When the Philadelphia Eagles signed DeMarco Murray in the offseason, few thought Murray would be the sole ballcarrier on the team. After all, the Eagles also added Ryan Mathews to go with Darren Sproles and Kenjon Barner. Some observers felt that signing Murray to a $40 million contract was a dangerous proposition. After all, Murray was coming off a 392-carry season, usually a bad sign for a position that is historically fragile.
And while there was always a risk of the Eagles' expensive backfield experiment blowing up in Chip Kelly's face, few could have predicted it'd go this poorly. So far this season Murray has 606 yards, which includes seven games with fewer than 40 yards on the ground. So after Murray saw his workload decrease and reportedly voiced his displeasure to Eagles Chairman and CEO Jeffery Lurie, Murray saw what little workload he had all but evaporate.
This was in full display Sunday night when, on a critical 4th and 1 on the Arizona eight-yard line, the Eagles gave the ball to Ryan Mathews, who promptly failed to pick up the first down. This wouldn't be so bad if Murray weren't money from short range. This season Murray is 15-for-15 on 3rd and 4th and short. And while with Dallas he converted 41 of 57 first downs in those situations.
Murray finished Sunday's blowout loss with a grand total of two carries for three yards. After the game, Murray continued to play the role of the good soldier, insisting that he was in for the long haul.
"I want to play, "Murray said. "This is what I signed up for. I’ll be here ... I signed up to be here for an opportunity to make the playoffs.
"Whenever I get an opportunity I just got to make the best of it," he added. "I’m not calling the plays. Things [that are] out of my control, I can’t worry about it."
It remains to be seen what the future holds for Murray. An anonymous former Dallas teammate of Murray's said he's only happy when he's getting his way, which certainly hasn't been the case this year. He clearly isn't a scheme fit in Chip Kelly's offense, and if Sunday is any indication, there isn't even room for Murray to do what he does best in pressure situations.