Looking Away From Murray: T.J. Yeldon | NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
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Looking Away From Murray: T.J. Yeldon

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    NEW ORLEANS, LA - JANUARY 02: T.J. Yeldon #4 of the Alabama Crimson Tide is tackled by Frank Shannon #20 of the Oklahoma Sooners during the Allstate Sugar Bowl at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on January 2, 2014 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)

    One of the biggest offseason questions facing the Dallas Cowboys after their 13-5 season, and one that will need to be answered sooner rather than later, is whether they bring back running back DeMarco Murray on the heels of his record-setting season.

    Emotion and sentiment says it's a no-brainer, but logic might say otherwise.

    So what if the Cowboys let Murray walk after the greatest season in franchise history for a running back? Where could the Cowboys go as an alternative? There's talk of the Cowboys looking to the draft to replace Murray, which would likely require a first-round pick (No. 27) and definitely no later than their second-round selection.

    A guy that could possibly be there when the Cowboys come up at No. 27 is Alabama running back T.J. Yeldon.

    Look at the recent line of Alabama running backs to come out of Tuscaloosa, and there are some big names there: Mark Ingram (who is a Cowboys' free agent option), Trent Richardson (who's been a bust so far) and Eddie Lacy, who's been the best of the bunch.

    Yeldon isn't the bruiser Lacy is, but he's much faster and better in the open field, and he's also got good size at 6-2, 221 pounds. As a junior last season, Yeldon rushed for just shy of 1,000 yards on just shy of 200 carries, which aren't eye-popping numbers. He's also a good receiver out of the backfield, and while he's not the elite talent of a Melvin Gordon-type guy, he could be a good value pick in the early rounds running behind the Cowboys' mammoth offensive line and still allow the team to go defensive line in the first round.