3 ways the Dallas Cowboys afford Jamal Adams without breaking the cap

EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - NOVEMBER 24: Jamal Adams #33 (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
EAST RUTHERFORD, NEW JERSEY - NOVEMBER 24: Jamal Adams #33 (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /
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Dak Prescott #4 of the Dallas Cowboys (Photo by Corey Perrine/Getty Images) /

How the Dallas Cowboys afford Jamal Adams Reason No. 1:

Multi-faceted approach

So let’s say the Dallas Cowboys pull off a trade for Adams. He’s said he will not insist on a new deal right away if he gets traded. So the Dallas Cowboys could easily afford him in 2020 since they still have over $11 million under the salary cap and Adams only costs roughly $7 million this season. Sure, they still have to sign rookies but all these deals are easily digestible under the circumstances.

Next season things get a little trickier. Next season Adams’ cap hit will go up to $9.8 million (per Over the Cap). The Dallas Cowboys have $36,137,251 in free space, but that’s not counting Dak Prescott. If the Cowboys franchise Dak again in 2021, it’ll be to the tune of over $37 million. You can see where the problem is.

Sadly, this is as deep as many in the national media want to go when there’s really a ton of workarounds available to get both players signed.

The first step is to sign Dak Prescott to a long-term deal. Whether that’s a 4-year deal or 5-year deal doesn’t matter, because the Cowboys can convert his base salary and kick it into future years. Some may cry, “but that will create problems down the road!”

It won’t. League revenue and the cap may drop next year because of COVID-19 but when that new TV deal kicks in, the cap will explode. Even if the Dallas Cowboys owe Dak more money on the backend, chances are good it will take up a smaller percentage of the cap that last year or two than it will in Year 1. That’s why pushing money back isn’t as disastrous as some make you believe.

As long as players live up to their deals and stay relatively healthy, teams rarely get in trouble doing this. The Dallas Cowboys can’t do it gratuitously but they can do it – with multiple players. With so many players in their primes and playing on long deals, the Cowboys have a few options (La’el Collins, DeMarcus Lawrence, Zack Martin, etc..).

And for those worried about the cap dropping next season – don’t be. It will be catastrophic for the league so the owners and players won’t hesitate to work out a deal to freeze the cap (which they both can do under the CBA).