EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ – For the second time in three years, the Dallas Cowboys will keep Ezekiel Elliott out of the regular season finale to keep him fresh for the playoffs.
Sources vs. ESPN, Elliott will be inactive for Sunday's game against the New York Giants, leaving the Cowboys as their main strikers with Rod Smith and Darius Jackson.
NFL Network first reported that Elliott would not play.
Elliott's absence should not affect his ability to win the second title of his career. He has 1,434 yards on 304 carries in 15 games. Los Angeles Rams' Todd Gurley is the second in the NFL in a hurry and will not play because of a knee injury on Sunday. New York Giants, who ran back to Saquon Barkley, would have to rush 237 yards against the Cowboys to claim the title. Elliott also leads the 77-catching cowboys, a record for the franchise in one season, for 567 yards.
Coach Jason Garrett said several times during the week that the Cowboys would approach the finals in the same way as all the other games, even though the Cowboys are locked in as the fourth seed in the playoffs. The right-hand guard Zack Martin (knee) has been classified as questionable, but is not expected to play. Defensive lineman Tyrone Crawford (neck) was eliminated on Friday. Martin and Lawrence will be available for the playoffs.
Prescott saw a similar number of actions against the Giants, especially when Tyron Smith, the left-wing offshoot of Pro Bowl, did not play. Smith is considered questionable about a neck injury. Cameron Fleming would replace Smith if he does not start. Prescott has played up to six snapshots this season. Cooper Rush took on the Cowboys' 40-7 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars in October.
Prescott said he wanted to play against the Giants during the week. The Cowboys won six of their last seven games to claim the title of NFC East.
"I do not know that it's not about playing stuff, but we have an impulse that we need to continue," Prescott said Thursday. "Coach, as I've said before, the momentum is tremendous, it's a big thing in this league, that's about the team that gets hot, I think it's important that a lot of people go out there and play it goes. "