Jerry Jones Believes Tony Pollard ‘Would Have Had More Impact’ for Cowboys During Losses

Tony Pollard and the Cowboys are bound to part ways. Jerry Jones, though, shared some strong words about Pollard's performances in losses.

The Dallas Cowboys and Tony Pollard are heading toward severing ties once the 2024 league year begins.

While Pollard, a pending unrestricted free agent, put together one Pro Bowl season in his time as the lead Cowboys running back, owner Jerry Jones believes there were moments where Pollard could’ve had more of an impact.

Jerry Jones Shares Where Tony Pollard “Would Have Had More Impact”

Speaking with a throng of reporters in Indianapolis at the NFL Scouting Combine on Friday, Jones addressed Pollard’s upcoming exit. As Jones reflects back on it, there’s the personal belief Pollard could’ve been more impactful when Dallas fell in games.

“I think Pollard played well. He’s someone that I would have thought that would have had more impact for us in the games we didn’t play well in,” Jones told reporters.

Jones elaborated further in detailing the type of impact he expects to see out of the running game.

“But that running game is a product of not only the back but the blocking and the complete offense,” Jones said.

In other words, Jones sounds like he doesn’t want to place all of the Cowboys’ rushing woes on just Pollard, implying there’s plenty of blame to go around for the offensive line and the offense as a whole.

“When I look at him — I have done that with our coaches, and I have done that with our scouts — he played well,” Jones said.

Did Dallas’ Running Game Stumble in 2023? Changes Likely on Deck

The Cowboys ranked fifth in total yards on offense and led the NFL with 509 total points scored. Those numbers came with Brian Schottenheimer taking over for Kellen Moore as offensive coordinator.

However, the ground game was considered the weak link of this Dallas offense. The Cowboys ranked 14th overall in rushing yards during 2023. They also ranked 15th in total rushing touchdowns.

That’s a decline from their 2022 production when Moore was calling the offense. Dallas ranked ninth in rushing yards, but the team’s 24 rushing touchdowns were the second most in the league. And that was during Pollard’s Pro Bowl campaign.

The same 2022 Dallas rushing offense produced 13 games of more than 100 rushing yards — including two of 200 yards or greater. The ’23 ground attack went on to produce 11 100-yard games but no 200-yard tallies. And, the Cowboys failed to surpass 100 rushing yards in three of their final four regular-season games.

Looking Back at Pollard’s Production in Dallas Losses

How did Pollard fare in all of this? And how did his personal marks in 2022 compare to 2023?

While Pollard managed to hit 1,005 yards last season, he delivered just one 100-yard effort — a 122-yard day during the Week 3 road loss to the Arizona Cardinals. He tallied 100 or more yards in three games during his ’22 Pro Bowl campaign.

But with Jones bringing up the topic of Pollard’s performances in losses, here are some notable games supporting the spirit of his statement:

  • Week 5: Was bottled up to the tune of 29 yards on only eight carries during the Cowboys’ lopsided 42-10 loss to the San Francisco 49ers.
  • Week 8: Settled for 51 yards through 12 carries in the NFC East road defeat against the Philadelphia Eagles.
  • Week 14: Limited to 52 yards on 11 totes against the Buffalo Bills in a one-sided 31-10 road loss against the eventual AFC East champs.
  • Week 15: On Christmas Eve, Pollard finished with just 38 yards on 12 carries in the narrow 22-20 defeat at the hands of the Miami Dolphins.

KEEP READING: Cowboys Owner Jerry Jones Says ‘Arrow Is Really Up’ on QB Trey Lance

While Jones believes it was a collection of elements that led to down performances in the ground game, he is emphasizing the need for Dallas to run the ball better next season. However, Pollard isn’t expected to be involved in the Cowboys’ run-based schemes moving forward.

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