FRISCO, Texas -- Ezekiel Elliott's last carry went for no yards with 5:21 left in the third quarter in Week 16 but resulted in a first down anyway due to an unnecessary roughness call on Detroit Lions defensive tackle A’Shawn Robinson.
Elliott did not play the final two snaps of the third quarter. He didn't play any of the fourth quarter. And then he didn't see any action in the Week 17 finale against the Philadelphia Eagles.
With last week’s first-round playoff bye, Elliott is looking at a long layoff from action going into Sunday’s game against the Green Bay Packers.
He entered the regular season with just seven carries in one preseason game and admittedly took some time to get up to speed. He had 51 yards on 20 carries in the season opener against the New York Giants, during which he was too quick to the hole. He had 83 yards on 21 carries in the second game, against the Washington Redskins, where he was too patient.
“I don’t think I’ll have that problem again,” Elliott said. “It was just I wasn’t ... honestly, I just wasn’t comfortable in the system. I wasn’t comfortable in the system yet. Now I feel completely comfortable.”
Elliott finished as the NFL’s leading rusher with 1,631 yards on 322 carries. The Cowboys chose to hold him out of the final game because they know he will carry the load, however long their playoff run will be.
“I think it was just good to get refreshed,” Elliott said. “I think it was good to get my body back together. I feel great. I feel like I haven’t played a down of football this season, so I’m excited.”