Ezekiel Elliott, a three-time Pro Bowler and one-time All-Pro selection with the Dallas Cowboys, remains a free agent as teams prepared for mini-camp, and fans have wondered why he is without a team only a few months before the season stars.
Skip Peete, the current running backs coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers who was on the Cowboys’ staff from 2020 to 2022, suggested Wednesday the star running back needs to be willing to accept a lesser role and smaller paycheck. Peete said he and Elliott spoke the other night.
“I think that’s part of the reason he’s sitting out there,” he said, via the Tampa Bay Times. “If you’re going to play, I mean, you’re going to be the second and third guy. That’s kind of what the price is. So. that’s something that a person has to be able to see that that is what it is going to be.”
Peete said Elliott fought the drop to running back No. 2 as Tony Pollard grew in prominence but noted Elliot being able to maintain the ability to be productive.
In 2022, Elliott had 876 rushing yards – the lowest total of his career but still scored 12 touchdowns on the ground. He earned $12.4 million last season from the Cowboys.
Dallas was fourth in points scored and 11th in yards gained.
The Cowboys will likely be going with Pollard as the starter again this season. The team also has Malik Davis, rookie Deuce Vaughn, Ronald Jones and Rico Dowdle on the roster.