The Dallas Cowboys answered the offseason's largest looming question with a simple announcement Monday.
Dallas announced Monday the franchise has agreed to terms on a new contract with franchise quarterback Dak Prescott. NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Prescott signed a four-year, $160 million deal to stay in Dallas.
The deal has a maximum value of $164 million, including $126 million in guaranteed money, and includes two key details: A no-trade clause, and a no-tag provision. Prescott's deal averages to $42 million a year over the first three seasons with $75 million in the first season and a $66 million signing bonus.
After Prescott, 27, played under the franchise tag in 2020 and suffered a gruesome, season-ending injury, many wondered whether Dallas would be able to strike a long-term deal with Prescott and avoid placing the tag on him once again, or potentially run the risk of losing him outright if they opted to avoid using the tag. The new deal answers the Cowboys' looming uncertainty under center, and disconnects the constantly churning rumor mill related to Prescott's contractual status that has been running since the 2019 offseason.
As the Cowboys learned from their games played without Prescott in 2020, he's not just incredibly valuable, but essential. Prescott was on pace to break the all-time single-season passing record before breaking his ankle in Week 5, and the Cowboys' offense suffered drastically as a result, going from a unit that was scoring 32.6 points per game with Prescott to 21.1 without him, and underscoring Prescott's importance to the franchise's chances of success.
Every skilled position player statistically suffered from the loss of Prescott, who had reset the mark for the most passing yards in the first four games of a season in the Super Bowl era with 1,690. Dallas' offense was the only thing keeping it competitive, and once the Cowboys lost Prescott, their ship capsized.
With their boat captain now locked up for the next four years, the Cowboys can proceed full speed ahead. The two-time Pro Bowler is staying in Dallas for the long haul.