The Dallas Cowboys still have not signed quarterback Dak Prescott to a long-term deal, but a report from NFL Network's Ian Rapoport suggests the franchise plans to retain him for the 2020 season regardless.
Rapoport reported Friday night that he's hearing the Cowboys are "likely" to use the exclusive franchise tag on Prescott for the 2020. That means they'd have to pay him around $33 million. It also means he wouldn't be able to negotiate with other teams.
The $33 million number is calculated as an average of the top five highest-paid quarterbacks in the NFL for this coming season. It's a steep price to pay, but most analysts believe Prescott would make more than that annually if he signed a long-term deal.
Rapoport also reports that the Cowboys will try to work out a deal before it comes to that, but it will be "difficult."
Prescott obviously wants a long-term deal that pays him as one of the top quarterbacks in the NFL, but $33 million for one season isn't a terrible consolation prize.
Prescott threw for 4,902 yards and 30 touchdowns with 11 interceptions this past season. But while his statistics were impressive, the team underachieved. The Cowboys, thought to be a Super Bowl contender when the season started, finished with just an 8-8 record and did not win the NFC East.
With the move, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones would essentially just be tabling the decision on signing Dak to a long-term deal one more season. It'll be interesting to see if it works in his favor.