The Cowboys reworked left tackle Tyron Smith’s contract Monday freeing up $8 million in salary-cap room, according to sources. The move had been anticipated since he signed an eight-year, $97.6 million contract extension last summer.
The Cowboys turned $10.2 million of Smith’s 2015 base salary of $11.039 million into a signing bonus.
The Cowboys were up against the cap, needing the space to make official the new contract for Doug Free as well as to cover tenders for restricted free agents Chris Jones and Lance Dunbar.
It also gives them room to shop on the free-agent market, which officially begins Tuesday, though the Cowboys are hunting for bargains, not big names.
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Bucs defensive end Adrian Clayborn is among the free agents the Cowboys have interest in at the right price. Bears defensive tackle Stephen Paea was another, but he reached agreement with the Redskins on Monday.
The Cowboys have 14 free agents, some of whom they hope to re-sign, including running back DeMarco Murray and linebackers Justin Durant and Rolando McClain.