If running back Joseph Randle could have picked an NFL team to select him in the 2013 draft, it would have been the Dallas Cowboys, who took him in the fifth round Saturday.
“It’s the best fit for me in the NFL,” said Randle, a Southeast graduate, who spent three seasons at Oklahoma State. “I have a daughter (3-month-old Aubrielle), and she lives in Dallas. This will be perfect for that situation. Everything worked out just right… I feel very blessed.”
Randle is one of three former Wichita high school players selected in the draft, joining Northwest’s Chris Harper and East’s Arthur Brown. It’s the first time three City League players have been selected in the same draft.
Randle spent Saturday with his family in Wichita, and after he was told that he was going to be drafted by Dallas, he sat back and watched his family’s reaction when they first heard the news while watching on TV.
“I knew the whole time, but I didn’t tell my family,” Randle said. “They were so excited.”
He said he heard from so many people after his selection that both of his phones’ batteries died.
Randle likes the situation at Dallas — a roster that includes guard David Arkin from Kapaun Mount Carmel — and will likely be a backup for DeMarco Murray, who has struggled with injuries. Dallas chose not to re-sign Felix Jones in the offseason.
“They really only have one back, so it’s perfect,” Randle said. “The NFL is going to a two-back system, so it’s just the perfect setup for me.”
Randle could have been bitter that he was selected 151st after rushing for 1,417 yards and 14 touchdowns in 2012. He had 1,216 rushing yards in 2011 with 24 touchdowns and had 156 points, second in Oklahoma State history, behind North grad Barry Sanders.
Randle figures he fell at least two rounds because he had a second surgery on his right thumb.
“The surgery didn’t go so well, so I ended up having another surgery a few days before the draft,” Randle said. “I had messed it up with training, so I had the second surgery.
“…. Everyone found out because OSU told them.”
Randle wasn’t frustrated or disappointed, though, as he watched other players picked before him.
“It was a fun atmosphere,” he said. “I had the right kind of people around, so it wasn’t stressful…. I come from a football family, so we all understand everything, so it wasn’t a stressful situation.
“I just feel blessed that I get this opportunity and I feel like I’m going to make the most of it.”
He must wait to dive fully into readying himself for the Cowboys because of his thumb. The soft cast will be removed shortly, but he knows he needs to fully recover.
“Maybe the round situation didn’t work out exactly like I would have liked it,” Randle said. “But I can’t complain. Everything is just working out perfect. I now get to go do what I love, and I get to play in a place I’ll be very comfortable in.”