Wednesday, February 20, 2013
Can Cowboys afford Spencer?
By Tom Carpenter
Per Todd Archer of ESPNDallas.com, the Dallas Cowboys are expected to meet with free-agent linebacker Anthony Spencer's agent during the combine this week.
"The Cowboys and agent Jordan Woy have had minimal talks since the season ended about a new deal for Spencer, the free agent-to-be who was named to the Pro Bowl after a career-high 11 sacks in 2012, but that should pick up steam with free agency less than a month away," Archer wrote.
Earlier today, we discussed how the Cowboys would benefit from reworking quarterback Tony Romo's contract because they are so far over the salary cap. Archer thinks that will be a key if the Cowboys want to have a legitimate shot at re-signing Spencer without having to drop $10.6 million by franchising him for 2013.
"The Cowboys would be hard-pressed to get Spencer signed to a deal without getting Romo signed to an extension," he said. "According to a source, the sides have not begun negotiations. However, that could change in Indianapolis, although a source said nothing is planned as of yet."
Spencer won't come cheaply, either. ESPN NFL Insider Khaled Elsayed ranks Spencer as the 12th-best free agent on the market:
Khaled ElsayedTop 50 NFL free agents of 2013
"Many have pointed to the sack numbers of Spencer as if to say he only turned on his performance in a true contract year. While he is coming off the best year of his career, Spencer has consistently performed in Dallas, it's just been in the run game where it has showed up. This year he finished sixth in pass-rushing productivity and topped the run stop percentage charts for 3-4 outside linebackers."