NFL News: Cowboys' Dak Prescott Comments On RB Tony Pollard

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Tristin McKinstry

The Dallas Cowboys have some questions leading into 2022. Mainly, their ground game is of particular interest.

The team is clearly set on former fourth overall pick Ezekiel Elliott being the lead running back. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is even on the record saying the Ohio State product must be the team's feature ball carrier.

However, fans have clamored for backup Tony Pollard to play a more prominent role. This is off the back of a bit of a breakout season for the 25-year-old.

Now, Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott is chiming in on Pollard and had some high praise for the Memphis product.

'A Guy I Want Around'

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Prescott met with reporters following practice on Thursday when Pollard came up. The veteran quarterback said Pollard was someone he was very impressed with thus far.

“He’s a special player that is going to help this team and continue to help this team and contribute in so many ways. He’s a guy that I definitely want to keep around,” Prescott told reporters at training camp. “His mentality to want the ball, to be a great teammate and put his ego aside to do whatever it takes to help this team. Whether it be blocking, at running back, or out at receiver. That just speaks to his versatility and his athleticism.”

Pollard's Versatility

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Elliott missed time in 2021 due to injuries, and Pollard took advantage of the increased playing time. He rushed for a career-high 719 cards while adding 337 yards in the receiving game.

Pollard's promise in the passing game is something Prescott is excited about. “He can get out there and be one of our best pass-catchers,” Prescott said. “Just the way that he’s grown just in his route running from the time that we’ve asked him to take on that role is impressive.”

A Position Move?

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One option that may make everyone happy is a position change for the 25-year-old Pollard. Moving him to wide receiver adds to their shallow depth at the position, and allows Elliott to be the feature tailback.

Offensive coordinator Kellen Moore discussed the possibility with reporters at training camp. "At Memphis that really was his primary position, at slot receiver. And then he would kind of go into the backfield, that was his secondary role.... he's not going to just run the running back route tree. ... he can stretch people vertically," Moore said.

Pollard's Future

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If Pollard has a big year, the team will have a decision to make. Pollard is a free agent at the end of this upcoming season. While no extension talks have taken place, the team wants the 25-year-old back in the fold next year.

“There are some things as we move forward that we just have to take a look at,” Cowboys Executive Vice President Stephen Jones said on 96.7 The Ticket, “in terms of that running back position and the cap and how that works, in terms of Zeke and Tony and how we work those two together. So, we’ll continue to see how that’s evolving as the year goes. But the goal is to have Tony Pollard back here next year.”