The Dallas Cowboys have used Ezekiel Elliott a lot over his career. As in... a lot a lot. Elliott has been used so often over the course of the last few years that many fans believe his workload has actually been too large, especially considering the fact that the team has a talented reserve running back in Tony Pollard to help share the load. It has felt like a consensus has been reached by just about everyone this offseason that the division of labor has to be more evenly-split in 2022 for a number of reasons.
Wear and tear for Zeke is one of these as is the talent that Pollard possesses. Ultimately it feels like the Cowboys have to use the latter much more this coming season, particularly because he/they both will likely be elsewhere come 2023.
Tony Pollard has fewer career carries with the Dallas Cowboys than Ezekiel Elliott had during his rookie year
As noted at the beginning, it isn’t exactly breaking news to hear that the Dallas Cowboys haven’t used Tony Pollard a ton throughout his three seasons on the team. Incidentally Pollard’s time in a Cowboys uniform has been 100% of offensive coordinator Kellen Moore’s experience running that side of the ball, but there are many places to assign blame for him not touching the ball more.
Lately we have been putting together videos breaking down each and every position for our Training Camp Preview series over on the Blogging The Boys YouTube Channel. We recently did running backs which you can watch below, make sure to subscribe to our channel (which you can do right here) so you don’t miss any of our videos, and something stuck out to me while looking at the careers of both of these two players.
Did you know that Tony Pollard has fewer carries over the course of his entire career with the Dallas Cowboys than Ezekiel Elliott had throughout just his rookie season?
It’s true. Pollard is sitting on 317 carries through three seasons while a rookie Zeke was handed the ball 322 times. Zeke’s third season in the NFL almost laps Pollard’s career as well (304 carries).
Ultimately this only reinforces what we already know in that the Cowboys have preferred to utilize Ezekiel Elliott over anyone else in the backfield since spending the fourth overall pick on him two years ago (and doubling down on that with a big contract at the midway point between then and now). Still, though, it is wild to consider that Pollard has been used that infrequently but also that Zeke has had an enormous amount of work so early on in his career.