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Dallas Cowboys Running Back Breakdown: Full Evaluation and Depth Chart Analysis

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Dallas Cowboys Running Back Breakdown: Full Evaluation and Depth Chart Analysis
Rob Carr/Getty Images

It's been suggested that the NFL is a ''passing'' league, which it always has been.

Most importantly, the game of football is about running the ball, which it also always has been.

The Dallas Cowboys seem well positioned in the backfield with numerous young running backs that offer plenty of capability. This, of course, assumes that the Dallas offensive line will perform better in 2013 than it did a year ago—there is plenty of evidence to suggest that it should.

The Dallas offense has never finished better than 7th in the NFL in rushing under head coach Jason Garrett. This came in 2009, during Garrett's final season as offensive coordinator. That was also the last year the Cowboys both made the playoffs and won a game in the postseason.

In all other seasons, beginning in 2007 with Garrett as a rookie offensive coordinator, Dallas has never finished higher than 16th in rushing yards per game and fell all the way to 31st in 2012.

Again, pending a better offensive line, the main question concerning Cowboys running backs is whether or not Garrett cares to use them. Another mystery, at least concerning the heir-apparent in the starting lineup, is whether or not the starter stay healthy for once in his brief NFL career.

Can Dallas cough up a 1,000 yard rusher for just the second time since the departure of Hall of Fame running back Emmitt Smith in 2002?

I highly doubt that.

Can the Cowboys cross 2,000 yards on the ground, as an offense, to quite likely win the NFC East?

That idea has some legs, possibly.

Here's a look at the candidates charged with bolstering a rushing attack in this alleged ''make it or break it'' season for Garrett as head coach. The good news here is that no runner is beyond 25 years old, and most are even younger. The players listed fall in order based on my best guess as to what the depth chart will look like heading into training camp.

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