The Cowboys will announce DeMarcus Ware's new contract at 4:30 p.m. today. It is a six-year extension, through 2015, and includes some $40 million in guarantees. Ware was in the final year of his rookie deal and would have become a restricted free agent in the off-season.
His contract compares to some of the recent contracts paid to the NFL's best defenders, including Washington's Albert Haynesworth (seven years, $100 million, $41 million guaranteed), Baltimore's Terrell Suggs (six years, $62.5 million, $38.1 million guaranteed), Pittsburgh's James Harrison (six years, $51 million, $20 million guaranteed) and Minnesota's Jared Allen (six years, $74.5 million, $31 million guaranteed).
Ware, 27, was the runner-up to Harrison for defensive player of the year last season. He has four sacks this season -- two in each of the past two games -- and 57.5 in his career.
"I've been lucky to be around a lot of good ones," Cowboys coach Wade Phillips said Monday. "He’s at the top of the class, and it doesn’t take long to call the roll. ...He’s very special that way. But he’s an all around player, and he plays the run well too. That’s what you really like about him."
Ware's deal continues the Cowboys' trend of wrapping up their best players. In recent, seasons they have signed to long-term deals: Tony Romo (six years, $67.4 million, $30 million guaranteed), Marion Barber (seven years, $45 million, $16 million guaranteed), Flozell Adams (six years, $43 million, $15 million guaranteed), Roy Williams (five years, $45 million, $20 million guaranteed), Terence Newman (six years, $50.2 million, $22.5 million guaranteed), Leonard DAvis (seven years, $49.6 million, $18.75 million guaranteed) and Ken Hamlin (six years, $39 million, $15 million guaranteed).
-- Charean Williams