As the NFL trade deadline draws near, it's worth noting that plenty of league swaps don't work out. Last spring's DeMarco Murray deal stands out as a counterpoint.
"Every time we go into a game I tell him, '100 yards or more.' That's what I want," Titans tackle Taylor Lewan said of Murray, per Jim Wyatt of the team's official website. "Because his success is our success. We get the opportunity to run the ball, and it is a huge accomplishment as an offensive line to see him get those yards. He is an unbelievable back. He makes guys miss all the time. He also lowers his shoulder. I am very impressed."
Ranking third in the NFL with 633 yards, Murray has crossed the 100-yard barrier three times over the past five games and boasts a healthy 4.6 yards per carry mark that rivals the 4.7 figure he tallied during his Offensive Player of the Year campaign in 2014.
Set to face the Jaguars on Thursday Night Football (airing exclusively on NFL Network), Murray gives Jacksonville coach Gus Bradley an obvious central figure to focus his defensive game plan around.
"(He's) very talented," Bradley said. "You know what, you try to find the scheme that you really utilize the player's strength. I felt like they did that in Dallas. I didn't see him last year (with the Eagles), but they're really utilizing his strengths and his talents. He's playing at a high level. He's one of the top running backs in the league as far as yardage, but I think what's also impressive is the receptions that he has."
Said Bradley: "It's not surprising to me that he's playing so well because I know when he was at Dallas, we had chances to watch him on tape and he's an unbelievable back. He's got great vision and great instincts. He's playing that way this year."
Murray roamed through the preseason and early parts of September sharing time with rookie Derrick Henry. The veteran, though, has seen his workload balloon over the past month with 25, 27, 21 and 25 carries over his last four starts.
"I think as the game goes on, no matter the carry situation, I just like to be involved in the game whether it is blocking, passing, I just like to be out there playing with the guys and trying to make an impact as much as I can," Murray said. "As the game goes on, (defensive) guys get tired, and you just kind of get a feel for what is going on."