Take a deep breath everyone. Just because the Dallas Cowboys and Dez Bryant (and his agent) aren’t there yet on the extension, doesn’t mean that it’s time to go into full panic mode. Everyone, including Bryant, fully plan on getting the deal done, and while they’d love to get it done before the 2014 season begins, it’s not the end of the world if it doesn’t happen.
Bryant believes that he should be paid like one of the top wide receivers in the game, for good reason. He puts up elite numbers, and he’s by far one of the most talented receivers in the NFL. In the last two seasons alone Bryant has really started to come into his own by putting up a total of 2,615 yards and 15 touchdowns. He’s the definition of a game-changer, and his ability to grab attention alone from opposing defenses makes every other receivers’ job on the roster a whole lot easier.
So the answer to whether or not we as fans should worry about Bryant and his contract situation, is a simple no. I personally can’t remember a time when the Cowboys have wanted to bring a player back, and they haven’t paid them the price that they are worth. Jerry Jones is a lot of things, but he’s not cheap, and he knows that he needs to pay the players on his roster who can seriously impact the win/loss column. To put it simply, Bryant will 100% impact the Cowboys’ record in the upcoming seasons, and he could be a key to any potential success that the Cowboys have for years to come.
Another question that seems to come up about the contract extension for Bryant is how much he should get paid. Currently, Bryant is still in his rookie contract, and he’s due to make $1.78 million this season. The top wide receivers as of 2014 get paid anywhere from $9.685 million per year (Andre Johnson) to $16.2 million per year (Calvin Johnson). Players who fall in-between those two include Brandon Marshall at $10 million, Vincent Jackson at $11.11 million, Dwayne Bowe at $11.2 million, Mike Wallace at $12 million, Percy Harvin at $12.849 million and Larry Fitzgerald at $16.142 million per year.
As for where we can expect Bryant to fall on that list, I expect to see his deal have an average per year of around $13 million to $14 million. This leaves him just below Fitzgerald and Johnson, but above the rest of the list.
Bryant never had any plans to hold out in order to get his new deal, and he has confidence the deal will get done if he keeps playing well. For all of the issues that seemed to come from Bryant early in his career, he seems to have taken a complete 180 in his off-field approach. While there were issues in the past, one thing that’s never been an issue has been Bryant’s dedication to his team and improving his game each year.
Dez will get his contract, and the Cowboys will keep their man. Don’t worry everyone.