Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said rookie sensation running back DeMarco Murray is making significant progress in his rehab from a fractured ankle and could be ready to go for the start of the off season program in April.
"He’s getting there. He is getting there," Garrett said. "At every turn, the rehab has gone well for him, all positive marks. And really it’s a tribute to our training staff but also to his approach. He’s a guy who has been there every day doing what he’s supposed to do and his body is responding well."
It all has given Garrett reason to be "hopeful" Murray will be ready to go for the start of the off season program.
In the mean time, Garrett continued to gush about the breakout season Murray had into 2011 when the third round pick from Oklahoma came out of nowhere to cement himself as the team's featured back. Murray, who missed much of training camp and the preseason with a hamstring injury, replaced an injured Felix Jones against the Rams on Oct. 23 and didn't look back before fracturing his ankle against the Giants on Dec. 11.
"DeMarco had a really good year for us," Garrett said. "He was a guy who was banged up throughout training camp and really didn’t play until our last preseason game. So he was just kind of getting himself acclimated during the early part of the season. But when Felix Jones got hurt, he got an opportunity to play and he really did a great job for us. I think he showed us what he showed at Oklahoma – a complete back, a guy who can run the football inside and outside, a physical runner, also can make the big runs for you, he can catch the ball out of the backfield, he understands protections on third down, a good physical blocker as well. He’s just a really good football player. He has a lot of good football ahead of him. It was good to see him get out there and make a contribution for us. He did get banged up at the end of the year, so it seems like he’s doing fine coming off of that injury. We are excited about him in the off season program and going forward in 2012."