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September 13, 2013

DeMarco Murray happy with his increased work load in Week 1

DeMarco Murray had 20 rushes and eight receptions in the Cowboys' 36-31 victory over the Giants. His 28 total touches was the second-most of his career, and the second-most touches by an NFL running back last week.

Philadelphia’s LeSean McCoy had 32 touches. Tampa Bay’s Doug Martin and Detroit’s Reggie Bush each had 25.

"Whenever I can get the ball, trying to make something happen, give this offense a spark, it's going to be good for our team," Murray said. "They did a good job of giving me opportunities to do that last weekend."

Murray had 31 touches against the Redskins two years ago, the only time he's ever had more.

Murray has a history of injuries, having missed nine games in his first two seasons, but coach Jason Garrett said he is not worried about exposing Murray to more hits with an increased load. Murray played 69 of 77 snaps, with Phillip Tanner taking five snaps. Joseph Randle did not play despite being active on game day.

"It's how the game plays out," Garrett said. "It's good to get him the football. He's a good football player. He's the kind of guy who can control the tempo of a game and the pace of a game for you. That's a good thing. There are a lot of good running backs in the history of the league who have been able to do that by either handing it to them or throwing it to them. So we think that's a good thing for our offense and a good thing for our team. Obviously, we'll be very aware if he's getting worn down and we need to put somebody else in there. You do that in games. You do that over the course of games. But I don't think that number is out of the ordinary at all."

The Cowboys will have Lance Dunbar back this week to ease some of the burden off Murray. Dunbar missed last week's game with a sprained foot.

"He's a special player," Murray said. "We’ll definitely get some touches [for him]."

-- Charean Williams




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