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#PickSix: A Rundown On The Running Backs


The opinions expressed in this article do not reflect those of the team.

The Washington Football Team is about 24 hours away from playing a (preseason) game at FedExField, and fans are clamoring to see their squad take on the Cincinnati Bengals.

They also have plenty of questions heading into the matchup, so here's what Washington fans want to know this week.

John H.: Haven't seen a great deal written about Jamin Davis anywhere recently.  How solid is he looking?

Rock solid, John. He had an impressive one-handed interception against Ryan Fitzpatrick in practice where he read the play to Logan Thomas perfectly. He had four tackles, two of which were solo, in his first bit of preseason action against the Patriots. There were still plenty of things to work on, though, so tomorrow's game against the Bengals will give him the chance to show how much he's grown in a week. In the meantime, if you're still looking for reading material, here’s this feature I wrote on him over the summer.

Randy C.: Why is newcomer Adam Humphries a WR starter on the WFT depth chart after he has done nothing for the team?

Because he's really good, Randy. That's why.

In all seriousness, Humphries has looked great working with Fitzpatrick from the moment he stepped on the field. Their connection has been one of the strongest facets of Washington's offense, which speaks to how well they played together with the Buccaneers. He's a starter because he deserves it. He's going to be a reliable slot option for Fitzpatrick in manageable third downs; in fact, they showed that off against the Patriots. I do get what you mean. There are other receivers, some of which Ron Rivera drafted, who have a more established relationship with the team. With that said, Humphries has been one of the best weapons on the field all month.

Bruce P.: Charles Leno Jr was replaced by Cornelius Lucas after two series. Is Lucas the new starter?

I wouldn't look too hard into that right now, Bruce. Cornelius Lucas was in over Charles Leno Jr. because the starters were allowed two series by the coaches before being taken out. It's a common practice for most teams, especially in the first preseason game. And for what it's worth, Leno has been the starting left tackle for most of camp. I suppose there's still time for that to change, but for now it looks like Leno will remain the starter for the regular season.

Chris L.: Why hasn't a decision been made about the new team? I just want to buy merch again.

This is exciting for me, because this is one rebranding question I can actually answer! There has not been an official decision on a new name yet, although the list of options has been narrowed down significantly. And rest assured, you will be able to buy merchandise with the new name and logo on it soon enough, although our current clothing line looks pretty clean, too, so I would suggest getting a shirt or two. I'll also save you the time of looking for the new "Making The Brand" episode and put it HERE.

@JustUrAvgFlyGuy: Good afternoon Zach, I know you can't know for sure but how much playing time do you think Jaret Patterson will get vs. Cincy? Also is there any chance they play him with the starters & will RR want him to field any KR's or PR's?

Good afternoon! (sweet name, by the way) Based on how much playing time he got against the Patriots, which was a decent amount, I would say that he gets a similar, or even greater number of snaps against the Bengals. He's taken advantage of his opportunities, and Rivera has noticed that. As for the possibility of him being a returner, he did field a couple of punts and kickoffs in practice, just as Rivera said he would. Jaret Patterson has a chance to make this roster, and the coaches are giving him the snaps to earn it.

Earl C.: Antonio Gibson doesn't seem to break a lot of tackles. It seems to me that we need a bigger, stronger running back. Do you agree or am I missing something?

It actually turns out that Antonio Gibson is fairly efficient at breaking tackles, and I have the numbers to back it up. According to Rotowire, Gibson broke 16.5% of his tackles last year. And I'm not at all comparing the two, but I'll just say that Rotowire has Derrick Henry's broken tackle percentage of 15.1%, and he's about as big and strong as they make running backs today. And on top of that, Gibson had the third-highest rate in terms of missed tackles forced by a running back. The best answer I can give for why it seems that he's not as good is because he doesn't have to break a lot of tackles, which isn't a bad problem to have.