Dec 29, 2013; Arlington, TX, USA; Dallas Cowboys quarterback Kyle Orton (18) throws prior to the game against the Philadelphia Eagles at AT&T Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Dallas Cowboys tell Kyle Orton to show up or pay up

Earlier today it was reported that Dallas Cowboys backup quarterback Kyle Orton informed the team that it was his desire to retire.

The Cowboys aren’t having any of it, and are taking a hard-nosed stand about it, telling Orton that he needs to show up to training camp or pay back his $3 million signing bonus, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.

While quality backup quarterbacks are always at a premium, so is cash, which makes the Cowboys stance understandable on both sides.

The $3 million figure comes from Orton’s contract, which was restructured last season. Dallas wants $3 million of the $5 million signing bonus he received from that deal. If he does retire, Orton is leaving a $3.25 million salary on the table.

There has been no response from Orton’s camp as to whether or not he intends to pay or play now that the Cowboys have drawn a line in the sand.

The question of Orton’s importance is only magnified by the condition of starter Tony Romo’s back. If Romo comes back 100 percent healthy, he still has to make it through a complete season, and coming off major back surgery that could be difficult. The Cowboys want to be sure they have their veteran backup in camp, or have the means to go sign another.

It’s an old-fashioned showdown in Dallas. First one to blink, gets it.

Tags: Dallas Cowboys Kyle Orton NFL

  • SmartThinking

    $3.25M isn’t chump change. It’s cheap and dependable insurance, too. Say what you will, this team needs Orton. At least for one more season. The braintrust knows better than anyone else that the odds of Romo completing the season upright are against him. For any chance at a playoff berth, however remote, Romo is going to need to be rested during the season. When Dallas gets ahead, assuming that happens, this year, look for Garrett to rest Romo and have Orton clean up. It’s the smart way to make it through those rough December games intact. And, a smart way to maximize Romo’s gifts throughout the entire playing year.

    • Old Frog

      I hear you but will they carry 3 QB’s if Orton shows up? I think they sincerely like Weeden and he wouldn’t last on the practice squad.

  • Old Frog

    It’s about time somebody does something. Time’s a’wasting

  • Earl Robertson

    Cowboys need to sign Alex Tanney I like that guy when he played in preseason he may suck in real time but he seems to me a guy with some promise

    • David87124

      Sorry, he signed with the Bucs the other day:)

  • jrcowboy49

    Time to make a trade for QB Ryan Mallett of the Patriots. A 3rd round pick might do it!