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Dallas Cowboys’ Ezekiel Elliott not feeling strain over contract, future with workforce

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OXNARD, Calif. — With no assured cash on Ezekiel Elliott‘s contract past 2022, many surprise if that is his final 12 months with the Dallas Cowboys.

Elliott just isn’t a kind of questioning.

“I believe it’s a huge season, however I believe you may’t look too far down the highway,” Elliott stated. “I believe if I concentrate on day by day, if I concentrate on having a very good day of camp, if I concentrate on taking it week by week, I believe the whole lot will deal with itself. And I do not assume there’s actually a motive to look that far down the highway. I believe if I deal with my enterprise day by day, then I will be in a reasonably good scenario on the finish of the season.”

Elliott’s $12.4 million base wage is absolutely assured as a part of the $90 million extension he signed in 2019. The Cowboys have a better path financially to maneuver on from him in 2023 as a result of there isn’t a extra assured cash in his contract. He’s set to make $10.9 million in 2023.

Elliott’s per-game speeding common has dropped every season, from 108.7 yards per sport in 2016, his rookie 12 months, to 58.9 in 2021.

A giant motive for the drop final 12 months was {a partially} torn posterior ligament in his proper knee, which he suffered within the fourth sport of the season. Elliott was on tempo for greater than 1,500 yards by the primary 5 video games final season with 5 touchdowns. He topped 69 yards simply as soon as within the closing 12 video games and completed with 1,002 yards and 10 touchdowns on 237 carries.

For greater than a month he wore a cumbersome brace on his knee for added safety because the harm restricted his burst.

“It positively was irritating and positively irritating sure components of the 12 months, however it’s soccer,” Elliott stated. “I believe at present is likely to be the one day everybody’s going to be 100%. From right here on out, everybody’s going to have a pair bumps and bruises and nobody’s going to be 100, so simply attempting to do the whole lot I can off the sphere to ensure I protect my well being and am prepared for Sundays.”

Elliott by no means thought-about lacking a sport. He has missed only one sport in his profession as a result of harm.

“Prime of the checklist on his redeeming qualities and there is a number of gamers you see across the league who if issues aren’t excellent, they will sit down. That is not Zeke,” government vp Stephen Jones stated. “He desires to be on the market for his workforce, his teammates and I like the hell out of that and what 21’s all about. One factor’s for positive: We will get 21’s greatest effort, week in and week out. And he is an excellent soccer participant.”

Elliott admitted to some concern the knee was not therapeutic quick sufficient after the season ended, however surgical procedure was by no means an choice.

“I used to be just a little frightened at first of the season, like, ‘Dang, this factor nonetheless form of feels just a little iffy,'” Elliott stated. “However I am going to say in all probability a month or two into the offseason, a month or two getting again into work, and I am going to say in all probability by the point OTAs hit, I used to be again 100.”

Elliott was in a position to work along with his private coach, Josh Hicks, earlier than coaching camp.

“It is powerful being injured and form of feeling your self lose a step,” Elliott stated. “So it positively helped me get again to transferring on the velocity I used to be used to and bringing that confidence again to myself — again to my physique, again to my thoughts that I may make these cuts.”

With Elliott and Tony Pollard, the Cowboys imagine they’ve among the best operating again tandems within the NFL. Pollard had a career-high 719 yards on 130 carries final 12 months. He additionally caught 39 passes for 337 yards, which has led some to name for a extra equitable cut up in touches.

Pollard and Elliott may see extra motion on the sphere collectively this 12 months because the Cowboys look to interchange a few of receiver Amari Cooper’s manufacturing in several methods. However Elliott will stay a key determine.

“Zeke Elliott is certainly one of our rocks on this workforce,” McCarthy stated. “He is a keystone participant. The communication, his capacity to do all the additional little stuff and people are issues I clearly get to have a look at and be part of. The additional work he places in pre-practice, post-practice, Tuesdays, I imply he is within the quarterback conferences within the morning. The bodily a part of it — he overcame rather a lot to play and I believe that speaks volumes about him and also you want these sort of people to win championships.”

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