Here's comes the post draft decompression and constant analyses that inevitably follow. Yeah, this is one of them. I, however, will attempt to pose questions and theories behind these "head scratchers"of the Redskins draft picks instead.
First, is Chris Thompson RB FSU. The first thing that came to mind when I saw him was long strider. And this was before I knew his size. (5'7'' 192 lbs) When I read his size I must admit I was a little perplexed by someone that size being a long strider. I think of scat back. Quick feet. Short area quickness and stutter steps. I see him take hand offs and turn his hips as opposed to a plant and cut and then quickly getting back up to speed. (could that be one of the reasons for his string of injuries and if so...?) No doubt that once he gets it going and he has a lane that he can take it to the house. The head scratcher for me is, I think we have a player with that description (not to mention injured) already and his name is Roy Helu. That was actually the second thing that came to mind when I saw him. His running style and football moves are very similar to Helu. The long striders (like RGIII) usually are the ones with the long run abilities as opposed to stutter steps and short quickness (like Ray Rice). Especially on passes out of the backfield such as swing passes and possibly screens. I can see Shanahan wanting that type of player for that role at RB although their running style might expose them more to injury. He runs a little upright, especially with his size. He doesn't really get small and protect himself just before contact so he absorbs a lot of punishment, hence being injury prone. That's not going to get easier at the next level. Helu runs the same way which makes this pick very intriguing. I can't help but think they see him as perhaps a replacement for Helu at some point in time whether this year or next.
That leads me to Jawan Jamison RB Rutgers 5'7'' 203 lbs. This time I read the size before I actually see the film on this guy. I'm thinking short area quickness and stutter steps and quickly getting back up to speed. I wasn't quite prepared for what I saw. I saw more wiggle than stutter steps and his ability to get quickly back up to speed was only decent and that was against lesser competition. That wiggle kind of reminds me of Royster, actually. He has good anticipation on when to stutter and make people miss but at the next level he needs to be "two players ahead " instead of one at the next level. Because when you make one miss, rest assured another player is coming right behind him. He can do it as he adjusts to the speed at the next level. That is on inside runs which, hopefully, he won't have to do much of.
He is good in the open field and knows how to use his blockers going full speed on long runs down field. That bodes well for screen plays and the stretch plays outside. His running style complements AlMo's running style better than Thompson. Although I don't like that jump-cut back to the left he does because it'll get him more contact rather than more yards. He gives you a little shake when running inside as opposed to AlMo's power running on the inside. He's perhaps, a little more versatile in that he can also be a receiver.
So that leads me to the question of: what does this say about Shanahan's plan for the position coming up this season? Two things. First, AlMo's season was spectacular but they say: the road is littered with RB's broken down after running for that many yards the year before. So, I think Jamison gives better depth at the position than Helu or Royster could provide.
Two, perhaps this means that different facets of the offense will be utilized more often. As in a RB receiving out of the backfield and RB screens plays as opposed to WR bubble screens. Adding these players for those roles might keep RGIII from having to run around so much by offering him more options should WR not get open on 3rd down. Shanahan's plans at the position and his fondness for The Long Striders at RB are somewhat clear. Natural RB's with power after a decisive cut (AlMo, Portis), long-striders with long run capability and receiving ability (Helu, Thompson Olandis Gary) and small, quick RB that can be a receiver (Royster, Jamison). Wouldn't it be easier to find a RB that could do all those things fairly well...? (Ahmad Bradshaw.. ahem, ahem) Pipe dream, I know...
A few bullet points (that are actually dashes):
- With all the speculation involving what Chip Kelly's offense will resemble this season, I thought I would weigh in on that with some speculation of my own. I think his offense, with Pat Shurmur (a WCO guy), will basically boil down to a WCO basic playbook with his (Kelly) pace, read-option plays and uptempo style of play. A 100 mph version of a 96 Wanda. Think of the West Coast Offense on cocaine.
- I still wonder if Kenjon Barner even made Shanahan's radar. Especially when he seems like a the same type of player as Jameson but faster. Barner just seemed like he was playing the game faster than everyone else around him. I like players like that.
- Maybe Tebow is starting to just realize what everyone has been saying all along: he's not an NFL QB. The problem is he's wasted quite a few years not learning a new position. It's becoming a little late for him to learn a new position effectively enough to contribute at a high level. I think he would have made a successful transition to joker TE had he learned that position from his rookie year. I hear a song... sounds like..."O Canada..."