Free agent quarterback Dak Prescott was looking for a new contract. That's no secret. It's been closely followed for a while now. A long-term deal is what the Pro Bowl signal caller was ultimately after and it appears the Dallas Cowboys and owner Jerry Jones are willing to break the bank to keep him in The Lone Star State for the foreseeable future.
During the 2020 offseason, the Cowboys reportedly offered Prescott a massive deal of $33 million per year with $105 million guaranteed, according to The Dallas Morning News.
The star signal caller ultimately turned it down and instead got the team's exclusive franchise tag, which paid him more than $30 million during an injury-shortened season last year.
Then, in March 2021, Prescott landed one of the largest deals in NFL history.
Dak Prescott Contract
DAK IS BACK
The #DallasCowboys have agreed to terms on new contract
— Dallas Cowboys (@dallascowboys) March 9, 2021
Despite coming off a gruesome ankle injury, the 27-year-old Dak Prescott and former fourth-round pick in the 2016 NFL Draft out of Mississippi State avoided free agency and got paid in a big-time way.
According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, Prescott's new contract is a four-year deal worth $160 million, including $126 million guaranteed. The deal can be worth up to $164 million.
The $66 million signing bonus is the highest in NFL history, surpassing the likes of Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson and Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
Highest signing bonus in NFL history:
Dak Prescott $66M
Russell Wilson $65M
Aaron Rodgers $57.5M
Matthew Stafford $50M
Matt Ryan $46.5M
Joe Flacco $40M
Aaron Donald $40M
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 9, 2021
Prescott, who made over $4.7 million during his entire four-year rookie contract, according to Spotrac, has instantly become one of the highest-paid players in the league.
That's the market value for a star quarterback these days, so it's understandable why the contract is so massive, but it might not seem worth paying Prescott that kind of money up front.
Prescott puts up impressive stats — nearly 5,000 yards and 30 touchdowns with 11 interceptions through the air in 2019 alone — and is likely entering his prime. However, one NFC playoff win in five seasons isn't anything to write home about and he hasn't proven he can win enough consistently to earn that type of payday, especially coming off an injury against the New York Giants last season.
Add in the fact running back Ezekiel Elliott and wide receiver Amari Cooper just got paid huge bucks last offseason, and it seems like a gamble for three star players from a cap space standpoint alone.
Prescott doesn't have Super Bowl rings like Tom Brady. He's not a perennial MVP-level quarterback like Patrick Mahomes, who signed a massive contract extension in 2020. And who knows how his game will be impacted by head coach Mike McCarthy as well?
The Cowboys wanted Prescott to stay and vice versa. Whether it was going to be three years or a five-year deal, agent Todd France helped make it happen, and Dallas did what it could to avoid a huge salary cap hit.
But is giving Prescott a huge deal right now worth it? Not a chance.
This post was originally published on March 9, 2020, before updating.
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