The Dallas Cowboys are going to have to make a decision on Ezekiel Elliott this offseason. For the first time since Dallas drafted Elliott seven years ago he enters an offseason with no guaranteed money on his contract from his extension way back in 2019.
Since Zeke’s deal was negotiated, this was always a potential break-point between he and the franchise, in fact last year on the day that the 2022 NFL Draft ended Stephen Jones went out of his way to say that “Zeke’s making a lot of money” which implied even more that the team would consider moving on from him in the spring of 2023.
If the Cowboys really were considering moving on from Zeke in 2023 as recently as a year ago, then his production this past season likely made their minds up. It has been well-documented how Elliott struggled down the stretch; when Tony Pollard left the Divisional Round matchup against the San Francisco 49ers the Cowboys got very little production from their workhorse back.
Not even 24 hours after that game was over word came out that Zeke was open to a pay cut with the Cowboys this offseason to remain a part of the organization. It seems that his representation may be trying to quantify his options.
Ezekiel Elliott’s representation will reportedly ‘figure out’ his value at the NFL Combine
It is just under two weeks until the 2023 NFL Combine which is obviously exciting as it relates to the 2023 NFL Draft. It is exciting for other reasons as well, though.
The combine provides the first opportunity in the offseason for the world of NFL decision-makers to come together, break the proverbial bread, and discuss things. Football things. Many NFL trades and other contract maneuvers have seen their foundation laid at the combine.
It seems that Ezekiel Elliott’s representation is going to be working hard at the combine, at least according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Schefter noted during Wednesday’s NFL Live that Zeke’s representation will “figure out” his value in Indianapolis before deciding about a potential restructure with the team. You can see the Schefter clip in our video breakdown of the subject below (jump to about the four-minute mark for the specific clip in question).
Any potential restructure of Zeke’s deal would obviously be focused on lowering his cap hit for this upcoming season. As it stands he is set to count $16.7M against the cap and that is a bit much given his production as mentioned.
There will obviously be a lot of posturing on the sides of both the team and player in the coming weeks as they attempt to set things up in their favor, that is just the way that things go. Elliott is a favorite of the Cowboys brain-trust so for them to be willing to even talk about releasing him seems rather noteworthy and an indication that they are seriously considering it.
What should the Cowboys do with Ezekiel Elliott?
This poll is closed
Restructure his deal to a team-friendly number
Move on, regardless of any potential restructure discussion
Nothing, leave things as they currently are