Quick Links

One stat that shows why Jay Gruden likes Rob Kelley so much

One stat that shows why Jay Gruden likes Rob Kelley so much

As Rob Kelley started to emerge as an undrafted rookie last year in training camp, Redskins head coach Jay Gruden made it clear he liked the young running back. Slowly, Kelley earned game snaps, and eventually took over the top running back spot on the roster.

Matt Jones did plenty to lose that job in 2016, especially fumbling, but don't dismiss Kelley's arrival as just a replacement for Jones. Repeatedly throughout the season Kelley showed an ability to make defenders miss, particularly in the backfield, on plays that Jones did not make. 

The folks at Pro Football Focus quantified that exact stat.

Kelley is in some elite company at gaining yardage despite taking on defenders behind the line of scrimmage. That success goes hand in had with Kelley's elusive rating, another PFF stat.

He landed No. 2 in the NFL with a 61.5 elusive rating, behind only Dolphins Pro Bowler Jay Ajayi and ahead of names like LeSean McCoy and David Johnson. On 168 carries, Kelley made 35 defenders miss, and he averaged 2.8 yards after first contact per attempt. 

MORE REDSKINS: Redskins are running low on cap space

Those numbers are why Gruden talks about Kelley in gushing terms.

"It’s exciting to see how far he’s come in a short period of time," Gruden said of Kelley. "It’s just natural to him. He can be a runner and he’s very gifted in that regard as far as finding holes and running through people."

A lot of folks assumed fourth-round rookie RB Samaje Perine would immediately push Kelley for the starting job. While there will undoubtedly be increased competition, don't expect Kelley to lose the job easily.

Remember, he can make people miss. 

<<<NFL POWER RANKINGS: WHO GOT BETTER AFTER THE DRAFT>>>

Want more Redskins? Click here to follow JP on Facebook and check out @JPFinlayCSN for live updates via Twitter! Click here for the #RedskinsTalk on Apple Podcasts, here for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!

ROSTER BATTLES: Left guard | Tight end Nickel cornerback  | Inside linebacker | Running back

Quick Links

Terrelle Pryor reportedly working out with special glasses based on Antonio Brown's advice

Terrelle Pryor reportedly working out with special glasses based on Antonio Brown's advice

New Redskins receiver Terrelle Pryor has been working out with Steelers All-Pro Antonio Brown this offseason. 

The pair documented their receiving drills, ladder drills and even yoga on social media. But what you didn't see, according to ESPN's John Keim, is Pryor practicing with special glasses that Brown recommended. 

Based on Brown’s advice, Pryor has also worn special sunglasses during offseason workouts, designed to prevent him from seeing an object – in this case the ball – until it is almost upon him. Sometimes he takes his gloves off, just to get a feel for the ball with his hands.

The glasses Keim describes sound more like blinders, or even tunnel vision, but the idea is to help Pryor get an instinctive feel for running routes. 

Despite putting up 1,007 receiving yards with the Browns last year, Pryor has only played the position since 2015. His first four seasons in the NFL were spent trying to make a roster playing quarterback. 

Now penciled into a starting receiver role for the Redskins, he knows he has a lot of catching up to do. 

"The good ones, they ask questions and never think they’ve got it. They always want to learn," Pryor said, "I’m not calling myself a great one, but I think I can get there."

MORE REDSKINS: Redskins Playbook: Some good news for Kirk Cousins

Quick Links

Redskins Playbook: 2017 schedule reveals some good news for Kirk Cousins

Redskins Playbook: 2017 schedule reveals some good news for Kirk Cousins

The Redskins offense performed at a high level in 2016, moving the ball well though the unit struggled in the red zone. Much of the success comes from Kirk Cousins' ability to quickly advance through his progressions and release the football before he takes too many hits.

Expect more of that in 2017, especially early in the season.

The Redskins don't face their first Top 5 sack defense until Week 9 when they travel to Seattle. From there, Cousins will face another Top 5 sack team when the Vikings visit FedEx Field in Week 10. 

After that, Washington's schedule doesn't feature a Top 5 sack defense until nearly Christmas. Unfortunately for Cousins, those two teams will come back to back in December when the Redskins host the Cardinals and the Broncos.

Sacks should not drive too much worry for Redskins fans. The Washington offensive line only allowed 23 sacks last season, two less than the Cowboys vaunted offensive line gave up on Dak Prescott. Cousins quick release and mastery of Jay Gruden's offense helps too. 

The Redskins have plenty to worry about in 2017, though facing fierce sack opponents shouldn't be too high on the list. 

<<<NFL POWER RANKINGS: WHO GOT BETTER AFTER THE DRAFT>>>

Want more Redskins? Click here to follow JP on Facebook and check out @JPFinlayCSN for live updates via Twitter! Click here for the #RedskinsTalk on Apple Podcasts, here for Google Play or press play below. Don't forget to subscribe!

ROSTER BATTLES: Left guard | Tight end Nickel cornerback  | Inside linebacker | Running back