While there has been a lot of speculation that veteran WR Dez Bryant could be a cap casualty this offseason, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones told reporters on Saturday that he expects him to back in Dallas for the 2018 season.
“As we sit right here, yes,” Jones said, per Jon Machota, when asked if he expects Bryant to still be with the Cowboys a year from now.
Jones added that he’s confident he and Bryant can have productive conversations this offseason about his contract. Jon Machota says it’s clear from listening to Jones that h wants Dez to remain a Cowboy and still envisions him as a top receiver.
According to Ian Rapoport, the Cowboys most likely would consider asking Bryant to take a pay cut or do something with the final year of his contract as opposed to releasing him outright. Rapoport adds that moving on from Bryant is likely a “last resort” for Dallas.
Bryant’s production has dropped off in recent years after he signed his big-money extension with the Cowboys, which has led to speculation that he could be a candidate to take a pay reduction this offseason.
Bryant, 29, is a former first-round pick of the Cowboys back in 2010. He’s currently in the third year of his five-year, $70 million contract that included $45 million guaranteed and stands to make base salaries of $12.5 million over the final two years of the agreement.
According to OverTheCap.com, releasing Bryant next year would free up $8.5 million of available cap space while creating $8 million in dead money.
In 2017, Bryant has appeared in 15 games for the Cowboys and has caught 66 passes for 814 yards receiving and six touchdowns. Pro Football Focus has him rated as the No. 45 receiver out of 116 qualifying players.
We’ll have more regarding Bryant as the news is available.