Joseph Randle’s locker remained intact Tuesday afternoon, but he no longer is part of the Cowboys. The team’s three running backs have moved on without him.
“It’s a business,” Cowboys running back Darren McFadden said. “I just know it’s part of the business. It’s just something we have to move forward from.”
None of the three running backs currently on the roster were at Valley Ranch last season. The Cowboys signed McFadden on March 13, a day after DeMarco Murray left for Philadelphia.
When he signed, McFadden expected to complement Randle and Lance Dunbar. But Dunbar was lost for the season with a knee injury in Week 4, and the Cowboys released Randle on Tuesday.
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“Moving forward and keep grinding,” McFadden said. “We want to go out there and just keep grinding, keep getting better each week.”
McFadden earned the starting job with 152 yards against the Giants in Week 6. It prompted the Cowboys to scrap the running by committee approach, with McFadden becoming the lead back.
He has ex-Seahawks Christine Michael and Rod Smith backing him up now. The Cowboys acquired Michael in a trade Sept. 6, and claimed Smith off waivers Oct. 14.
“I’m ready to help this team in any way possible, whether it’s in practice or on Sundays or Mondays,” Smith said. “When my number is called, just go out there and try to help the team win.”
With Randle inactive against Seattle, McFadden played 47 snaps, Michael 10 and Smith two. It marked Smith’s debut on the game-day roster, though he didn’t have a carry.
“It felt real good to get out there,” he said. “The coaches are starting to have confidence in me.”