As negotiations were told to be “active” between the Dallas Cowboys front office and Dak Prescott, Seattle Seahawks management wrapped up a monumental deal that made their quarterback the highest-paid player in the NFL.
“We have a deal.” A short, but expensive statement delivered to Russell Wilson’s 3.7 million Instagram followers Monday night that landed him a four-year extension worth $140 million and a $65 million signing bonus. Wilson’s $35 million annual salary tops Aaron Rodgers’ average annual salary of $33.5 million as part of the $134 million extension he signed last year with the Green Bay Packers.
As many Seahawks fans celebrated the fact their Super Bowl-winning quarterback was to remain a member of the 12s for the foreseeable future, fans around Dallas were left pondering what exactly this meant for their own quarterback. Prescott, who is consistently compared to Wilson, is due for renewal at the end of the 2019 season. And what was once a hope at a “team-friendly” deal, quickly evaporated once Wilson agreed to remain in Seattle.
However, the Cowboys front office appears to be in a perfect position to land their quarterback on a relatively “bargain-deal”, IF, the two sides can come to an agreement before the season begins. Prescott has found a way to become a polarizing figurehead inside the Cowboy community, even though he has shown to be a proven winner. Though a $30 million price tag may be rich for a few critics, it is a comfortable cap figure the Cowboys can take advantage of this offseason.
|Russell Wilson||$35 million|
|Aaron Rodgers||$33.5 million|
|Matt Ryan||$30 million|
|Kirk Cousins||$28 million|
|Jimmy Garoppolo||$27.5 million|
You take a glance at the top-five highest-paid quarterbacks in the NFL currently and it may be tough to come to terms with Prescott taking up such a large percentage of the salary cap. But, in dedication to Avengers: Endgame, think of the bigger picture. And why it would behoove Dallas to slot Prescott somewhere in the $28-$30 million price range.
|Andrew Luck||$24.5 million|
|Carson Palmer||$24.3 million|
|Drew Brees||$24.2 million|
|Joe Flacco||$22.1 million|
|Aaron Rodgers||$22 million|
Since the time Prescott was drafted in 2016, the highest-paid quarterback’s average salary has risen $11 million with the fifth highest-paid rising a little over $5 million. In 2017, Matt Stafford sat at the top with a yearly average of $27 million before being toppled by Matt Ryan and Aaron Rodgers the following season.
The deal Tony Romo signed before the 2014 season that sent shockwaves through the NFL community and caused immediate backlash towards Owner Jerry Jones paid him an average of $18-$20 million per year. That deal would have been up at the end of the 2019 season and would be now looked at as one of the best bargain deals in the league for the caliber of play you expected from Romo.
If you choose to take the criticisms of Prescott at face value and believe quarterbacks such as Jared Goff, Carson Wentz, Andrew Luck and Patrick Mahomes are of higher status then what they will command on the market will surely continue to increase that desired number for starting quarterbacks.
Prescott could enter the 2019 season as the third highest-paid quarterback. By 2021 he would most likely reside somewhere in the 6-10 range. Wilson’s original deal coming off of his rookie contract netted him $21.9 million/year. Before his recent extension, he sat eighth amongst highest-paid at his position.
Any desire to see Prescott continue his career with the Cowboys will come at a cost. Whether it be by franchise tag or extension, it will cost. And with the quarterback market continuing to grow towards that $40 million number, it seems wise to lock Prescott down as quickly as possible.
It may be the only way.
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