FRISCO, Texas — When Ezekiel Elliott was introduced to the crowd at Riders Field before the Reliant Energy Home Run Derby Wednesday, it was as if Elliott was home again.

Elliott signed a one-year deal with the Dallas Cowboys on Tuesday and has been part of the on-field workouts this week after spending last year with the New England Patriots.

“It was just important to me just to get back here and finish what I started,” Elliott said at the Cowboys’ annual fundraiser.

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Elliott spent the first seven years of his career with the Cowboys, becoming the franchise’s third all-time leading rusher behind Hall of Famers Emmitt Smith and Tony Dorsett. He was named to the Pro Bowl three times and an All-Pro once.

In 103 games, he ran for 8,262 yards on 1,881 carries with 68 touchdowns. He caught 305 passes for 2,336 yards with 12 touchdowns.

He led the Patriots last year in rushing yards (642) and receptions (51), and while he has not had a 100-yard rushing game since 2021, he is not ready to concede his status as a starting running back.

“At the end of the day I’m a football player. I love this game,” Elliott said. “I think I still am a dominant guy. I’ve got to go out there and prove that. That’s a motivation. I think we all know how I feel about competing and leaving it all out there for my teammates.”

No one is more excited about Elliott’s return than Dak Prescott. Elliott and Prescott built a tight bond since they were drafted together in 2016.

“He’s a real guy,” Prescott said. “He’s honest, what you see is what you get. He can have fun, but when it’s time to be serious and lock in, there’s nobody better than him … It’s something every young guy should follow, the way that he goes about his business. It’s going to be huge for this team.”

Elliott said he is still learning the slight changes made to the offense now that Mike McCarthy is calling the plays. He will be asked to lead a different running back room from when he left, with Rico Dowdle, Royce Freeman, Deuce Vaughn, Hunter Luepke, Malik Davis and Snoop Conner. The Cowboys did not select a running back in last week’s draft but did agree to terms with undrafted free agent Nathaniel Peat.

“We’ve got a lot of young guys, lot of talented guys with different skill sets,” Elliott said.

There will be one thing different in Elliott’s return. His uniform number will change from the No. 21 he wore in Dallas to the No. 15 he wore in New England and at Ohio State.

“I just kind of look at it as a different era,” he said.

But with the same goal as before.

“Got unfinished business,” he said. “Here to chase the ring.”