What a tumultuous offseason it has been for the Dallas Cowboys, especially for long-time defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence. First, Lawrence was set to be a cap casualty due to his large cap hit. Then, he was asked to take a pay cut, which he initially declined. Then, last week, Ed Werder reported that the defender wasn’t “going anywhere.” On Monday, the Cowboys proved Werder was correct.
The team reportedly signed Lawrence to a three-year, $40 million extension. Ian Rapoport said that $30 million of the deal is fully guaranteed. NFL’s Tom Pelissero noted that Lawrence is now the first defensive end in league history to have seven straight seasons of his contract fully guaranteed. Even though he initially declined a pay cut, Lawrence’s restructured contract certainly differed from the $19 million he was set to make before the new deal.
According to Jane Slater, there is a voidable year in the contract, but the important thing is that the new contract saves Dallas millions of dollars. Initially, Lawrence’s paycheck for 2022 was supposed to count as $27 million against the cap. His new $14 million hit against the cap helped save the Cowboys $13 million this year.
Cowboys DE DeMarcus Lawrence reportedly signing three-year, $40 million extension with $30 million guaranteed
Lawrence has been an integral and long-standing presence on the Dallas defense. He has played all eight of his pro years with the Cowboys since they drafted him in the second round of the 2014 NFL Draft. Since then, the defensive end has amassed a total of two interceptions, 17 forced fumbles, 48.5 sacks, 321 total tackles, 74 tackles for loss, and 100 QB hits.
Last season, the Boise State product sustained a broken foot in Week 1 but returned strongly in December. After his injury, he tallied 21 tackles, 3.0 sacks, five passes defended, two forced fumbles, and one interception. He earned himself an impressive PFF grade of 91.0 for last year despite the injury break.
Lawrence is a clear fan favorite that Cowboys Nation will be thrilled to have back. Defensive coordinator Dan Quinn (who Lawrence has repeatedly praised) will also be glad to have a veteran presence return to give the defense some continuity moving into 2022.