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Elliott Officially Holding Out Of Training Camp
The Dallas Cowboys plane to Los Angeles took off Thursday without Ezekiel Elliott. And now, as the team opens training camp in Oxnard on Friday it's official: Elliott is holding out.

The star halfback wants a new contract, despite having two years left on his current deal. Elliott joins the likes of Melvin Gordon, Michael Thomas, Yannick Ngakoue and Trent Williams skipping the start of camp in hopes of getting new pacts.

Yahoo’s Charles Robinson reports that Elliott wants a contract similar to Todd Gurley’s recent deal with the Rams.

As's Todd Archer reported, there have been discussions between the two sides, but rumors have persisted the entire offseason that he could skip training camp even if it could cost him $30,000 a day in fines and about $226,000 if he misses a preseason game.

If he doesn't show up to camp by Aug. 6, he loses an accrued season toward free agency, so would an 11-day holdout mean much?

That angle is worth watching as recent reports have suggested the two sides have been in contact. Perhaps something can get done quickly enough to get Elliott on the field in a relatively timely manner.

Elliott wanting a new deal sooner rather than later is understandble. The Los Angeles Rams signed Todd Gurley II to a four-year, $60 million extension that included $45 million in guarantees last summer as he entered his fourth year. Elliott is about to enter his fourth year. Gurley turned 24 before his fourth year started, like Elliott, but unlike Elliott he entered the league with concerns about his knee from an injury suffered while at Georgia.

At this point, it should be noted the Cowboys can retain Elliott via the franchise tag well beyond the range of his current contract.

So what's Elliott's leverage here?

In his absence in 2017, the Cowboys went 3-3. The running game with Alfred Morris and Rod Smith was decent statistically (121.3 yards per game), but the Cowboys scored one touchdown in a three-game losing streak and Dak Prescott threw for more than 212 yards in a game just once.

Beyond that, Elliott has been exceptional. The Cowboys are 28-12 in games he plays.

Owner and general manager Jerry Jones has maintained the Cowboys do not have a pecking order when it comes to re-signing Prescott, Elliott or Amari Cooper -- even if Prescott and Cooper are going into the last years of their respective contracts. The Cowboys have the cap room to sign all three, and they would save money against the 2019 cap once Cooper signs.

There is a deal to be done with Elliott. One that gives the player financial security and protects the team from the inevitable downfall all running backs face.

As Archer summed up: "Holding out is not the answer. Neither is not paying out."

Yet here we are. ... We'll follow up as needed.