According to Cole, the Cowboys aren’t budging from their long-term contract offer that includes $20 million guaranteed and subsequent guarantees later on.
Cole mentions that Dallas’ stance stems from their belief that Dez is ultimately bluffing about sitting out of Week 1’s game. Beyond that, the Cowboys reportedly believe Bryant needs the money and will utlimately sign his franchise tender or a long-term deal.
The fact that Bryant has been around the Cowboys’ camp this offseason further suggests that he’s bluffing about a hold out.
Interestingly enough, Mike Fisher of 105.3 The Fan reported earlier in the week the Cowboys are “very optimistic” about having an agreement in place with Bryant after July 4.
- Fisher mentions that the two parties are comfortable enough with the ongoing contract talks that they’re willing to take a break for holiday weekend.
- Dallas management is reportedly concerned about the negative impact that could be created by allowing Bryant to play out the year under the franchise tag while he leads a contending team, per Fisher.
It’s worth stressing that there is no agreement in place right now, and the team may not have an announcement prepared for next week, but it sounds there are some mixed signals being relayed to the media.
Dallas used their franchise tag on Bryant a few months ago, which means they’re looking at paying him a salary of $12.823 million fully guaranteed for the 2015 season. A long-term extension would offer them some immediate cap relief, but all indications have been that the Cowboys are approaching this situation with a great deal of caution.
Bryant, 26, caught 88 passes for 1,320 yards receiving and 16 touchdowns over the course of 16 games for Dallas last year. Pro Football Focus has Bryant rated as the No. 2 wide receiver in the league.