Ezekiel Elliott on Todd Gurley contract, larger workload; 'I'm ready for whatever they throw
Running back coach Gary Brown was ready to move on to a different individual drill Friday afternoon. Ezekiel Elliott had other plans.
The star running back asked Brown if the group could have another repetition on the drill they had been working on. Brown agreed.
Elliott lined up and took another practice rep where the ball carrier avoided garbage cans being moved in different directions. (The RB begins the drill with their back to the players holding the cans so they can't see which way Brown is instructing the others to move.)
"I just thought at the time that that's something we needed to work on," Elliott said. "I think it was a good drill and an extra rep that those younger guys need who haven't been here that long. I just got in his ear and told him we needed one more."
It was a small example of the larger leadership role Elliott is taking on entering his third season. He's also expected to see a bigger workload, one that includes more involvement in the passing game.
"I'm ready for whatever they throw at me," Elliott said. "Whatever they ask me to do, I'm going to go out there and do it. That's it. All I want to do is go out there and win. So if they need me to do more, I'll do more. If they need me to do less, I'll do less. It's whatever this team needs."
If Elliott continues to build on the offensive production he's had over the last two seasons, he'll have a chance to eventually become one of the league's highest-paid backs.
Rams running back Todd Gurley took over that title Tuesday, signing a four-year extension worth $60 million that includes $45 million guaranteed.
Elliott said Gurley's deal is great for the position, but he's not thinking about how it will impact him at the moment. Elliott still has two years left on his rookie deal. The Cowboys could then choose to exercise the fifth-year option allowed on all first round picks, keeping him in Dallas at least through the 2020 season.
"You have seen a good trend of running backs being picked high, and after they've been picked high their teams are getting better," Elliott said. "So I think the league is finally noticing the value of the running back."