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Darren McFadden Highlight Reel Shows Vision, Burst

Bryson Treece

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Cowboys Blog - [VIDEO] Darren McFadden Highlight Reel Shows Vision, Burst

If you're a Cowboys fan (why else would you be here?) then you're basically in the same boat that Raiders fans have been in the last several years when it comes to Darren McFadden: What's he got? How's it gonna help us win?

But it's early yet for McFadden, the Dallas Cowboy, so I found this video on YouTube with highlights of McFadden in Oakland. The time range isn't clear and please excuse the explicit language in the video's music track. We did not make this video.

The Video Link

Because it's YouTube and NFL content, you'll have to go to YouTube to watch the video. Here's the link (it will open in a new tab): Ultimate Darren McFadden Highlights

I thought it was worth noting how he runs and this video shows off a lot of his style.

He came out of college with a reputation as a straight-line back and you can see that in the video plenty. I saw an occasional juke, but most of it was stiff arms, bulldozing, and a few spins for good measure.

Darren McFadden has positive qualities

It's not the biggest question. He is a good RB. His questions revolve around durability and health. But watch the video... I'll wait.

He's not big on side-to-side running. Even an outside route will turn up the field early if he sees an opening. Perhaps you don't like that style of running but I freaking love it. Get up the field and gain positive yards. That beats all the fancy footwork for a loss every time.

What impressed me most is his instincts for positive yardage. That's probably McFadden's biggest asset: his nose for the end zone.

He's looking to get up the field on every play. He'll go through anyone he can and he's actually pretty good at making contact and staying on his feet. The video shows a ton of yards after the first point of contact and that's what you want from your running back behind the caliber of offensive line the Cowboys field each week.

You want a guy who can suss out a hole and get to it quickly, taking whatever contacts in stride. He does that.

Second, I saw that Darren spots holes very quickly and gets to them. You have to respect a guy with good vision while running the football. He's deceptively quick about getting through holes because he looks sort of stiff as he runs, but slight changes in direction come with a bit of power and burst.

He's also got good habits regarding ball control. He doesn't have the best record when it comes to fumbles, but seeing the nose of that ball in his hand, holding it close to his body and in his outside hand makes me feel better about him.

He's very simple and direct with his running style, and I like that. It's similar to how DeMarco Murray runs the ball, only Murray takes a bit more of a beating and is more elusive when he needs to cut.

All in all, and just for what it's worth this early in the game and late in his career, I saw some things in this video that I hadn't seen as much before it. Maybe you will, too.

He Needs To Bring Those Qualities To The Field in Dallas

Taking what's in the video and adding it to his limited performance against the 49ers last night doesn't add up. He wasn't getting much help from the offensive line, but neither were Joseph Randle or Gus Johnson and they managed to get more done in their time on the field.

Ben Malena also played last night but didn't get a whole lot done.

There are some notes from the game that contribute to the lack of "Wow" in McFadden's game, but that's for another time. For now, just take a look at what McFadden can do and let's see how he stacks up next week against the Vikings.



Nothing gives me greater joy than the experience of being a Dallas Cowboys fan come time to check another victory on the schedule every Sunday. I live Inside the Star everyday and blog on it occasionally, as well. Follow us on Twitter - @InsideTheStarDC

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Zack Martin, Xavier Woods Suffer Preseason Injuries, Cowboys Down 2 Starters

Mauricio Rodriguez

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Cowboys' Eyeing Training Camp To Extend Zack Martin's Contract

Last Saturday night didn't end well for the Dallas Cowboys, who saw multiple players go down throughout the game, most notably Zack Martin and Xavier Woods. Preseason injuries are always the more painful ones, and when we're talking about someone like Martin, it just makes it worse.

Martin suffered a knee injury and was ruled out after going down. ESPN's Todd Archer tweeted out that a source had claimed the injury was a hyper-extended left knee. This surely would be great news considering the fear right now is a season-ending injury.

Todd Archer on Twitter

A source said the initial diagnosis of Zack Martin is a hyperextended left knee, but he will undergo an MRI on Sunday. The Cowboys do not practice again until Monday and play Aug. 26 against the Arizona Cardinals. Depending on the severity of the... https://t.co/1MPbJfQph8

Zack is set to have an MRI on Sunday and the team is hopeful the injury isn't that serious. We probably won't see the All-Pro left guard return in the preseason but could see him back on the field as soon as September 9th when the Cowboys kick their season off at Carolina.

Besides Zack Martin being the best offensive guard in the NFL, the Cowboys' offensive line depth is definitely not good. If his injury proves to be worse than what the front office believes, this offense will have to play without arguably their best player.

As we nervously await more news on Martin's knee, there are more injured players to talk about.

Xavier Woods injured his hamstring as he made an effort to intercept the ball and was also ruled out for the game. We still don't know about the severity, but we do know it's the same hamstring that he dealt with last year.

Although Woods isn't anywhere near Zack Martin as a football player, his injury comes at the team's weakest position in depth. Jeff Heath, Kavon Frazier and Xavier Woods are the Cowboys' only legitimate safeties that will earn a roster spot.

If the hamstring injury is serious enough to keep him sidelined for multiple weeks, we could see the Cowboys getting outside help for the defensive backfield. Whether that means trading for Earl Thomas, some other safety or looking at the free agents available, I don't see the team going into the season with two safeties on the roster.

For now, we need to wait for more results regarding both of these players who will be detrimental to this team's success in 2018. The Cowboys suffered more injuries than these ones, though.

Saad Yousuf on Twitter

And the injuries continue... Jameill Showers is down on the Cowboys sideline with what looks like a knee injury. Still down. Duke Thomas Datone Jones Bo Scarbrough Xavier Woods and the big one, Zack Martin That's the injury list for the Cowboys tonight.

Datone Jones has been impressive during his stay in Dallas and is a quality DT and was ruled out for the game after getting tangled up with the Bengal's offensive line. Seventh-round draft pick Bo Scarbrough suffered a hip injury and is apparently not severe either.

Compared to Woods' and Martin's injuries, these ones won't keep Cowboys' fans up at night. However, hopefully they all turn out to be okay and ready to play as soon as possible. The team's starters make this team a legit threat in the NFC, but when it comes to depth, they're not in a good position.

Tell me what you think about "Zack Martin, Xavier Woods Suffer Preseason Injuries, Cowboys Down 2 Starters" in the comments below, or tweet me @PepoR99 and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!



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Report: Center Travis Frederick Undergoing Shoulder Evaluation

Kevin Brady

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Travis Frederick

After missing the team's walkthrough this morning, it is being reported that Dallas Cowboys starting center Travis Frederick is having his shoulder evaluated due to multiple stingers. According to reports, Frederick has been dealing with stingers all training camp, and the Cowboys are unsure what is wrong with his shoulder.

Frederick rarely misses any practice time at all, and has not missed a start since he entered the league in 2013. He's the catalyst of this offensive line, and will be greatly missed if his injury is severe enough to make him miss regular season game time.

David Helman on Twitter

Jason Garrett says Travis Frederick is getting his shoulder looked at in Los Angeles. He's been dealing with stingers. No update behind that #cowboyswire

Joe Looney has been tasked with replacing Frederick for the time being, taking first team center reps during today's walk through and practice.

Given how meaningless Saturday's game is, I'd expect Looney to start at center against the Bengals this weekend as well. Hopefully the evaluation reveals that Frederick's issues are not serious and he will be ready for game one, but consistent stingers will always make fans fear for the worst.



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Cowboys G Marcus Martin Needs Surgery; Impact on 53-Man Roster

Jess Haynie

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Marcus Martin
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Marcus Martin, the veteran guard Dallas signed as a free agent last March, suffered a potential season-ending injury in the team's preseason opener last Thursday night. Just how long he'll be out is still be determined, but it still should impact the Cowboys' final 53-man roster this season.

Martin tore ligaments in his right big toe against the 49ers. However, as of yesterday, it was not decided if he would pursue surgery.

Brandon George on Twitter

The Cowboys don't expect backup OG Marcus Martin to play this season after he tore ligaments in his big toe in the preseason opener, but he's seeking a 2nd opinion before deciding whether to have surgery. Martin signed a 1-year deal with Dallas as a free agent this offseason.

A former third-round pick in 2014, the 24-year-old was brought in as a potential reserve at both guard at center. He was still in competition with Joe Looney and others for a roster spot, though, and his minimal one-year contract suggested nothing was guaranteed.

Even if Martin doesn't have surgery, he is almost sure to miss the start of the season. Dallas would likely place him on injured reserve, but still have the option to recall him after Week 8.

Marcus' absence all but guarantees that Looney will return in 2018. This will be his third year in the system and his ability to play center is critical.

In my 53-man roster projection last week, I had both Looney and Martin making the team. So if I had that right, that means a spot has opened up for probably fifth-year veteran Kadeem Edwards, who was playing with the second unit in the preseason opener.

The notorious Chaz Green, who has played guard at times, could also be the beneficiary of the open roster spot.

Damien Mama, an undrafted free agent in 2017 who Dallas added this offseason, is the only other guard currently on the roster. We should get to see more of him as the preseason continues.

Marcus Martin's availability, or lack thereof, and how it ultimately impacts the roster will be determined in the coming weeks.



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