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.