Agent says Ezekiel Elliott, Cowboys are ‘very close’ to a new contract, believes he can play Week 1 vs. Giants - Cody Benjamin, CBS Sports
Ezekiel Elliott has finally returned from Cabo, coming back to Dallas on Tuesday night. It seems increasingly likely that the running back will end his holdout with an announcement of a new deal on Wednesday.
Arriving in Dallas on Tuesday night from Cabo San Lucas, where Elliott has spent much of the summer training, Arceneaux told reporters at the Dallas/Fort Worth Airport that his client and the Cowboys are “very close” to an agreement, then assured them that both he and the team are “committed” to getting the two-time Pro Bowler a long-term contract.
”I think Zeke is showing he’s committed by coming back to Dallas,” Arceneaux said, as ESPN’s Todd Archer reported. “We didn’t come here not to do a deal ... We’re talking. They’re committed, and we’re committed. That’s why we are here.”
Ezekiel Elliott is really cutting it close by returning to the Dallas area the week of the regular season debut, but the star running back expects to be ready to play against the New York Giants on Sunday.
Ezekiel Elliott doesn’t have a deal with the Cowboys yet, but he’s ready to rejoin his team.
“I’ve been ready,” Elliott said as he arrived at D/FW Airport on Tuesday evening.
Arceneaux was headed to continue negotiations with the Cowboys in hopes of getting a deal done in time for Elliott to practice Wednesday. The Cowboys open the season against the Giants on Sunday.
Earlier on Tuesday, news broke about a different kind of contract extension. La’el Collins, with first-round pedigree and the starting right tackle, re-upped with the Cowboys, adding another five years onto his deal.
The team agreed to terms on a five-year extension with offensive tackle La’el Collins, NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo reported, per sources informed of the pact. Garafolo adds that the pact includes $50 million in “new money.” The first two years are fully guaranteed, and Collins receives $35 million in total guarantees.
Still just 26 years old, Collins continues to improve from early-career struggles, and is one of the rising young tackles in the NFL. The Cowboys will now pay him in line with his worth.
The deal keeps in place the core of the Cowboys talented, highly paid offensive line with left tackle Tyron Smith, center Travis Frederick and right guard Zack Martin are already among the top paid at their positions. Four of five players on one of the best offensive lines in the NFL -- and the best if all are healthy and playing at their peak -- is now locked down through at least the 2023 season.
It’s officially game week, and the Cowboys are prepping to start their season by facing off against the New York Giants. There are plenty of storylines for both of these teams, and it extends to more than just Ezekiel Elliott.
Either way, Tony Pollard’s role with the Cowboys will be something to watch. Remember, the team drafted him in the fourth round to offset Zeke’s rugged style of play with a change of pace. If Zeke does return, it’ll still be worth watching to see how new offensive coordinator Kellen Moore incorporates Pollard to the mix.
If he has to start, now that would be quite a story as well. He’s looked good in few carries he received in preseason but getting the ball for four quarters in a regular-season game should be on another level.
Cowboys get great news on Tuesday with the return of several All-Pros to practice - Clarence Hill, Star Telegram
The Cowboys are expecting a return of Ezekiel Elliott to go along with the return of some their injured stars.
Receiver Amari Cooper (foot) and guard Zack Martin (back) returned after a month-long break, which included missing all of the preseason. Tackle Tyron Smith missed the final three preseason games with a back injury.
All three practiced on a limited basis on Monday with the expectations of playing against the Giants at AT&T Stadium at 3:25 p.m. on Sunday. The team had Tuesday off before returning to work on Wednesday for a fully-padded practice.
“I didn’t do everything, but I think I did enough,” Cooper said. “I think I’m good. I didn’t feel any pain. But then again, I didn’t do everything that I would normally do in a game. So I would just need the rest of the week to really assess it.”
It’s always fun to make bold predictions, even if most of them rarely come true. For some, bold predictions include seeing a big season debut from Dak Prescott, who’s generated a lot of hype throughout the preseason.
2. Dak Prescott Will Throw for 400 Yards
Since becoming the Cowboys starting quarterback in 2016, Dak Prescott hasn’t been asked to throw the ball much. Last year, Prescott attempted a career-high 526 passes (13th most in NFL).
Over the past three seasons, Prescott only has five games where he has thrown for more than 300 yards through the air. In the light of that, two of those games have come against the Giants.
Regardless if Elliott suits up or not, Prescott will throw for 400 yards against the Giants on Sunday.
The fourth-year quarterback knows that he is in a contract year and needs to prove himself to the organization.
Sean Lee was once considered to be one of the league’s very best linebackers in the NFL, but injuries have slowed him down. With the future of the linebacker position already on the team in Jaylon Smith and Leighton Vander Esch, could Lee be on his way out?
[The 2019 season] hasn’t started off ideal for Lee either as last month he suffered an MCL sprain during training camp practice. Albeit minor it was the latest red mark on an injury-filled resume for Lee. A guy who at one time was mentioned with Seattle’s Bobby Wagner and Carolina’s Luke Kuechly as the best linebackers in the game is now a regular for unflattering punchlines. So what does the future hold for Sean Lee?
The Cowboys run mostly out of the nickel package on defense with two linebackers, those will be Jaylon Smith and Vander Esch, which will reduce Lee’s snap count in an attempt to keep him healthy. He’s also undergone another wardrobe change from weakside linebacker to strongside. Ideally, the Cowboys would love for their two young studs to continue their progression with the veteran Lee by their side as a mentor. Unfortunately, history says it’s only a matter of time before he’s on the shelf again.
The organization is hoping for the former because it would give them the best linebacking trio in the NFL. Lee and his leadership can’t be undervalued but can he survive another season filled with injuries? This is one of the many questions heading into 2019 and one that could be answered rather quickly with another devastating but predictable setback.
Ezekiel Elliott wasn’t the only Dallas spots sensation that arrived back in Dallas Tuesday night. Mavericks legend Dirk Nowitzki was also there, although the crowds of cameras and reporters were tragically not for the recent retiree.
Came home from China to all these cameras at the airport. I thought to myself: “ Man. I still got it!!” Turns out they were all there for zeke....— Dirk Nowitzki (@swish41) September 3, 2019