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Cowboys EVP Stephen Jones explains quiet offseason: We're 'looking towards signing our own guys'

Despite vowing to go "all in" on the 2024 season, Jerry Jones' Cowboys were remarkably quiet during free agency.

Dallas' leadership can explain. The Cowboys were already very much in -- but by in, it appears Jones might have meant they were already in committed relationships, and have more to lock down in the near future.

"We spend max, max money year in and year out. All 32 can only spend the same amount of money over a five-year stretch," Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones told 105.3 The Fan. "When we're all said and done, we max out our salary cap every year. We will have done that and what comes with having a good roster, which we do, we also are looking towards signing our own guys.

"It doesn't mean it happens overnight. But when you're wanting to sign players like (quarterback) Dak (Prescott) and (linebacker) Micah (Parsons) and (receiver) CeeDee (Lamb), then certainly you have to hold money back if you want to have a realistic chance of signing those guys."

The Cowboys have already staked their position regarding Prescott entering 2024, stating they will proceed with his contract remaining as constructed, leaving no room for adjustment and essentially setting up a prove-it season for Prescott prior to him reaching free agency in 2025. Lamb, however, is approaching free agency in 2025 and logically could be done sooner. As for Parsons, it would be a complete shock if the Cowboys didn't find a way to keep him, but with his fifth-year option likely to be picked up -- keeping him under contract through 2025 -- Dallas has time to get that deal done.

Essentially, then, Jones explained the Cowboys' quiet March simply: They're going to spend big money to keep key players already on the roster, and are planning accordingly.

If they agree to an extension for Lamb in the next month or so, they could push money into the future and free up some space to sign free agents. But that likely won't come until Dallas has an opportunity to take stock following the draft. Such is life on the edge of the salary cap.

Settle in, Cowboys fans: Your reigning NFC East champion likely is not finished with roster construction, but as March proved, it might not be as explosive -- or as frantic -- as you'd hoped.

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