If your Internet was running a little slow early Sunday evening, it was probably due to the massive influx of Fantasy Football team owners feverishly attempting to add Dallas Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray to their rosters.
Who can blame them?
With Dallas' first-string running back Felix Jones out with an injury, the rookie out of Oklahoma saw his first extended action. It didn't take Murray long to prove he belonged: He ran for a 91-yard touchdown on his very first carry of the game, the second-longest rushing touchdown in Cowboys history.
Although Tony Dorsett's 99-yard touchdown scamper still holds the top spot in franchise annals, Murray wasn't done assaulting the record books. By the time that Dallas had put the finishing touches on its 34-7 stampede of the Rams, the rookie runner set a franchise record for rushing yards in a game with 253. In doing so, he surpassed someone named Emmitt Smith. You might have heard of him.
While the performance certainly caught the NFL off-guard, fans of the University of Oklahoma (not to mention, its rival in Austin) were already aware of how explosive Murray can be when healthy.
Interestingly, the performance came at the expense of his former teammate, Rams quarterback Sam Bradford, who played with Murray at Oklahoma. Bradford was forced to sit out the game against the Cowboys as a result of injury. "It was great," Bradford said of Murray's performance to The Oklahoman. "Obviously, I would love to see him have that type of performance against anyone else but us."
After the game, Murray was diplomatic when asked if he his big game would make him the starter in Big D. "It's hard to say. Felix is our guy and I don't know what my role will be when he returns," Murray told 105.3 the Fan in Dallas. "Hopefully he returns very soon. Whether it's starter, second, or third string, I'm gonna do it with a smile on my face and try to contribute as much as I can."
Where Murray goes from here will be interesting to watch.
Will he go the way of Jerome Harrison? In 2009, Harrison shocked the NFL with a 286-yard rushing performance with the Browns, only to be relegated to a back-up role in the following seasons. Or will he follow in the footsteps of fellow OU stand out Adrian Peterson? As a rookie, Peterson set the NFL record for rushing yards in a single game with 296 and has gone on to have a distinguished NFL career.
Either way, Murray has emerged as yet another weapon in the Cowboys' deep arsenal. Even with a 3-3 record, Dallas remains a team to watch out for in the wide-open NFC East.
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