As you ease in-and-out of your nap after stuffing your face with some delicious Thanksgiving food, the Dallas Cowboys are hoping to feed Ezekiel Elliott a healthy amount of carries when they play host to the Washington Football Team. Over the years, the star running back has feasted on the holiday and now has himself in a position to make some NFL history on Thursday if that trend continues.
In his three career Thanksgiving games, Elliott has totaled 400 yards from scrimmage and three touchdowns, giving him over 100 scrimmage yards in each contest (The back missed Dallas' 2017 matchup due to a suspension). If he gets over the century mark again, he'll become the first player in NFL history to record at least 100 scrimmage yards in four consecutive Thanksgiving Day games. A performance of that magnitude would also put Elliott in a tie with Pro Football Hall of Famers Michael Irvin and Barry Sanders for the second-most Thanksgiving games with at least 100 scrimmage yards in league history. Only fellow Hall of Famer Emmitt Smith, who holds the record with eight such games, would stand above Zeke.
Last year against Buffalo, Elliott was an absolute force out of the backfield both on the ground and in the passing game. He averaged nearly six yards per carry en-route to 71 total yards rushing and then caught seven of his 10 targets for 66 more yards, giving him 137 from scrimmage. The 25-year-old is coming into this game with some solid momentum too after rushing for 103 yards on 4.9 yards per carry in Dallas' upset win over Minnesota Vikings. He also caught both of his targets for 11 yards and a touchdown in the win.
This year, however, he does face somewhat of a tough challenge as the Washington Football Team does feature a stout front-seven. Back in Week 7, Elliott was held to just 45 yards rushing as Washington moved to a 25-3 victory. That said, Ron Rivera's club is generally a middle of the road unit against the run, allowing 120.4 yards per game on the ground on a 4.3 yards per carry clip. Just a few weeks ago this unit allowed Lions rookie D'Andre Swift to total 149 yards from scrimmage, which is just further evidence that Zeke could be in for a strong holiday. If that comes to fruition, Elliott would put himself among some of the greatest players to ever play on Thanksgiving.