DeMarco Murray carrying the load, feeling fine

IRVING, Texas -- A quarter of the way into the season, Dallas Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray is on pace for 396 carries.

Only six running backs have had more carries in a season in NFL history. Larry Johnson holds the record with 416 carries in 2006 for the Kansas City Chiefs.

“I feel fine,” said Murray, who was named the NFC’s offensive player of the month with an NFL-best 534 yards rushing. “I feel fine and I take care of myself throughout the week. My body feels good.”

Murray’s injury history has been well-documented. He has missed games with ankle, foot and knee injuries. He has not had more than 217 carries in a season, and the 99 carries he has had to start the season are the most in a four-game span in his career.

In Murray’s first three years, coach Jason Garrett was constantly asked why he didn’t hand the ball more to Murray. Now he is asked if he needs to cut back on Murray’s carries. Joseph Randle has 57 yards on nine carries and Lance Dunbar has 27 yards on 11 carries.

“You certainly have to be mindful how we use all our players and it applies to the running backs as well,” Garrett said. “You just have to see how he’s doing. We have confidence in the other running backs that we have. Both Randle and Dunbar have done a nice job for us when they’ve gotten opportunities. We have confidence in them to do that and we’ll have roles for those guys. But he’s certainly the bell cow of our team right now and we’ll continue to give him chances. But you’re always watching your guys and making sure you’re using them the right way and not overusing them. That applies to him as well as anybody else.”

Murray has always had a varied offseason program that included yoga and mixed-martial arts training to help with strength and stamina. He also has a strict maintenance program that he did not want to go into detail about Thursday, but if he is asked to carry the ball 400 times, he believes he can handle it.

“I’ve always been one to take care of my body, doing different things, making sure I’m healthy,” Murray said. “Some things are out of your control, but just try to do some preliminary things, make sure your body is fresh, make sure you’re ready to come to work every day and work hard. I’ve always done that since I was in college, so I’ll continue to do certain things.”