Much to everyone’s surprise, running back Darren McFadden played in all 16 games for the Dallas Cowboys in 2015.
Though, with McFadden one fall away from yet another injury in a career that’s been defined by them, the Cowboys signed a reinforcement in the form Alfred Morris earlier in March.
Speaking up on the type of competitive environment Morris’ signing might bring, McFadden doesn’t feel threatened by the addition (via team’s official website).
“You know for me as a running back, I know the type of league this is and I know it’s hard just to have one go-to guy,” McFadden said. “You definitely need another back in there. You know, with us signing another back, is not something that bothers me at all. I’m a guy who doesn’t mind competition and things.”
McFadden thrived in the Cowboys offense last year, posting his best stats since a breakout 2010 campaign with the Oakland Raiders. After assuming the starting role early in the year, the former top-five pick finished the season with 1,417 total yards and three touchdowns.
Now, walks in a player in Morris who is coming off a down season with the division-rival Washington Redskins. After tallying nearly 4,000 yards in his first three seasons in the nation’s capital, Morris put up a lowly 751 yards on the ground in 2015.
While McFadden is not fretting over Morris’ role (whatever that may be), owner Jerry Jones reportedly wants to stick with the incumbent as the lead back:
Jerry Jones sees Darren McFadden, not Alfred Morris, as Cowboys' lead back https://t.co/oQpOk8HPso
— Todd Archer (@toddarcher) March 22, 2016
Though, McFadden isn’t just kicking back while knowing what Jones’ plans might be:
“That’s the thing for me, the older I get — one of the things is you can’t take as much time off. That’s why I started back early, just try to get back to it and I just want to make sure my body is completely ready and be in the best position I can be in.”
The Cowboys likely didn’t sign Morris just for him to ride the bench this season. Clearly they see the value he can contribute in looking back to his first three seasons in Washington.
With the Cowboys running back situation looking far more promising than it did this time last year, the main storyline to follow will be quarterback Tony Romo’s progress as he recovers from an injury-plagued 2015 campaign.