9:01pm: The Cowboys didn’t bring Smith’s base salary all the way down to the minimum, tweets Todd Archer of ESPN.com, meaning they only converted $10MM into a signing bonus.
7:03pm: Save for the Saints, the Cowboys were set to have the least amount of cap space in the NFL when the new league year begins tomorrow. As they attempt to make moves during free agency to shore up areas of need, they’ve agreed to a contract restructure with left tackle Tyron Smith that will free up more than $8MM in cap room, according to Brandon George of the Dallas Morning News.
Per George, Dallas used a built-in restructuring mechanism attached to Smith’s contract, converting $10.2MM of his $11.039MM 2015 base salary into a signing bonus, creating a savings of $8.16MM. As such, the Cowboys will now have more than $11MM to work with when free agency starts tomorrow afternoon. Smith is in the midst of an eight-year, $109MM extension that contained $40MM guaranteed.
As George writes, the Cowboys could create an additional $12.8MM in space if they chose to restructure quarterback Tony Romo‘s contract. However, the club has already done so in the past, and would prefer not to tweak Romo’s deal again.