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Tony Pollard signs franchise tender

Mike Florio and Chris Simms break down what Ronald Jones is capable of accomplishing in a one-year deal with Dallas and explore what Ezekiel Elliott’s options are moving forward.

Tony Pollard is officially back with the Cowboys for 2023.

The running back has signed his franchise tender, according to multiple reports.

The Cowboys and Pollard have until July 17 to work out a long-term deal. But if they don’t, Pollard will make $10.091 million on a one-year contract in 2023.

Pollard, a fourth-round pick in the 2019 draft, rushed for 1,007 yards with nine touchdowns and caught 39 passes for 371 yards with three TDs in 2022. He also accounted for 122 yards from scrimmage in Dallas’ two postseason games before suffering a fractured left fibula and a high-ankle sprain in the Divisional Round loss to San Francisco.

While Pollard underwent tightrope surgery for the high-ankle sprain, he is expected to be fully healed in time for training camp.

In 62 games with six starts, Pollard has rushed for 2,616 yards and 17 touchdowns, averaging 5.1 yards per carry. He’s also caught 121 passes for 1,008 yards with five TDs.

Pollard signing his franchise tender makes sense given the market for available running backs. While Austin Ekeler has been granted permission to seek a trade given that his contract with the Chargers is set to pay him $6.25 million in 2023, there has been no reported interest.

Running backs Josh Jacobs and Saquon Barkley have also been franchise tagged by the Raiders and Giants, respectively.