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Cowboys contract rumors: Amari Cooper has shockingly high demands, Dak Prescott likely to join exclusive club

The Cowboys front office might not get much of a break this offseason and that’s because it’s got two big contract extensions it’s hoping to get hammered out before the start of the 2019 season. 

Those extensions are with Amari Cooper and Dak Prescott, and apparently, one negotiation is going much better than the other one. According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, negotiations with Cooper have gotten off to a slow start because the receiver’s demands were “deemed shockingly high” by the team, which is saying a lot, because it appears the Cowboys went into negotiations expecting to pay Cooper at least $16 million per season in his new deal. 

As things currently stand, Cooper is headed into the option year of his rookie deal, which is scheduled to pay him $13.9 million in 2019. If $16 million per year isn’t good enough for Cooper, it’s possible that he wants Odell Beckham-level money. Beckham’s contract pays him an average of $18 million per season, which is the highest number in the NFL by far, as no other receiver is even making $17 million per year. 

If Cooper ends up getting $16.8 million per season, that would make him the second-highest paid receiver as far as average annual salary, but if he has “shockingly high” demands, it might mean he’s hoping to shoot past that number. 

As for Prescott, it seems negotiations are going a little bit better on that front. For one, it sounds like the Cowboys are expecting to give him at least $30 million per year, according to the Star-Telegram. If that happens, Prescott would join an exclusive club of quarterbacks at the $30 million per year mark that includes only Russell Wilson, Ben Roethlisberger, Aaron Rodgers and Matt Ryan

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones was asked about negotiations with Prescott on Monday and he sounded pretty optimistic that a deal would get done soon.  

“I’m confident we’ll get this done. We’re sold on Dak,” Jones said on The Rich Eisen Show. “We do want to have him for the long term. We think he’s worthy of investing in for the long term. He’s going into his fourth year now in the NFL. When you look at the snaps he’s had, when you look at the the situations he’s been in. When you look at, first of all, how he got here and you see, really, how he’s performed. We see real upside in Dak.”

Whatever Prescott ends up getting, it will be a huge raise. As a fourth-round pick, Prescott has made a total of only $1.62 million through the first three seasons of his career (Just to be clear, that’s all three seasons combined). Although he’s scheduled to make $2.025 million in 2019 as part of the final year of his contract, it’s nowhere near the $30 million he could be getting if the two sides work out an extension. 

The reason Jones is more than happy to write a huge check to Prescott is because the Cowboys owner feels that his quarterback hasn’t even begun to scratch the surface of his talent. 

“You don’t have it all yet,” Jones said. “We love the way that he, I’m going to use the word ‘logically progresses’ through a game. You see when the going gets tough or you see when he’s got to come from behind, when he kind of turns it loose a little bit, you see him make those plays. All of those things embolden me to make a deal with him that puts him here for the long term.”

The Cowboys front office has definitely been busy when it comes to contract negotiations. The Cowboys have already hammered out one extension this offseason (Demarcus Lawrence) and even if they get a deal done with Cooper and Prescott, they won’t really get a break. After the 2019 season, the team will need to work out an extension with Ezekiel Elliott, who has a contract that’s set to expire after the 2020 season. 

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