When the Dallas Cowboys took on the Broncos on Saturday, most of their potential starters didn’t play, including running back Ezekiel Elliott. That was to be expected, however, one media outlet thinks the two-time rushing champ may have made a mistake in doing so.
On Friday, Pro Football Focus released a piece highlighting five veterans that would benefit from a strong preseason. Surprisingly, the Cowboys’ top runner, Elliott, was mentioned in it.
PFF’s Kambui Bomani on why Elliott was named:
“The recent narrative surrounding Ezekiel Elliott has been a common one in many NFL circles. The once premiere back is no longer a reliable bell cow and may be more suited as a committee back within the 2022 Dallas Cowboys offense.
“Elliott’s recovery from a partial PCL tear while also slimming down during rehab are all promising steps this offseason toward a career resurgence. This preseason will be all about showcasing the hard work he’s put in behind the scenes and its legitimacy toward future success.”
This has to be a joke, right?
The notion that this would help Elliott is untrue for multiple reasons. First, Elliott is entering his seventh season with the Cowboys, and his last two have seen him suffer injuries. So, knowing that he’s going to be the starting running back once the season begins, why would he risk getting dinged up in a preseason game, which is meaningless to a player that’s at the point in his career that Elliott is in? It makes no sense to do that.
Another reason why this was sort of an off-the-wall thing to say is that Elliott made it clear about two weeks ago that he wasn’t playing in any of the Cowboys’ preseason contests.
“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.”
The Cowboys had a joint practice against the Broncos this past week and will have two against the Los Angeles Chargers before their preseason game next Saturday in California. That’s about all the physicality you want Elliott taking before the season commences. He’s very much enthralled with what the Cowboys do offensively, and any extra wear and tear before the regular season wouldn’t be a wise move.
For Elliott, isn’t about being as healthy as possible for the Cowboys so that he can resemble the running back that was one of the best in the NFL before his knee injury last season.
Featured image via Jason Parkhurst-USA TODAY Sports