3 reasons the Cowboys need to pay Dak Prescott this offseason

Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys

Dak Prescott, Dallas Cowboys. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

The Dallas Cowboys need to figure out what they’re doing with quarterback Dak Prescott. Here are three reasons they need to pay him this offseason.

Are the Dallas Cowboys going to pay starting quarterback Dak Prescott or not? “America’s Team” has slapped the two-time Pro Bowl signal-caller with the franchise tag ahead of his fifth season in the league. Prescott has never made big money before, as he was drafted by the Cowboys in the fourth round of the 2016 NFL Draft out of Mississippi State University.

Though the two other star quarterbacks from that draft in Jared Goff of the Los Angeles Rams and Carson Wentz of the Philadelphia Eagles have gotten extensions, Prescott’s future with the Cowboys only extends through 2020 at present time. His camp wants at least $35 million annually on a four-year deal. That’s roughly $4 million above what he’ll make on the franchise tag.

Dallas has gone about this the wrong way the entire time. The Cowboys have paid almost anyone of note on the roster ahead of Prescott, including draft classmate Ezekiel Elliott, who already got first-round money as the No. 4 pick in the 2016 NFL Draft. So are the Cowboys going to pay him what he’s worth or give him the Kirk Cousins treatment like the rival Washington Redskins did?

Here are three reasons the Cowboys need to pay Prescott this offseason before it’s too late.

3. Prescott’s new contract will look less imposing over time

If the Cowboys were to come to an agreement with Prescott’s representation on a deal earning him somewhere between $35 million and $37.5 million in annual salary, it’ll look less daunting in a matter of months. Should this annual number be in the ballpark of what Russell Wilson makes with the Seattle Seahawks, that should suffice for Prescott’s camp in his first bite at the apple.

As soon as the Cowboys pay Prescott, it’ll be like a new car depreciating as soon as it is driven off the lot. In the coming years, top quarterbacks like Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs, Deshaun Watson of the Houston Texans and Lamar Jackson of the Baltimore Ravens are all going to have to get paid handsomely. $37.5 million annually will begin to look like chump change.

Prescott is young enough to help give the Cowboys a second Super Bowl window well after this current collection of players’ competitive viability runs out. Think of how the Seahawks have re-emerged behind Wilson in his early 30s, despite a few relative down years for the franchise recently. With a top-12 quarterback in the league, you an always remain Super Bowl viable.

The Cowboys knew this day of reckoning was coming. Prescott has been underpaid for years now and the rent is due on his contract. The Cowboys don’t want to go into a six-year quagmire like they did between Troy Aikman and Tony Romo in the early 2000s. By paying Prescott before Mahomes, Watson or Jackson, it only saves “America’s Team” money down the line.

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