Ezekiel Elliott made headlines earlier this week for all of the wrong reasons.
Zeke’s history with the letter of the law that is the NFL is not a great one nor one that inspires confidence among his fans. What he does as a football player on the field though, well, there’s no question about it. He’s the best running back in the National Football League.
It’s difficult really to quantify what exactly Elliott brings to the Cowboys. He’s led the league in rushing in two of his three seasons (and likely would have the third if not for the noted unfortunate past), and led his team to division titles in those same years. He’s the heartbeat of the Cowboys, “the straw that stirs the drink” according to the most important Jones in town.
This is why it should come as no shocker that Ezekiel Elliott is in line for a large pay day with America’s Team sooner rather than later. While he had his fifth-year option picked up for 2020 he still has a long-term contract that needs negotiating. The same is true for the other two thirds of today’s era of the triplets in Dak Prescott and Amari Cooper, but according to NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero that doesn’t matter. Zeke is going to get paid soon enough.
While the #Cowboys have made clear Dak Prescott and Amari Cooper are at the front of the line, they’ve also been talking contract with Ezekiel Elliott‘s reps ... and everyone seems to be on the same page. @nflnetwork @NFLTotalAccess pic.twitter.com/phBOJkseqV— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) May 21, 2019
Pelissero notes that Elliott’s camp and the Cowboys have been in communication despite ongoing contract talks between the team and representatives for Prescott and Cooper. He also mentions that it seems like everyone involved feels that Zeke will soon be the highest-paid running back in NFL history. Read it again. The highest-paid running back in NFL history.
Of course, the barometer for running back salary in the NFL is Todd Gurley of the Los Angeles Rams. He got his long-term extension after his third year (that’s where Zeke is now) last offseason, a huge contract to the tune of four years for $60M.
Gurley’s deal included $45M guaranteed with a signing bonus of $20M. You can bet your bottom dollar that Zeke will hurdle all of those numbers like he does players for the Philadelphia Eagles (and everyone else if we’re being honest). His track record speaks for itself and soon enough his financial worth to the team will, too.