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Dallas Cowboys' 5-Foot-5 Running Back Goes Viral

Photo: Tim Heitman

A clip of an undersized Dallas Cowboys rookie has gone viral online.

Former Kansas State standout Deuce Vaughn, who at 5-foot-5 was the shortest player measured at the 2023 NFL Combine, was shown running through would-be tackles during a training camp in a clip shared by the Athletic Cowboys beat writer Jon Machota on Thursday (July 27). The play would have otherwise been typical of a handoff in practice, however, Vaughn's small stature compared to his teammates earned attention on social media with more than 2.2 million views on Twitter as of Friday (July 28) morning.

"Looks like a toddler broke [loose] on the field oh my," Twitter user @LynzieKate wrote.

The @NFL_Memes Twitter account joked that Vaughn "looks like a toddler who broke loose on the field after stealing someone's phone and won't give it back" along with more clips of the rookie participating in practice.

Dallas' selection of Vaughn was one of the feel-good stories of the draft -- without even acknowledging his small stature -- as his father, longtime Cowboys scout Chris Vaughn, made the phone call to notify him that he was being drafted by the team in the third-round of the 2023 NFL Draft.

"You want to come to work with me next week?" Chris Vaughn asked his son with tears in his eyes from the team's draft war room in the clip shared on the Cowboys' YouTube account.

"I wouldn't mind that at all," Deuce responded.

Vaughn then put team owner Jerry Jones on the phone with his son.

"I don't know when I've been speaking for everybody that's really in the heart of the Dallas Cowboys is standing here with a tear in their eye," Jones said. "We're so happy to have you on the Dallas Cowboys."

"I can't thank you enough," Deuce responded.

"Well, what I really want to say, you earned every ounce of me being able to make this call," Jones said. "I'm so excited, there's just something magical about this moment that may be bigger than we even realize here, talking to you on the phone.

"But you is now a Dallas Cowboy. Your daddy just handed the card in, right here. It's got him on it. Congratulations."

Vaughn was a unanimous All-American in 2022 and a consensus All-American in 2021, as well as a three-time second-team All-Big 12 selection during each season of his collegiate career and the Big 12 Offensive Freshman of the Year in 2020.

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