Posted on March 13, 2017, by Travis Pulver
It sounds bad to have to say it. It’s even worse to have to mean it. But it is beginning to appear as if the Dallas Cowboys may want to seriously consider hiring a babysitter to keep their superstar running back out of trouble. That is if they want to make sure he’s available for 16 games next season. What did he do this time?
Well, it seems that he was hanging out on a rooftop during a St. Patrick’s Day Parade enjoying an adult beverage or two when he pulled down the shirt of a young lady standing next to him.
TMZ dropped this bombshell on people Monday morning. While that doesn’t sound good for a guy whose domestic violence investigation still hasn’t been put to rest, it is important to know the whole story. In one video, the woman appears to be engaged with people down below that want her to show her breasts—or, well, for Ezekiel Elliot to show them her breasts.
She can be seen gesturing at her breasts and then gesturing at Elliot before he reaches over and pulls down her top to expose a breast. In the second video, Elliot appears to be taking the initiative this time and tries to expose a breast again. This time she slaps his hand away—but appears that she might not have known it was him.
The woman appears to be in momentary shock, gets over it, and then flashes the crowd herself.
Elliot’s reps have said there is nothing to it, the woman was not upset, and it was all in good fun. However, the general public has taken it as an opportunity to call the NFL to the carpet over its sexual assault/domestic violence policies. Many have been quick to call Elliot a variety of names (none of them nice ones) and demand a six-game suspension. Some have gone as far as to equate his conduct with that of Ray Rice in his infamous video.
Do the two compare? Of course, not. That is not to say that sexual assault to any degree or severity is acceptable, but if this sort of thing were going to be enough to get someone arrested the New Orleans Police Department would have to turn a hotel into a jail during Mardi Gras.
But the power of public perception can do wonders when it comes to putting pressure on the NFL. If there is enough of an actual outcry—and not just the Cowboy-haters ranting and raving over what a [insert derogatory term] Elliot is for exposing a woman’s breast seconds before she could do it herself—maybe the NFL will get involved.
While this act alone may not get him into any trouble, it would not be shocking for the NFL to use in their current investigation (pattern of conduct?). So far, the league has refused to comment on the video.
So—should the Cowboys be concerned? Yes and no.
No, because there is no way the NFL decides to make a case out of this. Some will try to insist upon it and say the NFL is being soft on sexually inappropriate conduct. They will say that as decent humans they are offended and that the NFL should be too. But the NFL always has bigger fish to fry than this. So, the league will add a file to his current case about it and move on.
Good—right? That means the Cowboys shouldn’t be concerned—right? Wrong.
Part of the trade-off that comes with making millions to play a game is that you are held to a higher standard sometimes. You are put under a microscope—especially if you are a superstar—and everything you do will be watched, scrutinized, analyzed, and critiqued. People will be quick to judge and assume guilt simply because the only thing we like more than seeing our heroes rise is seeing them fall.
Elliot has already shown some questionable judgment before this incident. He meant no harm when he visited the pot store in Seattle, but he shouldn’t have gone in just because of the perception it would create and the assumptions people would make. It was his buddy carrying the gun in Ohio, but does anyone think Elliot didn’t know his buddy was carrying?
Now we have breast-gate.
As isolated incidents, they mean nothing. But if you look at the big picture that is Elliot’s life it shows a pattern of conduct. He doesn’t always have the best judgment. He hasn’t done anything too bad (that we know of or has been proven) yet. But if he keeps getting away with little things, he may press his luck a bit too much one day. Since the whole world is watching, the proof will be caught on camera, and then he will get in trouble.
Dallas lives and dies by its running game. Without Elliot, it will struggle. If the running game struggles, so will the Cowboys.
It sounds ridiculous and just a little bit absurd but if the Cowboys want to make sure their prize running back stays out of trouble, they may want to consider getting him a babysitter/friend that will nudge him in the right direction from time to time.