FRISCO, Texas – Jerry Jones knows finding accurate and fair comparisons to a rookie running back can be tricky, even if that rookie running leads the rest of the NFL in rushing by 85 yards after five career games.
"'I knew John Kennedy. You're no John Kennedy,'" Jones said Tuesday on 105.3 The Fan. "You get those kind of comparisons."
Still, the Cowboys' owner/general manager has visions of a few all-time great backs when he watches Ezekiel Elliott run. Specifically, when Elliott split the Bengals' safeties in the second level on his way to a 60-yard touchdown this past Sunday, "That reminded me of Herschel Walker with that burst of speed element," Jones said.
"When he runs with his leverage and he deals it out, just his explosion when he's physical like that, then he does remind me a lot of a physical back, (Earl) Campbell, people like that. He runs inspired with real physicalness. And then he can make that cut and go straight up field. That's Emmitt Smith."
"When I think about his size, his speed, and then when you watch him protect in pass protection, it really shows you how smart he is. He's highly intelligent, he really makes very few mistakes and he's getting better at any of those. So all of those things come to mind."
"Sounds like you're talking about Superman at running back. We're not, of course, because he enjoys a top offensive line. But Emmitt had a great offensive line as well."
Elliott professed that he still has room for improvement following his 134-yard, two-touchdown performance against the Bengals, his franchise rookie-record third straight game over 100 yards. But his yards-per-carry average has jumped in each of his first five games, from 2.6 in Week 1 to 8.9 this past Sunday.
"You watch the film from Week 1 and you watch me know," Elliott said this past Sunday, "it looks like two different backs."