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DeMarco Murray calls surprise benching 'frustrating'

DeMarco Murray is slated to be the Dallas Cowboys' featured running back this season. His ability to stay healthy and productive makes him the X-factor on a potentially special offense.

Which made it all the more eyebrow raising when Cowboys coach Jason Garrett benched Murray after the running back fumbled during Dallas' second possession Saturday against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Murray watched the first-team work without him for 20 minutes before re-entering the preseason game with the starters in the third quarter.

"It was a little frustrating, I got to be honest," Murray said Monday, via "But I'm just trying to make plays. I'm a competitor. I wasn't mad at anyone. I wasn't pouting on the sidelines. I wasn't anything. I was waiting for my opportunity to get back in the game. Once my number was called, I was ready to play."

"(Garrett) made the decision, and hey, I'm a team player so I respect the decision," Murray added. "He's a smart coach. Great coach. I'm always gonna be behind him. Whatever is best for the team, I'm all for it."

Playing with the starting offensive line, Murray carried the ball eight times for 45 yards in Dallas' first series of the third quarter. He ended the drive with a 7-yard touchdown reception in which he made several Bengals defenders miss.

Murray was jokingly asked if Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo will be benched when he throws his first interception of the season.

"I highly doubt that," Murray said.

Murray said last month he's capable of a 2,000-yard rushing season. We're not worried about his confidence or his ball security. It's more about Murray's ability to sustain the workload expected of a bell-cow back.

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