Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott walks off the field after...

Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott walks off the field after practice in Frisco, Texas, on May 22. Credit: AP/Michael Ainsworth

It looks as if Saquon Barkley will get the result he wants from the Ezekiel Elliott contract holdout in Dallas. Then again, however it turns out with the Cowboys, Barkley will be satisfied.

At an NFL Network event late last week, the Giants’ star running back was asked about Elliott and the prospect of his Dallas counterpart missing the opener this Sunday. He started out in one direction.

“I think if you ask anybody who plays in the NFL that plays against the Dallas Cowboys, would you rather play them with Zeke or without Zeke, I think everyone knows what the answer would be,” Barkley said. “No disrespect to anyone else on that team, I think Ezekiel Elliott is the most important piece of that team . . . If they want to hold out a little longer and wait on that to after Week 1 . . . ”

Then Barkley changed direction with a cut that could rival any he makes on the field.

“Actually, scratch that,” he said. “I would love for him to be there as a competitor. When you see that guy across the field, you want to prove you’re that best back, and what better way to do it than be on the same field?”

So whatever happens with the Cowboys and Elliott as the opener against the Giants looms, it seems, will be just fine with Barkley. Of course, he doesn’t have to tackle Elliott. He just has to measure up to him.

There are reports that negotiations between the Cowboys and Elliott have intensified, which have come on the heels of comments by owner Jerry Jones saying he expects Elliott to miss several games with the holdout. His presence or absence will have a big impact on the Giants, who will be in Dallas for the opener.

“We’ve been quietly working on the Cowboys for a while now,” Pat Shurmur said. “We’ve known since the spring that they’re our opening game, so you always have one eye on the opener. With regard to Ezekiel Elliott, I think we’ll just watch that play out like the rest of the world does. Obviously, he’s an outstanding player, but those are really issues of the day for the Cowboys, not so much for us.”

Until Sunday, that is, when it will become an issue for both teams. Notes & quotes: The Giants were awarded WR Cody Core (Bengals) and OT Eric Smith (Jets) on waivers. They waived WR Alonzo Russell and T Brian Mihalik . . . CB Sam Beal (hamstring) was placed on IR.  The Giants can designate him as one of two players to return off IR in six weeks. They signed TE Eric Tomlinson, most recently of the Jets, to take his place on the roster . . . QB Kyle Lauletta, a fourth-round pick of the Giants last year who was waived on Saturday, went unclaimed but signed to be on the Eagles’ practice squad.

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