East Notes: Cowboys, Prescott, Patriots

As a former fourth-round pick who is still on his rookie contract, Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott has one of the most team-friendly deals in the NFL. He has taken notice of the big money deals given to Matt Ryan ($30MM/year), Jimmy Garoppolo ($27.5MM/year) and Matthew Stafford ($27MM/year), but he says he’s staying patient at the same time.

I know if I play well, they’ll take care of me,” said Prescott on SiriusXM (via the Dallas News). “It’s just part of it. All these guys out here getting these contracts, they’re getting them deservedly so because of the way that they’ve been playing. My [focus] this year is just winning games. That’s my main goal. That’s really my only goal, not any individual success or numbers or worry about the contract. It’s about going in and winning enough games to get us to the playoffs and then winning one game at a time at that point. The rest of the stuff will come.”

Prescott is entering the third year of a four-year rookie contract that pays him $681K annually. The fifth-year option will not be available to the Cowboys when his deal expires after the 2019 season, but the team – in theory – could control him for at least another two years via the franchise tag. Both sides, ideally, would like to hammer out an extension between now and ’19 that would provide security to Prescott while giving the Cowboys cost certainty.

Here’s more from the East divisions:

  • The Patriots trading for Seahawks safety Earl Thomas doesn’t seem terribly likely, but Mike Reiss of ESPN.com notes that the Pats often utilize the “Big Nickel” package, which could lead them to at least consider a deal. The Big Nickel allows a defense to add an extra defensive back who can support the passing game while also helping out against the run as a linebacker type. The Pats already have a solid top three at safety with Devin McCourty, Patrick Chung, and Duron Harmon, but adding Thomas to the mix would give them additional depth and more options to work with as they look to keep up with the league’s best aerial attacks.
  • Dolphins wide receiver Leonte Carroo could be on the roster bubble after having just seven catches for 69 yards last season, ESPN.com’s Mike Rodak writes. The departure of Jarvis Landry, in theory, could open up an opportunity for him, but he’ll have to stand out in a group that now includes free agent pickups Danny Amendola and Albert Wilson. Meanwhile, DeVante Parker and Kenny Stills are also in line for playing time and 2017 seventh-round pick Isaiah Ford has impressed this offseason, which could push Carroo out of the picture.
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