Kirk Cousins has franchise-tag advice for Dak Prescott: 'You can use it to your advantage'

While Kirk Cousins’ NFL career is defined by ups and downs, he’s a bonafide expert at one key skill — getting paid.

The Minnesota Vikings quarterback shared some advice on that front Thursday with Dallas Cowboys signal-caller Dak Prescott, whose contract drama is carrying into yet another offseason.

Don’t fear the franchise tag.

Prescott’s negotiations complicated by Dalton

Prescott has yet to sign the franchise tender the Cowboys offered him and is unlikely to do so ahead of the July 15 deadline. Prescott would earn more than $31 million playing under the tag, but obviously prefers a long-term deal after earning roughly $5 million total on his rookie contract.

With the Cowboys changing the negotiating game by signing three-time Pro Bowl quarterback Andy Dalton, an already complicated negotiation just became more so.

Cousins: Sign the franchise tender

Cousins told ESPN’s Trey Wingo on Thursday (h/t @ PFT) that he would advise Prescott to enjoy the payday and wait for an even bigger one on the other end.

“I believe the franchise tag can be your friend,” Cousins said. “I don’t think it’s something to be disappointed with. I think it enables you to be well compensated, and deservedly so, for the upcoming season.

“Then, I always say the cream will rise to the top. If you’re good enough, the cream’s going to rise to the top, and you’re going to get compensated the way you want to.”

Cousins got paid

Cousins famously engaged in a multi-season contract standoff in Washington that resulted in his playing two straight seasons under the franchise tag. He then bolted for the Minnesota Vikings on a record fully guaranteed three-year, $84 million deal despite never demonstrating himself as more than a competent starter in the NFL.

It was a master class in getting paid.

Dak Prescott could do worse than taking the Kirk Cousins contract path. (Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images)

Prescott on a similar career arc — so far

Prescott finds himself in a similar position as Cousins was in Washington. He’s outplayed his rookie deal as a mid-round draft pick, but is by no means in the upper echelon of NFL quarterbacks. He’s trying to get paid like he is, leveraging his status as a capable NFL starter in a league where even that level of talent at a young age is coveted.

Prescott and the Cowboys were reportedly close to a multi-year deal worth $33 million annually last fall before Prescott demanded more.

Cousins’ advice is to go ahead and take the money in hand.

“Hey, whatever happens, don’t be afraid of the tag,” Cousins continued. “It can be your friend, and you can use it to your advantage.’”

While it’s taboo in NFL circles to talk about another man’s money, Prescott could do worse than take the Cousins path — that is if he can secure it.

Working consecutive seasons under the terms of the tag before signing a multi-year guaranteed deal is playing the game at its highest level.

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