Rookie running back Ezekiel Elliott was spotted in a Seattle marijuana shop before Dallas played the Seahawks in a preseason contest last week, according to a TMZ report, and Cowboys owner Jerry Jones isn’t pleased with the No. 4 overall pick, as Clarence Hill of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram writes.
“Well, I think that, in and of itself, the reason we are talking about it is in a way part of the learning process,” Jones said. “But it’s not good. It’s just not good. It’s just not good.
“Again that’s a part of just really getting the big picture here,” Jones said. “No matter if you played at whatever level there is a picture here of interest. So again, I’m aware of it. I heard the report and I would know how he is. And he needs to look at that and the other thing is it’s just not good. I don’t want to say anymore. I do want us do things that in general while it may not be wrong it’s just not good.”
Of course, while marijuana is not approved in the NFL, the substance is legal in the state of Washington, so technically Elliott was doing nothing wrong (and, per the TMZ report, Elliott didn’t purchase anything at the store). So while Jones may be disappointed in Elliott’s trip, the league is not concerned with the matter, tweets Ed Werder of ESPN.com.
However, a source tells Werder that some are worried about a “pattern of behavior” exhibited Elliott, who is still under investigation by the NFL after domestic violence accusations surfaced last month. Additionally, Elliott has reportedly been “partying” quite a bit since being drafted in the spring, leading the Cowboys organization to wonder about the former Ohio State running back’s maturity level, according to Jason Cole of Bleacher Report (Twitter video). Finally, Bryan Broaddus of the team’s website says (Twitter link) that Elliott isn’t currently in “football shape.”
Clearly, some of these issues are more concerning than others, and not being in the proper shape or visiting a marijuana shop can’t be compared with rumblings of domestic violence. But for the Cowboys, it all adds up to a distraction that they don’t need, especially when so many of their players have already run into trouble this offseason. Rolando McClain, Demarcus Lawrence, and Randy Gregory, for example, are all facing suspensions of varying lengths for drug-related offenses.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.