Dak Prescott Contract: Salary, Cap Hit, Extension

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Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott (4) throws a pass during an NFL Football game in Arlington, Texas, Sunday, Jan. 14, 2024.
(AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth)
Chase Kiddy @chaseakiddy Feb 01, 2024, 12:59 PM

Dak Prescott’s 2024 contract with the Cowboys might be the most interesting topic in the NFL right now behind Super Bowl results and Taylor Swift mania. 

QB1 in Dallas is scheduled to spawn a gargantuan salary and cap hit in 2024, despite the fact that he just turned in a terrible performance in a home playoff loss to the Packers in the first round of the postseason. Yikes. 

Dallas has some restructuring options that it can execute to mitigate the damage. It could also do something even crazier, like trade the guy that many pundits felt was a short-list MVP candidate this past season. (This is unlikely for several reasons, not the least of which is that Prescott would have to waive his no-trade clause.)

Ultimately, the Dallas front office put itself in this situation by waiting too long to negotiate this contract with Prescott back in 2020-21. That situation handed a lot of leverage to Prescott, ending with the present contract extension whose final-year numbers are titanically large. 

Expect some movement on this soon. 

Dak Prescott Contract

Dak Prescott’s current contract is a four-year, $160 million deal with the final year governing the 2024 season. He signed the deal on March 9, 2021, after playing the 2020 season on a franchise tag worth $31.4 million.

Because Prescott was originally drafted using a fourth-round pick in 2016, there was no team option available for a fifth year in 2020. That lack of additional control set up the franchise tag and subsequent extension negotiation.

Dak Prescott Contract Extension

The most likely path forward for Dallas is a short contract extension, negotiated this offseason in the next few months, that smooths out Prescott’s salary and cap numbers over the next two or three years. 

Dak Prescott Salary

Dak Prescott is scheduled to make a $29 million base salary in 2024. He will collect an additional $5 million in roster bonuses if he’s still with the team on March 17.

Prescott’s base salary has been much skinnier in recent years because he and the Cowboys have continually converted his salary into roster bonus cash in order to create additional team cap room. He ultimately made $1.7 million in base salary in 2023. 

Over the life of this four-year deal, Prescott’s average annual salary has been $40 million. 

Dak Prescott Cap Hit

As presently constructed, Dak Prescott’s cap hit for 2024 currently totals a gigantic $59,455,000, or roughly 25% of the projected 2024 NFL salary cap.

Even by the standards of huge quarterback contracts, this is a large number. Consider Patrick Mahomes’ 2023 cap hit for Chiefs: $37.1 million, or about 16.5% of the overall salary cap. And that’s the fourth-highest cap hit in the history of the NFL!

The unprecedented nature of Prescott’s cap hit will all but force Dallas to take action during the upcoming offseason.

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About the Author

Chase Kiddy

Read More @chaseakiddy

Chase Kiddy is a writer for BetMGM and co-host of The Lion's Edge, an NFL and college football podcast available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and everywhere else. He has also written for a number of print and online outlets, including the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Washington Post, Daily News-Record, and HERO Sports. His first novel, Cave Paintings, is in development.

Chase Kiddy is a writer for BetMGM and co-host of The Lion's Edge, an NFL and college football podcast available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and everywhere else. He has also written for a number of print and online outlets, including the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Washington Post, Daily News-Record, and HERO Sports. His first novel, Cave Paintings, is in development.