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Will RB Ezekiel Elliott Join the 2,000 Yard Rushing Club?

Brian Martin

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Dallas Cowboys: Ranking Top 5 Most Indispensable Players 4
(Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

All eyes were on Ezekiel Elliott throughout his rookie season with the Dallas Cowboys. He has been one of the few first-year running backs to seriously challenge Eric Dickerson's rookie rushing record, but unfortunately fell a little shy. But, Elliott could still join Dickerson in the record book by becoming one of the few to ever rush for 2,000 yards in a season.

To say that rushing for 2,000 yards in a single NFL season is a difficult task to accomplish is an understatement. To date, only seven running backs in the history of the league have ever accomplished this feat.

(1973) O.J. Simpson 2,003
(1984) Eric Dickerson 2,105
(1997) Barry Sanders 2,053
(1998) Terrell Davis 2,008
(2003) Jamaal Lewis 2,066
(2009) Chris Johnson 2,006
(2012) Adrian Peterson 2,097

I don't know about you, but I think that's an impressive group of running backs. All of them already have a bust in the Hall of Fame, with the exception of Adrian Peterson and Chris Johnson of course. But, that could be just a matter of time.

Ezekiel Elliott has been pretty impressive so far in his young career, but joining the elite group of 2K rushers is a tall order to ask of him.

Ezekiel Elliott

Dallas Cowboys RB Ezekiel Elliott

Ezekiel Elliott, a.k.a. Zeke, would have to put together a historic season to have a real shot at going over 2,000 rushing yards in a single season. He would have to average a minimum of 5.5 yards per carry and carry the ball an upwards of 360 times. Those of course are just ballpark numbers, but it gives you an idea of what kind of monumental season he would have to put together.

Back in 2016 for example, Elliott averaged 5.1 yards a carry and toted the rock 322 times. He ended up accumulating 1,631 rushing yards, falling a little short of Eric Dickerson's rookie rushing record (1,808). Of course, those numbers could have been a little better if the Cowboys coaching staff hadn't pulled back the reins toward the end of the season to save him for the playoffs.

It's not out of the realm of possibility Zeke joins the elite group of 2K rushers, but things would probably have to fall into place perfectly. Both he and his offensive line would have to remain healthy for the entire season. He would have to break more long runs and opposing defenses would have to stop stacking the line of scrimmage as often as they do.

Unfortunately, I don't believe all of the pieces will fall into place. Teams aren't going to stop stacking the box. Zeke will continue to see eight, nine, and even 10 man fronts on a regular basis, especially if the Cowboys revamped receiving core struggles.

Luckily, that's not a bad thing. The Dallas Cowboys don't need Zeke to rush for 2,000 yards. It would be a nice accomplishment for him, but I don't know if it will make them any more successful as a team or put more W's in the win column. Another year like he had his rookie season would probably make everybody happy.

So, joining the 2,000 rushing yard club is certainly doable for Ezekiel Elliott, but I doubt that's his, or the Dallas Cowboys goal heading into the 2018 season and beyond.

Do you think Ezekiel Elliott will ever join the 2,000 yard rushing club?



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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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Derek Robinson

    July 11, 2018 at 9:28 am

    Weather it is or it’s not. It’s definitely doable. Zeke has a huge chip (log) on his shoulders, and he’s definitely out to prove that he is the best RB in the league.

    I believe he will set a new standard for running backs this year. And make the pro bowl. ” Feed the beast”

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Star Blog

What Is The Cowboys Most Pressing Offseason Need?

Kevin Brady

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Can we Believe General Manager Jerry Jones?

Finishing their season with a Division Round loss, Dallas Cowboys fans are getting a somewhat late start on the 2019 offseason. Of course, we'd much rather a later start, but the results are what they are.

Now Dallas must get better, and re-tool before heading into Dak Prescott's fourth season, and the Cowboys' 2019 campaign. Though they didn't feel all that close to a championship this season, looking around the roster, it's actually tough to identify one key need the Cowboys must address.

They are filled with young, talented players that they have high hopes for across the board. And in the places they are "older," such as across the offensive line, they have established veterans who aren't going anywhere anytime soon.

So what is the Cowboys' most pressing offseason need?

Well, despite already using their 2019 first round pick to address it, the answer very well might be wide receiver.

Adding Amari Cooper midseason provided a massive jolt to the Cowboys previously anemic passing attack, but on his own he is not enough to take this passing game to where it needs to be to compete in this new NFL.

Third round pick Michael Gallup is going to be a very good pro, and progressed really well as his rookie season went on. I think he can play opposite Amari Cooper nicely, and be the number two option in the passing game going forward.

Though arguably their best wide out against man coverage, Cole Beasley is a free agent, and if the reports are true about Scott Linehan returning in 2019 it could very well mean Beasley will not be opting to sign back with Dallas.

Regardless of Beasley's decision, however, the Cowboys need to seriously evaluate their pass catchers heading into next season.

This is a passing league. The rules have dictated that you must be able to pass the ball efficiently if you want to compete with the best of the best around the NFL. To take the next step in their progression, and reach an NFC title game and/or Super Bowl, Dak Prescott will need to have as explosive a group of pass catchers as possible.

The Cowboys have already taken solid steps to making this a reality, but another move or two this offseason could go a long way to putting Dallas in the conversation with teams like the Rams and the Saints in 2019.



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3 Things We Learned About The Dallas Cowboys In 2018

Kevin Brady

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Sean's Scout: Starting Front 7 Sets Tone Early, Cowboys Depth Falters in Loss to Bengals 1
AP Photo/Michael Ainsworth

Coming into the 2018 season, loads of questions surrounded the Dallas Cowboys and the future of their roster.

Could their defense stay intact when the annual Sean Lee injury occurred? Was Kris Richard going to lead the Cowboys young secondary to places we thought they could be? And would Dak Prescott earn a contact extension and become the official franchise quarterback of America's Team.

Of course, there are tons of other questions that may have gone unanswered, but these three critical areas seem to find clarity in 2018.

Leighton Vander Esch And Jaylon Smith Are Legit

The Dallas Cowboys caught a lot of flack for their selection both of these linebackers, each for different reasons.

When they snagged Jaylon Smith in the second round of the 2016 draft, it was still unknown to the public if Smith could ever even play football again. When they took Leighton Vander Esch 19th overall last April, fans questioned how valuable an off-ball linebacker would be on a defense that already had Sean Lee.

Well, after their first full season together, it's easy to say that both Vander Esch and Smith are the linebacker options of the future in Dallas. Named to the Pro Bowl during his rookie season, Vander Esch took the world by storm in 2018. When Lee went down, he was there to not only fill his shoes, but to outplay the veteran all year long.

What is fun to consider is that as good as Vander Esch was this season, Jaylon Smith might be even better. Both posses insane sideline to sideline pursuit ability, and are some of the surest tacklers in all of football.

Watching these two grow together will be a pleasure over the coming seasons.

Their Young Secondary Is Coming Together

Like their linebackers, the Dallas Cowboys secondary is a young group, who fans are excited to watch grow throughout the years. It seemed like more pressure sat on the shoulders of young cornerbacks Byron Jones and Chidobe Awuzie than of Smith and Vander Esch, however.

With Kris Richard joining the staff and making the decision to move Jones to cornerback full time, it was do-or-die for the former first round pick. Byron Jones answered all the doubters, earning not only a Pro Bowl selection but also First Team All Pro honors for his performance.

Opposite him, Awuzie had a rough start to his sophomore campaign. While typically right there in coverage, wide outs too often made contested catches over him. Over the final few weeks of the year, however, that changed and Awuzie played some of the best football yet.

Xavier Woods, Anthony Brown, and Jourdan Lewis (in much fewer snaps) all had fantastic seasons as well, giving the Cowboys great hope and confidence in their secondary moving forward. They may need to add another safety during the offseason, however, though Jeff Heath remains more than just a viable option.

Dak Prescott Is Here To Stay

Whether or not you think it's justified, Dak Prescott is the quarterback of the future in Dallas. And he earned that right the back-half of 2018 and during the postseason. After a shaky start to his 3rd season, Prescott turned things around nicely, leading the Cowboys to a 7-1 finish to the regular season.

Prescott played the best football of his young career down the stretch, and showed just how valuable he is both on the field and in the locker room. It seemed like every game he made 2-3 winning plays that put the Cowboys over the top that afternoon.

Dak is going to get a contract extension, and will be locked in as a Cowboy for the foreseeable future, and with the way he played the final 10 games of his season, I can't second guess this decision much at all.



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Jason Garrett Can’t be Serious About Retaining Scott Linehan, Can He?

Brian Martin

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Jason Garrett Can't be Serious About Retaining Scott Linehan, Can He?

One of the few positives most of us were looking forward to after the Dallas Cowboys Divisional Round loss to the Los Angeles Rams was the fact that Scott Linehan would no longer be the offensive coordinator for America's Team. Everything was pointing to his dismissal, but that may not be the case according to Head Coach Jason Garrett.

Todd Archer on Twitter

Jason Garrett said on 105.3 The Fan that offensive coordinator Scott Linehan will return in 2019. "We don't anticipate any significant changes on our staff," Garrett said.

I can't say that I was happy upon learning Jason Garrett plans on retaining Scott Linehan as the Cowboys OC in 2019. In fact, my first thought was… Well, something better left unsaid. I'm sure many of you can kind of read my mind, because I'm pretty positive you had all that the same thoughts running through your head as well.

In all honesty, I didn't think there was a snowball chance in hell Scott Linehan would return to Dallas after the conclusion of the 2018 season. After all, the Cowboys nearly fired him during the bye week earlier this season, meaning his job security was already on thin ice. He didn't do anything to improve things in my opinion.

I know Jason Garrett has said Scott Linehan will return as the OC in 2019, but not for a second do I believe it. We are less than 72 hours hours removed from the Cowboys exit from the playoffs and I highly doubt any of Dallas' decision-makers has had the time to sit down and discuss who stays and who goes. In fact, I know they haven't.

Jeff Cavanaugh on Twitter

Stephen Jones says they won't comment on anything with coaching staff but that they need to take a deep look at why they fell short. Says it a little early to speculate about players or coaches. They haven't had a meeting about it yet.

I think once the Cowboys brass sits down and reevaluates the 2018 season, they will come to the conclusion they can do better than Scott Linehan as their offensive coordinator. There were just too many times throughout the season where the playcalling was a problem just. It's just time to move on, despite the vote of confidence by Jason Garrett.

Of course, this could just be me trying to read between the lines hoping and praying Scott Linehan is finally fired. Like many of you, I've grown way too tired of his predictable and dated playcalling. It's time to move on and find someone more innovative who can maximize the talent the Dallas Cowboys have on the roster, much like Kris Richard did with the defense.

You can either choose to believe Jason Garrett or not. I for one have a hard time seeing the Dallas Cowboys staying status quo with their coaching staff, especially their offensive coordinator. But, only time will tell.

Do you think it's time for the Dallas Cowboys to fire Scott Linehan?



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