How good is Dallas' run game?

Cowboys can win NFC East, but offensive line must improve its run blocking

Updated: September 24, 2013, 1:56 PM ET
By Rivers McCown | Football Outsiders

MurrayTim Heitman/USA TODAY SportsDeMarco Murray had 175 yards on 26 carries against the St. Louis Rams on Sunday.

The Cowboys were able to bull over the St. Louis Rams in a surprising 31-7 rout Sunday, behind a huge statistical game from running back DeMarco Murray, who rushed for 175 yards on 26 carries. It notched a second win for the Cowboys to put them alone in first place in the NFC East, and with assumed front-runners Washington and New York both starting the season 0-3, it presumably puts them in the driver's seat in the division.

"The offensive line did a great job," Murray told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Murray is a victim of Stockholm Syndrome: This was a decent, not excellent, job by the line. But after so many games with 10-15 carries and 50 yards, even competent blocking begins to look great.

The reality is that Murray is a good back -- it's the dysfunctional Dallas offensive line that has consistently short-circuited his on-field value.

To read more about how good the Cowboys' rushing attack is and if they are good enough to win the NFC East, you must be an ESPN Insider.

Rivers McCown

Football Outsiders
Rivers McCown is an associate editor for Football Outsiders.