Will the Dallas Cowboys pull the trigger on Ezekiel Elliott?

That seems to be a burning question heading into the NFL draft, which is set to kick off a week from Thursday in Chicago. The Cowboys hold the No. 4 overall pick and could be in the market for a running back with the aging, oft-injured Darren McFadden as their top option.

ESPN NFL Insider Louis Riddick, who spent 13 years in NFL front offices, believes that the Cowboys plan on making a splash with the former Ohio State tailback. Why? Maybe it’s his resemblance to the NFL’s all-time leading rusher.

“I’ve kind of been out on a limb in saying this, I think they’re going to take Ezekiel Elliott,” Riddick said Wednesday on ESPN’s Mike and Mike. “I think they see Emmitt Smith. I think they see 1,500 yards on offense as a running back for at least his first contract. That’ll help Tony Romo out as much as anything. That’ll get that offense really humming.”

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That’s quite the statement from Riddick, who is still well-connected in NFL circles.

Smith, of course, was drafted No. 17 overall by Jerry Jones and the Cowboys back in 1990. But the Cowboys haven’t kept a true franchise back since he left in 2002.

In 2014,┬áDemarco Murray broke Smith’s single-season rushing record and led the Cowboys to the NFL Divisional Round. Without Murray in 2015, the Cowboys fell apart when Tony Romo went down with a season-ending injury.

But, as Riddick pointed out, the Cowboys are also in need of a pass-rusher because of the off-the-field issues of Greg Hardy and former Nebraska star Randy Gregory. The logical pick could be Elliott’s Ohio State teammate, Joey Bosa, at No. 4.

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Still, Riddick thinks Jones will look to get back to the model that fueled the Cowboys’ best seasons in the last 25 years.

“They’ll try and do some things to fix their defense in the top part of the second round, third round as far as trying to address that,” Riddick said, “but I think (Elliott) is the player they’re gonna get.”