Stephen Jones: Cowboys looking to extend CeeDee Lamb, Trevon Diggs
The to-do list for the Cowboys this offseason seems to be growing longer by the day.
Executive vice president Stephen Jones huddled with reporters at the NFL scouting combine in Indianapolis on Tuesday, and for the second day in a row, he found himself talking about extending some of the team’s star talent.
Wide receiver CeeDee Lamb and cornerback Trevon Diggs are both now eligible for contract extensions. And Jones says both fourth-year players stand to be key components of the roster moving forward.
“Obviously, they’re in our plans long-term,” Jones told media members, echoing the sentiment he used in a Monday report when talking about the club needing a plan “to ultimately extend” quarterback Dak Prescott.
“You’re always looking at something like that,” he said regarding doing the same with Lamb and Diggs.
The Cowboys selected both players in 2020’s draft. Lamb was a first-round pick, so the team can simply place a fifth-year option on him, locking him up for one extra season before having to re-work his financials for the 2025 campaign.
It is expected the Cowboys will go this route with last year’s 1,300-yard receiver. The fifth-year option- due by May 1- would bump Lamb’s salary up to just under $18 million in 2024. That’s a massive raise over what he’s getting now, but still below what the league’s top receivers are hauling in.
Diggs will be entering the fourth and final year of his rookie deal unless he were to get an extension this offseason.
It may seem like a no-brainer, but the organization’s recent history of proactively reaching extensions is not particularly good.
They did it three times in 2019, extending linebacker Jaylon Smith, right tackle La’el Collins, and running back Ezekiel Elliott. Smith made it just two years and change into his five-year extension before getting cut; Collins played only another 27 games on his before being released. Elliott’s six-year extension made him the highest-paid rusher in the game at the time, but his production has declined dramatically since then and put his future with the team very much up in the air.
It’s thought that Diggs, who led the league in picks in 2021 and is tied for the most interceptions leaguewide since turning pro- would be in line to earn over $15 million per year if he were to hit the open market now. Give him another season of terrorizing opposing quarterbacks (and time for more corners to shift the market price at the position), and that dollar amount would rise even higher in 12 months’ time.
According to Jones, it sounds like the Cowboys are willing to write a check now to keep Diggs from hitting free agency after 2023.
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