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Cowboys asking Doug Free to take a paycut

Doug Free

Dallas Cowboys tackle Doug Free (68) on the sideline during an NFL football game against the Cleveland Browns Sunday, Nov. 18, 2012, in Arlington, Texas. The Cowboys won 23-20. (AP Photo/Brandon Wade)

AP

The Dallas Cowboys have asked right tackle Doug Free to take a pay cut and are apparently more than willing to wait it out to get what they want.

According to Ian Rapaport of the NFL Network, the Cowboys are asking Free to take a “sizable” pay cut in excess of $2 million. The Cowboys are willing to wait it out knowing the longer the process drags out, fewer teams will be suitors for Free should he ultimately be released.

It’s still a bit of a gamble for the Cowboys but one they are apparently willing to make. If they wait and Free refuses to take the reduction in pay, the Cowboys will be forced to either pay him his full salary or release him without a proven option to turn to. Jermey Parnell would likely be next in line but has limited experience in four seasons.

Dallas could try to hedge their options by signing another free agent such as Eric Winston or Winston Justice in case Free won’t submit to the pay cut. However, a lack of cap space could complicate that option for the Cowboys. It still seems to make sense for both sides to find a scenario both can live with. It may just take a while for the parties to finally agree upon what exactly that is.