FRISCO, Texas – If the Cowboys are going to keep Darren McFadden on the roster when the season begins, it has to be based on what he did last season.
Because unless he practices Tuesday, which is highly unlikely, McFadden will now miss the entire training camp and preseason schedule with an elbow injury he suffered in July.
Still on the Active/NFI (Non-Football Injury) list, McFadden hasn't been cleared to return to practice and might not before the Week 1 game with the Giants on Sept. 11.
"I'm just taking it day by day and trying to get healthy and do it right," McFadden said on Monday about his rehab, which was initially scheduled to have him ready by the first regular-season game. "Oh yeah, I'd love to be there. It's coming along great. I've been working hard at it. It's just a day-to-day thing for me."
With a full stable of running backs, the Cowboys will have some tough choices to make. Ezekiel Elliott is expected to be the starter, but Alfred Morris has secured his spot on the team, perhaps as the backup. Lance Dunbar is returning from a knee injury and rookie Darius Jackson has flashed enough potential to keep himself in the equation.
The Cowboys could possibly keep McFadden on the NFI list for the season, which would keep him off the 53-man roster for the first six weeks.
"No, that's something I definitely hope not," McFadden said. "I just try to block that out of my mind and go day to day with it."
- Nick Eatman