SEATTLE -- Aside from the unfortunate video of the running back at a marijuana dispensary hours before kickoff, Dallas Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones could not have asked for more of Ezekiel Elliott’s debut.
“You saw everything,” Jones said. “You saw his change of direction. You saw his speed and you saw the way he finishes runs. And you saw his power. You saw everything he had there. And then of course we started the game off with him split out and saw him as a receiver and of course his play without having the ball is what has made him special. No, there’s nothing we didn’t see.”
Elliott played in 15 snaps in the first quarter of the Cowboys’ 27-17 loss to the Seattle Seahawks. He carried the ball seven times for 48 yards, including a three-carry span in which he showed his speed to the edge on a 9-yard run wide, change of direction on another 9-yard carry and power on a 13-yard run in which he bulled Pro Bowl safety Kam Chancellor.
“Can’t remember the specific runs, honestly,” Elliott said. “When I go out there, it’s kind of a blur, so.”
Elliott drew an unnecessary roughness penalty on Chancellor a play after powering through him. After a Dak Prescott pass fell incomplete, Chancellor shoved Elliott in the back. Elliott was not afraid of talking back to several Seattle defenders.
“The NFL game is a little more different,” Elliott said. “There’s a lot more talking in it. Normally I don’t talk, but they were being chippy, man, and I’m not soft.”
Jones’ favorite moment might have been on the play that caused him the most stress. The Seahawks brought a blitz in which Elliott had to go across the formation to pick up a linebacker, whom he flattened.
“I take a lot of pride in blocking, so I pride myself in being a great blocking running back as much as I am running the ball, as much as I am catching the ball,” Elliott said. “So it’s always good to get a good block in.”
Elliott did not play in the first two preseason games because of a sore hamstring that forced him from practice on Aug. 2 while the Cowboys were in Oxnard, California, for training camp. He practiced the final two days in Oxnard and then had three full workouts at the Cowboys’ new practice home, The Star, in Frisco, Texas.
“He finished runs well and he ran with authority,” coach Jason Garrett said.
The Cowboys generally don’t play their regulars in the preseason finale, so Elliott could be under wraps for the next two-plus weeks before the Sept. 11 season opener against the New York Giants.
“I wish I was going to play next week. I don’t think I will,” Elliott said. “But I think I’ll be ready for Game 1.”