It wasn't an ideal evening for Redskins rookie running back Keith Marshall against the Atlanta Falcons, but he learned a lot in his first preseason game.
Redskins running back Keith Marshall made his long-awaited return to the state of Georgia on Thursday night, as Washington took on the Atlanta Falcons in their preseason opener.
Marshall – who's his own worst critic – didn't exactly light up the stat sheet against the Falcons. He had five rushes for -1 yard. He also caught two passes for 10 yards in Washington's 23-17 loss to Atlanta.
"It was cool, it was a great experience," Marshall said. "I've been dreaming about it [playing in the NFL] since I was a little kid, so it's good to cross that off."
"Today didn't go as good as I wanted it to, but I gotta look at the film and see what I can do better," Marshall said.
Even though Marshall didn't explode like he wanted to in his first professional game, having so much support in the stands at the Georgia Dome kept his spirits high.
"It was cool," Marshall said. "I got a lot of friends and family around the area, so it was cool to come back to Georgia. I got a lot of love for this state and UGA [the University of Georgia], so I had a lot of friends come [and] support me and everything, so it's cool."
Fellow rookie Robert Kelley got a lot of touches against Atlanta, and wound up leading the team in rushing [seven rushes for 40 yards and one touchdown]. Other than Matt Jones and Chris Thompson, the team is very young at the running back position, further illustrating the need for getting the younger backs more reps in the preseason.
With one preseason game in the books, and training camp coming to an end on Sunday, Marshall knows that the chances to distance himself from his competition are few and far between.
"It's a great opportunity," Marshall said. "I just gotta make sure I'm doing everything in my power to take advantage of it, and keep getting better."