Joseph Randle is listed as the starting running back on the first depth chart released by the Dallas Cowboys in advance of Sunday’s opener against the New York Giants. But both coach Jason Garrett and vice president Stephen Jones admit they have not yet decided who will start.
It could be Randle, who was the backup last season to the departed DeMarco Murray, who ran for a team-record 1,845 yards. It could be free-agent signee Darren McFadden, who is looking for a fresh start after a disappointing and injury-dotted seven years in Oakland. Or it could be Christine Michael, the newly-acquired 2013 second-round pick of the Seattle Seahawks who came over in a trade Sunday.
“We won’t outline anything before the game,” Garrett said. “We’ll give each of those guys a chance over the course of the week to show us that they’re worthy of opportunities.”
Jones said the starter will likely be decided in practice this week.
As McFadden has stayed healthy and the team added Michael to the mix, Randle's stock has slipped significantly over the last couple of weeks. Owners should take a long-term approach with Randle, since it's not likely that McFadden stays healthy for a full 16-game season. The beat writers seem to think that Michael was added for depth, not to become the starter. That said, Randle is much less attractive than he was a month ago.