Cowboys' Elliott withdraws appeal of six-game ban

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Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott has withdrawn his appeal against his six-game suspension.

Elliott served the first game of his ban this past Sunday against the Atlanta Falcons after the Second U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied his request for an emergency injunction at a hearing last Thursday in New York.

A series of injunctions and restraining orders had allowed Elliott to play up to that point, but a three-judge panel decided against another injunction.

A hearing was scheduled for December 1, however, Elliott has instead decided he will serve the entirety of his ban.

Elliott is eligible to return for a December 24 matchup with the Seattle Seahawks in Dallas. The Cowboys (5-4) have turned to Alfred Morris, Rod Smith and Darren McFadden in Elliott's absence. 

His agents Rocky Arceneaux and Frank Salzano said in a statement: "In consultation with the NFLPA [NFL Players Association] and his lawyers, and after careful deliberation and review of the recent Second Circuit decisions, Mr. Elliott has decided to forego any further appeals and will serve the remaining suspension.

"This decision arises from a practical assessment of the current legal landscape. Mr. Elliott's desire for closure in this matter is in his best interests, as well as the best interests of his team-mates, family and friends.

"This decision is in no way an admission of any wrongdoing, and Mr. Elliott is pleased that the legal fight mounted by him and his team resulted in the disclosure of many hidden truths regarding this matter, as well public exposure of the NFL's mismanagement of its disciplinary process.

"Mr. Elliott will maximise this time away from the game and come back even stronger both on and off the field. He intends to release a final personal statement in the upcoming weeks and until then we have no further comment."

The suspension stems from a domestic violence allegation by Elliott's former girlfriend in July of 2016. NFL commissioner Roger Goodell initially decided there was enough "persuasive evidence supporting" Tiffany Thompson's allegations of domestic abuse. Elliott has not faced legal charges in connection with the accusations.

The NFLPA immediately appealed Goodell's suspension decision, enabling Elliott to play while the case worked its way through the legal system.