At times during his young career, Ezekiel Elliott has looked like the best running back in football. It looks like the Dallas Cowboys star is working to cement himself among the NFL’s elite.
Amid the Cowboys’ struggles as a team, Elliott had his worst NFL season. His 979 yards and four yards per carry were career lows, as were his six touchdowns, tied with his 2018 output. The 52 passes he caught for 332 yards were more than his shortened second-season, but his 6.5 yard per reception mark was also a career low.
Elliott’s best statistical year remains his rookie season in 2016, when he had 1,631 yards and 15 touchdowns on the ground, averaging over 108 per game. Expectations for the Cowboys will be high this fall, with Dak Prescott back from injury and head coach Mike McCarthy’s back against the wall a bit after the disaster that was 2020.
“He was way quicker, way more elusive, more fluent,” Elliott’s trainer and personal running backs coach Josh Hicks told The Athletic, after comparing videos of the running back doing the same drill months apart. “I know he’s getting better.”
“I don’t think Zeke has ever worked like this in the offseason.”
Ezekiel Elliott has taken his workouts to a new level, and his Cowboys teammates have taken notice.
“It’s just exciting to see him in the best shape of his life.”https://t.co/SdVBULuMvf
— The Athletic NFL (@TheAthleticNFL) July 1, 2021
Ezekiel Elliott has had a number of workout videos go viral in recent months, and for good reason. His teammates are excited to see the progress he’s made as well.
“Zeke looks great. He’s in the best shape of his life. Looking fast,” Prescott said. “Obviously, everybody’s seen the clips of him working out independently with his running back coach. His cuts, just how explosive he is.”
Elliott led the NFL in rushing as a rookie in 2016 and again in 2018. He had a very strong 1,357 yard, 12 touchdown season in 2019 as well. When he’s locked in, he’s as big a weapon as the league has at the running back position.
That should be a scary notion for opposing defenses in 2021.