LaDainian Tomlinson rips Ezekiel Elliott, says he quit

Getty Images

Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott had by far the worst game of his career on Sunday, managing just nine carries for eight yards in a blowout loss to the Broncos. And Elliott is hearing it today for what appeared to be a lack of effort.

Hall of Fame running back LaDainian Tomlinson was particularly vocal in his criticism of Elliott.

“I didn’t like the way he quit today. I didn’t like that. He absolutely quit on his team today,” Tomlinson said of Elliott on NFL Network.

Asked to elaborate, Tomlinson said Elliott should be a team leader, and instead he looked like he was bringing the team down.

“First, his attitude on the sideline,” Tomlinson said. “Clearly, he didn’t have any communication with his teammates. But also, he didn’t want to talk to his teammates. Sometimes when things are going wrong, as a leader of that team as a captain, you got to step up and rally the troops. You’ve got to go to the offensive line and say, ‘I know it’s tough but let’s keep battling, let’s keep fighting.’ You got to go to the quarterback and say, ‘Hey man, I’m not getting it done today – you got to step it up.’ You got to rally the troops. . . . They need him to do that because last year, he led the league in rushing. So, everybody is looking at him as the top dog. So, if you want to be the top dog, you got to do it on and off the field.”

Elliott also appeared to quit on an interception, standing and watching instead of trying to make the tackle. It was an ugly game all around for the Cowboys, and especially for Elliott.

91 responses to “LaDainian Tomlinson rips Ezekiel Elliott, says he quit

  1. Reminds me of the “Lay Lady, Lay” Haynesworth play where he tripped against the Eagles and just decided to stay down and read a magazine.

  2. Jerry Jones has drafted players with a selfish attitude. No one should be surprised when it shows up during games. Not should we be surprised when it spreads through the locker room.

  3. Absolutely True.
    Unquestionable, what a little Baby. He was like a 4 yr old out there.

    On another note, why wasn’t he even the least bit involved during the end of the game? He did nothing except line up in the backfield and run a shallow route and no one was paying attention to him, including Dak. He’s one of your best players, and yuo have no screens, draws or flat plays set up for him in the hurry up?
    Cowboys coaches are to blame for that. When the game is on the line, you want the ball in the hands of your best players.
    Awful coaching

  4. “At age 27, that was unfortunately the last time Tomlinson was able to be his true, dynamic self.

    The next season, the Chargers had an opportunity to exact revenge on the Patriots in the AFC Championship game.

    While Chargers QB Philip Rivers played through a torn ACL, Tomlinson aggravated a mysterious injury.

    The specifics of the injury were never determined, but LT sat alone on the bench with his helmet and visor on for most of the game.

    He finished the contest with two carries for five yards, as the Chargers lost 21-12.

    According to the recap of the game prior, Tomlinson left in the second quarter with a bruised left knee.

    It’s unclear how Tomlinson hurt himself so much against the Patriots to the point where he couldn’t play in the biggest game of his life.

  5. From what I understand,one of the reasons Patriots 3rd safety Duron Harmon is a team captain this years is because last year at halftime during the Super Bowl Harmon was a key inspiration of not giving up despite being down 21-3. He has earned the nickname “The Voice” by his teammates.

    Attitude does matter. Being positive can make a difference in performance.

  6. This makes total sense, as clearly the way to lead a team is to sit on the bench with your helmet on, visor covering your eyes and a jacket over you during a tough game. Tomlinson is a hypocrite. Not that I’m a Dallas fan because I’m happy they lost but I also abhor hypocrosy.

  7. Why would he pursue? Not like he’s one of the fastest Cowboys on the field during that play, right? Lmao

  8. I heard this last night on NFL Network and I must say that I agree with LT on this one. Hopefully Zeke is listening and takes it into consideration. Just a maturity thing that he’ll eventually get, I hope.

  9. I love when the old guys feel like they know it all.

    It’s all elliotts fault they couldn’t get a stop on defense or stop the run. Elliots fault the pass hits off Dez’s hands and is intercepted.

    Denver d played well and stopped what the Cowboys do best. Now Dallas needs to adjust and game plan for when that happens.

    Sometimes the other team just plays better

  10. Like when LT propped his helmet and a big jacket up on a broom after he injured himself in the AFC Championship? Same game in which Rivers played through a worse injury? Quitting like that?

  11. Those are strong words coming Thomlinson. Yes, Elliot tanked it on the INT but at least he was IN the game.

    Maybe LaDainian would like to tell us what kept him on the sideline during the 2007 AFC Championship while Rivers played through a torn ACL.

    Seeing him sitting there motionless the entire game under a cape with his dark tinted helmet is one picture of a quitter many San Diego fans will never forget.

    And keep in mind people. If Thomlinson couldn’t physically return to that game, he would have been in the locker room.

  12. okieviacal says:
    September 18, 2017 at 10:16 am
    Like when LT propped his helmet and a big jacket up on a broom after he injured himself in the AFC Championship? Same game in which Rivers played through a worse injury? Quitting like that?

    ———-

    You beat me too it. Exacty!!!!!

  13. Tomlinson is a 100% class act, and he wouldn’t say something like this if it was maybe true. That’s a bad sign for young Elliott, who has a ton of ability. I hope he doesn’t turn into another Can Newton or Odell Beckham, and start thinking of himself only.

  14. jbacher35 says:
    September 18, 2017 at 10:13 am
    I love when the old guys feel like they know it all.
    ======================================================

    That “old guy” played football at the highest level, is in the Hall of Fame, knows the dynamics of players and their attitudes, and knows more about football than any of us. Bill Belichick is an “old guy”. Do you think he feels like he knows it all?

  15. jbacher35 says:
    September 18, 2017 at 10:13 am
    I love when the old guys feel like they know it all.

    It’s all elliotts fault they couldn’t get a stop on defense or stop the run. Elliots fault the pass hits off Dez’s hands and is intercepted.

    Denver d played well and stopped what the Cowboys do best. Now Dallas needs to adjust and game plan for when that happens.

    Sometimes the other team just plays better

    ——–

    Whose fault is it that Elliott could only manage 8 yards rushing?

  16. As a Dallas fan I was very disappointed in the attitudes on the side lines from the beginning. I can deal with a loss on any of the games they play except for when they lose like that from not even trying. The coaches should have been laying into their a$$e$ on the side lines but instead stood there with the look of stupidity on their faces. Elliot quit on the first run when he couldn’t get to the line of scrimmage. So all in all Dallas deserved to lose that game and I give credit to the Broncos for a game well played.

  17. “Tomlinson is a 100% class act”

    Yeah, real class act. Calling out Elliot for “giving up” in an absolute blowout, when he himself quit on his team and pouted on the bench with his helmet on in a close AFC title game with Pats. So classy, I can hardly contain my adoration for such a great human.

  18. Zeke might of quit I agree but this coming from the guy who sat alone on sidelines with mystery injury during playoff game in NE with the darth vador visor and wind jacket on ….

  19. He’s absolutely right but he’s also a big time hypocrite, Lady Tomlinson quit on his team in the playoffs because it was cold out.

    Meanwhile, Phillip Rivers played on a torn ACL in the same game.

    This guy is amazing, wow.

  20. Yep! Sounds about right. Another quality OSU product. Just look at his last game as a Buck and threw a tantrum. He is an idiot that has never had to handle any sort of repercussions due to his actions. It will continue in Jerrah’s world.

  21. nhpats says:
    September 18, 2017 at 10:44 am
    jbacher35 says:
    September 18, 2017 at 10:13 am
    I love when the old guys feel like they know it all.

    It’s all elliotts fault they couldn’t get a stop on defense or stop the run. Elliots fault the pass hits off Dez’s hands and is intercepted.

    Denver d played well and stopped what the Cowboys do best. Now Dallas needs to adjust and game plan for when that happens.

    Sometimes the other team just plays better

    ——–

    Whose fault is it that Elliott could only manage 8 yards rushing?

    ————————————

    Wouldn’t that be on the offense as a whole? This isn’t golf. Takes more then one guy to make it happen. It’s funny because last year it was all the offensive line and that was the reason for success. Now they have a bad game but it’s elliott’s fault.

  22. Funny. When I saw him sulking on the sideline, the FIRST thing that went through my head was LT pouting on the sideline with a towel over his head…

  23. Didn’t Tomlinson tap-out vs the Pats in the ’07 AFC Championship game? He must think everyone has forgotten that and only remembers how he helped their fantasy teams back in the day.

  24. It has still never occurred to the Jones’s that diva-ball works poorly against resistance. Smack a Cowboy in the mouth and he’ll scream at his teammates, drama up the sideline, or pout, but he won’t hit back.

    Cowboy’s have have always been half as good as the hype. And that is generous.

  25. I would quit on my team too if they acted like they had no clue what they were doing. You have a mobile QB, you can’t run the football, why not use your QB’s mobility to extend plays? As good as Denver’s secondary is, they can’t cover Dez, Witten, Beasley for more than 7 seconds. One will get open if Dak scrambles to buy time.

  26. First of all, I’m not a Cowboys fan. In fact, I thoroughly enjoyed watching them get pummeled yesterday. However, I don’t think everything LT said was warranted. Two years ago if this had happened who would be doing what LT mentioned? Tony Romo. Usually it’s the QB who does what he suggests. The problem is that the offensive line is a group of veterans. They don’t need some rah-rah guy like that. Why wasn’t Dak doing what LT suggested? Furthermore, we’ve all seen Dez Bryant go crazy on the sidelines when they aren’t playing well and what happens? Everyone jumps all over that and says he’s a malcontent and everything else. Let’s say for example Elliot had done what LT suggests. In that case LT would come out today and say he’s a hothead and loses his temper when they are losing. Let’s face it, these guys get paid to say controversial, and sometimes inane, things. If wonder if LT ever did what he suggested when they were losing. The interception is a fair point but I don’t think all of his comments are warranted.

  27. Elliot and Bryant aren’t leaders. They’re good when things are going good. Elliot called out Urban Meyer after a bad game. That is why I wanted dallas to pass on Elliot take Jalen Ramsey and grab Derrick Henry in the 2nd but they chose the flashy guy. No matter how good Dak becomes they will always be held back by Elliot and Bryant.

  28. Im not ready to dismiss the Cowboys yet. Sure that was a miserable showing last night that they should be ashamed of. But sometimes thats just what a team needs to give them a needed kick in the fanny. They just learned a fat lesson on what happens to NFL teams that dont keep their intensity up every minute of every game. Now in the weeks to come lets see what they learned from it.

  29. I was at the LT game where he disappeared under his hoodie and sun visor. wrapped up in a huge over field coat to keep warm. Yes the man is a child… but he is spot on with what Elliot did yesterday.

    I have been watching football for over 55 years. Never have I seen a player just quit 7 yards away from another player running with the ball.

    I remember the great run down by the Patriots Tight end Ben Watson in a Denver game where he ran 80+ yards to bring down a DB who intercepted a pass from behind and prevented him from scoring. That play was one of the greatest of all time as far as never quitting goes…. yesterday Mr. Elliot showed his true colors….
    Pouting winning quitter

  30. Elliot is totally distracted as he proceeds with his NFL lawsuit. As a young guy, he’s put himself in an awkward position by filing a public lawsuit against NFL policy…which his handlers had him sign went he entered as a rookie last year.

  31. thats real rich coming from the guy that wore the dark visor and cape on the bench hiding from his teammates during a playoff game. i am no fan of zeke trust me, but for LT to call someone out for quitting is ludicrous.

  32. That Denver pass rush is a buzz saw. Any QB facing them has to deal with that in his face for the full 60 minutes. Its actually a great test to see if a QB is just a flashy guy or a true championship hearted competitor. Are they like Tom Brady going to just keep getting up and making plays in between body slams, cave and quit like Newton, or not give up per se but still get so flustered they are no longer effective? I felt Dak fell into that third category but each can make up their own mind.

  33. Daniel Reeve says:
    September 18, 2017 at 10:03 am
    This makes total sense, as clearly the way to lead a team is to sit on the bench with your helmet on, visor covering your eyes and a jacket over you during a tough game. Tomlinson is a hypocrite. Not that I’m a Dallas fan because I’m happy they lost but I also abhor hypocrosy.
    —–
    Tomlinson was also calling out Joey Boss’s for “hurting” his team by holding out for better terms in his rookie contract only for others to point out that Tomlinson also had significant holdouts also when he played for the chargers in which he missed huge chunks of the pre season. The guy is unbelievable. He should take his highly specialized cognitive dissonance skills and become a politician.

  34. I vaguely remember LT sitting all alone on the bench with his Darth Vader helmet on during a loss to the Pats.
    —————–
    And he’s never stopped making excuses for losing and quitting to this day.

  35. “Clearly, he didn’t have any communication with his teammates. But also, he didn’t want to talk to his teammates.”
    *******************
    Tomlinson acts like he’s got a list of things gone wrong and repeats himself, using ALSO, as if it’s different. Both complaints say the same thing. He may be right, but shouldn’t pretend to have one transgression masquerade as multiple ones.

  36. The best thing the Cowboys could have done with Eliiot was say take your punishment, handle it like a man, learn from it and become a better person. Instead just like High School, college and now the pros they are enabling him because it serves them to do so.This will end up hurting Zeke long term.

  37. I don’t think anyone has ever accused LT of being well spoken or profound. He’s the same guy who after losing to the Pats and throwing a tantrum on the field after the game felt the need to take the podium and remind us all of what a classy guy he is.

  38. goodellisruiningtheleague says:
    September 18, 2017 at 9:53 am
    Cowboys still going to the Super Bowl. WE DEM BOYZ
    ———————————————————————————-
    Your Boyz didn’t go to the Super Bowl even when they had a first round bye and then home field advantage. Keep dreaming. Have you looked at the schedule? The Raiders and Chiefs are going to lay one on them as well.

  39. ibillwt says:

    And he’s never stopped making excuses for losing and quitting to this day.
    —————–

    You guys ragging on Tomlinson’s performance in that game need to read Dr. David Chao’s medical evaluation (former Charger team doctor) at the
    san diego union tribune:

    “Tomlinson suffered the MCL sprain in the AFC divisional round victory over the Colts in the final game played at the RCA Dome. He did everything he could with rehab to play seven days later.”

    “In fact, Tomlinson did try to play and as is typical with a medial collateral ligament (MCL) sprain, he was unable to cut with any precision or power… Although lineman can play with a knee brace, a running back cannot. His knee was taped for support. On his first carry of the game, Patriots linebacker Tedy Bruschi hit him on the knee, aggravating the injury.”

    “We tried to do what we could to make it possible to continue, but he just couldn’t cut or burst off that leg.”

    So yeah, Rivers as a QB can play on a bad ACL, but for a RB who’s only team contribution is running the ball, it’s not possible. You whiny girls need to grow up.

  40. akira554,

    Maybe LT was actually hurt. But that doesn’t excuse the way he sat away from his teammates during that playoff game sulking like my 7 year old. Why didn’t he go over and motivate his teammates? Why wasn’t he passing game tips on to his backup? Instead he sat, helmet and visit on by himself. That in itself was quiting on your team. Now he has the audacity to call someone out for quiting on his team. In a game with stakes not nearly as high as his Chargers playoff game was.

    I still can’t believe he doesn’t recognize the hypocrisy. Seriously get that man checked for CTE.

  41. As many have pointed out here, LT’s comments come with some hypocrisy attached to them. But at the end of the day, he is right – Zeke did quit. I actually turned to my wife during the game and said, “Zeke has quit. It’s like he’s not even there.” It wasn’t all his fault as we were losing at the line of scrimmage, but at least show some heart. Bottom line is the Boys got their butts kicked in every phase of the game…including coaching. Kudos to the Broncos who came to play and were better prepared. Only player to grade out positive is our punter, Chris Jones. And maybe DeMarcus Lawrence. Other than that, no bright spots. Now back to work because our schedule doesn’t get any easier.

  42. Right from that outfit he wore on draft night you just knew what type of character he had … they’ll do it every time .
    The only , rare , real character guy Jerrr picked was jayson witten.

  43. I started to dislike Zeke starting when he blasted his coaches at OSU when they lost to Michigan State for not giving him enough carries. He went 11 for 33 yds. Dude melts down in the face of adversity (interestingly, something he barely faced in college or as a rookie) and thinks it’s always someone else’s problem when things go bad. The Cowboys locker room has explosive and selfish personalities like Zeke and Dez. Now is the time for Garrett to get things in order and Dak to prove he is the leader and hold his teammates accountable.

  44. Just a reminder…. LT sat out that playoff game after a grade 3 MCL separation, which is a tear. MCL injuries affect lateral movement and he was a runningback. His backups at the time were Michael Turner and Darren Sproles. Others who have had the same injury have missed 4-8 weeks. Philip Rivers heroically played through a torn ACL but as a pocket passer as opposed to a runningback.

    FYI

  45. Don’t shoot the messenger;Elliot gave up after interception.LT(light)just did reporting on what was obvious.Shameful,especially with all eyes on him because of his off field accusations.He has a long way to go to grow up.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!