Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones knows that the running back position needs to eventually be addressed before the season starts. Fortunately for him, there are plenty of talented ones becoming available. Some are waiting to make the jump from college to the NFL, while proven veterans are being released on a daily basis. According to NFL.com, recently released Houston Texans running back Arian Foster could become a target for the Cowboys.
Jerry Jones and the Dallas Cowboys underestimated the departure of DeMarco Murray, who walked away in free agency and joined the Philadelphia Eagles. Even though Murray broke the single season rushing record held by the legendary Emmitt Smith, Jones believed that he could adequately fill the void with another running back in the NFL because the Cowboys boasted one of the best offensive lines in the league.
Without the benefit of hindsight, it was hard to argue with Jerry Jones at the time. The Dallas Cowboys do have a dominant offensive line. Tyron Smith, Zack Martin, and Travis Frederick are considered by many to be the best left tackle, right guard, and center in the NFL. Doug Free might be past his prime, but he’s still a solid right tackle. Left guard La’el Collins showed enough potential as a rookie that many believe that he will some day join Smith, Martin and Frederick at the Pro Bowl.
Though the production from the running back position wasn’t anywhere near being a disaster, it wasn’t as good as what the Dallas Cowboys expected. Joseph Randle showed promise, but he’s now essentially out of the NFL because he cannot get his life together. Lance Dunbar did better than expected before being sidelined by an injury. Darren McFadden was a pleasant surprise, as the often injured veteran ended up with more than 1,000 yards for the season.
In fairness to the Dallas Cowboys running backs, the team wasn’t expecting to be leaning on them as much as they did. Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett and offensive coordinator Scott Linehan wanted to lean more on Tony Romo and the passing game when DeMarco Murray left town, but injuries to Romo and Dez Bryant forced them to turn to the ground game more than they had planned.
In his desire to win another Super Bowl, Jerry Jones knows that he does not want to make the same mistake twice. He’s going to make sure that the Dallas Cowboys are well equipped at running back next season. It’s not the biggest priority for the team, but the offensive backfield is going to get an upgrade. Jones might be hesitant to use a high NFL Draft choice on a runner, but he has plenty of options in free agency.
One of those options became available on Thursday. The Houston Texans released Arian Foster, according to NFL.com. Foster was the leading rusher in Texans history, but the franchise could not afford to pay him $6.5 million. It was time for them to go with younger and cheaper options. Foster still believes that he has something left in the tank, and many people in the NFL agree with him on that.
On paper, Arian Foster appears to be an excellent fit with the Dallas Cowboys. Since he’s on the tail end of his NFL career, he wants to win a Super Bowl, which is what Jerry Jones and Tony Romo want. Foster has logged a lot of miles, but running behind one of the best offensive lines in the NFL can help with that. From a schematic standpoint, the Cowboys run a zone blocking scheme, which is what Foster was accustomed to with the Houston Texans.
Arian Foster and the Dallas Cowboys are a good fit.
[Featured Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images]