Running Back - Washington Redskins
Tim Hightower appears poised to make a huge impact for the Redskins. Mike Shanahan built a reputation for plugging in random running backs and having success in Denver. Shanahan went to ridiculous lengths to prove this ability bringing in Larry
Johnson and Willie Parker to compete with Clinton Portis to create washed-up dream team. However, Ryan Torain came on to help salvage the Skins' running attack. Torain's injuries allowed Hightower to snatch the starting role and he's certainly made the most of the opportunity this preseason. Fumbles plagued Hightower in Arizona, but it appears he put cast those issues aside.
Some running backs take a few years to hit their stride (e.g. Michael Turner, Arian Foster,); Hightower came out o I-AA Richmond and made a few waves ripping off touchdowns in Arizona but never evolved into their feature back. A number of backs have languished in the Arizona offense. A washed up Emmitt Smith struggled, Thomas Jones moved on to develop into a one of the best backs in the league, and Beanie Wells continues to under perform. Hightower comes to a Redskins team in the second year of a new scheme (a scheme that's produced rushing stats out of lesser
talent), an improved offensive line, and he's running crazy in the preseason. I know, it's the preseason, but the Skins schedule is
promising. The Eagles lack the linebacking corps, the Giants are a mess
with injuries, and who knows if the Cowboys will get their defensive
groove back. Couple that with games against the NFC West and
Hightower's penchant of scoring TD's, and you've got the makings of a
1,300+/12TD+ type of breakout season.