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Sunday, January 26, 2020

Dak Prescott

Dak Prescott has high praise for Dallas Cowboys’ defense

Dak Prescott

Dak Prescott is giving the Dallas Cowboys’ defense the ultimate endorsement.

Prescott has spoken highly of the Cowboys’ defense throughout training camp. He continued to praise them after they shut out the Houston Texans during the team’s 34-0 preseason win on Saturday night, calling them “tough.”

As reporter Jon Machota shared, the Cowboys’ starting defense has played eight series during the preseason and forced one fumble and six punts. The touchdown they allowed came off a turnover.

If they are good enough to give Prescott and the Dallas offense fits, chances are they will prove to be trouble for the rest of the league. That would be a continuation of last year’s trend where the defense ranked sixth in points allowed and seventh in yards. The only thing that might really hold them back this year is Ezekiel Elliott’s contract situation.

Dak Prescott shares how he tunes out contract distractions

Dak Prescott

Dak Prescott has dealt with plenty of distractions throughout training camp. He, Ezekiel Elliott and Amari Cooper all have contract matters the Dallas Cowboys need to address. Elliott has been in Mexico during his training camp holdout. Prescott has been in camp, though he’s been faced with plenty of questions and rumors.

During Saturday’s preseason game against the Houston Texans, Prescott conducted an interview on the sidelines and was asked how he maintains focus amid the distractions.

“I love this game, and there’s so much that the game of football brings with itself. If you give your focus and all your attention to that, it’s easy to block all the other stuff out. It doesn’t meant anything; it’s just a distraction. I control my destiny, I control what I do, and that’s what it’s about for me,” Prescott said.

Prescott, who at just over $2 million salary this season, is one of the biggest bargains in the league. He is in the final season of his rookie contract and reportedly seeking at least $30 million. One report saying he wanted $40 million led to ridicule from many, which isn’t easy for any player to handle.

The 26-year-old former fourth-round draft pick has thrown for 67 touchdowns and 25 interceptions during his NFL career. The Cowboys have gone 32-16 over his three seasons as a starter.

Jerry Jones: Dak Prescott is in ‘top tier’ of NFL quarterbacks

Jerry Jones

The Dallas Cowboys and Dak Prescott have not been able to come to an agreement on a contract for the quarterback, but that’s not due to a lack of confidence from the team in Prescott’s ability.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones spoke about Prescott’s contract status. The owner said the Cowboys do not doubt what Dak can do, unlike others who say he is not worthy of being paid like a top-tier QB.

“Again, coming up on the money is really not that issue with Dak,” Jones said via the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “A lot of people question whether Dak is one of the guys who need to be in the top tier. I have never questioned that. That is what this is showing you. I don’t think there is any doubt that he is at the top level of paid quarterbacks. There is no question in my mind about that. Now how we make this all fit to have the best team around him, that is what we are trying to work on.”

A report just over a week ago said Prescott turned down a contract offer from the Cowboys that would have paid him over $30 million per season. Terms of the offer, such as the ever-important issue of guaranteed money, were not reported. That was followed up by a report saying Prescott was seeking $40 million, though that report was shot down.

The Star-Telegram’s Clarence Hill Jr. says there is “no question” Prescott turned down a deal from the Cowboys for $30 million per season.

Prescott, who was taken in the fourth round by the Cowboys in 2016, is set to make just over $2 million this season, making him one of the biggest bargains in the league. However, he’s set to be a free agent after the season, and the Cowboys would prefer to work out a long-term deal with him.

Report: Dak Prescott seeking $40 million from Cowboys

Dak Prescott

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott is playing hardball over his new contract and was willing to turn down $30 million, but now we know what he actually wants.

According to Jane Slater of NFL Network, Prescott is seeking $40 million annually from the Cowboys, which would comfortably make him the NFL’s highest-paid quarterback in terms of annual value.

ProFootballTalk’s Mike Florio, however, reported that this was false by any standard.

The $30 million average annual salary would have put Prescott in the top five of NFL quarterback salaries, tied with Atlanta’s Matt Ryan.

Dallas is in a tough spot contract-wise. They have three key offensive players who either want or need new deals, and Dallas has reportedly made competitive offers for all of them. This report would seem to bear that out — $30 million would certainly count as solid offer for Prescott, even if he doesn’t want it.

Report: Dak Prescott turned down $30 million per year from Cowboys

Dak Prescott

Dak Prescott is one of several core players the Dallas Cowboys have been negotiating a long-term contract extension with leading up to the season, and apparently the quarterback has some significant demands.

Michael Lombardi of The Athletic reported on Sunday that he has been told Prescott turned down an offer from the Cowboys that would have paid him somewhere in the neighborhood of $30 million annually. That would place him among the five highest-paid quarterbacks in football.

The average annual value of a contract doesn’t tell the whole story, so it’s possible the Cowboys offered Prescott a deal that he felt did not include enough guaranteed money. Still, he may have to lower his expectations if he thinks he’s going to make as much as guys like Aaron Rodgers, Ben Roethlisberger and Matt Ryan.

While Prescott’s career completion percentage of 66.1 and passer rating of 96.0 are above average, his rookie season in 2016 — when threw 23 touchdown passes compared to just four interceptions — was by far his best. Very few people would argue he is a top-five NFL quarterback, so you can understand why the Cowboys might be hoping he will take less. They also still have to pay Ezekiel Elliott and Amari Cooper, and Prescott could help them keep those offensive pieces together by signing a team-friendly deal.

Judging by what he has said about the upcoming season, it’s possible Prescott is comfortable betting on himself and playing out his deal.

Report: Cowboys have made ‘generous’ offers to Elliott, Prescott, Cooper

Dak Prescott

The Dallas Cowboys are willing to make each of their key offensive skill players among the highest-paid at their respective positions, and they are said to have made respectable offers to all three of them.

The Cowboys have made what they feel are “generous” contract offers to Ezekiel Elliott, Dak Prescott and Amari Cooper, according to Jane Slater of NFL Network. The long-term extension offers would reportedly place each of the players in the top five highest-paid at their positions.

Elliott is almost certainly seeking to become the highest-paid running back in football, and he can make a case for that after he averaged 4.7 yards per carry and scored 34 total touchdowns in his first three NFL seasons. He also racked up more than 2,000 total yards from scrimmage last year as the clear focal point of the Cowboys’ offense.

Determining the market value of Prescott and Cooper could be a bit more difficult, and paying them as top five players sounds more than reasonable. Cooper provided Dallas with a huge spark when they acquired him in a trade last season, catching 53 passes for 725 yards and six touchdowns in just nine games with the Cowboys. However, he’s not Michael Thomas, Julio Jones or Odell Beckham Jr.

Prescott is in a similar situation. While his career completion percentage of 66.1 and passer rating of 96.0 are above average, his rookie season in 2016 — when threw 23 touchdown passes compared to just four interceptions — was by far his best. Very few people would argue that he deserves to be paid like Aaron Rodgers.

While Prescott and Cooper are both entering contract years, Elliott seems like he is by far the most desperate for a new deal and is willing to go to extreme measures to get it. It may not be likely that the Cowboys will lock up all three players long-term before Week 1, but we wouldn’t rule it out.

Dak Prescott: Ezekiel Elliott texts daily during holdout

Ezekiel Elliott

Ezekiel Elliott is out of sight from the Dallas Cowboys, but not out of mind.

Quarterback Dak Prescott says that Elliott texts him daily as the running back holds out in search of a new contract. Prescott added that Elliott is doing work away from training camp.

At last report, Elliott was off to Mexico as he avoided Dallas’ training camp. There don’t seem to be any hard feelings between him and Prescott as the running back does what he feels he needs to do. Ownership is not happy, but things may change come Aug. 6 when Elliott needs to report to accrue a year towards free agency.