FRISCO, Texas — One of the stars of training camp and the preseason has been fourth-year running back Rico Dowdle as the South Carolina product has started to take command of a heated RB2 battle that has been one of the preseason storylines.
Head coach Mike McCarthy has offered praise for Dowdle throughout training camp, but after his performance against Seattle on Saturday night that featured him accounting for 47 total yards and one receiving touchdown along with having big moments in pass protection, the praise from McCarthy has begun to break out into a sermon.
"I've been impressed with Rico since the first year," McCarthy said. "I love his running style. He runs angry. He pass-protects with a lot of urgency. He sticks his nose in there."
His performance stuck out on a mostly murky night for the Cowboys' offense as he continues to shine a little bit more with every time he touches the field.
"I think I made the most of the opportunities that I got," Dowdle said postgame on Saturday. "It's always room for improvement, another week to grow. Like I've said, this is the biggest opportunity for me since I've been here."
It wasn't all positives on Saturday though, as Dowdle was the lead punt protector on a Bryan Anger punt that was blocked for a safety in the fourth quarter.
"When you look at the punt protection, it's just unexpected," McCarthy said. "And I think he'll definitely learn from that experience. Because he's always been so good in punt pro and pass pro."
Injuries have plagued Dowdle's early career in Dallas, but with a fully healthy body and mindset moving forward, the sky proves to be the limit for the emerging standout in the running back room next to Tony Pollard.
"I think we're just seeing Rico finally healthy," McCarthy said. "He's had a tough [three] years here. Very instinctive. Very bright. Very good, young football player."