A little over a week after losing Derrius Guice for the season, the Washington Redskins are looking outside the organization for running back help.
In an effort to spark the NFL’s 28th-ranked rushing attack from last year, the Washington Redskins drafted Derrius Guice in the second round of April’s draft. But they lost the rookie to a torn ACL in the preseason opener, and speculation about adding a veteran immediately surfaced.
The Redskins still have solid running back depth, with Chris Thompson, Samaje Perine and Rob Kelley healthy and available. But another hit to that depth came this past week, with Byron Marshall expected to miss 2-4 weeks with an ankle injury. So adding someone, if only to get through the rest of the preseason, might finally be on the radar.
On Saturday, Redskins head coach Jay Gruden acknowledged the need to add a running back and told reporters a workout will come on Sunday. Gruden did not name any names of who would be at the workout, but ESPN’s Josina Anderson has reported two running backs who are at least coming in for a visit.
Orleans Darkwa spent the first four seasons of his career with the New York Giants, with career-highs across the board last year (171 carries for 751 yards and five touchdowns). Leg surgery in May has limited the interest in him this offseason, but he did have visits with the Jets and Bills around the start of training camp.
Jamaal Charles averaged a functional 4.3 yards per carry in a limited role with the Denver Broncos last year (69 carries in 14 games). But on the wrong side of 30 (32 in December) a visit with the Saints in June is the only known interest he has drawn this offseason.
Darkwa and Charles are a step above the type of backs who would simply be brought in to fill the depth chart for the Redskins’ preseason finale, then have no chance to make the 53-man roster. Adrian Peterson is also available, but it’s unknown if he is on Washington’s radar at all.