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July 16, 2012

Cowboys confident Claiborne will be signed for camp but may not budge on offset language

Cowboys training camp officially begins for rookies and selected veterans next Wednesday and the team has yet to come to terms with top draft pick Morris Claiborne.

However, two high-ranking Cowboys sources said on Monday that they are not concerned and believe Claiborne will be signed and in camp on time.

The holdup with Claiborne, a former LSU star cornerback who was picked sixth overall in the NFl Draft, is that none of the top eight picks have signed contracts.

It's not about money but offset language. The financial terms of Claiborne's deal is set. The issue is for him and the rest of the unsigned picks is whether to include offset language in their contracts. 

The teams want it and the players, who without it are allowed to essentially double dip, don't.

Offset language gives a team the ability to cut a player and have compensation that is  guaranteed for the first four years of the contract be "offset" by what the player makes if re-signed by another team. Without "offset" language, the player is paid the guaranteed salary for, say, a fourth season and paid by his new team.

According to one Cowboys source, the Cowboys may hold their ground even if the other teams cave. The Cowboys have always included offset language in their contracts.

Still the Cowboys are not concerned about the holdup and believe it will all be cleared up before the start of camp.

Claiborne is trying to remain patient and said he will be ready to go whenever it's done.

"I'll patiently wait," Claiborne last week, according to the Shreveport Times. "I'm not in no hurry. You hear a lot of talk about people saying I'm holding out. No, I'm not holding out. I'm going to camp signed or not signed. It don''t matter." 

According to the Cowboys, Claiborne has been cleared to practice after missing minicamp and OTAs because of wrist surgery. He may wear a precautionary brace, but he will be full go whenever he reports to camp.

Clarence Hill 






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Clarence..Is it possible the offset langue that is holding up Mo' Claiborne from signing his contract is the fact he wants his contract..fully guaranteed? Andrew Luck and RGIII both signed fully guaranteed contracts. We all know Jerry tries to sign his rookie first round picks to a Jerry friendly contract every chance he gets. This may be a new trend in the signings of rookie contracts now with those contracts now being fully guaranteed since those same rookies in the first round are now on a rookie pay scale. Jerry...give the kid what he wants and get him into camp. A four year, $17 million, fully guaranteed contract with a club option for the fifth year sounds about right in my eyes going by what Luck and RGIII received.

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They need to sign Claiborne. He is the only safe pick. Most others seem to be role players....like the 2009 draft, which was a big bust!

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