Dallas Cowboys Need to Upgrade Running Back Depth

By Ben Grimaldi
Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Cowboys have a really good running back in DeMarco Murray, when healthy. Unfortunately those last two words are the biggest problem with Murray’s game right now; he hasn’t been able to stay healthy for the Cowboys.

When DeMarco Murray is healthy and getting carries, the Cowboys win, that’s not a secret to anyone who follows the team. Dallas is 9-0 when giving Murray 18 or more carries and he has the ability to be one of the best running backs in the league with his blend of speed and power. However, his injury filled two seasons in Dallas means the Cowboys should be looking to upgrade the talent behind Murray should he get hurt again.

I like Phillip Tanner but its obvious the Cowboys don’t see him as more than a role player and the same can be said for Lance Dunbar. Dunbar has plenty of the skills to be a really good running back but it appears as though the Cowboys think of him as a more change of pace kind of back so Dallas needs to upgrade the depth in their backfield.

One way to improve their running back situation is to sign a player in free agency. It’s well known the Cowboys don’t have a ton of money to spend so they might be looking for an undervalued runner with experience. Players that might interest the Cowboys should be Chris Ivory, Danny Woodhead or even Rashard Mendenhall.

Ivory is a great fit because he’s strong runner who could help the Cowboys in short yardage situations and is also used to sharing the workload. Woodhead would bring versatility to the offense and Mendenhall might be a bargain because he’s coming off a year in which he recovered from major knee surgery and didn’t perform well last year. All three would make nice options for the Cowboys.

Dallas could also draft a running back but since they have so many other needs, using a high pick on a running back would be a mistake. Drafting Stepfan Taylor, Mike Gillislee or taking a chance on Marcus Lattimore in the fourth round or later would be a nice addition to the Cowboys backfield. All three have questions about size, speed or health so each should be available right around where Dallas should be looking for talent.

I really like DeMarco Murray and believe he is the running back of the Cowboys future but they also need to be smart and plan ahead in case Murray gets injured again. Creating depth and competition on the roster is never a bad thing and the Cowboys could improve both at running back.

you can chat with or follow Ben on twitter @BenGrimaldi

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