Taylor Williams

Takeaways From The Cowboys-Giants Opener

Created on Sept. 12, 2013 5:00 AM EST

The Ground Game

A ratio of 23 rushes to 49 passing plays hardly bears out the notion of balanced play-calling under Bill Callahan. Same with the run-first mentality: Dallas ran the ball on just 9-of-27 first downs.

DeMarco Murray rushed for 86 yards on 20 carries, but also caught eight balls for 39 yards. His first- and second-down production wasn’t totally up to snuff, but he got enough touches to remind New York how dangerously shifty and evasive he can be.

But Murray isn’t a workhorse rusher, and his injury history at age 25 should discourage any such thinking. We saw nothing from Lance Dunbar or Phillip Tanner, both of whom had truly outstanding preseasons that merited reps in the regular season. They deserve chances to contribute against a weaker defensive line.

Bottom line: Introduce a rotation to get the power of Dunbar and Tanner into the mix, and keep looking for Murray on screens and check-downs where he can produce after the catch.

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