Multiple months into the Dak Prescott and Amari Cooper negotiations, and two-plus weeks into Ezekiel Elliott‘s holdout, not much of note has transpired. Jerry Jones said these deals are unlikely to be completed until the team returns from their camp home (Oxnard, Calif.) to Dallas, and the owner offered another timetable Tuesday night.
Jones acknowledged neither the team nor its high-profile extension candidates have created a Week 1 deadline to cut off negotiations (Twitter link via ESPN’s Ed Werder). Jones added one of Dallas’ re-up prospects could sign before the big three. Byron Jones and La’el Collins join Prescott and Cooper as contract-year players, with Jaylon Smith set for 2020 restricted free agency.
Elliott and Jones have not spoken during this holdout, the owner acknowledged (via Werder, on Twitter), adding fuel to the fire of the two-time rushing champion missing regular-season games. A report indicated Elliot will not play into the regular season on his current contract, which runs through 2020.
“I’m not (concerned) in any way,” Jones said, via Calvin Watkins of the Dallas Morning News (on Twitter). “But I certainly know that we’re in a situation where it could be Week 1, of course; it could be Week 2. It could go into the season; that’s the facts. If it doesn’t, it’s probably no harm.”
While executive VP Stephen Jones has mentioned Byron Jones, Collins and Smith, Jerry Jones acknowledged what appears to be a loosely defined hierarchy among the Cowboys’ priorities here. The owner cited DeMarcus Ware‘s 2014 release, which led to two more Pro Bowl seasons in Denver, as an example of previous cap mismanagement allowing a star to depart — one he does not want to repeat amid this contract conundrum.
“I’ve got to realize that I could let a DeMarcus Ware out of here because I don’t have enough money, because I paid it to too many others,” Jones said, via The Athletic’s Jon Machota (on Twitter). “That happened to me. I don’t want that to happen again. And we’ve got some top talent here.”
More variables exist in the Cowboys’ current negotiation matrix, but no resolutions are in sight for the defending NFC East champions.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.