Ranks Cowboys Running Game 26th; Ignores Offensive Line


On Monday, released a ranking of the entire league’s offensive backfields. The Dallas Cowboys, who had the second best rushing offense in the NFL last season, was ranked a lowly 26th on the list. But the writer of this article neglected a very important variable in his ranking equation: the talent level of the offensive line.

If you glace over the Cowboys current depth chart of running backs, it’s hard to blame anyone for thinking this team has taken a severe step backwards when it comes to their running game. Around The NFL writer Marc Sessler admits to as much when he explained his low ranking of Dallas’ runners in his article.

"“I’m not riding the Darren McFadden Hype Train in Dallas, but this is his best fit since playing under Hue Jackson in Oakland. Randle has talent, but I can’t place the Cowboys much higher with Murray — last year’s rushing champ — out the door.”"

Names like McFadden, Joseph Randle, Lance Dunbar, Ryan Williams and Lache Seastrunk do not inspire confidence for anyone who doesn’t watch and study the Cowboys as much as fans do. See, the fans know something that the national media hasn’t learned yet: Dallas’ offensive line has the potential to be the greatest of all-time.

Oh, you’ll hear ESPN and Fox Sports One talking heads mention the dominance of this young Cowboys offensive line from time to time. But Dallas fans honestly believe in their greatness. They’ve seen it! This entire line could be chock full of future Hall of Famers.

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With Pro Bowlers like left tackle Tyron Smith, center Travis Frederick and guard Zack Martin all just 24 years of age, the future is limitless for this O-line. Combine that with the Cowboys glorious signing of undrafted free agent offensive lineman La’el Collins this offseason, a projected first round talent himself, and you’ve got yourself the makings of the next great dynasty in Dallas.

With the exodus of running back DeMarco Murray this offseason, fans have to believe that a great offensive line can make an average, underachieving running back play like Emmitt Smith. What choice do they have now that the draft is over and the free agency pool is near empty? Fans have to believe in this offensive line.

And that’s exactly what this Cowboys front office and coaching staff is betting on. It’s the reason they ultimately let Murray go to Philadelphia. They believe this offensive line can open up running lanes large enough for a Mack truck to drive through.

Surely running backs like Randle and McFadden can find success with windows that wide open. In fact, any NFL-caliber runner worth his salt should find ample running room behind Dallas’ new Great Wall.

And that’s the ultimate gamble. The Cowboys and their fans are betting on this young, but talented O-line to save their season. Not on a one-time wonder at running back who missed a total of 11 games in his first three seasons in Dallas due to numerous injuries.

The rest of the nation looks at this ragtag list of names on Dallas’ current running back depth chart and thinks their the 26th best group of runners in the league.  The Cowboys are betting that even a group unproven, underperforming, and often-injured running backs can rack up major yardage behind a great offensive line.

So, where are you placing your chips this season? Mine are on this offensive line.

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