To quote Drake: “Nobody eats when the family fueds.”
Well, Jerry Jones just served Ezekiel Elliott his biggest plate of his career. And after a months of speculation, Elliott is finally ready to eat.
A 40-day holdout ended today when the two sides agreed to terms on a six-year, $90 million extension with $50 million of that guaranteed. The deal makes Elliott the highest paid running back in the NFL — something many assumed would never get done.
Back in mid-july, rumors circulated regarding whether Elliott would even hold out. With several years of control left for the Cowboys to leverage against Elliott, fans immediately began bashing the all-pro running back for even harping at the idea of a holdout.
With Super Bowl aspirations at the forefront of everyones minds, Elliott used that to his advantage. On July 25, Elliot missed the Cowboys’ flight to Oxnard, Calif., for training camp. No one panicked, until he did not report at the veterans’ deadline the next day. And the reality of a possible holdout began to surface.
Elliott’s non-report brought plenty of subtle and questionable jabs from the opposing sides. Storylines of new contract extensions filled headlines (Jaylon Smith and La’El Collins) followed by Elliott’s reaction to Jones’ infamous “Zeke Who?” joke.
Now, a day before the NFL’s centennial season and four days before the Cowboys 60th season, the question remains: How prepared will Zeke be?
A history of slow starts during the first couple games of the season could show itself after missing an entire training camp.
Head Coach Jason Garrett has ample confidence the star running back will be able to be integrated quickly once he rejoins the team.
“Zeke is as capable as anybody I know,” Garrett said. “He’s an experienced player, he’s been a really good player for us, he knows our system of football. I don’t think they’ll be a lot of learning there. He’s a smart guy, an instinctive guy.”
Once again, this Cowboys front office has shown how impressive they are when pressed against a deadline.
Mission accomplished Zeke. You went toe-to-toe with one of sports greatest businessmen. And won.
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