Cowboys Hoping To Keep Ezekiel Elliott Fresh With New Game Plan

Getty Images The NFL season won't slow down, and crunch time is quickly approaching as the playoff picture is starting to develop week after week. At this point in the season, it's not hard to tell which teams are contenders, and which teams are pretenders. From a fantasy standpoint though, there's plenty of value everywhere. Now that we are more than halfway through the season, we can figure out who can consistently produce in terms of fantasy football. Just because select players let you down all season, doesn't mean that they can't have a good week here and there. We're going to dive into Week 14 and find the find the best value plays that will give you a bang for your buck. After all, you don't want to just pay for a name. So, while you're setting your early game slated for Sunday, keep in mind that everybody is playing. You want to be different and find the guy who will go off on your team, but not anybody else's. That's what we're going to break down here. We will go over some of the best bargain plays, that issue high-upside for cheap. And I will also throw in some obvious cash plays for you grinders out there that need to know who is undoubtedly going to go off this weekend. So, for those of you who are new to DraftKings, or maybe you even need a refresher, let's go over the rules real quick.

The Rules of The Game

DraftKings is pretty simple and straightforward. Although there are many different games, you can play, and slates you can get involved in, we are going to stick with the classic slate for Sunday, December 9th, 2018. Here is the full outlook of the 13 game slate that we will be going over this week. - New York Jets @ Buffalo Bills - Carolina Panthers @ Cleveland Browns - Atlanta Falcons @ Green Bay Packers - Baltimore Ravens @ Kansas City Chiefs - New England Patriots @ Miami Dolphins - New Orleans Saints @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers - New York Giants @ Washington Redskins - Indianapolis Colts @ Houston Texans - Cincinnati Bengals @ Los Angeles Chargers - Denver Broncos @ San Francisco 49ers - Philadelphia Eagles @ Dallas Cowboys - Pittsburgh Steelers @ Oakland Raiders - Detroit Lions @ Arizona Cardinals Just like any Daily Fantasy platform, you are issued a salary for each individual contest. Each lineup will have $50k available. Every player will have a price tag on them based on their value each week. For this slate, Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey is the most expensive, while the Oakland Raiders defense is the cheapest. You cannot exceed the $50k salary, but you also don't have to use it all up. While I suggest using up the majority of the $50k salary, you don't have to if it isn't necessary. In GPP games, the idea is to find the cheapest players with low ownership percentage and high ceilings. If you figure that out, then you most likely won't go over the limit. Don't make that second-guess your picks. Just because you still have money available, doesn't mean it needs to be spent. If you love your lineup, roll with it. Okay, enough chit-chat, let's get into this.

It’s no secret that Ezekiel Elliott — the reigning NFL rushing champion — will be a large part of the Dallas Cowboys offense. That’s been the case since he exploded on the scene as a rookie.

Last year, Elliott had a monster workload, with 304 rushes — 43 more than any other player — to go with 77 catches, collecting 2,001 yards from scrimmage.

But with first-year offensive coordinator Kellen Moore coming in, the Cowboys are looking to adjust Elliott’s workload to make it manageable to peak in the playoffs without too much wear and tear.

Moore said on Wednesday at OTAs that he will take a read and react approach to the situation.

“At the end of the day, we want to get him as many touches as we can. At the same time, you got to recognize what a 16-plus game season is,” Moore told reporters.  “We’ll see how it progresses (with the other RBs), but if we can get it to Zeke, we’re gonna get it to Zeke.”

Running backs coach Gary Brown said it’s on the play callers to keep Zeke’s workload manageable.

“You would like to be in a range but you can’t put a number on it,” Brown told Clarence E. Hill Jr. of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “We have to do a good job trying to control his touches. The game is going to dictate what is going to happen.”

Elliott has never shown signs of wanting a decreased workload, but it could do him good, especially with capable backups in the mix.

One player the Cowboys have high hopes for is Tony Pollard, the team’s fourth round pick in this year’s draft out of Memphis.

Pollard has drawn comparisons to New Orleans Pro Bowler Alvin Kamara as an all-purpose type of weapon for the Cowboys.

“I know people think he’s going to be this gadget guy,” Brown said. “He’s more than that. He’s bigger than what you think he is and he runs powerful for a guy you think is a gadget guy. I think he can do all our runs and more.”

And it appears Zeke has enjoyed been around Pollard and the other backs on the team, taking on a mentor-type role.

“He’s done a great job with all the running backs, just getting us together, having us over his house for cookouts, and just bonding,” Pollard told the Dallas Morning News’ Jon Machota. “In here he’s been helping us with little pointers and things we can sharpen up and get our game better with.”


Moore is still in the initial stages of installing the offense. The Cowboys have used the offseason workouts to pour the foundation, and will build the house during minicamp and training camp.

But as far as the game plan goes, Moore maintains he’s “seeing how things progress.”

The Cowboys are also seeing how things progress off the field. Elliott was detained and handcuffed following an incident with a security guard at a concert in Las Vegas last month and the NFL is investigating the situation under the personal conduct policy.

The team is optimistic Elliott could escape without a suspension, but have made it clear to the 23-year-old star that he needs to be more careful.

“It’s a situation you don’t want to be in, but we all make mistakes,” Brown said. “Even the greatest leaders make mistakes. We have to be understanding of that. We have talked to him about doing better and moving forward. We can’t beat him down for that. Obviously, we don’t want him in that situation. We talked to him and move on. He understands, ‘I can’t put myself in that position. I have got to be smarter.’ We all make mistakes.”

Elliott has not spoken to the media since the incident.