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Zeke Threatens To Sit Out, What to Make of It?

Mauricio Rodriguez



If Ezekiel Elliott Must Sit, The Time is Now

According to ESPN's Josina Anderson, Ezekiel Elliott's camp has informed the Dallas Cowboys that the superstar running back won't play in 2019 without a new deal in place. The news may come off as a surprise at first, but considering Zeke has yet to report to training camp, the threat only makes sense. It seems like losing an accrued season toward free agency by not reporting by August 6th isn't a problem for Elliott knowing he still has the 2020 season on his contract to do so.  Not to mention, he knows that a deal is eventually coming.

As both sides continue to work on a contract extension, Jane Slater took to Twitter to give us an update on where things stand not only with Zeke, but with Dak Prescott and Amari Cooper.

Jane Slater on Twitter

Back in Oxnard for #Cowboys camp today and Wednesday and a few new details on the contracts front. I'm told the team has "generous" offers on the table for their QB, RB and WR. Putting each one in the top 5 "highest paid" at their positions.

While it's nice to hear the Cowboys are willing to pay big-time money for their big-time players, it isn't just about being a Top-5 highest paid player in annual average per year. It's also about contract structure, guaranteed money, and many more factors.

What differentiates Zeke's situation from Dak and Cooper is the fact that Elliott could become the highest-paid player at his position. He has the credentials to ask to be the number one guy in the league. Meanwhile, Dak Prescott and Amari Cooper will not be setting the market that way (although they'll be getting paid).

Something else we can't ignore is the fact that we know the market value for quarterbacks and wide receivers is going nowhere but up, while the running back's market is as uncertain as ever, as the league's trend continues to center around the passing game and analytics continue to discuss their real value.

But what should we make of Elliott's threat? Is he really going to sit out the entire 2019 season if the sides can't agree to a contract extension? Personally, I wouldn't recommend overreacting to ESPN's report.

Ezekiel Elliott's threat definitely makes things more interesting, but we shouldn't take it for granted. Even if a deal isn't reached, I'd be surprised if Zeke sits out the 2019 season. Yes, people like to compare his situation to Le'Veon Bell's, but it isn't that similar. Other than they are two running backs who have held out, the reality for both of them is different.

Last year, when Bell didn't report with the Steelers, he ended up becoming a free agent. He didn't sign the second franchise tag Pittsburgh's front office had assigned him. Simply put, he wasn't under contract.

Zeke, on the other hand, has still two years left on his contract and skipping the season would push his current deal a year. If he sits out, he won't be hitting free agency next year.

Of course, missing the regular season would affect the Cowboys. Heading into 2019, Dallas has what it takes to contend for the Super Bowl. But not having #21 in the backfield would hurt, a lot. As we wait for the always-elusive sixth Lombardi Trophy, Jerry Jones' confidence in getting the deals done better translate to Elliott showing up sooner rather than later.

Tell me what you think about "Zeke Threatens To Sit Out, What to Make of It?" in the comments below, or tweet me @MauNFL 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!

I love to write, I love football and I love the Dallas Cowboys. I've been rooting for America's team all the way from Mexico ever since I can remember. If you want to talk football, I'm in... You'll find me at @MauNFL.


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Cowboys’ Tight End Marcus Lucas with Huge Opportunity vs the Houston Texans

John Williams



Cowboys' Tight End Marcus Lucas with Huge Opportunity vs the Houston Texans

With only two preseason games remaining, opportunities to make a statement are growing thin. The Dallas Cowboys have very few spots on the roster available, especially at the tight end position where Jason Witten, Blake Jarwin, and Dalton Schultz appear to have the depth chart locked down. The problem is, Jarwin and Schultz have been dealing with injuries and missed the second preseason game against the Los Angeles Rams and probably won't play against the Houston Texans tonight.

Enter Marcus Lucas.

Marcus Lucas hasn't been a member of the Dallas Cowboys for very long, but he's already made an impact.

In his first preseason game with the Dallas Cowboys, Lucas caught four passes on four targets for 20 yards. His receptions went for two, seven, five, and six yards for an average of five yards per reception. He did have a holding penalty that cost the Dallas Cowboys 10 yards on a first down play that didn't go anywhere anyway.

Though Lucas has bounced around NFL practice squads, he's never really found a home. After going undrafted in 2014, Lucas was signed by the Carolina Panthers in May of that year but wasn't able to stick on the 53-man roster and was released and placed on the practice squad. In 2015, he was on the Miami Dolphins and Chicago Bears practice squads. In 2016, the Panthers brought him back in the summer after the Bears released him from their 90-man roster. That September after cut-down day, the Seattle Seahawks signed Lucas to their practice squad where he spent all of 2016. From 2017 to the end of 2018, Lucas spent time with the Indianapolis Colts, Oakland Raiders, Detroit Lions, the Seattle Seahawks again, and the San Francisco 49ers. He was with the 49ers in 2019 before joining the Dallas Cowboys about two weeks ago and will get an extended run in these final two preseason games.

At Thursday's practice, Lucas was the only tight end available with Jason Witten getting a rest day and Jarwin, Schultz, and fellow Tight End Cody McElroy dealing with injuries.

Todd Archer on Twitter

With Jason Witten getting a day of rest, Blake Jarwin, Dalton Schultz and Codey McElroy injured, the Cowboys have one tight end practicing today: Marcus Lucas, who has been with the team for about two weeks.

It's possible that Lucas may get an extended amount of playing time tonight with an opportunity to show the Dallas Cowboys and the rest of the NFL that he's ready to land on a 53-man roster. With likely only Jason Witten being the only other tight end active for the game against the Houston Texans, Lucas will get a lot of playing time. If his last preseason exposure is any indication, he'll get the chance to display his receiving prowess.

At 27, Lucas likely has few opportunities left to make his mark for an NFL franchise. On a team that proclaims the "next man up" as a battle cry, after Witten, Lucas is the next man up for tonight and depending on his performance could make the Dallas Cowboys front office or another front office around the league take notice.

Depending on the long-term health of the Dallas Cowboys' tight end position, Lucas may find his path to a roster spot simply dependent upon the health of Blake Jarwin and Dalton Schultz. Though a job may not come with the Dallas Cowboys, tonight is an extremely important audition for his next suitor. How he performs tonight could land Marcus Lucas a job after the Dallas Cowboys trim the roster to 53 next week.

They say "preseason games don't matter," but to Marcus Lucas, this might be the most important game of his career.

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Player News

REPORT: Signs Point to Elliott, Cowboys Finalizing Contract Extension

Jess Haynie



Will No Preseason Work Hurt Ezekiel Elliott's Early Season Production?

Our long Cowboys National nightmare may close to ending. According to Kevin Turner of 105.3 The Fan, there's news coming in that points to Ezekiel Elliott and the Dallas Cowboys soon reaching an agreement and ending Zeke's holdout.

The following was just tweeted this morning from Turner's account:

Kevin Turner on Twitter

BREAKING: Hello, talented media personality KT here, same source tells me Zeke is booked to return from Cabo tomorrow. Another source tells @Shippyfunsports the Cowboys and Zeke were in contact late last night, and that a deal could come together over the weekend. @1053thefan

We had just heard yesterday that Dallas offered Zeke a deal that would make him the second-highest paid RB in football behind Todd Gurley. Was that enough to get Elliott to sign, or perhaps the basis that Zeke's team used to make a final counteroffer which Dallas agreed to?

Hopefully we'll find out all those details very soon. For now, we can just take hope in these signs of light at the end of this contract dispute tunnel.

The Cowboys aren't the same team without Ezekiel Elliott. With so much at stake in this 2019 season, it's time to get this deal done and get ready to win.

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Player News

Report: Cowboys Offer Ezekiel Elliott a Contract to Make him the NFL’s Second Highest-Paid RB

Matthew Lenix



Report: Cowboys Offer Ezekiel Elliott a Contract to Make him the NFL's Second Highest-Paid RB

Negotiations are picking up in Dallas. According to ESPN's Ed Werder, the Dallas Cowboys have offered All-Pro Ezekiel Elliott a new contract that would make him the second-highest-paid running back in the NFL.

Ed Werder on Twitter

Sources: The most recent offer in negotiations between holdout Ezekiel Elliott and the Cowboys came from the team. Elliott has been offered a contract making him one of the NFL's 2 highest-paid RB. That would suggest team offering more than LeVeon Bell and less than Todd Gurley.

This would put Elliott just below Todd Gurley's four-year 60 million dollar deal and just ahead of Le'Veon Bell's four-year 52.5 million dollar deal. He's currently set to make 3.9 million in 2019 under his current contract. Deadlines make deals and it appears the Cowboys understand this. More to come.

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