Former Cowboys player came up snake-eyes betting on himself |

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A former Cowboys player could have had it all. Instead, he finds himself rolling in the deep instead of cashing big-time checks.

Dalton Schultz isn’t going far. The tight end has signed a one-year deal with the Houston Texans worth up to $9 million, moving him from Dallas last season to Houston in 2023.

$9 million for a year’s worth of work doesn’t sound too bad for most of us, but when you consider the offer Schultz reportedly declined previously, it has you feeling for the five-year tight end.

According to Albert Breer of MMQB/Sports Illustrated, Schultz had the option to take a $36 million, three-year deal, “at one point.” That would have worked out to $12 million a year. Schultz turned that offer down according to Breer.

Dalton Schultz fumbled a multiyear contract with the Cowboys

The timing of all of this is what really drives the narrative. If Schultz was offered that extension at some point in 2021 when he was playing his best football, he might have turned it down in the hopes of getting a larger deal that offseason.

If that was the plan, the Cowboys called that bluff by franchise-tagging him. That was the contract he played on in 2022.

By doing that, it forced Schultz to enter free agency a year late, in 2023. As many have pointed out, that puts him up against a deep TE draft class in 2023. Rookies are inherently more cost-effective, and Schultz had a worse 2022 than 2021. So he didn’t get a market that valued him at what he felt he was worth, and what he had literally been offered previously, according to reports.

Schultz’s agent Steve Caric has publicly denied Breer’s report, but obviously, he has every reason to do so, even if it’s true. It reflects quite poorly on Caric if his client went from the contract Breer detailed to the one he actually signed.

Rolling the dice just doesn’t always work out. For Schultz, he’ll have a chance to put together another contract year in 2023 with the Texans and see if the offers are more lucrative next free agency cycle.

You hate to see a guy fumble the bag, but if the report is true, this one is entirely on Schultz and his agent, albeit in retrospect. It’s a huge sigh of relief for the Cowboys, too, who can now likely get a tight end replacement in the draft for cheap.

Dallas will almost certainly be without both Schultz and Ezekiel Elliott next season. It’s a new-look offense for the Cowboys, who just added wide receiver Brandin Cooks in a trade with the Texans.

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