The Big Step
Name one player that the Cowboys need to step up in 2020 more than cornerback Chidobe Awuzie. The departure of Byron Jones means Awuzie is the new number one corner. That’s quite an important spot on an NFL roster.
Jones ended up developing into too good of a player that Dallas couldn’t sign him. Awuzie has played quite well since he was given the number two spot in 2018. The one argument against Awuzie was that he wasn’t covering the top cornerbacks.
This season will have a huge impact on the price range of Awuzie’s next contract. If he has even a good season, his contract could be significantly better than it would have been if Jones was still on the team.
With his value now, he can probably fetch a contract around an average of $6 million per season. This would have him tied with Josh Norman for 30th amongst cornerbacks today.
Awuzie is looked at as a number two corner with upside to be a number one corner. After a good season in 2020, he can reach anywhere from $9 million to $10 million on a short-term contract. This would have him within the range of Richard Sherman and Kendall Fuller today.
The reason I think it would be a short-term contract is that I believe Awuzie will want to bet on himself improving, and banking more money on a future contract as he continues to develop. It’s not that far of a reach for a corner that held quarterbacks to under a 60 percent completion percentage since 2018.
An extra $3 million to $4 million is awaiting Awuzie’s contract as a number one corner on the Dallas Cowboys. Can Jerry Jones afford to let Awuzie walk next offseason? He might not have much of a choice than to sign him.
Unless Dallas invests another top pick on a cornerback in the 2021 draft or believes rookie Trevon Diggs can be a year two number one corner, signing Awuzie is a must. Too much needs to go right to continue without him.
While it does not seem like the 2021 offseason will be as crazy as it was in 2020, there are still some key contracts that will need to be addressed. A lot will have to do with Dak’s contract and what is left, but yet again the Cowboys will have an interesting offseason.