DeMarco Murray spent one year in Philadelphia, and for all intents and purposes, it was the worst year of his career. Granted, he still had more than 1,000+ total yards, but he averaged a career-low 3.6 yards per carry and rushed for just six touchdowns, this after rushing for 22 in the previous two seasons combined.
But eventually, mercifully, the turmoil with Chip Kelly ended. Murray was traded to Tennessee – for a fourth-round pick – and proved once again that he’s one of the best backs in football. Murray had 1,600+ total yards, averaged 4.4 yards per carry and scored 12 touchdowns (nine rushing, three receiving) for Tennessee.
Indeed, Mike Mularkey’s downhill rushing attack suited Murray much better than Kelly’s side-to-side, wait-and-dance approach.
“That’s the type of game that I like,” Murray said of Mularkey’s philosophy on CBS Sports Radio’s Tiki and Tierney. “I was very thankful that I was able to get back into that situation and get back into the offense that I’ve been running throughout the course of my career. I think Mike and the rest of our coaching staff knew what they wanted to do, and for me, it was a great fit for both sides. It wasn’t the ideal place when I first (thought about it). It wasn’t the most sexiest place to be, but it was a place where I wanted to kind of get away from the spotlight. Let me concentrate on football and let me see if I can help this team out and see what I can do.”
Murray was a bell-cow back for Tennessee, finishing the season with 346 touches and leading the Titans to a 9-7 finish. Tennessee went just 5-27 in 2014-15 combined.
“I had a great time,” Murray said of 2016. “Nashville is an amazing city. The fans were great. (We’re a) young team. It was our first year together for everyone for the most part. We did well and obviously finished 9-7 and out of the playoffs. It’s not what you want. It’s not something you’re happy about usually. But just the turnaround in such a short time, I thought it was a pretty decent year for us.”
Murray, who turns 29 on Feb. 12, does not plan on leaving Tennessee anytime soon.
“I’ll be staying in Tennessee,” he said. “I’m there for the long haul, definitely. I love it there, so I’m there for the long haul.”