In fact only 12 backs (or 1/3 of the league) were able to play in 15 or 16 games as main/starting backs (a bit of a gray area some back-ups who assumed starting roles played in 16 games like Darren McFadden and DeAngelo Williams, but I didn't count them because they weren't relied upon for 15 or more weeks). There is a very real possibility that Jones misses multiple weeks and the Redskins lack any sort of option to replace him. Adding Bell would fix that and give the Redskins somewhat respectable depth going into the season, while at the same time not giving up on the hope that Jones is the long term answer.
"When I went down, on a scale of one to 10, [the pain] was a seven, and then it went up and then it settled down," Jones said. "I still have flexibility now, so it's not as bad as it was. I'm moving well now. The only thing I can't do is raise my hand. That's about it."
Backup running backs. It just wasn't a productive night as Keith Marshall and Robert Kelley combined for 13 carries for 34 yards. Chris Thompson carried four times for 18 yards, which was fine (he did get run over by Leonard Williams on a stunt/sack up the middle, but many would). He's usually pretty good in this area. Thompson should be fine as a third-down back, but the Redskins need another durable runner in case Matt Jones shows he can't be an every-down back for 16 games. It's really hard to believe the Redskins won't seek help from outside the organization to fill this need.
The current team seems to understand the questions surrounding them. They're also not a team full of stars; the roster instead is full of players who worked their way into certain roles. They can't -- and shouldn't -- forget that they're a nine-win team with more to prove. I don't sense that they have.
"We have a lot of good players in this locker room and I wanted to make sure our backups were ready to play at all times," said Gruden. "We had a lot of our backups step up into starting roles last year and I thought it was important for Colt McCoy, who played quarterback for the first half] to get some quality work against a quality defense, along with some of the other guys that played, in first-team roles."
Colt McCoy was the surprise starter for the Redskins in their Friday night preseason game against the Jets. And it wasn't just the fans and media who were surprised by seeing McCoy being center for the first snap. McCoy himself didn't find out that he would be starting until shortly before kickoff.
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