DALLAS - Cowboys fans are ready to see their team in action, as the players head to training camp in Oxnard, Calif., but running back Ezekiel Elliott was not with his teammates as they left for California.
Quarterback Dak Prescott and tight end Jason Witten were among the players who got onto the team's charter plane headed for California on Thursday afternoon, but Zeke was not seen getting on the plane.
Elliott now has until Friday morning to report to Oxnard on his own and the drama around a potential holdout is at fever pitch.
A report over the weekend said Elliott was thinking about leaving the country as camp got underway and beginning a holdout with the team over a new contract. The team’s first practice is set for Saturday in Oxnard, Calif.
Elliott has two years remaining on his current deal and is set to make $3.8 million for this season and $9 million in 2020.
Zeke would be fined $40,000 per day of training camp he misses. If a hold out extended into the preseason, he would be find $226,000 per preseason game missed.
Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett said Wednesday he expected Elliott to be with the team at the start of camp. But he later added a more cryptic response.
"Yeah, we're just focused on our team and the guys who are going to be there," Garrett said.
Garrett is entering his ninth season as head coach of the Dallas Cowboys and the final year of his current deal.
The Cowboys have made it to the playoffs three times under Garrett and have lost in the divisional round each time, including last season to the Las Angeles Rams.
FOX 4 asked a former Cowboy what Garrett will have to change to see a contract extension.
“I think they need to make it to the NFC Championship Game at a minimum,” said former Cowboys defensive lineman Chad Hennings. “With that amount of talent particularly on this year’s team, in my opinion, unless there’s a catastrophic injury or whatnot there’s no excuse other than that.”
One player Garrett is especially excited to see at training camp is center Travis Frederick.
Frederick missed the entire 2018 season after being diagnosed with Guillain-Barre syndrome. It’s an autoimmune disease that affects the nervous system.
Garrett said Frederick has had a great offseason, and he’s worked hard to come back and get himself physically ready to play.
Two players that will miss the start of camp are DeMarcus Lawrence and Byron Jones. Coach Garrett confirmed, citing offseason surgeries they underwent.
The team’s first practice is on Saturday.