THURSDAY, 4:58pm: Ware is open to listening to the Cowboys’ proposal, but will be reluctant to shave too much money off his salary, a source tells Clarence Hill of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. If Ware doesn’t accept a pay cut and the Cowboys cut him, the veteran pass rusher expects to draw plenty of interest in free agency.
TUESDAY, 5:04pm: The Cowboys contacted DeMarcus Ware today to let him know they definitely wanted to keep him, but not at $13MM per year, tweets Ian Rapoport of NFL Network (via Twitter). As it stands, Ware would account for a $16MM cap hit in 2014 and is owed $26MM in total between ’14 and ’15.
Ware, once among the NFL’s elite front seven personnel, is on the verge of turning 32 and isn’t the type of game-changing talent that he once was. The linebacker-turned-defensive end is a seven-time Pro Bowler and a four-time First-Team All-Pro, but he clearly lost a step in 2013. As Andrew Cohen of OverTheCap explains, the Cowboys could theoretically keep Ware on board with his current contract thanks to the Sean Lee, Orlando Scandrick, and Tony Romo contract adjustments putting them right around the ~$133MM cap limit. However, it would make much more sense for Dallas to shave a bit off of his deal and put that cash to better use elsewhere.