- Calvin Watkins, ESPN Staff Writer
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Prior to his season-ending Achilles injury Sept. 23 against Tampa Bay, safety Barry Church was offered a new contract by the Cowboys. Church didn't turn down the offer or present a counter.
Church's agent, Bruce Tollner, didn't respond to the new deal. The amount of the contract is unknown, but the Cowboys were willing to lock Church up for a couple of years.
Church is in the final year of his contract with a base salary of $540,000 and will become a restricted free agent. With Church's injury, it's doubtful the Cowboys will allow him to sign a new deal.
Church should return healthier than ever from his injury, but whether the Cowboys want to give him a new contract appears doubtful until they see if he's ready to play.
If Church didn't get hurt, then we assume he would have gotten a new deal and might be in the Cowboys' plans for three to four years.
Now, the Cowboys have the leverage to place a tender on Church.
A player can get placed under the first-round tender and based on 2012 salary figures, that was worth $2.742 million. Second-round tenders are worth $1.927 million and rights for first refusal are $1.26 million.
The Cowboys value Church's skill set and he did enough to earn the starting job opposite Gerald Sensabaugh in the offseason. But now the business side takes over and Church's injury complicates matters for the Cowboys.
Do you still give him a new contract? He's coming off a major injury. Or do you give him a second-round tender, knowing few teams will be willing to give up a second-round pick?