Ezekiel Elliott’s performance against the Philadelphia Eagles was a necessary one. The Dallas Cowboys needed their star running back to have a big game and remind everyone exactly why he matters.
In the Cowboys’ 37-17 win over the Eagles, Elliott rushed 19 times for 105 yards. Per Pro Football Focus, Elliott rushed for 93 yards AFTER contact. He averaged 4.89 yards after contact on Sunday against the Eagles. That’s the early part of his career Ezekiel Elliott.
If the Dallas Cowboys are going to make their way into the playoffs by winning the NFC East, they’ll need another big performance from Elliott in the Cowboys matchup with the New York Giants.
As much as we have enjoyed Tony Pollard’s performances at times this season, he’s been inconsistent. There have been big plays, but he hasn’t done enough to prove himself deserving of a 50/50 split on Sundays. Against the Eagles, Pollard carried the ball nine times, picking up 12 yards. One of those carries was a seven-yard run. So, on the other eight carries, Pollard picked up just five yards.
Elliott reminded us why he’s one of the best backs in the NFL despite a down season. As inconsistent as the offensive line has been with backups playing across the offensive line for a large portion of this season, Ezekiel Elliott is still on the verge of a 1,000-yard season.
Surprisingly, the Cowboys will have a bit of a test on their hands this weekend when they face a New York Giants defense that has been pretty good against the run this season. The Giants currently rank 11th in the NFL in rushing yards allowed per game at 111.6 per Pro Football Reference. Their defense has earned 3.32 expected points added, which is 13th in the NFL. At 4.1 yards per carry allowed, the Giants rank eighth in the NFL.
The Cowboys will need Elliott and the running game to perform as they did against the Giants if they want to earn a playoff berth this weekend. Of course, they need some help from the Eagles, but the Cowboys have to take care of their own business Sunday as well.
While this hasn’t been a great season for many on offense aside from Amari Cooper and CeeDee Lamb, Elliott has once again put together a fairly productive season given the circumstances. Hopefully, his performance against the Eagles is a sign of what’s to come for Elliott in 2021.