Joseph Randle fell to the fifth round on Saturday, at least 60 picks and a day after he was hoping to get selected.
From that perspective, the draft process was probably a disappointment for the former OSU star, who had the chance to come back to Stillwater and star for a Big 12 contender.
But once Randle gets past that initial spurn, he may find the draft day stumble to be a blessing in disguise.
The monetary difference between third- and fifth-round running backs is nothing substantial. Neither will get much of a financial commitment from their team until they consistently produce on the field.
Good thing for Randle — he’ll likely get that chance.
The Dallas Cowboys drafted him to back up DeMarco Murray, a role that will come with plenty of snaps and, likely, a number of touches in both phases of the offense.
Last season, Felix Jones, the Cowboys back-up who is now a free agent, had 111 carries and 25 receptions. That would be a great workload for any rookie, especially a fifth-rounder. Plus, as Dallas (and OU fans) can attest, Murray is injury-prone, missing six games last year.
So from the sounds of it, the Dallas brass expects Randle to play plenty right away (“He certainly has all the physical traits you want,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett told the Dallas Morning News.”), giving him the chance to immediately make a name for himself.
Seems every year, a relatively unknown running back (or three…) bursts onto the scene and into the Pro Bowl before you can Wikipedia his back story.
Last season, it was Alfred Morris, the Washington Redskins rookie from Florida Atlantic that went in the sixth round and then exploded for 1,613 yards and 13 touchdowns as RGIII’s sidekick.
“I highlighted (Joseph Randle) over the last couple weeks, when we do our SportsCenter segments, as the (running) back, late in the draft, who could be this year’s Alfred Morris,” ESPN analyst Mel Kiper said on draft day. “I think the kid’s got an awful lot of ability, you look at the production, the ability to catch the ball out of the backfield. People say, well he had some gaping holes to run through, but he still showed the ability to make some moves in space and create some extra yardage and a lot of times, really make big plays for that offense. I like Joseph Randle’s ability. Comes out as a junior and goes in the fifth round, that’s not what you want to see, but this guy has a lot of talent and he made a lot of things happen running with the football.”
He’ll be relatively close to home (Randle is from Wichita), with a couple former Pokes (Dan Bailey and Dez Bryant) and a great opportunity. Doesn’t sound too bad for a fifth round pick.