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Should the Cowboys keep Kendial Lawrence?

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At NBC, I gave my thoughts on running back Kendial Lawrence:

Through three preseason games, Lawrence has totaled only 14 yards on five carries. One of those rushes was a seven-yard touchdown, meaning Lawrence had seven yards on the four other carries. He also has failed to record a reception. Playing only 16 snaps, there’s really not too much we can conclude from Lawrence’s preseason work.

So what do we know about Lawrence? Well, he’s just 5 feet 9 inches tall, 194-pounds, which is very comparable to Dunbar. That’s obviously not ideal, but Lawrence also has great speed. Actually, he’s probably slightly more explosive than Dunbar. Lawrence ran between 4.33 and 4.45 at his pro day. That’s a big range, but Lawrence’s 10-5 broad jump and 37-inch vertical suggest he has true explosiveness. He’s probably a high-4.3 or low 4.4 sort of running back, which is outstanding at any size.

The problem is that Lawrence wasn’t extremely productive at Missouri. Running back success is obviously largely dependent on the offensive line, but it’s still slightly concerning that Lawrence averaged just 5.0 YPC on 444 carries during his four-year career. He also caught only 10 passes per season and scored 21 total touchdowns.

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2 Responses to Should the Cowboys keep Kendial Lawrence?

  1. Steve Rendon says:

    My theory is that the cowboys know what potential Lawrence has, and don’t want him playing in preseason so other teams will notice. The cowboys need every roster spot, and keeping 5 running backs is out of the question. In an attempt to pass him though waivers once the final cuts are made, the cowboys hope the lack of exposure in the preseason will help him not become claimed by running back needy teams. ie. jets, raiders, Arizona, steelers, to name a few. Thus signing him to the practice squad and unleashing him mid season once the injury bug bites.

  2. Steve Rendon says:

    Also, the statistics from his time at Missouri are not bad considering his lack of size, and even more the below average offensive line he was running behind. I believe he has great potential, and shows to be durable for a smaller back. Racking up all those yards at Missouri can’t be done while on the trainers table. During the first preseason game against the raiders he showed great speed, and cutback ability as well as ability to shed tackles during his touchdown run in the fourth quarter.

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