2020 NFL free agency: Dak Prescott contract talks continue, Cowboys issue tender to Cooper Rush

As if the Dallas Cowboys didn’t already have enough on their offseason plate, they must now figure out how to help combat the spread of coronavirus, and aren’t entirely sure if the NFL will decide to push back the start of free agency because of what is now a global pandemic. No changes have been made just yet — other than the cancellation of the NFL Annual Meeting — and the Cowboys are currently enjoying more time to negotiate with both Dak Prescott and Amari Cooper, by virtue of the tag deadline having been moved to March 16. 

While all of that sorts itself out, they’ve continued working through less complex deals, and that now includes the one on backup Cooper Rush. Sources confirmed to CBS Sports in February that the Cowboys intended to issue a tender on Rush, who is a restricted free agent this offseason, and that trigger has now been pulled. The team reportedly tendered Rush on Thursday ahead of free agency, per Field Yates of ESPN, which will pay him $2.14 million in 2020. 

The presence of Rush this offseason will be key if contract negotiation with Prescott takes longer than either side would like — the two-time Pro Bowler making it clear he’ll likely not report to offseason workouts until a long-term deal is finalized. Absent Prescott, Rush will get first-team reps which would go a long way in giving him a chance to prove he’s as good as he was during the preseason of his rookie year, as opposed to what they’ve seen the last two Augusts. 

Signed as an undrafted free agent by the Cowboys in 2017, and hasn’t seen any impactful game time due to the durability of Prescott. It’s expected the Cowboys will bring in competition at the backup quarterback role to challenge Rush this summer, but receiving the tender — thanks to his familiarity with offensive coordinator Kellen Moore — gives him a leg up on any newcomers. 

As for Prescott, well, that sound you hear is both sides attempting to hammer out details.

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