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Is Darius Jackson Better Than Ezekiel Elliott?

Brian Martin

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Cowboys Headlines - Is Darius Jackson Better Than Ezekiel Elliott?

It's nearly been four whole months since the 2016 NFL Draft and you may have forgotten that the Dallas Cowboys used not one, but two draft picks on the running back position.

Ezekiel Elliott has received the majority of the hype surrounding the Cowboys draft picks and rightfully so, but the other running back that they drafted in the six round out the Eastern Michigan might just end up being a steal in regards to where he was drafted.

Darius Jackson has all of the qualities that you look for in a running back in the NFL and could very well be just as good as Ezekiel Elliott.

Let's take a look at Jackson and Elliott's last year of college production in 2015 and what they have been able to accomplish during their entire collegiate career.

Darius Jackson 2015 & Career Stats
Att/Rec Yards YPC TDs
Rushing 208 1,078 5.2 14
Career Total 321 1,586 4.9 17
Receiving 21 201 2
Career Total 44 375 4
Ezekiel Elliott 2015 & Career Stats
Att/Rec Yards YPC TDs
Rushing 289 1,821 6.3 23
Career Total 592 3,961 6.7 43
Receiving 27 206 0
Career Total 58 449 1

Let's break down the 2015 season for both Jackson and Elliott first, because comparing career stats between the two players would be unfair considering Elliott received more opportunities than Jackson throughout their college careers.

If you take into consideration that Elliott had 81 more rushing attempts than Jackson, the argument could be made that Jackson's 2015 performance might be a lot more similar to Elliott's. If you think about it, 81 more rushing attempts for Jackson would equal about six more games to improve his statistics if you take into account he is receiving approximately 20 carries a game.

Suddenly, Ezekiel Elliott's 1,821 rushing yards don't seem quite as impressive, especially if you consider the talent that surrounded him at Ohio State.

Now, don't get me wrong. I'm not trying to discount anything that Ezekiel Elliott was able to accomplish in college. In fact, he had an outstanding collegiate career. What I'm trying to do is shine a little more light on the type of player Darius Jackson is and why the Dallas Cowboys decided to draft him in the six round.

Do you know what Leonard Fournette, Derrick Henry, and Darius Jackson had in common in 2015?

All three had the highest percentage of their teams touchdowns scored.

ESPN Stats & Info on Twitter

45: Leonard Fournette accounted for 45.1% of LSU's TD scored (all non-passing TD) in 2015, highest rate in FBS

That's pretty impressive company that Darius Jackson finds himself in. Derrick Henry is the 2015 Heisman winner and Leonard Fournette was not only a Heisman favorite in 2015, but should be one of the favorites to win the Heisman once again in 2016.

The Dallas Cowboys could use as much help as possible with finding the end zone, especially after the disastrous offensive performance they had in 2015.

Darren McFadden might have finished fourth in rushing in the NFL in 2015 with 1,089 rushing yards, but he only managed to score 3 touchdowns. That is definitely an area that could use improvement for the 2016 season.

It has yet to be seen what type of player Darius Jackson can be for the Dallas Cowboys, but it is encouraging to know that he has a nose for the end zone.

Now, is Darius Jackson better than Ezekiel Elliott?

Honestly, as good as I think Darius Jackson can become, I don't think he has a chance to compete with Ezekiel Elliott for the starting running back spot. Elliott is arguably the most complete running back to enter the NFL since Adrian Peterson nearly a decade ago.

I'm not even sure that Jackson can outperform Darren McFadden or Alfred Morris to earn more playing time in 2016.

I do however envision Darius Jackson becoming Robin to Ezekiel Elliott's Batman in the future after he has had time to develop his skills further and get accustomed to the speed of the NFL.

It is really going to be interesting to see how Jackson performs in training camp and in preseason games. I'm sure he will receive plenty of opportunities to impress the coaching staff and show us all why the Dallas Cowboys decided to draft him.

Are you excited to see what type of player the Dallas Cowboys have in Darius Jackson?

Please feel free to use the comment section below  to provide your thoughts and opinions on this topic. I really look forward to hearing back from you so that we can discuss this topic further.


Level C2/C3 quadriplegic. College graduate with a bachelors degree in sports and health sciences-concentration sports management. Sports enthusiast. Dallas Cowboys fanatic. Lover of life with a glass half-full point of view.

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15 Comments
  • Boooo This Man

    Oh stop this.

  • Shawn Pugh

    I coached football for 7 years and I know that it's become a passing league but anyone knows that if you want to throw the ball, you first have to be able to run the ball and I don't see any team with four running backs better than the Cowboys in the NFL!!!

    • Brian Martin

      100% agree with you Shawn.

    • https://www.facebook.com/app_scoped_user_id/10153813008003226/ Paul Heckmann

      As much as I like the pick, in no way is Darius better than EzE. When you're comparing stats, you have to take into account a huge variable, the teams that you are facing and the quality of their offense/defense. Playing Big 10 football is a far cry from Mid America Conference

      • Brian Martin

        Thanks for commenting Paul. I don't disagree with anything you said, in fact I probably should've put a little more emphasis on the level competition that both Jackson and Elliott faced in my article. I do however wonder if Darius Jackson and Ezekiel Elliott were to switch places if their statistics would still be a little similar. If Jackson was surrounded with the talent that Ohio State had on offense, would he have similar stats that Elliott had and vice versa? I do believe that Elliott is the better RB, but the point I was trying to make is that Jackson could be a very good RB in the NFL as well.

  • Monte

    If nothing else Jackson is faster than Elliott & that in itself might make a difference. Zeek probably has him beat in hand size though which is important w/ ball security. I don't see the elusiveness of Emmitt out there in any of the runners. Cudos 2 Emmitt he was just plain EXCITING 2 watch!!!

    • Brian Martin

      Thanks for commenting Monte. I think they both are going to make a really good 1-2 combination for years to come.

  • Tyshawn H

    Having Darious Jackson in town with Zeke would make our RB group a bit more dynamic and dangerous for the next few years. Even after D-Mac and Morris go on their way, these two guys will hold it down wonderfully.

    • Brian Martin

      Thanks for commenting Tyshawn. I'm really looking forward to seeing both Darius Jackson and Ezekiel Elliott running behind the Cowboys talented offensive line.

  • Dave

    Nice article,but please don't use titles like that. Wayyyyy to clickbaity

    • Brian Martin

      Thanks for commenting Dave. I don't usually use titles like that. Usually I try to avoid the clickbaity titles, but I thought this time it was kind of fitting. I wanted to express how Darius Jackson could become a really good RB for the Dallas Cowboys. I think often times we get too caught up in the collegiate programs these players play at and their stats. College production is great, but once you become a professional you have to start all over. Jackson is from a small program, but I think you can be really good in the NFL.

  • Randy Martin

    Brian I have to believe this article is a little tongue in cheek. Elliot to Jackson comparison is Apple's and oranges. Elliot played at Ohio St. While Jackson played at EMU. Get real man!

    • Brian Martin

      Thanks for coming Randy. I know that Zeke Elliott and Darius Jackson are probably on opposite ends of the spectrum as running backs, but I really think Jackson has a lot that can be developed and help him become a really good RB in the NFL. I don't know if I could say the same thing about Elliott. He is already so well-rounded that I'm not sure if he can become much better. Jackson may never become as good as Elliott, but that's okay. That's why I said he could become Robin to Elliott's Batman in the article.

      • Football Geek

        Brian, I think your article is spot on and agree that Darius has the potential to be better than Elliot. Here are the reasons: 1) Darius is a better athlete- Proday numbers were 4.34- 40, 41' vertical, 11.1 broad, 20- 225 reps, @ 6ft 220 lbs. These numbers if he would have been invited to the combine would have put him in the top 3 of every category. He also could have went pro at baseball. Darius was a 2 sport athlete at EMU. His batting average while playing baseball for EMU's baseball team was 460. 2) The offensive line at EMU is not even in the same conversation as Ohio States. If you look at difference of last years numbers between Elliot and Jackson the difference is Darius created space and Elliot excelled at the space his oline created. 3) Opportunity. Darius has only been on a small stage his whole life. From a small town and small schools. Now he has put himself into a position to have a shot to show what he has done at every level just on a bigger stage. In listening to his interviews this stage is what he was waiting for. Now he has to take advantage of his opportunity.

        • Brian Martin

          Football Geek, I really appreciate you taking the time to comment. Personally, I can't wait to see what Darius Jackson does in the preseason. I really think he's going to open a lot of eyes and the Cowboys might just have to find some kind of role for him in 2016.

Dallas Cowboys

Though Promising, We Need To Relax About Safety Kavon Frazier

Kevin Brady

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Evaluating The Future Of Kavon Frazier, Byron Jones, And The Safety Position

With the addition of former Seattle Seahawks defensive coordinator Kris Richard to the Cowboys' defensive coaching staff, fans are hoping that Dallas will create their own "Legion of Boom." Of course this is a lofty goal, but one worth pursuing nonetheless.

If the Cowboys are to recreate the Legion of Boom they will need their version of two vital pieces: Earl Thomas and Kam Chancellor.

The Seahawks defense works, in many ways, because of these two players. Thomas' ability to play centerfield and literally defend sideline to sideline gives the Seahawks the freedom to use Chancellor where he's best, as a box safety. Chancellor is a big, physical safety who defends the run effectively in the box and can blanket tight ends in man coverage with his size and athleticism.

These safeties are arguably the most critical pieces to the Legion of Boom, though having a shutdown corner in Richard Sherman certainly doesn't hurt.

Realizing Chancellor's importance, Cowboys fans are hoping that current safety Kavon Frazier can fulfill this role in Dallas. Since being drafted by the Cowboys in 2016 Frazier has made his home on Special Teams. As an impressive tackler in both punt and kick coverage, Frazier earned himself time at safety down the stretch of the 2017 season.

Kavon Frazier

S Kavon Frazier

All in all, Frazier played rather well. Against the Washington Redskins he stepped in and made a few splash plays at the line of scrimmage, causing Cowboys Nation to lose their minds. After that impressive Thursday night game, however, Kavon Frazier didn't really reach that same level of performance.

Frazier is still a liability when asked to cover, especially when asked to play as a two deep safety. He also struggles when taking angles at times, though playing downhill as a tackler is his best attribute. Frazier actually reminds me a bit of Barry Church, though over time Church became more refined in coverage than Frazier currently is.

Some have argued that Kavon Frazier's presence should stop the Cowboys from considering a first round safety. I would disagree, and actually believe that if Florida State's Derwin James is available, the Cowboys should consider making that pick.

If you could combine the athleticism and coverage abilities of Byron Jones with the physicality and "box safety" qualities of Kavon Frazier, you'd have a fantastic safety. Unfortunately, this isn't the Marvel Universe and we are left without any super heroes in the back-end.

Hopefully Kris Richard will figure out how to correctly place all of these pieces in the Dallas Cowboys secondary going forward.


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Dallas Cowboys

Maverick Carter: LeBron James Considered Cowboys During NBA Lockout

Kevin Brady

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1
Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Maverick Carter is a pretty important man in the world of sports. As a business man, entrepreneur, and manager of one of the best basketball players of all time in LeBron James, Maverick Carter is certainly used to making headlines.

This week, while on former NFL running back Arian Foster's podcast "Now What? with Arian Foster," Carter claimed that Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones once attempted to negotiate a contract with LeBron James.

During the 2011 NBA lockout, Carter claims that Jones contacted LeBron James and discussed bringing him in as a Cowboy while the NBA was without games.

"Jerry Jones, being the smart marketer he is...one day out of the clear blue sky LeBron got a contract I think it was for like one year, a couple million bucks to play for the Dallas Cowboys." - Maverick Carter.

Carter then states that LeBron may have the paperwork framed in his house to remember these discussions with Jerry Jones. LeBron's fandom for the Cowboys has been well documented, as has been his high school football prowess.

We may never know how "real" these discussions were, and of course it is long over now, but just imagining LeBron James getting a chance to play for the Dallas Cowboys would break the internet.

You can check out the full episode of the podcast here, and I highly suggest listening to the other episodes Arian Foster has to offer.


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Player News

Cowboys Will Tag DeMarcus Lawrence; What’s the Plan?

Mauricio Rodriguez

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Cowboys Planning

February 20 is an important day for NFL clubs this year. Why? It's the first day in which teams can franchise tag any player. Since 2015, when the Dallas Cowboys tagged Dez Bryant before they were able to work out a long-term deal, Jerry Jones & Co. haven't used the franchise tag. In 2018, though, that will change.

DeMarcus Lawrence just played his best season yet in 2017, and he's looking to get paid big time. Through three years, he had been able to rack up nine sacks, 52 tackles and three forced fumbles. In just 2017, he sacked opposing quarterbacks 14.5 times, had 35 tackles and managed to force four fumbles.

Not only did Lawrence look like an elite pass rusher, but he also improved as a run defender a lot. The Cowboys have been looking for a "War Daddy" for a long, long time and Lawrence seems to be the answer for this football team.

After such a big year, one would expect the Cowboys to sign him to a multi-year enormous contract. But there's a catch. Lawrence failed to remain healthy early in his career and really didn't make as much of an impact until last season.

There's no question that D-Law will be wearing a star come the 2018 NFL season, but will he be doing it under a long-term deal or under a franchise tag?

David Moore on Twitter

Cowboys will not place franchise tag on DeMarcus Lawrence tomorrow as that window opens but will do so by March 6 w/ understanding the goal is to reach a long-term deal. Both sides have until July 16 to make that happen.

For now, according to David Moore from Dallas Morning News, the Cowboys will franchise tag Lawrence with the objective of getting a deal done in July. The tag however, is not expected to be placed as soon as possible.

Jess Haynie on Twitter

In 2015, the Cowboys didn't place the franchise tag on Dez Bryant until the final deadline day. This year's deadline is March 6th, so it may be two weeks before they make it official with DeMarcus Lawrence. #CowboysNation #DallasCowboys

What would franchise tagging DeMarcus Lawrence mean for this team?

First of all, they'd make sure he doesn't hit free agency in March. This gives the front office time to get to work and restructure players' contracts if they have to in order to open up as much cap space as they can before giving him a deal.

It's worth mentioning as well, cap savings from players who are designated as post-June 1 cuts will already be available. If you want to be more familiarized with the Cowboys' cap situation, I highly recommend you read John Williams' deep dive on the matter.

It'll continue to be a very interesting story for this offseason, as handing a franchise tag to a player tends to become a non-friendly situation for both parties. Let's hope that's not the case for the Cowboys and Lawrence this year and that everything works out fine.

Here at Inside The Star, we'll continue updating you and the rest of Cowboys Nation throughout the offseason.

Tell me what you think about "Cowboys Will Tag DeMarcus Lawrence; What’s the Plan?" in the comments below, or tweet me @PepoR99 and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!


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