Dallas Cowboys: A Case for Drafting Dri Archer

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Sept 8, 2012; Lexington, KY, USA; Kent State Golden Flashes running back Dri Archer (1) runs the ball against the Kentucky Wildcats at Commonwealth Stadium. Credit: Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

I’ve recently spoken at length about the importance of really riding the shoulders of running back DeMarco Murray in 2014. The Dallas Cowboys have a very talented running back in Murray, at least when he’s healthy.

But the Cowboys probably only have one more season with Murray.

Murray becomes an unrestricted free agent following next season and it’s unlikely that owner and general manager Jerry Jones will shell out the money necessary to keep the former Oklahoma Sooners star in town. Frankly, Dallas can’t afford to gamble on a running back with Murray’s injury history when other options are so plentiful.

Yes, the running back position is experiencing a period of fundamental change, at least for the time being. Running is still the most fundamental aspect of moving the football, but the way many teams do that differs. Some teams want yardage from their quarterback and others want a committee of backs churning out rushing yards as needed. Other teams prefer throwing more to their backs than handing off.

One constant, however, concerning running backs, is the desire for elite speed.

Enter Dri Archer, easily the fastest player at the NFL Scouting Combine in February. The Kent State running back ran a blistering 40-yard dash in just 4.26 seconds. By comparison, free agent running back Chris Johnson gained huge attention with his 4.24 second surge at the 2008 combine. The Tennessee Titans might be done with Johnson now, but they’ve been pretty happy with this selection for numerous years now. 

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  • Sandy Faulkner

    I wouldn’t mind having Archer as a combo KR/WR/RB but I wouldn’t any higher than a 5th on him.

    • Christian Blood

      Waiting passed Round 4 basically means that you’re not going to get him. Probably have to pick him a little earlier … not sure actually.

  • David

    They should not take him any higher than the 6th round.

    • Christian Blood

      His kind of speed doesn’t last until the 6th Round … he might still be available in the 5th.

      • David

        Then pass on him. They dont need to spend a 5th round pick on a primarily ST guy when they have huge needs at almost every spot..

        • Christian Blood

          Well, Dallas’ draft history as late as the 5th Round is pretty lackluster. I think they’d be very well served in having a guy that can juice up the offense and also bring a couple, or more, kickoffs/punts back for touchdowns.

  • PaulTX

    Seems like a Devin Hester/Percy Harvin kind of guy. If he’s the best available in the 5th, sure.

  • Guy Smith


  • Michael Pickett

    Do writers really watch football? The purpose of a running back is positive yardage. Murray is the only back to offer that to the cowboys since M. Barber. Losing him takes them back to a less than .500 club.