You never know quite what you’ll get from Redskins preseason media coverage, as all of us attempt to say and write things about games that likely don’t deserve all that much said or written.
And so sometimes, you’ll get Clinton Portis on the sideline, suggesting that the Redskins may have the best running back group in the NFL.
“It’s only right that I talk about the running back position,” Portis said on the team’s Thursday night television broadcast. “We have guys that’s proven; I mean, probably the best group in the NFL when you look at Rob Kelley, Chris Thompson, Matt Jones and then you go out and you get Samaje Perine. This guy can really play. Mack Brown also.”
Indeed. Mack Brown also.
There’s no particular reason to treat this as an actual argument, but if you care, last season the Redskins finished 21st in rushing yards per game and tied for seventh in yards-per-carry. Over the last half of the season, they were 25th in rushing yards per game and 14th in yards per attempt. Although that was without Perine. No, wait, I’m not gonna do this.
If you preferred a different former Redskins running back with a slightly more pessimistic bent, you could listen to Brian Mitchell on ESPN 980 after Washington’s disappointing preseason opener. He was suitably disappointed.
“Offensively they did not look good,” Mitchell said. “And you look at the way that they practice, and I understand the rules have changed, but other teams do more than they do. Other teams are more prepared. And I understand it’s the first preseason game, but I expected a lot more from the offense. Six plays, and you looked below average during those six plays? I felt they should have gone another series. …”
“I didn’t see a lot of running,” Mitchell went on. “I saw early in the game they did some simple little blitzes where they brought a safety up, and it’s like we never saw it before. And I understand guys said they didn’t game plan for it, but why they hell do you need to game plan? If they’ve got four down linemen and they bring two people in the gaps, you’ve got a running back that’s supposed to be able to get that guy. And they didn’t do that very well.
“And I think when I look at the way they practiced, that’s the way they played. They played just like they practiced. They were very lax, they weren’t going after nothing. When you look at the Ravens, they’ve had 12 people get hurt this year during the offseason and during minicamps and all that stuff, but that team played a little harder than [the Redskins] did. It seemed like we’re so concerned about injury and not concerned about getting people ready to play. And when you look at the first game, I know the starters are not in there very long, but when your starter are in there, you want them to compete and you want them to win. And they didn’t do either.”
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