FRISCO - Amid a great deal of speculation regarding the Dallas Cowboys' contractual future of Jaylon Smith, the most weighty opinion, it seems to us, should come from ...
So, have the Cowboys - who absolutely need to make some headline-worthy moves in order to accommodate whatever their contract plans are with QB Dak Prescott - approached Smith about a restructure or something even more drastic?
"No sir,'' Smith tells CowboysSI.com. They have not.''
By our calculations, Dallas presently has $14 million of room. The Cowboys do not need to be cap-compliant yet. But whether Dak is tagged (at $37.7 million) or even gets a new deal before March 9 (with a possibly favorable low 2021 cap impact of $17 million), space is needed.
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That could come with a restructure of the contracts of players like Amari Cooper, DeMarcus Lawrence, Zack Martin and Ezekiel Elliott.
But Jaylon has no indication that room will come from the slicing of his contract ... or the slicing of his presence from the Dallas roster altogether.
Smith is aware of the public criticism of his level of play in 2020, when he led the Cowboys with 154 tackles, a top-five NFL total, but in the minds of some, didn't live up to his contract.
That contract, a six-year extension, is worth $68 mil total and in 2021 counts $9.8 mil. Dallas does have time to change its mind here, as March 21 marks the NFL day on which Smith’s 2021 base salary of $7.2 million becomes fully guaranteed.
But the Cowboys have a position, publicly and privately, of support for Jaylon.
“The fact that he lines up every day, the fact that he practices hard every day, plays hard, I thought he gave us some big-time, productive games,” coach Mike McCarthy says. “I just love his approach and the way he’s gone about it.”
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