Donovan McNabb thinks Cowboys need to pay Dak Prescott now

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Donovan McNabb thinks the Dallas Cowboys could make a very costly mistake by not paying Dak Prescott right now.

The retired former Eagles quarterback was the latest player to weigh in on Prescott’s ongoing contract war and McNabb laid out why it would be foolish to not lock him down now — before the quarterback market becomes even more expensive.

“Pay the man,” McNabb said on the “Last Stand Podcast.” “Pay the man because I’m going to tell you one thing —  you franchise him, say he has half Jameis Winston’s season and y’all make it to the NFC Championship Game or second round of the playoffs. And he passes for 5,000 yards, 35 touchdowns and maybe about 12 to 13 picks. You know how much money he’s going to ask for?”

The Cowboys’ 2016 fourth rounder has earned an average of $1 million per year and is looking for a massive pay bump after four strong seasons in the league.

But Prescott has been negotiating for months on a long-term deal to no avail. In that time, the Cowboys made deals with with studs Amari Cooper, Ezekiel Elliott, Jaylon Smith and Demarcus Lawrence, as well as former Bengals QB Andy Dalton.

Dak Prescott and Donovan McNabb
Dak Prescott and Donovan McNabbGetty Images

The Cowboys are rumored to have offered the 26-year-old Prescott a five-year, $35 million-per-year deal with $106 million guaranteed which would make him the “highest paid player in the history of football,” according to Cowboys’ insider Mike Fischer.

However, former Cowboys edge rusher Marcus Spears and ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith raised the possibility that the contract could be too-good-to-be-true.

“I’ve never known a guy to fight over a year if he’s going to get $100 million guaranteed,” Spears said on “Get Up” on Monday morning. “Out of every contract we’ve watched get done … there was not this delay. There was not this many players being signed to the team before the quarterback being signed. There was not a nine-year starter signed as a backup. All of this stuff! And we keep watching it like they’ll go about normal business and they’ll get the deal done. This ain’t normal!”

“This has me on high alert. It’s really raised my proverbial eyebrow,” Smith said. “I don’t understand with the exceptional, exceptional NFL analysts we have all over the place or NFL insiders why someone has not been able to tell us the amount of guaranteed dollars that Dak Prescott has been offered. Because I gotta believe that’s what this is about. Nothing else makes any sense for this go be going on for a year now the way that it has.”

If the July 15 deadline passes, Prescott would play under the one-year franchise tender for 2020 and the Cowboys would be left with two expensive options come 2021: Either suspend negotiations until next year and try again, or franchise tag their quarterback for another year.

“You think it’s a problem now. It’s going to be a major problem if Deshaun Watson and Patrick Mahomes sign their contracts,” McNabb added.

Watson and Mahomes were both drafted in the first round of the 2017 NFL Draft a year after Prescott and will be in the market for their own massive paydays soon.


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