Washington Redskins: Top 30 players in franchise history
By Ian Cummings
Great running backs have an attitude. It’s comes with the territory. Running the football is as personal as it gets in the NFL. And Clinton Portis was one back defenders didn’t want to trifle with.
Admittedly, the way that Portis was acquired was suspect at best. The Redskins traded Champ Bailey and a second-rounder for Portis, a running back whose career length was almost guaranteed to be shorter than that of Bailey, due to Bailey’s position.
Bailey would go on to enjoy a Pro Football Hall of Fame caliber career with the Denver Broncos. But Portis would make a name for himself in Washington as well.
In his first two seasons with the Redskins, it was immediately clear what Portis brought to the table: A top-tier running back. He amassed over 300 carries and 1,200 yards in each of those seasons, totaling 20 rushing touchdowns. After an injury-shortened season, Portis returned to the 1,000-yard rushing club for two more years, earning a second Pro Bowl nod in the process. He career was cut short soon after that by injuries.
In light of the Redskins recent struggles at running back, many have come to appreciate what the team had in Portis. His career may have ended earlier than most, but when he suited up in burgundy and gold, you knew the Redskins had someone they could count on to run the ball, churn the clock, and give the team a chance to win.