Ezekiel Elliott has found himself surrounded by controversy since joining the Dallas Cowboys last season.
Elliott, 22, can’t seem to stay out of the headlines. He’s been under investigation by the NFL for more than a year, stemming from a July 2016 domestic violence allegation made against him by an ex girlfriend.
Elliott has made other missteps which have kept the investigation open such as exposing a woman’s breast during a St. Patrick’s Day festivity and allegedly being involved in a bar altercation in Dallas days before training camp started.
The NFL has yet to make a decision whether to suspend Elliott, although owner Jerry Jones has repeatedly said he doesn’t feel a suspension will be handed down.
The league is expected to make a call soon.
A couple Hall of Famers weighed in on Elliott’s situation during Hall of Fame weekend in Canton.
Cowboys great Michael Irvin had plenty of controversy during his football days, and understands better than most the sort of situation Elliott is going through.
“The whole thing is I hate to see the situation get to where it is,” Irvin said. “We all need to take culpability. … Anytime anything comes down we want to run with it. That’s what makes it hard for me with Zeke.
“Everyone [in the media] wants to put Zeke out there to help with their ratings because they know everybody is going to tune in. He’s a young man. He’s a young man and he’s growing up. And he’s growing up in a hell of a situation. … I think he’s the best player in the NFL, but a lot is coming at him. I know he’ll get through it.”
Tomlinson, meanwhile, is known for having no off-field issues and believes Elliott will eventually mature from his rookie season.
“You just learn how to be a professional,” Tomlinson said. “Zeke is going into his second year now and so some of the things that obviously happened to him in his first year can’t happen again. And that’s a part of growing up and being a professional.
“He has enough guys around him that he can draw from different experiences and gain knowledge from the guys that came before him that he won’t make the same types of mistakes. So it’s all about being a professional.”