The status of running back Ezekiel Elliott has been a big focus lately for the Dallas Cowboys, as the running back continues to battle a knee injury. It you believe Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, however, the worst is behind the running back.
On Friday, Jones told 105.3 The Fan that Elliott’s trainers believe the running back is “good to go,” and that a ten-day rest will get Elliott back to full health.
“His trainers, the people that are the closest to his health, his medical situation, they think he’s really good to go,” Jones said, via the Dallas Morning News’ “SportsDay.” “And, so, I don’t see after a 10-day rest here, you know, a lot of times, if you can get through games, if you can push on, then that’s better for you than sitting it out. You actually, if you have an issue, it improves if you’re able to get through and not injure it more. He certainly didn’t injure anything more last night. So, I really look forward to a powerful and dynamic Zeke as we move on into this last part of the season.”
Whether Jones is talking based on something he knows or is offering some hopeful speculation is not clear. We do know that there was legitimate concern about Elliott missing time due to the nagging knee issue. He also didn’t look any better Thursday against the Saints, picking up just 45 yards on 13 carries. The rest should help, but it’s hard to envision Elliott closing the season the way Jones seems to think he can.
A new report hinted at the severity of the injury for Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott and suggested that he may have time off in the future.
The Cowboys are considering having Elliott sit out at least one game to give him more time to recover from his knee injury, according to ESPN’s Ed Werder. Elliott’s availability for next Thursday’s game against New Orleans is in some question, though the team is not considering placing the running back on injured reserve.
Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy admitted Friday that the team will “evaluate” Elliott and determine his practice workload based on that. Elliott, who has been playing through the injury for several weeks, has maintained that he does not need extra rest or time off.
Elliott’s injury has been characterized as a bone bruise, and there had already been suggestions that his workload may be scaled back even if he does play. The Cowboys know they can lean on Tony Pollard, who had 68 total yards Thursday against the Raiders and also ran back a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown.
The Cowboys have lost three of four, and that coincides with diminishing output from Elliott. He ran for just 25 yards in the loss to Las Vegas, and the knee issue likely has a lot to do with that. If the Cowboys want to make a playoff run, they’ll need him healthier than he appears to be right now.
Ezekiel Elliott has been playing through a knee injury for several weeks, and he has been noticeably less effective during that time. The Dallas Cowboys are thinking about limiting his touches as a result.
Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said after Thursday’s loss to the Las Vegas Raiders that the plan was for Tony Pollard to get 25 touches in order to reduce Elliott’s workload. Instead, Elliott got 15 touches to Pollard’s 14. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Media, that could change going forward.
Pollard rushed for 36 yards on 10 carries and added four catches for 32 yards. He also scored on a 100-yard kickoff return. Elliott had 25 rushing yards on nine carries and six catches for 24 yards. Pollard clearly looked like the more explosive back, and Elliott’s knee injury may have had a lot to do with that.
Elliott was first listed on the injury report with the knee issue in Week 10. He then aggravated it on an awkward hit out of bounds against the Kansas City Chiefs last week (video here).
The Cowboys are 7-4 after losing three of their last four. Elliott’s health will likely be a key to their success down the stretch and potentially into the postseason, so it makes sense for them to let his knee heal as much as possible.
Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott appeared to hurt his ankle early on in Sunday’s game against the Kansas City City.
Elliott’s right leg got caught awkwardly underneath him as he was being tackled out of bounds in the first quarter. You can see the play below:
Elliott briefly went into the medical tent before returning to the sideline. He was walking with a limp, but the extent of the injury was not immediately clear.
It’s hard to tell if Elliott rolled his ankle or the defender just banged into it. The latter would likely be the better scenario.
Elliott was replaced by Tony Pollard on the Cowboys’ next drive, though they often use Pollard to give Elliott a breather, anyway.
There were several controversial calls in Sunday’s thrilling game between the Dallas Cowboys and New England Patriots, and Ezekiel Elliott apparently felt none of them worked in his team’s favor.
Following the Cowboys’ 35-29 OT win over New England, both Elliott and Dallas pass-rusher Randy Gregory were critical of the officials. Elliott said the Cowboys felt like they had to “overcome the Patriots and the zebras.”
There was one play in particular that likely infuriated Elliott. Dak Prescott made a crucial fourth-down mistake when he lost a fumble at the goal line late in the first half (video here), but it looked like the quarterback clearly got into the end zone on a sneak the play before. The third down play was not reviewed.
The Cowboys also had some big plays negated by holding calls. They had 12 penalties for 115 yards compared to New England’s five for 47 yards. Dallas did, however, appear to get away with a blatant face mask penalty on a key play in overtime.
It’s a good sign that the Cowboys overcame 12 penalties to beat a tough opponent on the road. And complaining about the officiating after a win carries a lot more weight. We saw an NFL coach do the same following his team’s OT win on Sunday.
Elliott and the Cowboys feel like they can beat anyone right now — even the zebras.
The Dallas Cowboys plan to file a complaint after running back Ezekiel Elliott had an injury scare from landing on a camera pylon during Sunday’s game.
Elliott appeared to hurt his back when he landed on a camera pylon positioned on the sideline during Sunday’s win over the New York Giants. He was shaken up for a moment, but remained in the game and showed no ill effects.
Still, the Cowboys don’t want a more serious injury to result from a similar situation in the future. Coach Mike McCarthy made clear the team thought the pylon was allowed too close to the field, and indicated the team would speak to the NFL or FOX about it.
You can see the play that had Elliott shaken up, as well as the pylon in question, in this video.
The problem is it’s not entirely clear where the pylon should go. While the Cowboys are understandably upset, it’s already away from the field in a place where it usually doesn’t interfere with anyone.
Field conditions can definitely lead to injuries, and we’ve seen it over and over again. We’ll see if the NFL has any response to this situation.
Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott are the two biggest stars on one of the most popular sports teams in the world, and they are looking for a new way to profit together.
Prescott and Elliott recently filed a joint trademark application for “214,” which is a combination of their two jersey numbers (No. 21 for Elliott and No. 4 for Prescott). The number also happens to be the area code for Dallas, Texas.
Athletes file for trademark applications all the time, and many superstars have done it with multiple teams. We cannot, however, remember many — if any — times a pair of teammates have filed for a joint trademark like the one Prescott and Elliott are seeking.
It’s worth noting that Elliott may not be with the Cowboys as long as some expect. He’s been outplayed by Tony Pollard in the early part of the season, and Mike McCarthy was not the head coach in Dallas when Elliott signed his massive six year, $90 million extension. If Zeke and Dak want to make money off a joint trademark, they had better do it soon.
Ezekiel Elliott on Thursday responded to critics of his big contract.
Elliott has been outplayed by Tony Pollard through two games. Though it is early in the season, there have already been critics pointing out how much more Elliott is being paid to not be the top performer.
Elliott basically went scoreboard on them all and said that he’s still cashing his checks regardless of his role.
Elliott has to say something about the matter and that’s the best he can come up with.
The 26-year-old was valuable as a rookie and had big seasons in 2018 and 2019. He signed a 6-year, $90 million deal prior to the 2019 season and delivered. But his role diminished last year and that has continued this year. So long as the direct deposits keep coming through though, Elliott won’t seem to mind.
ESPN analyst Booger McFarland offered a bold opinion about Ezekiel Elliott on Monday night.
McFarland, who is part of ESPN’s “Monday Night Countdown” show, was talking about the Dallas Cowboys. The Cowboys narrowly escaped the Chargers 20-17 in Week 2, thanks to some help from the refs.
Elliott received more carries than Tony Pollard in the game, but Pollard outproduced his teammate.
Zeke had 16 carries for 71 yards and a touchdown. He also had 2 catches for 26 yards.
Pollard had 13 carries for 109 yards and a touchdown. He added three catches for 31 yards.
Booger thinks Pollard is the better back right now.
“Run the football. But specifically, run the ball more with Tony Pollard,” McFarland advised the Cowboys.
“I understand that Zeke is your $90 million running back. But the guy that gives more juice is Tony Pollard. He’s more explosive. He brings more juice. … which guy gives us the best chance to have a home run play? Which guy gives us the best chance to move the chains? It’s not Zeke; it’s Tony Pollard. He’s their best running back.”
Randy Moss pressed McFarland on the point and asked whether Pollard is a better overall running back than Ezekiel Elliott.
“He’s playing better and he has more juice,” McFarland said.
That is a bold take.
Pollard is in his third season with the Cowboys and on pace for his best season. He has 7 catches for 60 yards and 16 carries for 123 yards and a touchdown.
Zeke was a monster as a rookie and played well in 2018 and 2019. Last season he had much less of an influence in Kellen Moore’s pass-focused offense. It appears the same thing is happening in 2021, though Elliott is maintaining a good attitude so far.
Ezekiel Elliott continues to face scrutiny coming off an underwhelming 2020 season, and his Week 1 performance didn’t excite many either.
Elliott was limited to 11 carries for 33 yards in the Dallas Cowboys’ season opener against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He didn’t offer much in the passing game either, catching two passes for six yards.
On Wednesday, Elliott urged critics to look at his full body of work, including his blocking contributions, despite the lack of flashy statistics.
Elliott has a point. There is more to being a solid contributor than piling up stats. Plus, he was up against the Buccaneers, a team coming off a Super Bowl win with a highly-regarded defense. He clearly retains the faith of his quarterback and his coaches judging by the fact that he was the clear backfield preference ahead of Tony Pollard, so there’s probably not much to worry about.
On the other hand, the Cowboys didn’t sign Elliott to a $90 million contract for his blocking skills. There’s a long way to go, but Elliott will have to show improvement to keep fans from getting on him.