On Thursday, Hall of Fame running back Emmitt Smith made the media rounds on behalf of Keurig, the company that makes the one-cup-at-time coffee machines. The former Cowboy had some pointed advice to the player who is jeopardizing a special season, one fumble at a time.
DeMarco Murray has blamed his five lost fumbles on bad luck and on trying to get every last yard while running the ball. Emmitt, while supportive of his successor, said something Murray needs to heed.
“Ball security is the most important thing and I learned this at a very young age,” Smith said on Thursday’s PFT Live. “The football is the most important thing on the football field. No matter if you get a hundred yards, no matter if you lead the league in rushing, if you turn the football over and you’re costing your team games or opportunities to win games, then it becomes a problem.
“I only want to bring it up because his performance has been stellar this entire season thus far, but you cannot help but bring it up when you’re laying the ball down, turning the ball over, and you’re taking away opportunities to either score points, whether it’s through field goals or touchdowns, or you’re taking away opportunities for your team to maintain control of the football, it’s tough to ignore.”
When it comes to fighting for that extra yard, Smith says it’s wiser to understand when to call it a play, and to move on to the next one.
“Knowing when the journey is over is one of the things I had to learn myself as a young running back and I had great coaches to try to emphasize those things when I started to have fumbling issues,” Smith said.
Murray will need even better coaching, because now he’ll be even more of a target.
“In the National Football League, once you starting laying it down on the ground, every team from this point forward is coming to tackle the football, not necessarily tackle you, so therefore you must have some ball security,” Smith said. “Ball security must be an important thing in a running back’s mind.”
For more from Emmitt, well, you know what to do by now, don’t you?