DeMarco Murray, running game going wrong way

IRVING, Texas -- DeMarco Murray has taken some big steps backwards since his spectacular season opener.

Murray has followed up his 20-carry, 131-yard performance in the win over the Giants by rushing for only 106 yards on 41 carries in the last three games. As a result, the Cowboys have the least effective rushing attack in the NFC, averaging only 67.8 yards per game.

The biggest problem: Murray has to make moves in the backfield way too often.

Murray has been dropped for a loss an NFL-high-tying 13 times this season, including 11 times in the last two games. He’s been tackled in the backfield on 21.3 percent of his carries, the highest percentage among backs who average at least 10 carries per game.

That’s a stark contrast to last season, when Murray was dropped for a loss only 14 times on 164 carries (8.5 percent).

Frankly, the blocking has been awful in the running game. Even on Murray’s best run of the season, a 48-yard gain against the Giants, he had to make defenders miss behind the line of scrimmage.

“You just have to keep banging away at it,” said Jason Garrett, who indicated that no personnel changes are planned on the offensive line. “We’ll keep doing that. We’ll evaluate what we’ve done over the course of the first four weeks and try to get that thing going.”

It’s been going the wrong way at an alarming rate recently.