Samaje Perine, the rookie fourth-round pick, is now the Redskins’ most experienced back.
Chris Thompson (leg) and Rob Kelley (ankle) both have been placed on injured reserve during the last week. Mack Brown, who opened on the active roster, had to be cut to make room for an offensive line dealing with injuries to four starters. Matt Jones was released in the final cuts. Keith Marshall tore his ACL early in training camp.
That leaves Perine. The Redskins signed Byron Marshall a week ago off Philadelphia’s practice squad. They do have LeShun Daniels on the practice squad and could promote him.
The story said Marshall is expected to play on third downs because he's a former WR and has experience running routes and catching passes. But, it's going to be tough to expect Marshall to help in pass blocking. Perine should get a majority of the early down runs from this point forward. The story pointed out that outside of two games, the Skins won't face a lot of tough rushing defenses which will surely make Perine a popular pickup off the wire this week.
Redskins coach Jay Gruden benched RB Matt Jones after a 20-17 loss to Detroit, in which he fumbled for the eighth time in his young career while fighting for extra yards just shy of the goal line. He was ruled inactive for the remainder of the season.
Heading into April's draft, the Redskins reportedly shopped Jones for a trade. Getting no offers, they used their fourth-round pick on Oklahoma's Samaje Perine, sending another signal that Jones didn't figure in their plans in 2017.
The story said the team will carry six running backs into training camp this month: Jones, incumbent starter Rob Kelley, Perine, third-down specialist Chris Thompson, Mack Brown and rookie Keith Marshall. Jones' ball control issues likely have cost him a significant role this year the way it looks now.
With running back Keith Marshall out for at least three weeks after suffering a sprained elbow and the roster cut looming, the Redskins’ coaches are going to have some tough decisions to make. Marshall’s hopes of making the team’s 53-man roster may fall victim to bad timing.
All NFL rosters must be cut to 53 players by Saturday. Matt Jones and Chris Thompson are locks to be two of the running backs. It looks like Robert Kelley, who took advantage of the opportunity that he had when Marshall went out against the Bills, is a strong favorite to claim a third spot.
And beyond the three-week window, the Redskins have to be concerned about Marshall’s durability. He lasted until the seventh round in the draft due to his difficulties staying on the field when he was at Georgia. Marshall also wasn't stellar in practice nor did he stand out in preseason games, however the team may decide to put him on IR and keep him around to give him a try next year, the story said.
While Matt Jones has cemented himself as the team’s lead running back and Chris Thompson is showing progression as an overall payer, the third running back spot remains up for grabs.
2015 practice squad member Mack Brown, seventh-round pick Keith Marshall and fellow rookies Robert Kelley and Kelsey Youngare all in the running.
While Marshall is listed as the No. 3 running back on the Redskins’ current unofficial depth chart, Kelley could get some work with the first- and second-team offensive units to see how he responds. With Jones banged up (AC joint), this is a key fantasy position to keep an eye on. Jones should be OK for the season, but if he gets hurt again at some point, the team's RB3 could get some significant work with Thompson likely remaining a third down back and change of pace option.