The Washington Redskins have had trouble finding effective running back depth since the departure of Alfred Morris. For 2019, it looks like they have the most depth they’ve had in recent years.
For the better part of the last five years, the Redskins have had an issue at the running back position. After Alfred Morris left the team in free agency following the 2015 campaign, the team was unable to find a truly solid starting option. Matt Jones had issues fumbling the ball and was eventually cut. Rob Kelley couldn’t stay healthy and lacked game-breaking ability. And over the course of the last two years, the team had issues staying healthy at the position.
But heading into 2019, things are looking up for the once-embattled group.
As of right now, the Redskins have seven running backs on their roster excluding fullback/H-back Elijah Wellman. Of the seven on the roster, five have a legitimate case to be a part of a rotation in the NFL, and you could make the case for a few of them as starters.
The most notable of the potential starters are Derrius Guice and Adrian Peterson. Guice, of course, has yet to play a down in the NFL after suffering a torn ACL during the preseason. The second-round pick in 2018 has a ton of potential and was regarded as one of the top backs in the ’18 class. He fell to the Redskins’ pick in Round 2, and they were lucky to retain his services. Provided that he can stay healthy, he could emerge as a more-than-solid starter for the Redskins.
Meanwhile, much has been made of the 34-year-old Peterson’s effort last year, as he went for over 1,000 yards and showed his elusiveness in his first year with the ‘Skins. He defied expectations and the future Hall of Fame player seems to still have juice left, something that few thought was possible after an awful 2017 campaign. Now, he will get a chance to continue to play a role and could split carries with Guice early in the season as Guice gets acclimated to the NFL.
Elsewhere on the roster, Bryce Love could have a chance to become a lead-back at some point in his career. While his final season at Stanford was good, a torn ACL caused him to drop to the fourth round of the draft. However, the previous year he had been a 2,000-yard runner and potential first-round option. He has true three-down ability and should be a good pass catcher at the next level. He may not be healthy enough to start the season on the active roster, but in late 2019 and moving forward, Love could end up emerging as a quality piece in the ‘Skins’ backfield. So, he can’t be discounted as a future starter and, if not, an excellent part of a one-two punch.