Dallas Cowboys decline option on Henry Melton


We've hit that part of the NFL calendar where teams will be making decisions on the future contracts of players who were on their roster in 2014.

For some, the decision to cut a player will be hastened by a scheduled bonus or money set to become guaranteed if said player remains on the roster past a certain date. For other teams a decision on future options must be determined.

Many option decisions are obvious, as the years were built in to protect the cap or give the team leverage with a borderline player.

One such player is Dallas Cowboys defensive tackle Henry Melton, who had a three-year, $24 million option that would guarantee him $9 million in 2015.

As expected, the Cowboys won't pick up that option, per the Dallas Morning News' Brandon George. Dallas had until Sunday to inform Melton whether or not the option would be picked up. Melton's agent confirmed the news Saturday.

When the Cowboys signed Melton, coming off an ACL injury last offseason, it was readily assumed it would be a one-year deal unless the defensive tackle dominated in 2014.

He did not dominate.

Melton finished with just 15 tackles, five sacks and three starts in 16 games before being shut down prior to the playoffs with a bone bruise in his right knee.

With bigger free agency questions -- Dez Bryant and DeMarco Murray -- the Cowboys' defense will move on with cheaper options.

The latest Around The NFL Podcast welcomes Malcolm Butler to the show and plays a free agency edition of "Who Do You Trust?" Find more Around The NFL content on NFL NOW.