The Dallas Cowboys are set to have joint practices with the Broncos and Chargers before their preseason games later this month. Ezekiel Elliott, the Cowboys’ top runner since 2016, will suit up for those but the veteran won’t participate in any actual preseason games.

“I’ve been playing football 20 years,” said Elliott. “This is my 7th year (in the NFL). I’ve seen a lot of football. I don’t think I need a preseason game, especially with the joint practices.”

Elliott is coming off of his fourth 1,000-yard campaign in six seasons. However, a torn PCL Elliott suffered last season during a Week 4 contest against the Carolina Panthers made it tough to watch. The two-time rushing champ looking noticeably gimpy times, which suggests the Cowboys should have done a better job of protecting him and utilizing Tony Pollard more.

This season it will be paramount for the Cowboys to involve Pollard more in the offense. The less Elliott has to shoulder the load, the less chance for injury. Plus, Elliott and Pollard have shown that they can produce simultaneously seeing as they have run for 100 yards in the same game three times in the past.

Elliott showed last season that when healthy he can still control ball games as he had three games of 95 yards or more (two over 100) in succession. Hopefully, Elliott can avoid a third consecutive year of injury setbacks, and be a valuable piece to any offense that should be productive once again in 2022.

Feature image via Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports