D-Day For Dez Contract
Cowboys COO Stephen Jones tells us to expect the Cowboys to to apply the franchise tag to wide receiver Dez Bryant by Monday’s deadline – but that it only marks the beginning of negotiations that started accelerating again last Tuesday. “I still think that it probably would be a stretch to think that we would have (a “Cowboys For Life” contract) done by Monday and beat the franchise-tag deadline,” Jones said. “It looks like we’re eyeing a franchise tag on Dez, but (that) certainly won’t stop us from working hard to get a long-term deal.”
In fact, while Dallas and Dez were very close to a done deal last October, Bryant’s change of agents slowed the pace – until last Tuesday, when both parties started anew. “Jerry and myself actually had a meeting with Tom Condon, his agent, Tuesday night,” Jones said. “Had a good long visit.”
We’ve predicted that “deadlines make deals” (Jerry’s own oft-spoken words) and Monday is one of those deadlines. But it’s the beginning, not the end. Dallas needs to be cap-compliant on March 10. A long-term deal can be negotiated all the way to July 15 before the tag sticks for the year.
Bryant has expressed unhappiness with the idea of the tag. But we’ve stressed – and Jones made it clear with us – the club is tagging Bryant to buy more negotiating time. “We just don’t want to lose his rights,” said Jones. “We think Dez is a unique player and certainly a big part of what we do in terms of what we’ve done, our success, and certainly going forward.
“We’ve got a long period of time there where we can work, continue to work on doing something long-term for Dez.”