Dallas Cowboys vs Washington Redskins – September 27, 2004
Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is on the field before play against the Washington Redskins at FedEx Field, September 27, 2004 in Landover, Maryland. The Cowboys defeated the Redskins 21 to 18. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
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Jerry Jones knows Cowboys’ clock is ticking

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones understands his team is about to lose talent in free agency, only making the future tougher.

Playoff losses always hurt. They’re especially painful when the offseason ahead is rife with challenges.

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones knows the feeling. After watching his team lose 23-17 at home to the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Wild Card round on Sunday, Jones is preparing for a longer offseason than he expected. Dallas, after going 12-5 and winning the NFC East, took 14 penalties in its upset loss, punctuated by a quarterback draw called with no timeouts and only 14 seconds remaining.


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On Friday, Jones spoke to 105.3 The Fan in Dallas about his feelings towards keeping head coach Mike McCarthy and how he viewed the season. Per ESPN:

“The team and their functions got us in a position healthy, in a position to win a Super Bowl. And, so, I’m very guarded about throwing all of that down the drain because we didn’t win one of the steps in the playoffs getting to the Super Bowl. … And, so, yes, I thought we did a really, a really good job of getting to the playoffs. Still, I can’t get over what we did in the playoffs.”

Going towards free agency, the Cowboys have a litany of decisions to make. Dallas is slated to be approximately $13.6 million over the 2022 salary cap and yet has key players scheduled to hit the market including wide receiver Michael Gallup, tight end Dalton Schultz, linebacker Leighton Vander Esch, safety Jayron Kearse and edge rusher Randy Gregory among others.


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With Jones already paying out huge contracts to edge rusher DeMarcus Lawrence, running back Ezekiel Elliott, wide receiver Amari Cooper, left tackle Tyron Smith and quarterback Dak Prescott, Dallas is hamstrung. It’s possible one or two fo the aforementioned free agents return, but most will end up elsewhere with the Cowboys getting a slew of 2023 compensatory picks.

The good news? Dallas isn’t likely to have much competition in the NFC East, with the Philadelphia Eagles still building with the Washington Football Team and New York Giants have many moves to make before contention is a real hope. Yet for the Cowboys, winning a division title means little, especially after 26 seasons of not reaching even the NFC Championship Game.

For Jones, the wait has been too long, and the list of things which have gone wrong over the last quarter-century have only mounted.

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