The Dallas Cowboys have had running back concerns ever since letting DeMarco Murray leave in free agency. Darren McFadden was signed and the team had a lot of faith in Joseph Randle while also having Lance Dunbar on the roster. Now, all three of them are dealing with injuries and it looks as if the team may start an undrafted rookie free agent in Thursday night’s preseason opener.
Pro Football Talk is reporting that Gus Johnson, an undrafted free agent from Stephen F. Austin, is going to be the likely starter against the San Diego Chargers.
Joseph Randle has a strained oblique muscle on his right side, and it had him on the sidelines on Monday. The team has been very cautious with him even though the injury isn’t expected to be very serious, and Randle wants to be back on the field soon.
“We’re going to go in here and figure out what we’ve got to do to get it back right so I can get back out here.”
Darren McFadden has a strained hamstring and still has not even practiced yet in training camp. This was the primary concern of many people after the Cowboys signed McFadden since he has spent a lot of his NFL career on the injury list.
As of now, the team believes McFadden will practice on Saturday for the first time.
Lance Dunbar won’t play against the Chargers and he has missed over a week of practice due to a sprained ankle. That leaves Johnson to start for the Dallas Cowboys on Thursday. He has had a good training camp so far and believes things are going well.
“It’s been going pretty good from my perspective. I just came in with the mindset that the reps that I get just take advantage of them because at one point and time this didn’t seem possible to me. Now that I’m here, I just have to make the most out of every opportunity I get.”
With all of the injuries in the running game, the Cowboys can’t very well rely solely on Gus Johnson. The injuries to McFadden, Randle, and Dunbar have to be concerning and making the Cowboys’ brass thinking if another running back should be brought in.
Ray Rice is still on the market and appears ready to play, but other teams have interest in him such as the Cleveland Browns. There are some other running back options out there as well such as Chris Johnson, Pierre Thomas, and Steven Jackson.
Gus Johnson is going to be thrust into the NFL spotlight very quickly for the Dallas Cowboys, and it is his chance to make the most of the opportunity. Injuries to Darren McFadden, Lance Dunbar, and Joseph Randle could up his chances of being a Cowboys running back when the regular season starts.
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