One of the good things about the Bengals being on a bye is you get a chance to watch some of the teams that you usually don't get to pay much attention to because you're busy watching Andy Dalton and A.J. Green being awesome. One of those games that I watched was the Rams-Cowboys game. Even though I figured it wouldn't be a very good game (it wasn't), I wanted to watch it mainly because I wanted to see how my fantasy players (Miles Austin and Steven Jackson) played.
Fortunately for me, I got a chance to watch the Cowboys running game find some life in the absence of Felix Jones.
Heading into Week 7, the Cowboys and the Bengals were in similar situations when it came to the running game (and the running game only). Neither team could get things going on the ground. Heading into the seventh week of the 2011 season, the Bengals and the Cowboys both had just mediocre to poor running offenses despite talented running backs in Jones and Cedric Benson.
Like the Bengals, the Cowboys were without their starting running back (due to injury, not due to suspension) heading into the game against the Rams. The Cowboys decided to hand the keys to the running game over to rookie running back DeMarco Murray, their third-round pick from the 2011 draft. I don't know what they were expecting from Murray, but I'm sure he gave them more than what they were hoping he could. After 25 carries, Murray had 253 yards and a touchdown.
His performance made everything that Felix Jones had done so far this season look even worse and you know that Murray may be the starting back from this point on, or at least get a much larger portion of the carries.
The Bengals need this to happen to them on Sunday when they take on the Seahawks in Seattle. The Bengals running game has been a huge disappointment so far this season and so has Cedric Benson. Now that he's been suspended for the Seattle game, the Bengals are open to find a new way to make the running game work. Maybe Bernard Scott blows up and has a huge game and proves that he can carry the ball 25 times a game. Maybe Cedric Peerman finally gets a chance and he looks good. Maybe the Bengals go with a combination of Scott, Peerman and Brian Leonard that works.
I'm not expecting any of the Bengals backs to have a 253-yard performance, but what would be nice is to see the Bengals figure out who can get the job done and then give that back a little more responsibility once Benson comes back.
So, who will be our DeMarco Murray?