In 2013, there was a lot of fan hype surrounding speedy running back Lance Dunbar. A big thought was that he could really compliment DeMarco Murray and give Dallas a speedy running back out of the backfield, someone who could maybe be Dallas’ version of Darren Sproles, a multifaceted threat. ESPN reported on Wednesday that the Dallas Cowboys have another comparison for Dunbar this year, and that is to be the team’s Reggie Bush.
The difference is that DeMarco Murray is the unquestioned started on the offense while Reggie Bush was the starter for the Detroit Lions when Scott Lineman was there. With Lineman now calling plays with the Cowboys, there is hope that he can use some of the special plays that highlighted Bush’s tenure in Detroit with Lance Dunbar in Dallas. As a change-of-pace back, Dallas has a lot of special plays to use the special skills of Dunbar.
The big question here is whether or not Dunbar can stay healthy. In 2013, the fan excitement was there because Dallas had a lot of special plays for Dunbar as well. However, he injured his foot in preseason and then finally got a chance to prove himself on Thanksgiving Day. Sadly, he injured his knee in that game and missed the rest of the season. Yes, Lance Dunbar is fast and exciting, but he is also small and has proven to be injury prone.
The Dallas Cowboys need Dunbar to remain healthy in order to trust him with the ball. While they drafted Joseph Randle last year with the expectations that he would be the primary backup to DeMarco Murray, and maybe push him for the starting job, Randle was a huge bust, only gaining 164 rushing yards for the year with a 3.0 yard-per-carry average. Lance Dunbar is now the man and the Dallas Cowboys have a lot of expectations for him in 2014.
The Dallas Cowboys open their preseason against the San Diego Chargers in San Diego. The game kicks off at 9:00 p.m. CST and will air nationwide on the NFL Network and locally on CBS 11.