The Dallas Cowboys are playing in the Hall of Fame Game this year. Why? Because owner Jerry Jones is one of the seven people being inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Like the other inductees, Jones was interview by Al Michael and Cris Collinsworth during the game. He touched on the team's secondary, on former Cowboys quarterback and current CBS analyst Tony Romo (Jerry said the biggest regret of his career was never managing to put a good enough team around Romo to win a Super Bowl with him), on Tex Schramm and Tom Landry, and more. Of course, he also talked about Ezekiel Elliott.
Elliott is still being investigated by the NFL because of alleged incidents of domestic violence that took place last year. Jerry has maintained throughout the investigation that there is nothing there, and he repeated that sentiment Thursday night.
"The domestic violence is not an issue. Zeke has had some other things that have been looked at." - Jerry Jones. Hopes Elliott active Week 1— Will Brinson (@WillBrinson) August 4, 2017
Jerry seemed pretty confident that Zeke would be available for Week 1 against the Giants, stating several times that he hopes to have the star running back on the field and that the team would be preparing as if he will play in that game.
Jerry: In my opinion, we're preparing our team for Zeke, and should.— Kate Hairopoulos (@khairopoulos) August 4, 2017
He didn't specify which "other things" he was referring to in that first quote excerpted above, but we know Elliott was in a parade and pulled down a woman's shirt while on the top of a float, was in his car, and may or may not have been involved in an altercation at a Dallas bar. It's unknown at this point how -- or whether -- those incidents will affect the NFL's decision-making when it comes to a possible suspension for Elliott.
Jerry also noted that he thinks a decision on Elliott will be coming soon.
Jerry: I would really hope (NFL decision) would be immediately. I think we'll see it imminently.— Kate Hairopoulos (@khairopoulos) August 4, 2017
Interested observes (including yours truly) have floated the theory that the only reason the league has not announced a decision yet is because Jones is being inducted this weekend and the NFL doesn't want him being asked about it when he's in Canton.
That's not a decision being made to protect Jerry, of course. Everyone knows he'll talk about anything at any time. (He just talked about it during the game anyway.) It's that the league doesn't want its most powerful owner taking shots at them when he is being given football's highest honor. It would not be a surprise at all if Jones was right, and the decision came down early next week.