Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones believes running back Ezekiel Elliott will be ready for the start of the 2017 season.
Elliott and the rest of the NFL are waiting to see whether the running back is to receive a suspension to start the new season – which is set to begin in September.
The Cowboys will welcome the New York Giants to AT&T Stadium in Week 1, but it is still unknown whether their star running back will be lining up.
Jones expects Elliott on the field in Week 1
Jones is one of the star names in the NFL, and speaking at the Hall of Fame Game, he believes Elliott will be on the field facing the Giants.
Dallas was 15-0 down against the Arizona Cardinals on Thursday night but come back to win 20-18 in the season's curtain-raiser.
Jones, who spoke to NBC, said: “There are a couple of issues that might or might not fall – and that’s going to be up to the league to decide – under the behavioural guidelines.
“But in my opinion, we’re preparing our team for Zeke and should.”
Elliott has other off-field issues
The Cowboys owner stated that the issue with Elliott isn’t the domestic violence allegations, which came to light last year, but other off-field issues.
“The domestic violence is not an issue,” Jones added. “Zeke has had some other things that have been looked at and are being looked at.
“But the domestic violence issue, there’s not an issue. I think that my hope is that Zeke is with us opening night, and I don’t want to get into anything that might, in any way, influence negativity that decision from the league office.”
Elliott was one of the shining stars, along with quarterback Dak Prescott, for Dallas last season – he ran for 1,631 yards on 322 carries last season.
The Cowboys won the NFC East title in the 2016 season, ending the regular season 13-3, and will be looking to go one step further this year.