Running back is a massive talking point among Dallas Cowboys fans. While Tony Pollard is an ascending star at the position, there's some trepidation in terms of how he'll perform handling the workload the every-down starter.
From the moment Pollard touched down in the NFL, he's been one of the most efficient backs in terms of yards per carry and rushing yards over expected. However, he's yet to log more than 200 carries in a season, and that's likely to change (in a big way) this year now that Ezekiel Elliott is no longer around.
Will Pollard produce the same efficiency and compile a similar clip of explosive runs with a significantly increased workload?
It's anyone's guess, really, but fans aren't totally off-base wondering if Pollard could wear down or show fatigue by the end of the season.
What that in mind, the Cowboys really need a RB2 to emerge by the end of training camp. It appears to be an open competition, but the latest buzz post OTAs and minicamp indicates Malik Davis is the favorite to win the job.
Will Malik Davis land Cowboys RB2 job behind Tony Pollard?
No competition is won before training camp, but Davis impressed the coaching staff at OTAs and minicamp. The second-year back attributed his performance to being more comfortable in the offense and entrenched in the RB room rather than being laser-focused on making the roster as an undrafted rookie.
While Davis is battling to win the backup job behind Pollard, he received the majority of first-team reps this offseason as Pollard works his way back from tight-rope ankle surgery. Pollard has been present at practice, but Dallas is wisely managing his workload in hope that he'll be fully unleashed at training camp.
Davis' performance has caught the eye of one Mike McCarthy.
"He has done an excellent job, particularly in the classroom," McCarthy said. "You can see his confidence and his understanding. I think the running backs as a whole have been really challenged this spring and the running backs have handled it extremely well. I'm very pleased with the running back group and Malik."
Davis played sparingly as a rookie, but Cowboy fans caught a glimpse of his potential against Tennessee on Thursday Night Football when he played in place of Pollard, who was rested out of caution due to a thigh injury.
The Florida product logged 10 carries for 39 yards in the game. Not eye-popping numbers by any stretch, but he was more efficient than Elliott (19 carries for 37 yards) and showed more burst and elusiveness than the veteran.
In total, Davis suited up for 12 games and totaled 161 rushing yards on 4.2 yards per carry. With the Cowboys bypassing adding another RB behind Pollard, Davis will get all the work he can handle during training camp to cement himself as the No. 2.
If you read the tea leaves, it might be Davis' job to lose.