Dallas Cowboys

Deadspin misses the mark on Jerry Jones’ Ezekiel Elliott squabble

Deadspin is usually spot on. But not this time.

Writer Chris Thompson thinks Jerry Jones is being a jerk to running back Ezekiel Elliott.

In a post Tuesday night, hours after Jones defended his right to make light of Elliott’s holdout status, Deadspin came out strong against Jones.

“Jones, one of the most powerful owners in professional sports and also possessing an ego the size of Jupiter, is not about to apologize to some damn running back,” Thompson wrote.

Thompson says Jones attempted to walk back his “Zeke who?” joke.

No, he didn’t. What he did was classic Jerry. He made a joke but quickly made his true feelings known. In this case, that he hopes Elliott returns as soon as possible.

Jones’ comments after the Jaylon Smith press conference are what appear to have irked Thompson.

“I’ve earned the right to joke with Zeke,” Jones said when asked about Saturday’s joke. “Let me be real clear about that. I’ve earned the right to joke with Zeke.”

Thompson suggests that Jones is probably referring to his battle with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell during Elliott’s 2017 six-game suspension saga. He’s probably right about that.

But it’s also about all the other times Jones has defended and stood behind Elliott during one of his numerous embarrassing public moments: His St. Patrick’s Day groping moment in Dallas, his car wreck in Frisco, his run-in with concert security in Las Vegas.

Jones has done plenty to deserve abuse and the ire of the media, but this isn’t one of those times.

Does Elliott deserve to be paid as much as the top running backs in the league? Of course, because he is one of the best running backs in the league. Is it true that running backs aren’t valued as they once were? Yes. So why would the Cowboys want to overpay their running back?

Jones will probably end up paying Elliott in the top tier of the highest-paid backs in the league. Until then, Zeke will have to laugh off any jokes.

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Stefan Stevenson has been covering sports for the Star-Telegram since 1997. He spent five years covering TCU athletics, which included two BCS bowls, two trips to the college World Series and the move to the Big 12. He has covered the Texas Rangers since 2014 and started reporting on the Dallas Cowboys in 2016.