Ezekiel Elliott played great in the Dallas Cowboys’ season-opener against the New York Giants, covering 104 yards on 24 carries in the 19-3 victory. The first team All-Pro running-back has already established himself as one of the cornerstones of this dynamic Cowboys squad following a sizzling rookie season. Elliott, 22, is no doubt a terrific talent but his off the field issues (domestic violence charges) has often put his team in a tight spot.

For Veteran NFL writer Ian O’Connor, Elliott is a walking red flag. In his recent piece on ESPN, he pointed out the risk of anointing Elliott as the top guy for the Cowboys.

He believed the running back’s volatile, unpredictable behavior would make him unqualified to be the face of the franchise, regardless of his importance to the team.

“If the Cowboys are to win championships in the coming years, they can't have a star this unstable as the centerpiece,” O’Connor stressed.

Dak is the man

Instead, the football scribe vouched for quarterback Dak Prescott to be the Cowboys’ centerpiece because of his talent, poise, and leadership on and off the field. Prescott, who covered 3,667 yards with 23 touchdowns and 4 interceptions in his rookie year, is often compared to a young Tom Brady for many reasons.

Former New England Patriots offensive coordinator Charlie Weiss really thinks Prescott is on a similar career path as Brady since both replaced more seasoned quarterbacks (Drew Bledsoe and Tony Romo) and exceeded expectations.

“If you want to draw a parallel, it’s very similar to Tommy in 2001,” Weis told ESPN. “We didn’t start too fast with Tommy — similar to what they’ve done with Dak — didn’t give him too much early, and then it grew from there.”

O’Connor stressed the Cowboys still need both Elliott and Prescott to continue growing in order to achieve Super Bowl aspirations.

They just have to identify which of the two is the leader of the pack.

Orlando Scandrick injury update

Scandrick may undergo surgery to fix a metacarpal fracture in his left hand. The cornerback suffered the injury after awkwardly tweaking his hand on a diving tackle in the second quarter of Sunday’s game. Although metacarpal fracture usually heals without surgery, Scandrick could still go under the knife to prevent painful shifting of bones.

Nevertheless, Scandrick is expected for a quick return with a cast or club in his injured left hand. The injury may hinder his ability to intercept passes in the next 4 to 6 weeks, but it won’t prevent him from suiting up as early as next week.