Buccaneers Interested In Signing Ezekiel Elliott

Ezekiel Elliott is set to hit the open market, putting the future of his Cowboys tenure very much in doubt. One of the teams which would be interested in adding the veteran running back is the Buccaneers, per Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times.

Dallas has, as expected, informed the two-time rushing champ that he will be released in a cost-cutting move. Given his decline in production in recent years, and the availability of numerous other free agent backs, Elliott could be hard-pressed to find himself at the heart of a considerable bidding war. Tampa will at least kick the tires on adding him to their backfield, though.

The Buccaneers hired Skip Peete as their running backs coach, after he served in the same capacity in Dallas. That would give Elliott, 27, a familiar face to work with should he find himself unable to work out a new, smaller, deal with the Cowboys and interested in heading to Tampa. In the event he were to do so, the former top-five pick would have competition for snaps.

Tampa Bay is moving on from veteran Leonard Fournette, something which he asked for given the uncertainty surrounding the team. The Buccaneers will have a very new look on offense with someone not named Tom Brady under center, and Dave Canales in place as the new offensive coordinator. The team ranked last in the league on the ground in 2022, so upgrading in that department is likely to be an offseason priority.

Elliott produced career-lows in rushing yards (876) and yards per carry (3.8) in 2022, as his role in the Cowboys’ offense shifted to that of a short-yardage specialist. A similar role would likely await him in Tampa Bay if the two parties were to agree to a deal, given the presence of former third-rounders Rachaad White and Ke’Shawn Vaughn. The Bucs are high on the latter deal, Stroud notes, but a high-profile addition could still be in the cards.

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