The Dallas Cowboys would benefit from adding two playmakers on offense to complement CeeDee Lamb and the recently-franchise tagged Tony Pollard.
Dalton Schultz is a free agent after playing on the tag in 2022, and seemingly the only avenue to him returning to the Cowboys for another year was receiving the tag again. Seeing how expensive that would be relative to the affordable $10.09 number for running backs, tagging Pollard was the obvious choice.
It’s looking increasingly likely that Schultz will reach free agency. With Evan Engram off the market after getting tagged by the Jaguars, Schultz is arguably the top tight end on the market and should have a number of suitors.
Could his market be hurt by the loaded 2023 tight end class? Perhaps, but certain teams will prefer a proven commodity over a rookie.
It sure seems like Schultz thinks he’ll capitalize on the open market, because this latest update on his future is pretty mind-blowing.
According to Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer, Schultz has already rejected “a pretty solid multiyear offer” from the Cowboys.
NFL Rumors: Dalton Schultz turned down contract offer from Cowboys
It’s pretty clear Schultz wants to see how he fares on the open market.
For any Cowboys fans scoffing at this report, don’t stand in the way of a player making his money. Tight ends rarely ink two lucrative contracts in their careers. Approaching his age-27 season, Schultz has a prime opportunity to sign a deal that will take him through the rest of is prime and set him up for life.
One could argue he’s already made that much, but if his agency believes he can earn more in free agency relative to what the Cowboys offered then by all means test the market.
All told, this could be a blessing in disguise for Dallas. While Schultz and Dak Prescott have undeniable chemistry, it’s probably in the Cowboys’ best interest not to pay a tight end top-of-the-market money.
Not only are they pressed right against the cap, but they have future deals for CeeDee Lamb, Micah Parsons, and Trevon Diggs to consider. Each of those players will command around $20 million per year if not more.
It would make little sense for Dallas to commit big-time money to a tight end when they could simply draft one of myriad prospects or sign an affordable veteran to share time with the developing Jake Ferguson and Peyton Hendershot.
After all, it was their respective play as rookies this past season that made Schultz expendable in the first place … which makes it surprising the Cowboys even made an offer to Schultz.
At the end of the day, we hope Schultz gets a bag as a free agent. He put together some fine years in Dallas — none better than a breakout 2021 — but this report strongly suggests 2022 was the last of them.