Much like last year, Cowboys again can’t get on a run

Posted Sunday, Sep. 15, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
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The Cowboys vowed to run it more and run it better. They promised 2013 would not be a repeat of 2012 when they had the fewest rushing yards in team history for a 16-game season.

So far, so bad.

The Cowboys’ running backs had 13 carries for 37 yards against the Chiefs, with quarterback Tony Romo adding two carries for 3 yards and Terrance Williams losing 3 yards on a receiver screen ruled a lateral.

“We’d like to run it better, and obviously we’d like to have a few of those runs back,” Cowboys offensive coordinator Bill Callahan said. “We didn’t pound it enough consistently. But they are a stout front. They were good. We knew that coming in. We just wanted more chances, I guess, in the second half.”

DeMarco Murray, who had 12 carries for 25 yards, repeated the same refrain each time he was asked about the running game.

“We’ve got to get better,” he said over and over.

Murray had 20 carries for 86 yards last week as the Cowboys rushed for 87 yards on 23 carries against the Giants. But Dallas also led the Giants the entire game last week. This week, they threw 42 passes and had 16 rushes, including Romo’s runs and the one by Williams.

Murray appeared perturbed.

“We didn’t run it enough,” Murray said. “We kind of got to the pass. It’s nothing to talk about or discuss.

“… It’s something I can’t control. We have a good O-line. It was shaky at first, but I thought the holes were opening up to get a good rhythm.”

The Cowboys haven’t had more than 123 yards rushing as a team since Oct. 14 at Baltimore when they ran for 227. They have not had a 100-yard rusher since Murray rushed for 131 in the 2012 season opener against the Giants.

“You’ve got to want it, to work it, and you’ve got to have better execution,” Cowboys guard Brian Waters said. “That’s something we’ve got to do. We’ve got a great runner back there, and we’ve got to give him more opportunities to be successful.”

Lance Dunbar, who was making his 2013 debut after missing last week’s game with a foot injury, had the longest run of the day for the Cowboys. His only carry went for 12 yards. He might have gotten more opportunities if not for a fumble on a 4-yard reception.

Dunbar also lost a fumble in the preseason against Arizona, injuring his foot in the process.

“We’ve struggled a little bit,” Dunbar said of the running game. “We’ve got to keep working on it, keep practicing.”

After two weeks, the running game continues to be a work in progress. They insist they want to run the ball more and better than they did last season.

“It’s about the game we’re playing that day,” Romo said. “I think if we have more possessions, we run the ball more. If we have a lead in the fourth quarter, we run the ball more. I don’t know if there is a magic number. More than anything, we have to run it a little bit better. We want to run it more. I know Bill does, and Jason [Garrett] and I do. It’s just we need to get it going a little bit. We’ve just got to do that.”

 

Charean Williams 817-390-7760 Twitter: @NFLCharean

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