The Cowboys' final offer that Dak turned down was reportedly a 5-year, $175 million deal, which averaged in the $35 million per year neighborhood with $110 million in guarantees, of which $50 million was a signing bonus. $70 million was in the first two contract years. The contract would have made him the highest-paid QB in NFL history.
It's not about Dak returning and being his same elite self next year. If he does that, he'll be fine. I hope he does.
It's about the long-term financial risk he has now opened himself up to if he doesn't come back the same. If he doesn't have a great year next year. If he gets hurt again next year. That's the risk he took. If he's not comfortable with just being the highest-paid QB in NFL history with a 5-year deal with $110 mil guaranteed, and wants to risk it all to eek out a few million more, that's his choice, and more power to him. But anyone who thinks Dak doesn't wish he could go back a few months and accept that deal now is kidding themselves.
Of course Dallas will franchise him next year. Why wouldn't they? It's cheaper for them to do that than make him the same offer they already made. Or maybe Jerry decides he does want Dak locked up for the long term and offers him the same deal. One thing's for sure, Dak has a lot of time to sit there and rethink his approach as he watches from the sidelines and starts to realize that even though he's still young, he's not invincible.
Will be interesting to watch it play out regardless. My only gripe is with fans whining that this is somehow Jerry's fault and he should still just pay him because it's "the right thing to do", like Dak's some poor charity case and $175 mil is pocket change.