The former Pro Bowl DT was just too expensive for the Cowboys to keep with so many pressing needs.
Dallas Cowboys DT Henry Melton will become a free agent in March after the team decided not to exercise the three-year option on his contract.
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The Dallas Morning News reported that the Cowboys had elected to decline the three-year player option in Melton’s contract after signing him to a one-year deal in the 2014 offseason.
Exercising the option would have given Melton a $9 million guaranteed salary in 2015, and with the team working desperately to keep both All-Pro WR Dez Bryant and All-Pro RB DeMarco Murray on the payroll, the Cowboys needed to make some tough choices among their other high-earning stars.
Melton joined the Cowboys in 2014 after missing 13 games with the Bears in 2013. He played well in spot-duty for the Cowboys, appearing in all 16 games and getting 3 starts. He recorded five sacks, including a two-sack performance against Washington and a 1.5 sack performance against the Arizona Cardinals the following week.
In his previous four seasons with the Chicago Bears, Melton recorded 15.5 sacks in his first three seasons, making the Pro Bowl in 2012. But an ACL injury suffered early in the 2013 season ended his season and his tenure with the Bears.