Micah Parsons wants Daron Payne to join him on the Cowboys’ defensive line

Micah Parsons wants Daron Payne to join him on the Cowboys originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

Could Daron Payne ditch the Commanders and land with the Cowboys this offseason?

One Dallas megastar spent part of Super Bowl week laying the groundwork for such a move.

While doing the rounds on radio row in Arizona a few days ago, Parsons sat down for an interview on PFT Live with Mike Florio and Chris Simms. During his time on set, the 23-year-old was asked for his thoughts on how the Cowboys can further improve.

“We’ve just gotta be more accountable, more aware,” Parsons answered, before shifting his perspective from on the field to off of it. “We gotta go after it in free agency, too.”

Parsons was then pushed to get more specific — which is when he presented an idea that’ll have Washington supporters squirming.

“I like Daron Payne a lot,” Parsons said, as a subtle-but-definite smirk unfurled across his face.

Parsons went on to list a few more positions that he believes could use reinforcements before concluding, “You’ve gotta spend the money. Why not spend it?” But Payne is the only person he directly mentioned by name.

Parsons’ interest in his (for now) NFC East peer is understandable.

Payne’s 2022 season was a remarkable one, as he posted 11.5 sacks in his 17 appearances (he had 14.5 sacks in his first four pro campaigns, by comparison).

Exploding in a contract year has put him in a position to get paid — like, paid — come free agency and Parsons is surely already daydreaming about how his own production would increase if Payne was occupying the middle of the Cowboys’ defensive line.

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Yet the Commanders will ultimately have a say in the matter.

Thanks to the franchise tag, there is a mechanism that Ron Rivera can use to keep Payne on his roster for another go-round at a $19 million salary. Or the franchise, of course, could ink Payne to a major extension, though the current ownership situation may complicate negotiations (and that’s without even touching on whether he personally wants to stick around with the organization). 

None of that was on Parsons’ mind, however, when he initially floated the idea on camera. He sees the Cowboys as title contenders — “I think we can be in Vegas next year,” he told PFT Live — and acquiring Payne would inevitably elevate their potential. 

It’d also be a sickening sight for those who care about Payne’s present employer.

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