Redskins coach Jay Gruden stated last week his belief in Matt Jones as the lead running back last season. He also left the door open for others to join the fray including those not currently on the roster.
You know, he’s a big guy and I think [Jones] can handle it. But, there will be other running backs you know worth mentioning. You know, we’re going to have three maybe four running backs up on game day and they’re going to get some reps. He’ll be the number one, but we will also utilize other players like Mack Brown, it could be Keith Marshall, it could be whoever else is here. So, still have Chris Thompson obviously. We’re still trying to figure that out."
Jones brings the full package with size, speed and good hands, but there's also concerns regarding his injury history and penchant for fumbles. Combined with the lack of a clear every-down fallback option among the current options, it seems likely that Washington adds a veteran before training camp. Perhaps that means a return of Pierre Thomas, but if they want to go big, Arian Foster makes for a clear target.
One of the top NFL running backs this decade, Foster has struggled to stay on the field. He missed 23 games over the last three seasons. He's also the top option remaining assuming he's in good shape. That's what makes this update interesting.
There's a good bet Foster would look for a 1-year "prove it" type contract, which works with Redskins general manager Scot McCloughan's overall planning. Washington could still let Jones emerge as the main running back while having a tag-team partner and known commodity at the ready when needed. Even if Keith Marshall or another RB impresses during OTAs, expect at least one veteran added. It's not banana's thinking Foster could make sense.
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