Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones better be prepared to open up his bank account in a big way if he wants to retain DeMarcus Lawrence on a long-term deal.
Tom Pelissero of NFL Network reported Thursday that Lawrence wants to be paid like New York Giants pass rusher Olivier Vernon, meaning at least $17 million per year.
The #Cowboys have yet to speak with DeMarcus Lawrence’s agent about a long-term deal. That’ll change next week in Indy, but don’t expect talks to go anywhere unless Dallas offers at least Olivier Vernon money — $17 million a year. @nflnetwork pic.twitter.com/hpXnmgK5lj
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) February 22, 2018
Now, this is interesting because the Cowboys are reportedly already planning on using the franchise tag to secure Lawrence. And funny enough, that number is right around $17 million this year.
Because Lawrence has some red flags (suspended for drug use and has undergone two back surgeries), it seems the prudent plan for Dallas would be to simply tag him and see if he’s capable of performing at a high level two years in a row. Lawrence did finish with 14.5 sacks last year, but he’s tallied a combined nine sacks in his previous three seasons.
It’s going to be interesting to see how Jones and Lawrence’s agent handle negotiations going forward. He’s talented, but in this scribe’s estimation the Cowboys would be foolish to break the bank on a huge deal at this juncture.