The Dallas Cowboys and Dak Prescott missed the deadline to get a long-term contract solidified in 2020. Neither side seems particularly perturbed about the can-kicking.
After the July 15 deadline passed, Prescott noted he "couldn't be happier" to play for the Cowboys.
In his first comments since the sides failed to strike a multi-year contract, Dallas EVP Stephen Jones likewise suggested talks were amicable.
"We had a great visit with him at the deadline. We pushed to try to have a few more changes here and there to see if we could get it done," Jones told the team's official website. "But he's got such a great outlook on the Dallas Cowboys, our football team, and he's ready to go out and win a Super Bowl, which would only create more value for him, more value for the Cowboys.
"So we're fired up about it and still have nothing but 100 percent belief in Dak and his future with the Cowboys, and that we can ultimately get a deal done. He's special. As Jerry and I have said, we are 110 percent behind him, and ultimately feel like we'll get this done."
Prescott got involved at the deadline to try to strike a deal, NFL Network's Jane Slater reported at the time, but the sides couldn't close. Prescott will play 2020 under the $31.4 million franchise tag before this dance begins anew.
"I don't want to use 'close' in terms of negotiations. You either get a deal done or you don't," Jones said. "We didn't quite get it done. I wouldn't put blame on either side. It's just one of those things, when you're talking about a deal as big as this is -- for our team, not just for Dak but our entire team, the ramifications that it has -- we certainly want to get it done right. I know he's respectful of (owner) Jerry (Jones) and myself of what we're trying to get accomplished, just as we are with him."
Jones admitted the biggest holdup was over the length of the deal. The Cowboys wanted five years, as they've given most of their star players in the past. Dak's camp preferred a four-year pact in order to become a free agent sooner.
Jones also noted that the uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic played a role in negotiations.
"We've never had one quite like it. It's certainly very interesting times when you look at what's going on with having to sit down with the union and negotiate what goes on with the virus when the revenues aren't where they should be," Jones said. "So we had some challenges because it wasn't normal times. Certainly, we've got nothing but respect for Dak and his representation in terms of what they're trying to get out of the deal.
"They certainly want a shorter deal. Historically we have, as management, wanted longer deals because it's more cap friendly and we're able to spread some things out and keep some players. At the end of the day, and Dak understands this, that's what we're trying to do."
With the Cowboys once again able to use the franchise tag on Prescott next year -- for around $37.7 million -- Dallas will have a chance to close on a new long-term deal in 2021, albeit potentially for a much higher price.