Dallas Cowboys rookie running back Ezekiel Elliott learned firsthand how much athleticism NFL players have during his first OTA practice on Wednesday.
“It’s a lot faster pace,” Elliott told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “The game moves much faster. Yesterday, I’m not going to lie, I was a bit shell-shocked.”
Elliott said though he was surprised by the speed of the NFL, he was more mentally ready and prepared for the faster pace on Thursday. The former Ohio State running back rushed for 1,821 yards and 23 touchdowns last season for the Buckeyes, and the Cowboys drafted him N0. 4 overall in the first round of the 2016 NFL Draft.
Elliott will work to become the starter this upcoming season, competing with veterans Alfred Morris and Darren McFadden, running backs coach Gary Brown said.
“He’s going to compete,” Brown said. “Zeke has to earn it. I think that’s the best thing for our team and for those guys going forward.”