The Dallas Cowboys know they need to make some moves in order to get over the hump in 2023, but it won’t be easy. They enter the offseason in the negatives on the salary cap which will severely limit them in the offseason.
They’re going to have to make moves in order to get out of the red, and even more to be able to upgrade their roster. With that being said, here are three contracts that are holding them back right now.
3 contracts holding the Dallas Cowboys back right now
3. DeMarcus Lawrence, Defensive End
A second-round pick in 2014, DeMarcus Lawrence has been one of the better defenders for several years now in Dallas. He had another strong campaign in 2022 with 65 tackles and six sacks, earning a trip to the Pro Bowl — his first since 2018.
As good as he is, he’s accounting for far too much money right now.
Entering the offseason, Lawrence counts for $26 million against the cap but they can’t do much at all with that other than restructure him. A release would result in $35 million in dead money and would cost another $9 million against the cap.
They could potentially restructure and save roughly $9 million but that would mean there would be a higher hit down the road and they would still have $17 million tied to Lawrence this season.
This doesn’t mean Lawrence should be gone. He’s still one of the best defensive ends in the entire NFL but his contract could end up holding them back this season from going after any free agents.