How Zeke Elliott is leading the NFL in rushing

Frisco -- We're a quarter into this NFL season and with Zeke Elliott leading the way, the Cowboys are front-runners.

"We just go out there and play Cowboy football," said Elliott.   "We're a physical team.  We like to run the ball."

Do they ever.  Perhaps you've already heard Elliott's 412 rushing yards are tops in the NFL.

But a deeper dive into the numbers shows the full impact of a great start.  He also leads the league with 140 yards after contact. His 27 first downs are another league-best.

And the Cowboys have produced the second highest rushing total in the league this season, all behind an offense line dealing with multiple injuries.

"It all comes back to us focusing on what we do," said center Travis Frederick, "focusing on the little things and trying to get better each week."

Despite the pounding that goes along with being a professional running back, Elliott says, thanks to his offensive line, at times he feels like his job is easy.

"They're a gritty group from the top to the bottom, no matter if you're a starter or a backup.  Those guys can play," says Elliott.  "They just have a culture in that room."

Elliott's been a quick study, but you'd expect that from the fourth overall pick. In terms of improvement, it's been substantial, especially over the last couple of weeks.  The biggest reason according to the rookie - more experience.

"That came with the game reps, honestly, that's what it's been," says Elliott.  "Getting out there, getting film, having something to watch and something to critique."

Elliott's also doing a better job from a mental standpoint, understanding the timing crucial to each run that's called.

"You have to be disciplined to their alignments," says head coach Jason Garrett.   "The assignments we have on offense and there's no question he's gotten better and better at that."

Elliott says he's also working on improving chemistry with his offensive on and off the field, planning on taking the guys out to dinner.  But running wild with this one could be expensive.

"Hopefully we don't take advantage of it too much," said Frederick.  "You know, offensive lineman, we do like to eat.  I don't know if he's ready to see that number yet."

With the numbers Elliott's piling up, perhaps the number on the dinner bill shouldn't matter.

Copyright 2016 WFAA


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