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The Dallas Cowboys got a glimpse Thursday night of what rookie running back Ezekiel Elliott can accomplish on the field. But before the game, they were disappointed in his actions off of it.
TMZ reported that Elliott visited a marijuana dispensary, Herban Legends in the Belltown area, just a few minutes away from where the Cowboys later that night would play the Seattle Seahawks in a preseason game. Not only did TMZ shoot video of Elliott inside the store but also posted a picture he took with a fan.
Marijuana is legal in Washington state, and there’s nothing wrong with just visiting the shop; many tourists do so when in town. But the drug is not legal in the NFL, and players can be suspended for recreational use — just as the Pittsburgh Steelers’ Le’Veon Bell, who will sit out the first three games of the season after multiple failed or missed tests.
To the Cowboys, it was a bad look.
“It’s just not good,” Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said. “That’s a part of just really getting the big picture here.”
In his first action of the preseason, Elliott had seven carries — all on the first drive when Tony Romo went down with a back injury — for 48 yards and looking very good after being sidelined during camp with a hamstring injury. Elliott twice ran over the Seahawks’ hard-hitting safety, Kam Chancellor, before leaving the game.
Certainly, Jones seemed disappointed in his rookie’s decision making. But Jones also has a funny habit of defending people — such as Greg Hardy, up to a certain point — whose missteps appeared to be far worse. We assume this will serve as a good lesson for the rookie about image and perception and that no major fault was committed until we hear otherwise.
Of course, the NFL likely has its eye on this story — as well as the allegations of domestic violence against Elliott, even though no charges have been filed, by his ex-girlfriend.
Elliott is an exciting NFL prospect who could be a standout rookie. But he’s very much under the microscope now based on a few recent incidents.
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