Ezekiel Elliott shrugs at talk that Tony Pollard should be the starter

Dallas Cowboys v Philadelphia Eagles
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With Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott missing the Week 15 win over the 49ers due to a calf injury and given that his replacement, Tony Pollard, played very well, chatter regarding Pollard’s ascension made its way into Elliott’s midweek press conference.

On Wednesday, Elliott initially was asked to respond to those who believe Pollard should be the starter.

“I don’t really pay much attention to it,” Elliott told reporters. “I don’t really know what to say to it. Tony is a great back though. Tony is a great back. As you saw this weekend he’s special, can do some great things and I mean shoot, he’s a good back.”

Pollard had 69 yards rushing, another 63 yards receiving, and two total touchdowns in the victory over San Francisco.

Asked whether Elliott attributes the push for Pollard to the short-term nature of the football business, Elliott said this: “I mean at the end of the day, those aren’t the people signing my checks. Those aren’t the cats that are making the final decision. So I think there’s a reason they’re not the ones making those decisions. So I mean I don’t think it really matters. It doesn’t really hold much with me what people outside the building are saying. All that matters to us is the people inside this building.”

The people inside the building already have made that decision, more than a year ago. Elliott’s contract already is fully guaranteed through 2021 and, as of March 2021, it will be fully guaranteed through 2022. No matter how well Pollard plays or how poorly Elliott may perform, Elliott most likely will be on the roster for two more seasons.

Pollard’s rookie contract lasts two more seasons, too. It will be interesting to see whether the Cowboys will pay Pollard upon moving on from Elliott, or whether they’ll simply look to the draft for their next workhorse tailback, at a bargain-basement contract for which, in the early years of the player’s career, the team realizes a huge windfall.

16 responses to “Ezekiel Elliott shrugs at talk that Tony Pollard should be the starter

  1. This is the perfect poster child reason why a team should NEVER pay a RB a huge long term contract.
    This is a passing league and as you see here quality RB come and go. The only exception to this is a very very few like Henry and Kamara.

  2. I do think there is a difference between the top few RBs in the league and all the rest, which Zeke was his first couple years, but not enough to give a huge contract v. just drafting another one.

  3. How would you know if Elliot was going to tank or not? I never thought Henry would continue to roll like this in Titan Town.

  4. Pollard definitely has more burst thru the holes…I would not be surprised if Dallas trades Zeke in the off season and drafts Travis Etienne to pair with Pollard.

  5. I don’t understand the fascination with Pollard’s single game performance. He has taken about 1/10th the wear and tear Zeke has, so of course he comes in on fresh legs and has a nice game. Good for the young man, but now we’re talking about Pollard’s second contract and whether he should start ahead of Zeke? Come on.

    Teams still stack the box for Zeke, which opens up opportunities in the passing game. Zeke remains one of the best (if not THE best) pass blocking back in the game. He still gets tough yards as good as most backs in the game.

    The Cowboys have lost all but one starter on their offensive line. They’ve lost their franchise quarterback. It is not a shocker that Zeke is not doing well in 2020. One good game by the backup runningback really doesn’t say as much as people want it to say.

  6. of course the people inside the buildung already made their choice by stating that Zeke is “the straw, if you will, that stirs our drink……”

  7. The Cowboys are just mad that Bill O’Brien didn’t hang around long enough to overpay for Zeke during the off-season.

  8. Elliott seems to have lost the fire after signing that big contract. It doesn’t help that Jerruh squandered away the best years of that offensive line. But hey, let’s make sure we give Dak $40M/yr…that’ll fix everything.

  9. Anyone that thinks Zeke has gotten lazy or doesn’t care isnt watching Cowboys games. He gives eveything he has on every play whether its running the ball or blocking. Hes had a down year no doubt, but he will bounce back.

  10. Zeke is not and never will be anywhere near the Barry Sanders Emmitt Smiths Jim Browns and Tony Dorsetts of NFL running backs. To be honest I’d take another Julius Jones or Marion Barber over him. Productive runners while in Dallas that stayed off Roger Goodells list of suspension candidates. Something for Zeke to chew on since he’s always wanting to be fed…

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