There's plenty of running back talk surrounding the Washington Redskins, especially after Matt Jones suffered another injury Friday night. Here's my main thought: Adding another unproven running back to a group of unproven running backs would not be a good idea. Bringing in a veteran who has little to no gas left in the tank would be an even worse move. For Washington, at this point, it's either go big or stick with what you have.
That appears to be the take from head coach Jay Gruden based on his comments after Monday's practice. Good. If the Redskins feared what their group of running backs offered, they would've improved the position earlier in the offseason.
Washington's decision to not sign a veteran back could be the result of two important beliefs within the team:
- They believe in Jones and the development of their young group.
- They plan is to be a pass-first team.
I think it's obvious that general manager Scot McCloughan and company want to give their youngsters a chance to prove themselves. Even with Jones' shoulder sprain, the hope is he'll be ready by Week 1. So, in theory, there's no need to panic.
The reality is there isn't much available on the open market. Many fans point to Pierre Thomas as a possible pick-up considering he was on the team late last season. However, adding him or pretty much any other available RB would only increase Washington's collection of presumed average backs. At least with Jones, Mack Brown, Robert Kelley and Keith Marshall, they're all young. Bringing in an older vet would likely stunt their development.
If Washington does fall into panic mode, they are better off looking for a back via trade. Otherwise, they'll suffer the consequences of not making the position more of a priority during the spring. They're not going to find a solution on the streets. Go big or stay home.
You can find Emmanual on Twitter @manny_benton.
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