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Morris: I Take Pride In My Pass Protection


For the second year in a row, the Redskins addressed the running back position in the draft's sixth round, this year adding Florida Atlantic's Alfred Morris.

The selection follows a pattern by head coach Mike Shanahan to choose running backs in the later rounds and develop them into contributors.  Morris hails from a small collegiate program, but he fits what his coaches want as a professional.

"He has the ability to make people miss, has great quickness, and can cut on a dime," Shanahan said.  "Now we get a chance to see how he'll come in and compete with the other backs."

That competition will revolve around his ability to help the offense in all facets of the game.  Any running back can be a playmaker with the football, but Shanahan's backs must do the dirty work in pass protection.

No problem, says Morris, who impressed Shanahan at this year's Senior Bowl.

"I actually take pride in [pass protection]," Morris explained.  "Everyone can run the ball and catch the ball, but what will set you apart from everyone else? I started taking pride in my blocking. I take it as a challenge."

While many collegiate programs run a spread offense, Morris ran out of a more pro-style offense, and frequently blocked in the I-formation.

"I blocked a lot of defensive ends in the kind of set that we had," he said.  "The only thing standing between me and him and the quarterback and a sack is me, and I took pride that I never let anybody touch my quarterback."

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