Ezekiel Elliott: Saquon Barkley did all he could do, but 'our defense is elite'


ARLINGTON — Following Sunday night’s 20-13 Cowboys win, Ezekiel Elliott and Giants running back Saquon Barkley exchanged jerseys.

Neither had a career-day, but both made the most of their opportunities. Elliott, the fourth overall pick in 2016, finished with 78 yards and a touchdown on 17 carries. Barkley, the second overall pick this year, managed 80 yards on 14 receptions and 28 yards on 11 carries.

“I think he played amazing,” Elliott said of Barkley. “I think he did all he could do. Our defense is elite, I think. Six sacks, a strip sack. They played their tails off today. I think Saquon did as much as he could do. Every time he got the ball in the open field he made the first guy miss and got what he could get, but our defense was just flying around and they played a hell of a game.”

The last time Elliott and Barkley were on opposite sidelines, Elliott ran for 153 yards and a touchdown in a 38-10 Ohio State win over Barkley’s Penn State team. Barkley finished that 2015 game with 194 yards on 26 carries.

Elliott wasn’t completely satisfied with his performance Sunday night. He felt there were a couple rushing attempts where he was a step away from breaking it for a bigger run, similar to what he often did his rookie season.

“I had a couple runs today that I wish I could have back,” Elliott said. “But that’s what film is for. It’s early in the season and we still have a lot of room to improve.”

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