Tony Pollard isn’t worried about his future with the Dallas Cowboys. The fifth-year back is ready to let his play do the talking.
The Cowboys used the franchise tag on Pollard this offseason and will have until July 17 to work out a long-term contract. He’d love to have his future plans locked up but Pollard isn’t sweating it.
“For right now I’m just letting my agent and the ownership handle that and just focus day by day coming in doing what I have to do,” Pollard told reporters on June 1 at OTAs.
The Cowboys likely want to see how Pollard bounces back from injuries he suffered in the postseason. He went down with a fractured fibula and high ankle sprain against the San Francisco 49ers and has been rehabbing relentlessly. Pollard feels like his hard work has him ahead of schedule.
“I would say I’m not really limited at this point,” Pollard said. “It’s just being smart with it, just trying to work my way back in slowly and make sure I’m in tip-top shape when I get out there so it’s not a fall off.”
Cowboys RB Tony Pollard Feels ‘Faster’ After Injury
Pollard is coming off a Pro Bowl year, rushing for 1,007 yards and nine touchdowns. He also added 39 receptions for 371 yards and three more scores. He’s a dynamic weapon and is feeling even faster heading into his first season as the undisputed lead back in Dallas.
“Honestly, I feel faster,” he said. “I mean we got great trainers. Working with [director of rehabilitation Britt Brown] on the bands I don’t know for how many months we’ve been going since the season was over, I just feel like I got a lot of juice in me left.”
As for the lead-back opportunity, Pollard isn’t changing his approach.
“For the most part it’s pretty much, I look at it as the same thing, the way I come in for work, day in, day out, give my all, work hard and just let the rest take care of itself,” Pollard said. “But I’m definitely ready for the opportunity.”
Cowboys Not Looking to Replace Ezekiel Elliott
The Cowboys parted ways with two-time rushing leader Ezekiel Elliott in March. The team saved nearly $11 million in cap space by cutting him. Elliott is coming off a year where he rushed for a career-low 876 yards. He did find the end zone a dozen times but he managed just 3.8 yards per carry. Elliott has received limited free-agent interest and remains without a team.
The Cowboys are not seeking to “replace” Elliott necessarily and understand there are aspects of his game that will be missed.
“I don’t think you can just go out and replace Zeke,” said head coach Mike McCarthy ahead of OTAs on Thursday. “Business, capanomics, that’s real. You have to make decisions and sometimes those decisions factor into the next decision or two that’s coming down the road. [The coaching staff was] going over short-yardage and goal line again last night and [Zeke] just jumps off the tape, so this isn’t about replacing Zeke.”