Sony Michel explained why he thinks Ezekiel Elliott is still ‘one of the top backs in the league’

Morning Sports Update

“I have this argument all the time.”

Ezekiel Elliott Sony Michel comments
Ezekiel Elliott warming up prior to a Patriots preseason game in Green Bay against the Packers. Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

The Red Sox lost to the Astros 9-4 on Monday despite Adam Duvall’s first inning three-run home run.

The two teams play again tonight at 8:10 p.m. ET.

Sony Michel believes in Ezekiel Elliott with the Patriots: Since arriving in New England as a training camp free agent signing, running back Ezekiel Elliott has already invited plenty of speculation about what he might contribute in 2023.

One former Patriots running back thinks it will more closely resemble the Elliott of old, when the former fourth overall pick was named to multiple All-Pro teams.

Speaking with Kay Adams on FanDuel TV’s “Up & Adams,” Sony Michel explained that the Patriots place an emphasis on running the ball, as they did during his own tenure in New England.

This, Michel theorized, will be good for Elliott.

“Zeke, he’s one of the top backs in the league right now. Still, to this day,” Michel said. Pro Football Focus rated Elliott as the 30th best in the NFL in a ranking earlier in 2023, but Michel thinks he stands higher.

“I have this argument all the time,” Michel explained of his stance on Elliott. “He’s still probably a top-seven running back. You know, a lot of people give him a lot of flak for what happened the past couple years. ‘He’s not the same Zeke.’ This dude’s going still for a 1,000 yards and he’s still not the same? He probably dropped off 200 yards and people were saying he fell off or he’s not the same.”

In Michel’s view, the Patriots could end up getting a resurgent Elliott based on his motivation to prove doubters wrong.

“He’s the same Zeke. Now, he’s probably hungrier than ever on a different team, fresh start.”

After averaging at least four yards per carry over the first six seasons of his NFL career, Elliott could only muster 3.8 yards per carry in 2022. He was eventually unseated as the lead back with the Cowboys, as Tony Pollard took over with more rushing yards despite fewer carries.

Trivia: Ezekiel Elliott was the first running back chosen in the 2016 NFL Draft. Can you name the second?

(Answer at the bottom).

Hint: Picked by an AFC South team, he was a former Heisman Trophy winner.

More from Boston.com:

A photo finish: U.S. sprinter Sha-Carri Richardson — whose Tokyo Olympic ambitions were derailed by testing positive for marijuana in 2021 — returned to the pinnacle of sprinting on Monday. The 23-year-old defeated a talented field to win the 100-meter World Championship at the wire.

On this day: In 1934, Red Sox pitcher carried his team to a 3-2 win over the White Sox in 10 innings. Not only did he pitch a complete game (including the extra inning), but he also hit a pair of home runs. His second, coming in the bottom of the 10th inning, was a walk-off.

1934 Red Sox Wes Ferrell

Daily highlight: Christian Pulisic got off to a dazzling start with A.C. Milan, assisting the opener and then following up with a rocketed goal of his own to double the lead.

Trivia answer: Derrick Henry


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