IRVING, Texas – The Cowboys must replace DeMarco Murray's single-season franchise-record 1,845 yards from a year ago. But owner/general manager Jerry Jones is excited about the overall run game the team established in 2014 – so much, in fact, that he says he anticipates an even better operation in 2015.
"You say the entire running game, and that would including our tight ends, including our fullback – the entire game – we're better," Jones said Wednesday. "Murray certainly is in that thought, but what we've got a chance to do with our depth, what we've got a chance to do with the talent, the competition that we have, and I'm assuming we can protect (Tony) Romo, which standing here last year, the concerns about his surgeries were more so than today.
"So if Romo can have the kind of year he had last year, then our running game will benefit from that. I'm talking about his individual abilities, his decision making throwing the ball."
And of course, the run game is anchored by one of the deepest and most productive offensive lines in the league. Offensive line coach Frank Pollack will continue teaching the concepts Bill Callahan oversaw a year ago.
The Cowboys currently don't have a clear-cut every-down running back, but veteran Darren McFadden is likely to get significant carries if the current depth chart holds. Joseph Randle, Lance Dunbar and Ryan Williams are also in the mix.
"I do think another year in the system helps everybody," head coach Jason Garrett said. "Obviously losing DeMarco Murray matters. DeMarco was a significant piece to our offensive success last year and he's not with us. But that gives other guys opportunities."