Show me the money! Demarcus Lawrence’s payday is coming
This past season was rough for our Dallas Cowboys. Suspensions and injuries hindered their chances making it to the playoffs. One player did, however, have a phenomenal season. Four year veteran defensive end Demarcus Lawrence finished the 2017 NFL season with an impressive 14.5 sacks. He’s the 3rd Cowboys player to get over 14 sacks in one season (Demarcus Ware and Jim Jeffcoat being the other two) . He was also named breakout player of the year by Pro Football Focus.
Lawrence picked the perfect time to have his best season yet. He is going into his unrestricted free agency with the assurance that the Cowboys will not want to risk losing him. Vice President, Stephen Jones stated
We won’t let D-Law not be a Dallas Cowboys next year…We’ll do everything we can to try to make something work, and if we don’t get it done then we’ll franchise him…We’d like to not have that franchise tag hanging out there…but we don’t want Demarcus Lawrence going anywhere.
If Lawrence and the Cowboys don’t come to an agreement on a long-term contract deal by March 6th, they will place the franchise tag on the defensive end to prevent him from hitting the open market. They will then have until July 16th to negotiate a contract. It has been estimated that the franchise tag could cost the Cowboys around $17.5 million.
One aspect of the story that should be noted is who Lawrence’s agent is. David Canter is the south Florida agent representing both Demarcus and Olivier Vernon, defensive end for the NY Giants. Two years ago, Vernon signed a five year, $85 million contract with $52 million guaranteed. One can bet that Lawrence is looking to that deal as a reference. They are planning have contract negotiations next week at the combine in Indianapolis. According to Tom Pelissero of NFL Network, Lawrence is expected to ask for $17 million per year.
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