White: Zeke Has No Leverage; Jerry Won't Crack

The Cowboys will give Ezekiel Elliott more money, Danny White says, but they're not going to give him what he wants

Tiki and Tierney
August 20, 2019 - 8:43 pm

The Cowboys extended one of their young stars on Tuesday, but it wasn’t Ezekiel Elliott. It was linebacker Jaylon Smith, who signed a five-year, $64 million extension with $35.5 million guaranteed.

Elliott, meanwhile, continues to hold out with the regular season rapidly approaching.

Is it surprising that Jerry Jones hasn’t caved to Zeke’s demands?

“No, I’m not surprised at all,” former Cowboys quarterback Danny White said on Tiki & Tierney. “Zeke, I’m having a hard time understanding his agents and his strategy because Zeke really has no leverage. Because he’s a first-round draft pick, he’s got the fifth-year option so he’s got two years left. If he’s going to sit out, he’s got to sit out for two years. He’d have to come back for the tenth game to get credit for this season, but he really has no leverage. This is a little bit mind-boggling to me that they would even play this game.”

The Cowboys, White pointed out, have an incredible offensive line. In fact, three of the top five salaries on the roster are tied up in the trenches.

Translation? The line is good, but it’s not getting any younger.

“Zeke is a great running back, but Tony Pollard is having some pretty good games in the preseason behind that line as well,” White said. “That window is closing. They’ve got to understand that. Zeke’s got to understand that. He’s not going to have that offensive line in front of him forever.”

Elliott, 24, rushed 304 times for 1,434 yards and six touchdowns last season, while adding 77 catches for 567 yards and three scores. Ultimately, though, White doesn’t think Jones will crack in contract negotiations.

“I don’t,” White said. “I think he’s going to get it done, but I don’t think it’s going to be because Jerry cracks. I think they’re going to come to a meeting of the minds, and I think he’ll get extended. I don’t think he’ll be the top-paid running back in the league, but I do think the deal will get done. I think they’ll end up paying him $12- or $13 million.”

Click below to listen to White’s interview in its entirety.