The Cowboys have locked up punter Chris Jones through the 2021 season, giving him a four-year contract extension. Jones was set to become an unrestricted free agent next Spring after what will be seven seasons with the Cowboys, five as the team’s exclusive punter.
Jones was one of the least called-upon punters in the NFL last year. His 58 punts ranked 25th, almost half of the 100 punts that busy Bradley Pinion booted for the 49ers. Jones’ low usage rate is thanks to the efficiency of the Cowboys offense.
When he does have to punt, Chris Jones has a knack for maximizing distance while also putting the ball on the sideline. He aims kicks about as well as you can ask, limiting returns giving the Cowboys defense favorable field position. As we saw last year against the Lions, Jones can also be a factor in covering his own punts with athleticism and a willingness to tackle.
Another reason for this extension is, no doubt, Jones’ role as the holder for Dan Bailey. Jones has been the holder since 2013 and he and Bailey have had a fantastic partnership. Along with long snapper L.P. Ladouceur, the trio have helped make Bailey to second-most accurate kicker in NFL history.
The financial side of Jones’ new deal is not yet known, but it will likely be about $2-$3 million per season. He is making $1.5 million in 2017.