Skip to main content

Emmitt Smith Opines on Cowboys’ Ezekiel Elliott, Tony Pollard

Cowboys legend Emmitt Smith recently offered his opinion on the uncertain future of the team’s two star running backs—Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard.

Pollard, who surpassed 1,000 yards for the first time in his career this past season, will become an unrestricted free agent this offseason if the team doesn’t keep him. However, it is expected the team will use the franchise tag on him, per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.

Elliott, on the other hand, might have his contract restructured or be cut because of the team’s limited space under the salary cap, which is currently at $5,303,002. Elliott is supposed to make $16.72 million against the salary cap next season. 

Smith thinks the Cowboys need to find a way to retain both tailbacks.

“I’m keeping both,” Smith said, via Pro Football Talk. “I may franchise tag Pollard, and I may go for a contract restructure with Zeke. But I’m keeping both, and the reason why is because we’ve got to get Pollard back healthy, and we need Zeke, and we need Malik [Davis] as well. We need that three-headed monster right now to rotate. Malik gives us a chance to get Pollard time to get back healthy again.”

Pollard suffered a fractured left fibula in the NFC divisional round and reportedly underwent surgery in January. Elliott had led the Cowboys in rushing for six consecutive seasons until Pollard ended that streak in 2022.