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Monday, May 13, 2013
Running game looked for too many home runs in 2012

By Calvin Watkins

The Dallas Cowboys' running unit finished 31st in the NFL in 2012 and starter DeMarco Murray, who missed six games with a foot injury, rushed for 663 yards.

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Murray's yardage totals ranked 56th on the franchises' single-season list.

Why was the rushing attack so bad?

Offensive line? Running backs? Play calling? Tight ends? Fullback? What was it?

Gary Brown, the new running backs coach, offered his thoughts on what went wrong.

"We just left a lot of yards out there," Brown said. "I think a lot of guys just wanted to hit home runs more than get those yards that may be ugly, so to speak. We left a lot of yards out there, and I think they understand that. I think we're going to try and do a great job of getting those yards they left out there."

The Cowboys didn't sign or draft a blocking tight end or another fullback in the offseason, instead selecting Gavin Escobar, a pass-catching tight end in the second round after using a first-round pick on center Travis Frederick.

Running back Joseph Randle was selected in the fifth round.

Brown said the Cowboys value fullback Lawrence Vickers, who is recovering from back surgery, and another year under offensive line coach Bill Callahan should improve things.

"The reason the run game was the way it was last year is a combination of things," Brown said. "We all didn't do the best we could possibly do. The key is to be the best we can be and get that thing going."