Ezekiel Elliott was Rookie of the year in 2016, but he and everybody else needed to move away from that. All of them probably did, but the ghosts that haunt him from the last year are not those from the field but are those from his personal life.
After fourteen months of NFL investigation in a case of domestic violence in which Elliott was involved the league officials have found Zeke guilty. The court of Ohio state concluded that there was no substantial evidence to press charges against NFL’s superstar and leading rusher. The league, on the other hand, had a different opinion and sentenced Elliott to a six-game suspension.
Cowboys running back appealed this decision, and Judge Amos Mazzant issued a preliminary injunction which allowed Elliott to play until a final decision is made. The NFL appealed to this ruling, and the process is still ongoing without knowing when will the decision be made.
So, you now must be wondering, if he was cleared to play, why is our headline saying ‘a player that didn’t play.’ Well, the reason is pretty clear. He was there, he was on the field against the Broncos, but he just failed to make an impact. Actually, he was so bad, that on one carry he lost five yards.
He had eight yards on nine runs. During his rookie season, he never once had less than 51 yards to his name. After the match, he said that he never had one digit number of rushing yards. He did, but back in his freshman year at college. Years back, so far away in the past that he doesn’t remember, we barely do.
Elliott had an awful game, we all can agree on that. But, what comes as even worse, is his behavior. Entire Cowboys team had a bad night, but Ezekiel was the first to throw in a white flag. This was most evident after Prescott’s pass which was intercepted. In the moment of the interception, he was standing five yards from the Chris Harris who caught the pass and didn’t move an inch. Yes, he put his hands on his hips and just watched. Children in school, on their first football practice, learn that when the ball is intercepted you chase the player who did it until he’s taken down. Zeke didn’t do that. He just watched!
In this situation, LaDainian Tomlison, one of the star running backs of his generation said: “He absolutely quit on his team today.” Jerry Jones added: “It is the first time that I’ve seen us play when Zeke was as neutralized as he was today.”
Both of them are right. Ezekiel Elliott needs to be disciplined by the Cowboys, not for his performance because everyone can have a bad game, but for his attitude. Maybe he shouldn’t even play until his head is clear. With him in this state, the league might do a favor to Cowboys if he gets suspended.