Hours before free agency opened Tuesday, Anthony Spencer signed a one-year, $10.627 million franchise tender with the Dallas Cowboys.
The move, which confirmed earlier reports that he had agreed to the tender, gives the Cowboys until July 15 to work out a long-term contract with Spencer, who is expected to move to defensive end from outside linebacker in the Cowboys' new 4-3 scheme next season.
There's still an outside chance the Cowboys could lose Spencer, 29, to another team that offers a long-term contract, but the franchise tag would give the Cowboys two No. 1 draft picks in return. Another possibility could be a trade. But if Spencer stays with the Cowboys without signing a new deal, he is guaranteed the $10.627 million in 2013.
Spencer, a six-year pro, played in 14 games last season and finished with career highs of 11 sacks and 95 tackles.