Browns’ Joe Thomas On Cowboys’ Ezekiel Elliott: “You have to learn how to lose”
Cleveland Browns left tackle Joe Thomas knows a thing or two about losing. The Browns have been synonymous with the term throughout Thomas’ tenure in Cleveland and have undergone rebuilds time and again.
So, amid all the criticism that Dallas Cowboys’ running back Ezekiel Elliott has been receiving due to his apparent lack of effort during the Cowboys’ loss to the Denver Broncos on Sunday, Thomas chimed in with a bit of advice for Elliott.
“[T]he problem when you’re a young player and some people will take this the wrong way but you have to learn how to lose,” Thomas said during an appearance on Pro Football Talk Live (h/t NBC Sports).
“Because in college a lot of times these guys come from programs where they didn’t lose a lot, and so as soon as things are going poorly it’s easy for those guys to just throw in the towel, and I think we saw that with Ezekiel.
Obviously they had a tremendous season last year. He came from an organization in college at Ohio State that hardly ever lost, and if you find yourself in a situation where you’re losing sometimes those guys don’t know how to handle it and they don’t understand you have to play at the highest level and give everything you have on every single play no matter what the scoreboard says because that’s your job and that’s what you owe to your teammates.
“I think for young players it’s difficult sometimes because they just don’t know how to handle it and it takes sometimes, you know, public shaming like Ezekiel’s getting right now to learn that just because you’re losing a game doesn’t mean it’s time to go quit because you’re quitting on your teammates and you’re quitting on the game.
In the NFL, that’s not acceptable and that’s not how you play and hopefully he’ll learn from that situation.”
Elliott will hopefully use this experience as a valuable learning tool as he matures throughout his NFL career.
Because the thought of a player giving up on a team during a tough game is a reputation no player wants to carry.