The Cowboys have to feel great after keeping their composure last Sunday against the Falcons and stealing an unlikely 40-39 victory to cap off a memorable comeback.
But if momentum means anything, their opponent this Sunday is, frankly, bringing even more of it to the table.
The Seahawks are 2-0. Russell Wilson has thrown nine touchdowns. He's thrown 11 incompletions. So keeping the ball away from Wilson has to be a key to this week's game for the Cowboys.
According to Ezekiel Elliott, that means controlling the clock. "[Time of possession] is really big [this Sunday], and that's been an area that we have to excel in," Elliott said.
The Cowboys have lost the time of possession battle in each of their first two games, and doing so increased the degree of difficulty in winning those games fairly drastically. "As an offense, we shot ourselves in the foot turning the ball over [last week]," Elliott said. "The week before, not finishing those drives and not converting third downs."
Elliott came into this season with a stomach tattoo that reads "Feed Me," and on an offense stacked with great receiving weapons and a franchise quarterback, the pace is still set by him. The Cowboys have an embarrassment of riches when it comes to playmakers, but keeping the offense on the field in between those big plays falls on Elliott.
"That starts with me," Elliott said Wednesday. "I touch the ball---not as much as Dak---but after him, a lot. It starts with me just making sure early in the game we're not wasting drives with ball security issues and making sure we're converting third downs."
So far, Elliott has been the sort of all-around weapon the Cowboys have come to expect from him. He's off to a better start than he was after two games last season. In 2019 he'd rushed for 164 yards, recorded 19 receiving yards and found the end zone twice. Against the Rams and Falcons, Elliott's rushed for 185 yards, recorded 64 receiving yards, and scored three touchdowns.
All this without the Cowboys getting off to a double-digit lead in either game. Elliott can break defenses when the opposing team is trying to play catch-up, as opposed to the other way around. But he plays perhaps the largest role in establishing that lead as well. Elliott tends to find himself on just as many highlights as his receiver teammates, but shouldering a heavy workload is ultimately his role on the team.
The running back said that he originally lost weight in the offseason as a result of not having access to the Cowboys' weight room and typical regiment, but that he put extra work in when training camp kicked off. "Once I got back in here, I definitely put the weight back on," Elliott said. "I know I'm going to get a lot of touches, so my body has to be ready for that. I think I've done a good job in past seasons being at a weight that helps me get through a season."
There might not be a game plan to stopping Russell Wilson the way he's playing right now. But if Elliott has his way, the Seahawks quarterback will have a lot less time on the field to keep his hot streak going.