TBL LogoTBL Logo

Ezekiel Elliott, Cowboys Contract Talks Are Going Nowhere

Ezekiel Elliott is still holding out and the Dallas Cowboys appear content to play hardball. That’s were we’re at in the seemingly never-ending saga of Elliott’s contract negotiations.

We got another hint as to how things are going on Tuesday:

So it appears Elliott made an offer to the Cowboys, they rejected it and offered far less than he asked for, which led to his holdout. There’s been nothing since.

Despite all the optimism that a deal will get done before Week 1, there hasn’t been a whole lot of movement here.

Elliott clearly believes he should be the highest-paid running back in football. Given his on-field production during the first three years of his career, it’s hard to argue with him. Elliott led the league in rushing in 2016 and 2018 and might have done it in 2017 had he not served a six-game suspension to open the season. On top of that, Zeke is a threat to catch the ball out of the backfield, as he hauled in 77 receptions in 2018. He’s a near-perfect modern tailback.

One issue here is trust and it’s unclear whether Elliott can stay out of trouble off-the-field or not. He’s had numerous run-ins with the law and was suspended for the first six games of the 2017 season for violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy.

I’m sure the Cowboys would be fine with making Elliott the NFL’s highest-paid running back if they were sure he could keep his nose clean. It doesn’t appear they believe the 24-year-old can do that yet. Because otherwise, there’s no doubt he’s worth the money.

It’s a safe bet Elliott won’t blink in this holdout, which means the Cowboys have to make the first move. Both sides seem dug in and the days continue to tick away before the season starts.

The Cowboys have their sights set on a Super Bowl run this season and they’ll only be able to do that if Elliott plays. Unless contract talks advance quickly, Dallas’ hopes for a title run will begin to fade.