According to Bleacher Report’s Brad Gagnon, the Dallas Cowboys are being advised to explore the possibility of trading for Chris Johnson, the defensive tackle from the Kansas City Chiefs. Johnson is currently holding out due to a contract dispute, seeking a new deal worth $30 million per year, while his current contract pays him $20 million for this season.
Gagnon argues that acquiring Jones, who finished third in the Defensive Player of the Year voting last season, would represent a significant improvement on the interior of the Cowboys’ defense. He suggests that a first-round draft pick could be enough to secure Jones in a trade.
Gagnon states, “Acquiring Jones might require parting with a first-round pick, possibly in addition to third-year starter Osa Odighizuwa. However, the upgrade he would provide in that position would be substantial.
If Dallas believes it can make a legitimate Super Bowl run with him on board (remember, the pick would be at the bottom of the first round in this scenario), it would unquestionably be a worthwhile move.”
Additionally, the Cowboys have a substantial amount of salary cap space at their disposal, with approximately $17.7 million available according to Spotrac, making them one of the NFL’s top six teams in terms of cap space.
This financial flexibility makes it appealing for them to pursue Jones, especially as they enter a season where expectations for a Super Bowl victory are high under the leadership of Dak Prescott and Mike McCarthy.
Gagnon highlights this by stating, “For Mike McCarthy, Dak Prescott, and the rest of the team, the time to make their mark is now. According to Spotrac,
they have more salary cap space than all but five NFL teams, giving them room to absorb Jones’ inherited cap charge of $20.8 million.”
Comparing Jones to the Cowboys’ current veteran defensive tackles, Johnathan Hankins and Osa Odighizuwa, it’s evident that he would be a substantial upgrade.
Pro Football Focus statistics from last season show that Jones posted impressive grades, with a 92.0 in overall defense and a 92.2 in pass-rushing, ranking him second among all defensive tackles. In contrast, Odighizuwa had a 68.2 defensive grade, and Hankins had a 46.5 defensive grade for the same period.
Furthermore, Chris Jones boasts an impressive resume, with two Super Bowl championships, four All-Pro selections, and four Pro Bowl appearances. Aside from the exceptional Aaron Donald of the Los Angeles Rams, Jones is considered the most accomplished defensive tackle in the NFL.
The Dallas Cowboys have already made significant trades during the offseason, acquiring Brandin Cooks, Stephon Gilmore, and Trey Lance in recent months. Therefore, they are viewed as a contender likely to make a deal before the October 31st deadline.
However, it’s essential to note that the Kansas City Chiefs have repeatedly emphasized their intention to keep Chris Jones and not trade him.
Despite his holdout since late July, Chiefs’ General Manager Brett Veach has expressed the desire for Jones to finish his career with the Chiefs, citing financial security and their offseason preparations as key reasons.
Veach’s statements suggest that the Chiefs are committed to reaching a deal with Jones rather than trading him. Nevertheless, if circumstances change and the Chiefs decide to go in a different direction, the Dallas Cowboys could become the leading candidate to acquire Chris Jones.
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