Article by: Justin Imler
We have more news in the Ezekiel Elliot saga, and the running back is not happy. As we all know, the all-pro has been holding out from training camp and preseason action in hopes of getting a new contract, most likely involving record breaking numbers. Even though most people within the organization and the media expect Zeke to be back for the start of the regular season, Dallas can’t wait around. They’ve had several preseason games so far and Tony Pollard, the running back presumably to be the starting role in Elliot’s absence, made his presence known against the LA Rams Saturday.
Pollard has been playing great football for the Cowboys so far this preseason, averaging 6.3 yards per carry. Pollard also capped off a 51-yard drive Saturday with a 14-yard touchdown in their 14-10 win. After the game, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones addressed the media and was asked about Zeke’s status right now, to which Jones responded, “Zeke who?”.
Obviously, this quick comment was meant to be humorous, and trying to show that the team has faith in Pollard, especially after seeing how well he’s been playing as of late, but not everyone saw the humor in Jones’ comment. Elliot’s agent Rocky Arceneaux told ESPN’s Chris Mortensen Monday, “I didn’t think it was funny and neither did Zeke – we actually thought it was disrespectful.”
This is certainly not a comment the Cowboys organization, nor their fans, wanted to wake up to this morning. As of right now, it is still a waiting game between the Cowboys and Elliot, but these comments clearly don’t help either side, and if I’m a part of the Cowboys organization, I would be feeling a little more nervous about this whole situation than I would have a few days ago. In my opinion, this Dallas team revolves around Zeke being on the field. I really like some of their young playmakers on defense and think that side of the ball has improved tremendously the past few seasons, but let’s face it, this team needs Zeke on the field if they want to move the ball down the field.
I personally have never been a huge believer in Dak, and nothing’s changed there. I think he’s a slightly above average starting QB who won’t win you big games on his own. Can Pollard fill Zeke’s shoes? Come on, of course not. Is he playing well in the preseason? Absolutely. Will he be able to make plays if Zeke is absent come week 1? Sure, but Zeke is worlds ahead of a guy like Pollard, and Dallas will need him in the lineup sooner rather than later if they want to have a chance at a Super Bowl in the 2019-2020 season.