1. Tony Pollard, RB
I, for one, do not want to envision a world in which Pollard isn’t taking carries in the Cowboys backfield. Running back isn’t the most important position on the field, but Dallas’ offense starts with the rushing attack and Pollard’s ability to break explosive plays brings a dynamic Ezekiel Elliott doesn’t offer anymore.
That doesn’t mean Elliott isn’t still valuable, however.
He’s still one of the best backs in short-yardage situations, and his sheer presence (and efficiency) near the goal line cannot be overstated. Given everything Zeke’s given to the franchise, it’s unlikely Dallas outright cuts him. A renegotiated contract is the more likely scenario. Ideally, that won’t impede Pollard’s negotiations.
Say what you will about being able to find RBs anywhere, but the Cowboys aren’t finding 1,000 rushing yards and 9 TDs on over 5.0 yards per carry in the draft or free agency. Not to mention 40 catches for nearly 400 yards and three more touchdowns.
We saw what Dallas’ running game looked like without Pollard against the Titans. That game alone should be all the evidence Jerry Jones and company need to re-sign the former fourth-round pick. He’s one of the team’s best mid-round draft finds in recent memory, and losing him would be absolutely devastating.