ARLINGTON, Texas -- The Cowboys’ coaching staff doesn’t believe Tashard Choice can be the cure for their ailing running game.
The Cowboys ranked 30th in the league in rushing with 86.0 yards per game. The running game has been especially poor the last two weeks, averaging 3.2 yards per carry.
Choice, who has a career average of 5.1 yards per carry, hasn’t touched the ball in the three games since the Cowboys made Felix Jones the lead horse in the running back committee. Marion Barber has played the third-down back role that Choice had filled since the start of the 2009 season.
Why not give Choice a chance to provide a spark?
“We have two other guys that we think are running hard,” Wade Phillips said. “We’ve got to block better for them, and we’ve got to execute the plays better. But those guys are running hard. I don’t have a problem with the way that we’re running. We’ve got to get them some opportunities.”
The Cowboys need to get Jones opportunities. He’s a dynamic threat. Barber, on the other hand, is just a guy.
It might be considered a compliment to call Barber mediocre at this point. He’s averaging 3.2 yards per carry – and hasn’t averaged more than that in a game since the season opener. He’s arguably the most overpaid player on the roster with a seven-year, $45 million contract. The fact that all the guaranteed money on the deal has already been paid makes Barber expendable this offseason.
The Cowboys should want to see how the combination of Jones and Choice clicks. That’s the future of the backfield.
At 1-5 with one of the league’s worst running games, what do the Cowboys have to lose by benching Barber for Choice? Certainly not yards.