Dallas Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray made history when he ran for 149 yards in his team's 38-17 win over the New Orleans Saints on Sept. 28. By doing so, Murray became just the fourth player in NFL history to record four consecutive 100-yard games with a touchdown to start a season.
DeMarco Murray made history against the New Orleans Saints on Sept. 28.
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Murray, the Cowboys' stud running back, ran for 149 yards against the Saints -- his fourth consecutive 100-yard game with a touchdown to begin the 2014 NFL seasons. Only three other players before him have accomplished the feat and all are Pro Football Hall of Famers -- Emmitt Smith, O.J. Simpson and Jim Brown, per CBS DFW's Shawn Lealos:
"There is no question that the Dallas Cowboys' DeMarco Murray is the best running back in the NFL at this moment of the 2014 NFL season. He has rushed for 534 yards, which easily leads the NFL in rushing and is 156 yards ahead of his nearest competitor, LeVeon Bell. Murray also joined some legendary company in NFL history when he ran for 149 yards in the Cowboys' Sunday night win over the New Orleans Saints.
"With that performance, DeMarco Murray became one of only four players in NFL history to open a season with four consecutive 100-yard rushing games and a touchdown. The other names on that list are all in the NFL Hall of Fame -- Emmitt Smith, O.J. Simpson and Jim Brown. Smith, the current NFL rushing leader, also holds the record for most 100-yard rushing games in a career with 78.
"Eric Dickerson opened the 1984 NFL season with two straight 100-yard performances before faltering in week three. Through the first four weeks of that season, Dickerson had 378 rushing yards. Dickerson finished that season with 2,105 rushing yards, a record that still stands today as the most in NFL history. At his current rate, Murray is on pace to break that record by 31 yards. Adrian Peterson missed the record by eight yards in 2012 and Chris Johnson fell short by 99 yards in 2009.
"The one thing standing between DeMarco Murray and the NFL single-season rushing record is his health. No one can deny Murray's talent. He had his first 1,000 rushing yard season in 2013, but missed two games due to injury. In 2012, he missed six games, and in his rookie season, he won the starting job midway through the year and then missed the end due to an injury.
"In 2014, Murray is on pace to carry the ball 396 times, which is just a ridiculous amount of carries. The more a running back carries the ball, the more wear and tear he puts on his legs and the more hits he takes to his body. Arian Foster led the NFL in carries in 2012 with 351 and then missed a large portion of the 2013 season to injury. Larry Johnson holds the NFL record for carries in a season with 416 and never ran for 1,000 yards in a season again in his career."
ESPN Dallas' Jean-Jacques Taylor defines the kind of player Murray is:
"Then there are guys like Murray who don't know what's said or written about them because they refuse to let others define them.
"Murray wants you to judge him solely by performance. Do that, and he's pretty sure you'll like what you'll see.
"In a lot of ways, Murray is old school. He doesn't spike the ball after touchdowns and he prefers classic uniforms like the New York Yankees'.
"In this pass-happy era of the NFL, all he has ever wanted is an opportunity to consistently carry the ball.
"Finally, he's getting a chance to do it. The results have been outrageous.
"Murray's 149-yard performance against the New Orleans Saints on Sunday made him one of only four running backs in NFL history to start a season with four consecutive 100-yard games and a touchdown. The others: Hall of Famers Jim Brown, Emmitt Smith and O.J. Simpson.
"Murray is on pace to become the eighth runner in NFL history to gain more than 2,000 yards and break Smiths' franchise rushing record of 1,773 in the process.
"As you would expect, he's not interested in talking about any of that.
"'I'm just out there to do whatever I can to help the team,' he said. 'Obviously, you've got to give credit to the offensive line for what they were able to accomplish up front, but that's definitely not something I'm thinking about.'"
The 26-year-old Murray has rushed for 3,215 yards and 20 touchdowns on 641 carries in 41 career regular-season games through Oct. 2, per ESPN stats.
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