Rival GM just baited Jerry Jones into making massive free agency blunder

Dallas Cowboys v Los Angeles Chargers
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The Dallas Cowboys received a huge boost last week when they were awarded more cap space after the NFL announced a $30 million increase of the salary cap. The Cowboys will be equipped with $255.4 million, which is some $8 million more than the initial projections.

In other words, Jerry Jones has no excuse not to spend big in free agency. The idea of landing a upper-echelon defensive tackle is mouthwatering. Even if Chris Jones and Justin Madubuike are unrealistic, someone like Grover Stewart or D.J. Reader would move mountains on the Cowboys defense.

Being that it's NFL Combine week, Dallas has a great opportunity to learn of the availability of impending free agents from other GMs and coaches. On Tuesday, Giants general manager Joe Schoen lended some insight into Saquon Barkley's future in East Rutherford.

Schoen stated the Giants would like Barkley back, but the was clearly posturing. Schoen even dangled the franchise tag as a possibility, but we all know that's not happening after ESPN's Adam Schefter reported otherwise.

It looks increasingly likely that Barkley will test the free agent market, which is essentially baiting Jerry Jones to sign the running back.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones can't take the Saquon Barkley bait

Barkley is a fantastic running back who'd likely make a transformative impact on the Cowboys offense. A two-time Pro Bowler and three-time 1,000-yard rusher, Barkley would bring a power element that Dallas' running game lacked with Tony Pollard last season, especially in the red zone.

Having said that, Barkley just turned 27 years old, which is widely viewed as the age running backs begin to break down. He also has a worrisome injury history, including a torn ACL and multiple ankle sprains. He's missed at least three games in four of six seasons.

Pro Football Focus projects Barkley to sign a three-year, $36.8 million contract with $20.1 million guaranteed. The $12.1 million annual salary would make Barkley the fourth-highest paid running back in the NFL. It's a little higher than Spotrac's projected market value for Barkley ($9.9 million), but both salaries are too pricey for our liking.

That means the Cowboys would be paying Barkley into his 30s. When has that ever worked out for any team? Should we expect Barkley to become more durable as he ages? With already more than 1,200 carries of wear and tear on his body?

Again, Barkley is a great player, but Jerry Jones can't take the bait. The Cowboys are so close to spending responsibly at the position. They're still eating dead money from Ezekiel Elliott's contract, but they're basically out from under that and no longer have $10.01 million committed to Tony Pollard.

Signing Barkley would put Dallas back to square one. This team needs a defensive tackle and linebacker more than it needs a running back, which can be found at any point in the NFL Draft.

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