence is netting $30M guaranteed which is obviously a huge win for him. There were clearly negotiations that went back and forth which led to him landing there, improving the Cowboys’ cap situation in the process, but apparently the initial offer from the team was one to scoff at. Dallas reportedly offered Lawrence a 1-year, $10M deal at the beginning according to Lawrence himself.

Bryant McFadden: Hey Tank, what was the first number?

DeMarcus Lawrence: You don’t want to know, man. It’s disrespectful. I feel like it’s disrespectful to me and also disrespectful for what I done did for the Dallas Cowboys.

Bryant McFadden: Well shoot, we know what you finally got. So let us hear the number. What that number was?

DeMarcus Lawrence: 1 year, $10 million dollars.

Lawrence goes on to explain that he responded that he was thankful to the Cowboys for everything that they had done for him at that point in time, but that it (at the time of that initial offer) was best for them to go their separate ways. He even says that he asked to be cut.

Lawrence adds that at that point Stephen Jones said he would take his offer to Jerry Jones to see what he says but that Stephen was “pretty sure” Jerry was going to be “pissed” about it because Jerry had just given DeMarcus $65M. Lawrence says that he responded by saying that he earned everything and wasn’t given anything and that he was actually in the middle of a process to help the team out by alleviating their salary cap situation. He adds that he wanted to get the deal done so that the team could have a fruitful free agency, one that included him being around, so that the team could achieve success together in 2022.

Again, the deal got done and that is what matters most, but it is certainly a bit concerning to hear how low the Cowboys initially came in with someone who has been among their better players as of late. Business is business and the team has to look out for themselves, but there is a logical point of reason that they cannot go past. Not to re-litigate the Randy Gregory situation, but “respect” was a common theme throughout it according to multiple reports and on Wednesday there was a seemingly-ominous tweet from free agent safety Jayron Kearse about how “respect is golden.”

Tank is back, but hopefully this is a lesson learned.