The Dallas Cowboys have plenty of cap space available but with a whopping 30 free agents, here are three players whose roster spots could be in jeopardy.
The Dallas Cowboys have the fifth most amount of salary cap space entering the offseason at just under $80 million dollars. But America’s Team also has 24 unrestricted free agents scheduled to hit the open market when free agency starts in March.
But here are three moves that could provide the Cowboys with just enough flexibility to possibly keep a player they might not have thought they could.
Defensive tackle Tyrone Crawford is at the top of my list. Back in 2015, the Cowboys tried to get ahead of the curve and lock him up to a contract extension before his production and price went up and it backfired. Crawford is a good player just not the type of player that should command the type of money he is due to earn.
With a $9.1 million cap number and $8 million in savings, the $1.1 million in dead money justify the calls for Crawford’s release. It was tweeted by Calvin Watkins of the Dallas Morning News that the eight-year veteran would be open to a pay cut. For an aging defensive tackle coming off a season-ending hip injury, it seems Crawford sees the writing on the wall.
Punter Chris Jones is another veteran who could see the door this offseason. With an underwhelming 2019 performance where his 41.6 yards per punt was good enough for 34th in the league, the ninth year veteran should at the very least have serious competition heading into training camp.
Releasing the left-footed punter would create $1.4 million in cap space yet leaves $1 million in dead money. I admit that this is not a huge return in the finance department but it could send a message to the rest of the team.
Tackle Cameron Fleming is another interesting cap casualty option. Before Fleming arrived the Cowboys had tons of protection issues whenever their All-Pro left tackle Tyron Smith would miss any kind of game action.
Fleming somewhat stabilized the swing tackle position although releasing the primary backup could net the Cowboys $4.5 million in cap space while only leaving $750,000 in dead money. I believe the new coaching staff will be able to find a replacement at a substantially lower cost.
With three moves the Dallas Cowboys can create an additional $13.9 million in salary cap space. That number is eerily close to the average annual amount for the top five cornerbacks in the league this past year. Will the new coaching staff prefer to keep these three players? Or will they cut them to keep one specific person?