12 June, 2023
The Cowboys dismissed Ezekiel Elliott over three months ago; it was a necessary bookkeeping move that no doubt wasn’t enjoyable for the powers that be. Jerry Jones, the owner and general manager of the Cowboys, is about to reap the benefits of cutting a franchise favorite, despite how painful it may have been for him to do so.
Elliott was listed as a post-June 1 cut even though the move was made back in March. In essence, this implies that the Cowboys could divide his $16.7 million cap charge over two years, minimizing the blow of his release while releasing $10.9 million in salary space. The discounts are only accessible until the transaction has been approved on June 1, which is the only catch to the arrangement.
The long wait is over, and the windfall has come. Now that the Cowboys have an additional $10.9 million in cap space to add to their previous $10.5 million, just five or six NFL teams have more money to spend than their estimated $21 million.
There is a ton of cap room for the Cowboys. They will also incur a considerable amount of expenses. Trevon Diggs is approaching the end of his rookie deal with an eye toward a potential extension. In 2024, a number of notable starters, including Terence Steele, Jayron Kearse, and Tyler Biadasz, will become free agents.
The truly expensive products are the next. CeeDee Lamb is likely to get a significant extension even though his current contract only has two years left on it. By the time Micah Parsons becomes eligible to negotiate in a year, he might be teasing a record sum of money. Of course, there is also Dak Prescott, whose contract extension by the organization has been discussed publicly.
What may the Cowboys’ contract extensions for Trevon Diggs and CeeDee Lamb look like?
There are many things you may buy with that extra cash, even if you ignore the day-to-day costs that arise throughout a season.
If the cost is acceptable to the Cowboys, maybe some of it will still go toward Hopkins or someone similar. Dallas has demonstrated a willingness to sign prominent veterans, if the cost is reasonable. They bought Everson Griffen in 2020 for under $3 million in guarantees. They hired Anthony Barr only last summer for $2 million. Remember that the Houston Texans had to agree to pay one-third of Brandin Cooks’ $18 million salary before they would trade for him this spring.
Even if they have money to burn, the Cowboys won’t likely be the highest bidders even though they are willing to get Pro Bowlers at a price.
Hopkins in particular, so that’s not always a bad thing. As previously mentioned, Lamb will shortly break the bank, and Michael Gallup has already arrived at the location to close a $57 million purchase. It’s okay if the Cowboys don’t want to overpay for a receiver who turns 31 next week given that Cooks is under contract for two more seasons.
The safe bet is that the Cowboys will continue to bolster their roster this summer, even if it doesn’t involve a Hopkins-caliber player. Griffen and Barr were signed during training camp, and Jason Peters did so right before the start of the previous year. It’s inevitable that the front office will at the very least sign another kicker.
What transpires thereafter with the extra cap space? Quite a bit, although perhaps not in the way you were hoping.