Washington football training camp profiles: Running backs
By Ian Cummings
Experience: 3rd season
Draft Status: 2018 second-round pick, 59th overall
2019 Stats: Five games (One start), 42 carries, 245 yards, two touchdowns, seven receptions, 79 yards, one touchdown
2020 Outlook: Health has consistently been a problem for Washington football running back Derrius Guice, but when he’s healthy, he clearly shows the potential to be the best ball carrier on the team. Against Carolina last year, Guice exploded for 129 yards and two scores on just 10 carries, and he appeared primed to close out the season on a high note. But another injury sidelined him for the rest of the year.
Now, coming into his third season, Guice has had another full offseason to train and get healthy. He’s still just 23 years old after missing one and a half of his first two NFL seasons, but he’ll have to maintain his availability if he wants to live up to his potential. Guice has the size, speed, contact balance, and hunger to thrive in a premier role, but health is a prerequisite to showing off all of those traits.
Expected Role: As mentioned above, Guice’s role depends on his health, but if he can stay healthy, he’s a more versatile back than Adrian Peterson, and we could see him phase out Peterson as the lead back as the season progresses. Regardless, Guice should be a regular face in Washington’s backfield rotation, and while he doesn’t have the receiver translatability that others have, his impact as a runner who can create for himself will be valuable.
Status: Guice should be a roster lock. He’s healthy now, so he’s not at risk of landing on the PUP list to start the year, and he has some of the highest upside in the team’s running back group. Given Peterson’s age, the Washington football team will need a readily available option behind him, and Guice is the best candidate for that task.