NFC Notes: Evan Neal, Ezekiel Elliott, Rico Dowdle, Cowboys, Eagles, Giants


The Cowboys currently have eight running backs on its roster including Ezekiel Elliott, Royce Freeman, Rico Dowdle, Deuce Vaughn, Hunter Luepke, Malik Davis, Snoop Conner and Nathaniel Peat. Dallas HC Mike McCarthy said they will use as many running backs as needed to produce. 

“Two or three [backs], whatever it takes,” McCarthy said, via Todd Archer of ESPN. “I think you have to pay attention. Whether it’s two or whether it’s three, frankly, to be honest with you, the players will determine that.”

Elliott still feels like he’s a “dominant” back in the NFL and is motivated to prove himself in 2024. 

“I think I still am a dominant guy,” Elliott said. “I’ve got to go out there and prove that. That’s a motivation. I think we all know how I feel about competing and leaving it all out there for my teammates.”

Dowdle said he provides a similar “downhill” running style to Elliott, while Vaughn is more of a shifty running back. 

“Me and Zeke [Elliott], he’s obviously a bigger back than me, but we’re similar style runners, downhill,” Dowdle said. “I’m more of a downhill compared to guys like Deuce [Vaughn]. I mean, that’s just not his game, but Deuce, he’s a guy you get in space and can make anybody miss in the world. We all got our own attributes, but me, I just think I’m all-around.”


Eagles WR A.J. Brown has liked the feistiness and trash-talking of young DBs such as first-round CB Quinyon Mitchell.

“Having these young corners who talk a little, it’s fun,” Brown said, via Martin Frank of the Delaware News Journal. “That gets practice going. I want somebody to talk noise to me. Slay and James, those guys are chill, laid-back, good guys. But you can’t really talk trash to them. They’re just going to do their job and say, ‘I got you,’ or something like that. The young guys are hungry. That’s good.”


Giants HC Brian Daboll said OL Evan Neal (ankle) is working hard on his rehab with their team’s trainers. 

“We can count on him. He’s in here, he’s working his butt off, and hopefully, when everybody gets back, like I said yesterday, I’m hopeful we’re going to have everybody ready to go in terms of how Ronnie Barnes has set it up and Aaron Wellman has set it up,” Daboll said, via GiantsWire. “Evan is on his program in terms of trying to get back as soon as he can. He’s doing everything he can do.”

Giants OC Mike Kafka reiterated that he can rely on Neal and he’s been a frequent contributor in meetings. 

“Absolutely I can count on Evan Neal. He’s going through his rehab process and I know he’s eager to get out there,” Kafka said. “All those meetings in the O-line room, he’s asking great questions and really into it and trying to get better. The medical side of it, our staff is going to take care of him and make sure he’s on schedule. Whenever he’s ready to go, he’ll be ready to go.”

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