IRVING, Texas – The Cowboys lost their star running back on Thursday, but the process to replace him begins Friday.
Darren McFadden, a first-round pick of the Raiders in 2008, signed a two-year contract with the Cowboys. McFadden is at Valley Ranch Friday and signed the contract that will pay the running back about $5.69 million over the next two seasons. McFadden met with owner Jerry Jones in his office when they officially inked the deal.
In seven years, McFadden has had only one 1,000-yard season, rushing for 1,157 yards in 2010. Injuries have always been the story for McFadden, who played his first 16-game season just last year. However, McFadden has been reduced to splitting carries.
In the past three seasons, McFadden has 485 carries, while Murray rushed for a league-high 392 times in 2014 alone.
So it's not likely McFadden will be the Cowboys' only option to replace Murray, who signed a five-year, $42 million deal with the Eagles on Thursday, paying the NFL's reigning leading rusher
$21 million guaranteed.
The former Arkansas standout has always been a favorite of Razorback alums Jerry Jones and Stephen Jones, and went fourth overall in the 2008 NFL Draft. Later on in the first, the Cowboys drafted McFadden's running mate Felix Jones with the 21st pick, becoming the first and only Razorback the Jones family has ever drafted.
The Cowboys might be looking at drafting their first tailback in the first round since Jones, to pair him up with McFadden and perhaps Lance Dunbar, Joseph Randle and Ryan Williams. Don't expect all of them to be around, especially if the Cowboys tap into a draft class that includes the likes of Georgia's Todd Gurley, Wisconsin's Melvin Gordon and Indiana's Tevin Coleman – three potential first-round backs.
Darren McFadden Signs With Cowboys