The Dallas Cowboys cut their ties with defensive end DeMarcus Ware Tuesday, trimming $16 million in cap space for the 2014 season.
Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones issued a release saying Ware is held in the "highest regard" in the team community.
Ware's future with the team had been a source of speculation over the past season due to his high salary, age and season-low numbers.“A decision like this, involving a man who is a cornerstone player in the history of your franchise, is extremely difficult,” Jones said. “After meeting this afternoon, DeMarcus and I agreed on an understanding that would allow him to explore the options he will have for the 2014 season and beyond. We were also in very strong agreement that playing for the Dallas Cowboys would be one of the options we would both be exploring."
The seven-time Pro Bowler has also had some health issues recently, with surgery on his right elbow, back troubles and a quadriceps strain.“DeMarcus had a hell of a career but when we’re in the cap situation that we’re in and obviously counting as much as he is obviously you have to look at it along with several others,” Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones said last month.
Dallas Cowboys players, retired and current, took to Twitter Tuesday to give their thoughts on the news.
Just want to wish my bro @DeMarcusWare the best on his next journey. I'm glad I had the opportunity to play with u these past 2 years.— Brandon Carr (@BCarr39) March 12, 2014
Fans get confused. U get mad when a player holds out and break his contract but not when a team cuts a player breaking their contract! Truth— DeionSanders (@DeionSanders) March 11, 2014
Michael Irvin (@michaelirvin88) March 11, 2014
[USA Today] [Dallas Morning News]