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Cowboys LB Jaylon Smith’s new deal with Dallas is for five years, $65 million

Jaylon Smith, Cowboys

Dallas Cowboys linebacker Jaylon Smith agreed to a contract extension with the NFC East club on Tuesday, and now it is reported the deal is for five years and worth $65 million, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Schefter also adds that Smith’s deal has $35.5 million guaranteed—the third-highest figure at his position.

The 24-year-old was a second-round selection of the Cowboys in the 2016 NFL Draft. However, Smith could not compete in his true rookie season with Dallas due to a knee injury suffered during the Fiesta Bowl with Notre Dame. Smith’s ACL tear sidelined the linebacker in 2016, and he would make his first professional appearance with the Cowboys in 2017 against the New York Giants in Week 1.

Since 2017, though, Smith has turned into a crucial piece of the Cowboys’ defense. He has appeared in all 32 regular-season games for Dallas in the past two years, starting in 22 of them. Smith has recorded 202 combined tackles, nine tackles for loss, eight QB hits, four forced fumbles, and five sacks in two seasons, quickly vaulting his way up the linebacker rankings and becoming a highly desired defensive player—as the Cowboys observed thus handing him the lucrative extension offer signed this week.

Additionally, on the other side of the ball, the Cowboys are attempting to sign quarterback Dak Prescott and running back Ezekiel Elliott to long-term contracts, with the latter holding out of the franchise’s training camp in an attempt to create leverage in negotiations. Recently, Prescott also shot down a rumor that the fourth-year shot-caller asked for an average annual salary in the $40 million range.

Smith’s guaranteed salary and presence in the defense, however, forebodes well for the Cowboys in competing at a high level for a long time.