The Cowboys are undefeated on the road since Dallas drafted Ezekiel Elliott out of Ohio State University with the fourth overall pick in the 2016 NFL draft. That’s nothing new for the rookie running back, who hasn’t been on the losing end of an away game since his freshman year of high school.
As a standout running back at the John Burroughs School in Ladue, Mo., Elliott and his teammates only lost seven games total during his high school career.
Three losses were state championship games at neutral sites, and one was a 45-20 home loss to rival Mary Institute Country Day School in St. Louis. The other four losses came in his freshman season, which Elliott finished with 42 rushing yards on nine carries. Of those losses, three were on the road, but Elliott only played in one of them.
Elliott's mother, Dawn, confirmed to SB Nation that Burroughs didn't typically let freshman play in varsity games, but made an exception late in that season, including a 38-20 loss at Lutheran North. Elliott's mother said he did get some carries in that game, and he was a little smaller then, standing about 5'8 and weighing in around 150 pounds.
Elliott and the Cowboys are 11-1 this season, with their only loss coming at home in Week 1 against the New York Giants. Dallas has won some tough road matchups this season, including Week 13’s 17-15 win over the Minnesota Vikings.
At Ohio State, Elliott and the Buckeyes only lost a total of four games over the course of his college career. Ohio State dropped a game to Michigan State during the 2015 season, a 17-14 in Ohio Stadium.
In 2014, the Buckeyes would go on to win the inaugural College Football Playoff. They suffered just one loss, a home upset at the hands of Virginia Tech.
The 2013 season ended with two consecutive losses for Elliott and the Buckeyes. Ohio State fell to Michigan State in the Big Ten Championship, and the Buckeyes lost to Clemson in the Orange Bowl. But both losses were neutral site games.
|Ohio State Buckeyes||2013||Michigan State||Lucas Oil Stadium|
|Ohio State Buckeyes||2013||Clemson||Orange Bowl|
|Ohio State Buckeyes||2014||Virginia Tech||Ohio Stadium|
|Ohio State Buckeyes||2015||Michigan State||Ohio Stadium|
|Dallas Cowboys||2016||New York Giants||AT&T Stadium|
For Elliott, the Cowboys’ success this season — both on the road and at home — isn’t anything new.
"I always think about that because I've never really been on a losing football team," Elliott said, according to Jon Machota of the Dallas News. "I haven't had that many losses in football. Honestly, I've probably lost less than 15 football games my whole life and I've been playing since I was 7."
Elliott has been a significant factor in the Cowboys’ success this season. He’s a candidate for league MVP, and for good reason. So far this season, the rookie has 1,285 rushing yards and 12 touchdowns on the ground, as well as 322 receiving yards and one catch for a touchdown.
Dallas still has a couple of road games coming up against division rivals. The Cowboys will travel to take on the Giants on Sunday Night Football in Week 14, and they will head to Philadelphia to face the Eagles in the final week of the regular season.
The Cowboys were the first team this season to clinch a postseason bid, and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs seems likely, also. If Elliott and his teammates can get past the Giants and Eagles with victories, the road to the Super Bowl should go through Dallas, and Elliott’s undefeated road record will remain intact.