Most of us remember a day when you could almost count on the Dallas Cowboys to have a running back who would run for a 1,000 yards each season, but since the departure of the great Emmitt Smith the team has only had one season in which a player broke through that barrier. That man was Julius Jones, who ran for a total of 1,084 in 2006 after falling just short of the mark in 2005 when he gained 993 yards. Now, seven years later, DeMarco Murry stands poised to become the 24th man in Cowboys history to reach that milestone.
Over the last four games, Murray has stepped up his game to help carry the team. During that stretch he is averaging 96 yards per game. It is not the individual stats that are on Murray's mind. The Cowboys are in a fight to make the playoffs, and the only number that matters is how many victories the team can string together.
“I just worry about taking it one game at a time, doing whatever I can to help this team. I don’t know where the yards are. I’m not worried about it. I’m worried about victories.’’ - DeMarco Murray
Murray is currently experiencing individual success and he is quick to give credit to where it is due. Speaking of his night in Chicago, where he racked up 146 yards on just 18 carries, Murray praised the men who were clearing the way for him to run.
“[Tyler] Clutts did a good job blocking. The O-line did a good job. Everyone was on the same page. We were just clicking.”
Had Jason Garrett not pulled his starters once the game got out of hand, Murray's totals would likely have been astronomical against the Bears porous run defense. As is was, he went over 100 yards for the second time this season and now stands just 157 yards away from breaking through the thousand-yard plateau for the season. With three games left to play, it's likely that we'll see a Dallas Cowboys runner top the mystic standard that has long been set for ball carriers.
Even though Murray would undoubtedly like to be the first man in seven seasons to accomplish this task, he would prefer to savor the taste of a playoff appearance instead. As he said, he is not concerned about the yards, it is all about the victories. When all is said and done, that is what it takes to get into the NFL's post-season party.