Ezekiel Elliott, Fantasy Football
Dec 22, 2019; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott (21) reacts as he walks to his huddle during the second quarter against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott has been one of the NFL’s best running backs since he came into the league. After signing a record-breaking $90 million contract extension with Dallas last summer, though, he’s heard from critics more than ever.

After months of seeing fans and analysts say he’s not worth the contract he signed, Elliott decided to fire back at the critics on Thursday.

Ezekiel Elliott blasts critics on Twitter

Elliott, the No. 4 overall pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, hearing people blast the Cowboys for spending a top-five pick on a running back. He immediately went out and showcased his elite talent.

Despite earning first-team All-Pro honors in his rookie season and making the Pro Bowl three times, Elliott kept seeing people call out his work. So, he fired back and demanded to start receiving some respect.

It’s hard to blame Elliott for wanting to receive a little more recognition. Across four seasons, he’s racked up 5,405 rushing yards, 1,619 receiving yards and 48 total touchdowns in 56 games. In his first three seasons, he led the NFL in rushing yards per game.

After three outstanding seasons, Elliott held out of training camp in 2019 to gain leverage in contract negotiations. The team eventually caved and despite missing a majority of the summer, he went out in the regular season and excelled.

Elliott finished third in rushing yards (1,357), fifth in rushing touchdowns (12) and led his peers in first downs (78). But, the Cowboys fell short of the playoffs and some of the blame fell on Elliott’s shoulders.

Ultimately, it’s clear Elliott just want he and his peers to receive more respect. Amid growing debates about the value of the running back position and whether or not they are worth large contracts, Elliott is trying to spark appreciation for the position.

Matt Johnson
NFL, MLB & college football writer for Sportsnaut. Graduated from San Diego State University with BA in Journalism, 2019. Grew up in Sacramento, now based in Indianapolis. Seen on MSN. Previously: eDraft, The Connection, With the First Pick