ESPN's Adam Schefter reported Tuesday on SportsCenter (via Garrett Stepien of 247Sports) the most pressing factor will be the number of years in the deal:
"So now we're into gray areas with Dak Prescott, who hasn't signed his franchise tender, who's trying to get that long-term deal done.
"The bottom line on the long-term deal [getting] done—the two sides have differing values. But I think the bigger issue might just be the years. The Dallas Cowboys want Dak Prescott on a five-year-or-longer deal. Dak Prescott wants four years. And there's a difference on the years that has prevented this deal from getting done so far. I think that, to me, sounds like it's the biggest obstacle—not the money, not the signing bonus, not the guarantees. It's the years."
The Cowboys used the franchise tag to retain the 26-year-old Mississippi State product for another season, but he hasn't signed the one-year tender associated with the tag. The deal would be worth an estimated $28.7 million for 2020, per Spotrac.
ESPN's Ed Werder reported March 25 the sides had restarted discussions, but there have been no updates suggesting they've made significant progress.
Prescott is coming off a strong 2019 campaign. He completed 65.1 percent of his throws for 4,902 yards with 30 touchdowns and 11 interceptions in 16 games. He added three rushing scores and ranked fourth among all quarterbacks in ESPN's Total QBR.
"I'm for sure at peace," he told Bleacher Report's Mike Tanier in February. "Because I don't control it. I worry about what I can control."
The biggest question should the stalemate continue is whether the two-time Pro Bowl selection is willing to holdout into the regular season because he'd have leverage.
Dallas is in the midst of a championship window, which increases the pressure on the front office to make sure Prescott is on the field for Week 1 in the always competitive NFC East. The team also doesn't have a proven backup with Cooper Rush and Clayton Thorson being the other signal-callers on the roster.
The Cowboys will hope the situation is settled long before that becomes an issue, though.