Why CeeDee Lamb’s Contract Negotiations with the Cowboys Have Hit a Standstill

 

Dallas Cowboys star wide receiver CeeDee Lamb is reportedly holding off on signing a contract extension as he enters the final year of his rookie deal.

ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler revealed on a recent episode of “NFL Live” that Lamb “appears to be waiting on [Minnesota Vikings WR] Justin Jefferson” before finalizing a new contract with the Cowboys.

CeeDee Lamb is negotiating a contract extension with the Dallas...

Lamb’s approach is strategic, considering the lucrative extensions recently secured by elite wide receivers such as Philadelphia’sA.J. Brown (three years, $96 million) and Detroit’sAmon-Ra St. Brown (four years, $120.01 million).

Justin Jefferson, a three-time Pro Bowler, is expected to set a new benchmark with his forthcoming contract, potentially influencing Lamb’s negotiations.

“Because Jefferson is also going into the final year of a rookie contract, the St. Brown deal is easier to apply to his situation,” wrote Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated.

Oklahoma Football: Would a 2020 re-draft put CeeDee Lamb elsewhere?

“And since Jefferson is owed $19.743 million on his fifth-year option, the apples-to-apples equivalent of his deal to St. Brown would bring him about $80 million over the next three years.

Give him the bump for-all due respect to St. Brown-being a better player, and waiting an extra year…do you go to $90 million over the next three years? Or $100 million?”

Lamb’s stellar performance last season, with 135 receptions for 1,749 yards and 12 touchdowns, further underscores his value.

The Cowboys are keen to secure their future with the 25-year-old, yet they face the challenge of managing cap space to maintain a competitive roster.

CeeDee Lamb on Twitter | Lamb, Pantsuit, Cute

In 2025, Dallas will need to address contracts for key players like edge-rusher Micah Parsons and cornerback DaRon Bland, adding pressure to their current negotiations.

Fowler also noted in April that Jefferson is focusing on securing guaranteed money in his next contract.

This aspect could also play a crucial role in Lamb’s decision-making process.

“The nature of football incentivizes players to take the sure thing.

Were Lamb to suffer a major injury in 2024, the kind of deal that’s on the table now may not be there next spring,” Fowler commented.

The Cowboys are reportedly open to letting the market set Lamb’s value.

Given that Jefferson is expected to command around $32.5 million per year, Lamb’s potential deal could be in a similar range.

Spotrac estimates Lamb’s market value at $33.7 million annually over four years, positioning him to become the NFL’s highest-paid receiver by yearly salary.

The waiting game is not without risks.

A significant injury could alter the landscape of potential deals for Lamb.

However, if Jefferson secures a historic contract, Lamb’s patience could lead to a significantly higher payout.

The Cowboys must balance the urgency to extend Lamb with the financial implications for their roster’s future.

As the Cowboys navigate these negotiations, they must also consider the looming contract extensions for other key players like Parsons and quarterback Dak Prescott.

For now, Lamb’s contract appears to be the top priority, given his record-breaking performance last season and his importance to the team’s offensive success.

In the end, Lamb’s decision to wait might set a precedent for other top receivers looking to capitalize on an escalating market.

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