Cowboys News: CeeDee Lamb fifth-year option, Terence Steele signs tender

Dec 4, 2022; Arlington, Texas, USA;  Dallas Cowboys wide receiver CeeDee Lamb (88) reacts after
Dec 4, 2022; Arlington, Texas, USA; Dallas Cowboys wide receiver CeeDee Lamb (88) reacts after / Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

It's been quiet on the Dallas Cowboys news front since free agency. There's draft rumors floating around with the NFL Draft taking place next week, but we haven't heard much about current players for multiple weeks running.

There could be another lull post-draft but things could ramp up if the Cowboys indulge in contract negotiations with CeeDee Lamb and Trevon Diggs, whom executive VP Stephen Jones told 105.3 the Fan the team hopes to keep for the foreseeable future.

Diggs could sign before Lamb given he was a second-round pick and therefore has no fifth-year option on his rookie deal. It would be behoove Dallas to get both players signed before the market explodes again, but there's seemingly more urgency with Diggs given he'll hit unrestricted free agency next year.

Before the Cowboys hit the negotiating table with either player -- assuming they haven't started the process already -- they made the easiest decision possible by exercising Lamb's fifth-year option, which Jones confirmed on Friday.

Cowboys exercise WR CeeDee Lamb's fifth-year option, Terence Steele signs RFA tender

The move locks Lamb into a $17.99 million salary for the 2024 season. Under the collective bargaining agreement, Lamb's 2024 salary is now worth the WR transition tag at $17.99 million since he made the Pro Bowl last season.

Some would argue Lamb deserved All-Pro recognition after he ranked in the top six amongst receivers in catches, receiving yards and touchdowns. That is surely in Lamb's future, but hopefully not before he inks a long-term extension with the franchise.

In other Cowboys news, Terence Steele officially signed his restricted free agent tender. The Cowboys placed a second-round tender on Steele earlier this offseason. April 26 is the deadline for Dallas to match any offer Steele receives, but all signs point to Steele remaining with the team for the 2023 season.

Assuming the Cowboys aren't thrown any curveballs before then, Steele signing his tender allows both sides to continue working out a long-term deal.

Jerry and Stephen Jones hinted at moving Steele to left guard next season as a means to get the Cowboys five best offensive linemen on the field.

Most fans understand Steele is best served at right tackle. A long-term extension would send a clear message that Steele is the franchise's RT ... after what many expect to be Tyron Smith's final season in Dallas. That would see Tyler Smith move back to LT and Steele take his rightful place anchoring the right side of the line.

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