The Washington Redskins‘ 24-14 Week 4 victory over the Oakland Raiders was a much needed victory, considering it was the Redskins’ first victory of the 2013 season. However, the game brought forth a revelation for Washington. Running back Alfred Morris left the game with bruised ribs and didn’t return. This is a critical injury, considering that at times, Morris is needed to pick up the offensive slack from quarterback Robert Griffin III when running the ball.
The Redskins’ bye week couldn’t have come at a better time. Redskins fans hope the week off will give Morris the time he needs to heal his bruised ribs. Reserve running back Roy Helu Jr. replaced Morris, and the Washington offense didn’t miss a beat. Helu Jr. kept drives alive on the ground and as a pass receiver; he even scored a rushing touchdown to seal the victory.
If Morris somehow isn’t ready to come back, Washington should feel confident that Helu Jr. can handle the rushing workload. He is a shifty runner that has the speed to turn the corner. He can also run in between the tackles when necessary to earn tough yards. Helu Jr. was the Redskins’ leading rusher in 2011, so he has the capability to fill the featured back role.
Some might say that Helu Jr. could prove to be a more valuable featured back than Morris, and that’s because of his proficiency as a pass receiver. Helu Jr. can become sort of a safety valve receiver for Griffin out of the flat. He is very effective catching passes and making defenders miss out in space. Morris doesn’t have that dimension in his game, preferring to bowl over defenders on his way to earning first down yardage.
Most likely, Morris’ injury isn’t serious enough for him to miss any playing time. Still, it’s a relief for the Redskins to know that Helu Jr. can step in and the Washington offense won’t miss a beat. Redskins fans hope Helu Jr. will continue to provide that efficiency at the right time. It would help the Redskins considerably in an effort to save their season.