• Philip Darrow

CAP Space Analysis: Dallas Cowboys

Twitter: @philip_darrow

The Dallas Cowboys come into 2021 with about $17 million in cap room. Let’s investigate what the future fantasy implications are and what moves they can make with this, while possibly creating more cap room.

The Cowboys already have 61 players under contract except for the most important one in Dak Prescott, to afford his $37.7 million cap hit if they franchise tag him again with no deal in place by March 9th, they will need to make moves early to keep him. Assuming they do nothing with Amari, they can create just under $40 million in cap room with the moves above. If they do anything with Amari it can clear about $54.5 million. In total, they could have about $57 - $71.5 million in cap space which will be useful for Dak’s hit that will take over half of this. (Update: They did restructure both all three of Collins, Smith, and Martin on 3.10.21 before this published and as I expected for the cap savings while keeping the line intact.)

They are being linked to taking a DB at pick 10 which would make the most sense as they need to help that Defense and the secondary was a big culprit of their woes this season. I have seen Jaylon Smith’s name tossed out there as a potential cut candidate, but I think they instead restructure his deal as the switch-in D coordinator and scheme should benefit him to react more in a more natural position for him. If they were to move on from him via cut it would be a post-June 1st move most likely for cap reasons.

QB: Dak is the QB to own unless they go another direction and take a QB in the draft. I think this is highly unlikely since Jerry likes his stars and Dak fits that to a T. (Update: since this was written they locked up Dak with the 4 year up to $164 million with $126 mill guaranteed. He is the QB moving forward.)

RBs: Zeke had his production drop, and you should be able to buy him on a bit of a dip. If you can get him at a discount by someone who worries about his production, then you should. He’s still a top back and once Dak back he will be fine. Tony Pollard is the other back to own as he has shown signs of being productive when Zeke was out, if you are the Zeke owner you should have your handcuff and should be able to part with a 4th likely as his production dipped last year and again you should try to buy on the dip if you own Zeke to protect your investment. Just by himself, Pollard likely has little to no value though without Zeke missing time, if the cowboys were to decide to move on from Zeke, he would be a favorite to replace him, I do not anticipate this happening.

WRs: I would fully expect them to restructure Cooper and keep him around. Gallup is a trade candidate with how well CeeDee played he has become expendable and could get them a draft pick or player to help the defense. If they trade him away, as they do not have the cap space for an extension nor should they with CeeDee and cooper, I would watch for whom they draft to replace him. I would be looking to get Gallup cheaper as people think Cooper and CeeDee will be the guys moving forward and he has been deemed the forgotten player. It likely will cost a mid-2nd for him but to the right place, he would see that value jump quickly. I have heard rumors of the Packers being interested as well as a few other teams and he could see a jump in value when traded to another team. The Cardinals would also be a great fit for him.

TEs: Schultz was a pleasant surprise but Jarwin should be back from his injury and he should be the TE to own. I would reach out to his owner to see if you can get him at a discount as people seem to have forgotten about him. A late 2nd to early 3rd in most leagues should get him. TE premium or 2 TE leagues will cost a little more to likely a mid-2nd. With seeing what Schultz did, Jarwin could produce a top 10 role.

Draft Capital:

  • 1st Round #10

  • 2nd Round #44

  • 3rd Round #75

  • 3rd Round Comp pick #100 (Bryon Jones)

  • 4th Round #116

  • 4th Round Comp pick #139 (Robert Quinn)

  • 5th Round Comp pick #179 (Randall Cobb)

  • 6th Round #192

  • 6th Round Comp pick #227 (Jeff Heath)

  • 7th Round #238