That transaction will save significant cap space which will lessen their $31.72 million in excess liabilities.
For them, releasing Cooper will make their cap casualties more manageable.
They could restructure deals or cut players that will bring their total under the $208.2 million cap for 2022.
As part of their roster building, the Cowboys have decided to use the franchise tag, as NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport shared.
The #Cowboys are franchise tagging TE Dalton Schultz, source said, keeping another playmaker in the fold. Coming off his best season, Schultz now is locked in for 2022 with a long-term deal the hope in the future.
— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 8, 2022
Rapoport said, “The #Cowboys are franchise tagging TE Dalton Schultz, source said, keeping another playmaker in the fold. Coming off his best season, Schultz now is locked in for 2022 with a long-term deal the hope in the future.”
Giving Schultz the tag makes sense in a lot of ways.
First, the $11 million franchise tag value for a tight end is one of the more cap-friendly amounts.
Second, Schultz had a breakout year in 2021 and it would be unwise to let him become a free agent.
Third, giving him the tag extends the contract negotiations between the two parties.
Schultz and the Cowboys will have until July to agree to a long-term deal
Otherwise, the tight end will still remain with Dallas for at least one season.
Schultz’s Breakout Year
But by his third year, he has become a vital contributor to the Cowboys’ offense.
Last season, Schultz played in all games and finished with 78 receptions for 808 yards and eight touchdowns.
Cooper’s potential departure means that Schultz might play a bigger role in offensive coordinator Kellen Moore‘s system.