We’re back again, to the nagging nightmare-like predictions of a failing offense. It’s like we’ve been taken back to 2004, you would think Chad Hutchinson is our Quarterback. Before I continue let it be known that Tony Romo is a good quarterback, and our receivers…well they’ll walk the walk. Many “experts” (if that’s what you want to call them) say our season hinges on the production of our running game, thought I don’t find that the case necessarily, I do believe that wont be a problem.
It doesn’t seem like long ago we were plagued with Troy Hambrick in the backfield, his potential seeming limitless but his production barely broke mediocrity. For the first time since the late nineties, early 2000’s, I’d say we have a running back core that has the potential to dominate.
A running game is, in my opinion, successful because of 3 particular attributes. You need to have a: “Bruiser” which is the type of back who can break tackles and wear down defenses, A “Homerun Back” who can deliver game changing runs consistently, and a “Relief Back” who can catch the ball well and still break tackles-this back is a mix of the two. It is possible to be successful with 2 of these backs but these 3 attributes should be what coaches look for.
In the NFC East these backs are everywhere, except they aren’t on the same team, thank God. Brandon Jacobs Bruises, Westbrook homerun’s, and Portis is a great all around back. However, here in Dallas we got all 3:
Marion “The Barbarian” Barber– Barber has truly earned his title, also being labeled as the closer, he has single handedly won games for this team. In his career with Dallas he’s totaled 715 carries for 3052 yards, compiling a 4.3 yd avg, and running for 36 touchdowns. Some predict that Marion will slow down given his bruising style, but I expect that Barber will eclipse the 1000 yard mark for the first time in his career this year on 200 carries.
Felix Jones– Felix had an unfortunate rookie season, but I expect that makes him hungrier. Felix’s first career rush was an 11 yard score. In 6 games, Jones had an impressive 30 rushes for 266 yards, that’s an impressive avg of 8.9 yards and 3 touchdowns. Not only that some of the teams we faced in his impressive games, weren’t easy defenses. Green Bay, Philadelphia, and New York headline a 6 team group that Felix dismantled. Expect Felix to get 10-15 touches a game, and lead the team in runs of 20+ yards.
Tashard Choice– Choice fell on our laps as a diamond in the rough. Many people were confused with the selection of Choice (I admit to being one of them) but when he was the last option boy did he deliver. Choice is a combination back mixing speed and power to surprise opposing defenses allowing him to be a asset to any running game. Though Choice won’t be the premier back for this offense, the Cowboys acknowledge that he could be anywhere else and don’t want to see him slip away. He’ll get a chance to prove himself and become a player for this seemingly future oriented Cowboys Team. Expect Choice to be a spell back who will produce equal to a mediocre starter, maybe comparable to a Julius Jones or a Lendale White. He’ll add convincingly to his 92 carries for 472 yards, 2 TD’s, and his 5.1 yd avg. Not to mention his 21 Receptions for 185 yards. He is not someone you want to see disappear from this team!
Whether or not this season hinges on the running game, the receiving core, or the coaching, expect this 3 headed beast to be ready to deliver in league leading fashion!