Decisions looming for the Cowboys
The Dallas Cowboys have some major offseason moves to consider. DeMarco Murray, and wide receiver Dez Bryant are both up for free agency and both had monster seasons, with Murray leading the National Football League in rushing.
Bryant had over 1300 receiving yards and 16 touchdowns in helping Dallas reach the playoffs, only to be eliminated by the Green Bay Packers on a very questionable catch. Since the season has ended for Dallas, the only major move that they made was to sign their head coach to a 5-year $30 million contract extension. They haven’t been able to make any more moves because the Super Bowl has yet to be played, which is the last game of the NFL season. As soon as that game is over, Dallas has several questions that need to be addressed. Dallas has a little over $7.4 million left in salary cap space for the 2015 season. With such little money projected left in cap space, Dallas has to make big decisions on if they can keep both of their star players, or which one to keep.
DeMarco Murray completely exploded onto the NFL this season with 1845 rushing yards and 13 rushing touchdowns, taking tremendous pressure off of Tony Romo and helping lead Dallas to the NFC East division title. Murray had been on pace to break the single season rushing record before breaking his hand during a game, but still playing with a hard cast on his left hand. Set to become a free agent, Murray has shown that he is worth a good contract because of the great rushing threat he brings to any team. Since breaking into pro football, Murray has gone from a 3rd round draft pick to leading rusher, and should be rewarded for his accomplishments. He helped Tony Romo lead a Dallas offense that beat the 2013 super bowl champion Seattle Seahawks in Seattle’s home stadium, something that has been very rare in recent years. Murray also set an NFL rushing record for most consecutive 100+ yard games to open the NFL season with 8 while breaking the Dallas Cowboys franchise record for 100-yard games with 12.
Dez Bryant solidified himself as one of the best wide receivers in the game. His statistics include 88 receptions for over 1300 yards and 16 touchdowns for this season. Those numbers are similar to the likes of Jordy Nelson and Randall Cobb, Green Bay’s star receivers. Dallas had attempted to sign him to a contract extension before the season started, but nothing came about. Bryant is an unrestricted free agent, meaning that any of the other NFL teams can contact him and offer a contract to him. Considering Bryant’s presence on the field and the way he can turn an offense around, he should be in the range of $14-$16 million a year, with about $9 million guaranteed. There are a number of teams that would love to have as talented a receiver as Bryant, and they would be more than happy to offer him a contract that pays Bryant that type of money. With only $7 million left in cap space for the 2015 season, Dallas has to hope that Bryant will take a hometown discount. However this situation unfolds, both Murray and Bryant are set to make some good money.