It’s no secret that the Cowboys and tight end Dalton Schultz have been trying to iron out a lucrative contract to keep him with the organization for the foreseeable future.

Last week, it was reported that the Cowboys and Schultz would make another run at a new deal. However, according to Michael Gehlken of the Dallas Morning News, the Cowboys and Schultz currently stand at an impasse as no progress has been made in contract negotiations as of late.

Tight end David Njuko of the Cleveland Browns signed a four-year extension in May that will pay him $13.69 million per year. That sets the floor for what Schultz and his representatives are likely looking for, but the Cowboys aren’t in a hurry to oblique.

Schultz signed his franchise tag tender on March 21 for $10.9 million. If no deal is reached by Friday’s deadline, Schultz will play on that salary for the upcoming season with hopes of coming to the negotiating table again in 2023 or hitting the open market.

The Cowboys are in a great position. Worst-case scenario, they have Schultz locked in for this season. Also, the Cowboys drafted Jake Ferguson in the fourth round out of Wisconsin so they have insurance if Schultz were to leave next year.

What hurts Schultz is that he signed his tender. Yes, it guarantees him nearly $11 million for this season, but it also means that the Cowboys don’t have to be in a rush to sign him long-term. Ideally, the Cowboys would like to sign Schultz at their price and have Ferguson on a cheap rookie deal for the next four years.

Schultz has been productive for two consecutive seasons. He tallied 63 receptions for 615 yards and four touchdowns in 2020 while playing several different quarterbacks due to Dak Prescott missing 11 games. Last season, he upped those totals to 78 receptions for 808 yards and eight touchdowns.

With that type of production, it’s understandable that Schultz wants his financial security from the Cowboys. However, Schultz isn’t a game-changer at tight end like Travis Kelce of the Chiefs or George Little of the 49ers so it’s also easy to understand the patience the Cowboys have in signing him. Plus, again, drafting Ferguson gives them some leeway.

It will be interesting to see if the franchise tag deadline speeds up negotiations between the Cowboys and Schultz. If not, it certainly will be one of the more intriguing topics when it comes to the Cowboys in 2022.

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