Coming off of 2 injury ridden seasons, DeMarco Murray is back at OTAs and getting ready for camp.
He was on ESPN's First Take on July 10th and had this to say, “We understand the expectations here in Dallas Cowboys Nation," He continued.
"We have a lot of great players and we’re definitely ready to change some things around here.
We moved some things around in the off-season and we’re getting better. This year, we’re doing some things differently and we’re excited about where we’re going, where we’re heading."
This is good news for the Cowboys faithful, as some are getting tired with the not-so-great finishes since 2010.
Romo's shiny new contract, Terrance Williams and an improved defense should be enough to propel us to a more satisfying record. But the one remaining factor, in the last couple of years, has been a poor running game.
2009 was the last year that we've had at least 2,000 total yards on the ground (according to NFL.com).
Our main Running Backs that year were, in order of total yards, Marion Barber III, Felix Jones and Tashard Choice. According to BloggingTheBoys.com, the combo accounted for 1,966 yards and 13 TDs.
This year's main running corps, in possible order of depth chart, appears to be DeMarco Murray, Joseph Randle and Lance Dunbar. I'm going to break these 3 down.
Murray is a 6'0", 227 lb back in his 3rd year out of Oklahoma. He's been injured in each of his first two seasons, missing nine games in total. He's had his highlight moments such as last year's season opener in New York, where he ran for 131 yards on 20 attempts, and average of 6.6 yards (rotoworld.com). If he can stay healthy, I believe that Murray has a chance to break 1,500 all-purpose yards this season.
Randle is a 6'0", 204 lb back in his Rookie year out of Oklahoma St. He's built much like Tony Dorsett, only registering one inch taller. In starting 2 out of his 3 years with the Sooners, stats from the last 2 years include, 2,633 yards, 38 TDs and a 5.5 yard rush avg (ESPN.com).
If given the chance, I believe he can work his way into the 3rd down back spot.
*As a side note, he also boasts a 100% completion percentage on 2 passes thrown last year!*
Dunbar is a 5'8", 191 lb back in his 2nd year out of North Texas. He is most known for his 2012 Preseason Week 4 performance vs Miami and his broken tackle off of Ray Lewis in Week 6 of the 2012 regular season.
Many say that Dunbar is undersized for the Running Back position, and I would agree with that. You can't argue with raw strength though, as he completed 11 reps of 225 lbs at his Pro Day (NFLDraftScout.com), which is impressive for a back of his size.
All-in-all, I believe that Dallas will enter the top 15 in NFL rushing yardage.
The improved O-Line and other factors paired with a chance at DeMarco Murray's breakout season can make this a reality.