Jerry Jones wants running game opponents 'respect'

Jerry Jones believes the Joseph Randle and Darren McFadden duo can perform behind the Dallas Cowboys' offensive line, but he's hedging on the height of those expectations.

The owner told KRLD-FM on Tuesday he just wants a running game that opponents must respect.

"Even if we're in that game, even if they've done a good job of taking it away from us a little bit, even if we're having to throw more, the word is respect," Jones said, via the Dallas Morning News. "If we can get defenses to compromise what they do their best to have to work on something that we can do because we have a running game, then we've accomplished something going into the game."

If the Cowboys fall from a dominant rushing attack in 2014 with DeMarco Murray to merely one that must garner "respect" in 2015, it will have a ripple effect on the offense -- it's also a tacit acknowledgment that neither Randle nor McFadden brings as much juice to the table as Murray.

The biggest concern in a drop in the running game sans Murray is the pressure that might be put back on Tony Romo. The quarterback played his best football in years in 2014, thanks to Murray shouldering the bulk of the offensive load.

If Romo and his bulky back falter when asked to carry that weight again, the Cowboys' season could implode.

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