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Stephen Jones: Cowboys considered running back during draft, says ‘Zeke’s making a lot of money’

The Dallas Cowboys have an eye on both the present and the future.

Dallas Cowboys v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

The Dallas Cowboys made nine picks throughout the 2022 NFL Draft. They added in areas that were obvious like along the offensive line, wide receiver, tight end, and at edge rusher while sprinkling in players at spots that can always use depth like linebacker and defensive back.

Among the positions which the Cowboys did not choose to spend a draft pick on was running back. Dallas has two talented runners in Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard headlining their group, but building an NFL team isn’t about just now. It is about the future as well.

When you look at decisions that the Dallas Cowboys are going to have to make in 2023, you see that Tony Pollard is going to be an unrestricted free agent, and that the Cowboys can get out of the contract that they gave Ezekiel Elliott in a relatively easy way for the first time. This would seemingly also be on the mind of the Cowboys.

During the team’s post-draft press conference, Stephen Jones said that the Cowboys considered drafting a running back. To be clear they could add one in undrafted free agency but that has not happened yet at the time of this writing.

He noted that Tony Pollard is going to be a free agent next year and that Rico Dowdle is going to be a restricted free agent. He then added that Ezekiel Elliott is ‘making a lot of money.’

This is the first time that someone within the Cowboys brain trust has said something like this about Ezekiel Elliott’s future. Obviously Elliott is one of the higher-paid running backs in the NFL based off of the deal that Dallas gave him three years ago, but 2023 is the team’s first real out of that contract.

Time will tell if the Cowboys decide to move on Zeke a year from now, but this was about as public of a declaration could be that they want to adjust that figure.

We will see what happens.