Tuesday is an important day in the NFL as it is the deadline for teams to place the franchise tag on players. We have already seen a few teams exercise the tag this season, including the Cleveland Browns who tagged tight end David Njoku (who by the way once reportedly wanted to be traded to America’s Team).
On Monday the league announced the franchise tag figures and it is $10.9M for tight ends. The Dallas Cowboys are rumored to be in the mix for potentially tagging their own tight end in Dalton Schultz, or they could choose to place it on defensive end Randy Gregory, a value that would be $17.9M.
Obviously the latter value is $7M more which means in a perfect world if you had to use one it would be the less expensive tag. The thing is that the Cowboys have players at both positions set to hit free agency and therefore need to make a choice if they plan on retaining them both.
The Dallas Cowboys reportedly have no plans to place the franchise tag on Randy Gregory and would only place it on Dalton Schultz
The new league year officially begins next Wednesday and that will mark the point in time that any player on an expiring contract “officially” hits the open market. If the Cowboys are unable to lock down whoever they want by then they risk losing them to another team, like they did with Amari Cooper of all people two years ago, although Cooper wound up re-signing.
However things shake out between now and next Wednesday, one thing appears to be known. According to The Dallas Morning News the Cowboys would only place the franchise tag on Dalton Schultz as far as their two most logical options are concerned.
A source tells @dmn_cowboys the Cowboys have no plans to place the franchise tag on Randy Gregory at this time.— Calvin Watkins (@calvinwatkins) March 7, 2022
Again the tag value for tight ends is $10.9M and if the Cowboys choose to do so before the deadline they will immediately be on the hook for that value and would otherwise be so unless they agreed to a long-term extension with Schultz before the summer.
The NFL did also announce the salary cap for this season and it is $208.2M which establishes the ceiling that the Cowboys and every other team has to work with.
Dalton Schultz has been a fine player for the Cowboys, but $10.9M is a big commitment to make to him, especially considering the team is reportedly going to give Michael Gallup a deal that exceeds $10M per year. The front office is in the middle of some questionable decisions and while this isn’t the biggest head-scratcher it would hardly be their most wise utilization of resources.