What's buzzing:

Shutdown Corner

Cowboys release Kyle Orton, take salary-cap hit as a result

Eric Edholm
Shutdown Corner
Weeden ready to be Romo's backup with Cowboys
.

View photo

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Kyle Orton (18) leaves the field after a 22-24 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles at an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 29, 2013, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Tim Sharp)

The Dallas Cowboys finally came to the realization that Kyle Orton wasn't walking through that door.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reports that Orton, due a salary that would have earned him $3.25 million, has been released. The Cowboys made the official announcement on Wednesday.

But why?

The Cowboys now will take a prorated portion of his $5 million signing bonus as a salary-cap hit this season of more than $1 million this season and more than $2 million next season.

And get this ... the Cowboys might have lost any chance to go after any of the bonus money that was paid out to him in 2012 under the assumption that he would play. Had they waited it out and just let Orton retire, they could have gone after more than $3 million that they already had paid him.

Very odd. More is likely to come on this story, but for now Brandon Weeden figures to be Tony Romo's backup, and undrafted Dustin Vaughan has a much better chance of making the Cowboys' 53-man roster now, although former Chicago Bears QB Caleb Hanie also is in the mix.

- - - - - - -

Eric Edholm is a writer for Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at edholm@yahoo-inc.com or follow him on Twitter!

View Comments (370)
  • NBA Power Rankings: MVP race shaking things up

    NBA Power Rankings: MVP race shaking things up

    Some of the sport's biggest names are making their presence felt. … More »

    Yahoo Sports - 5 minutes ago
  • Lions' website reports team won't franchise Suh

    Lions' website reports team won't franchise Suh

    Ndamukong Suh can test the open market when free agency begins March 10 after the Lions decided not to use the franchise tag on the star defensive tackle, according to a report on the team's website. The Lions did not officially confirm the … More »

    AP - Sports - 7 minutes ago
  • Ronda Rousey defeats Cat Zingano in just 14 seconds at UFC 184

    Ronda Rousey defeats Cat Zingano in just 14 seconds at UFC 184

    LOS ANGELES – It used to be that Ronda Rousey needed a minute to finish her fights. Now, she's getting two of them done in half of that time.

    The most dominant fighter in the world continued her mind-boggling run of destruction Saturday, submitting

    More »

    21 minutes ago
  • Ecclestone offers cash advance for smaller teams

    Ecclestone offers cash advance for smaller teams

    By Alan Baldwin LONDON (Reuters) - Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone has offered advance revenue payments to Sauber, Force India and Lotus to help with cash-flow problems ahead of the new season starting in Australia next week. "Bernie … More »

    Reuters - 10 minutes ago
  • Canadiens acquire forward Flynn in deal with Sabres

    The Montreal Canadiens have acquired forward Brian Flynn in exchange for a 2016 fifth-round pick from the Buffalo Sabres. Overall, he has 17 goals and 24 assists for 41 points in 159 games over three seasons with Buffalo. Flynn's future in Buffalo … More »

    AP - Sports - 14 minutes ago