Redskins RB Betts’ role expected to increase in 2009

The Washington Post reports that RB Ladell Betts could see more carries for the Redskins this season. Not much of a surprise given that Betts was supposed to see increased carries last season before injuries derailed him. Plus, starting RB Clinton Portis faded down the stretch.

You can take this news a couple of ways. A lot of the Redskins honks that I know view this as a good thing. Having Betts spell Portis during the season could make him more effective down the stretch. QB Jason Campbell‘s increased comfort level in coach Jim Zorn‘s system will also help Portis, because the Redskins will have more options on third-and-short than just telling Portis to run up the gut repeatedly for first downs. Also, the team signed guard Derrick Dockery. This is win, win.

But I’m a touch skeptical.

Portis went on a touchdown strike from Week 8 through Week 15 (including a bye week) and openly criticized Zorn last year. Portis said that his relationship with his coach is fine, but still gives me hesitation. The line is good up the middle, but the right tackle spot is unsettled. The team can claim that Campbell is their guy, but chasing after Jay Cutler, Mark Sanchez and Mark Rypien (alright, not really on this one) says otherwise.

More questions than answers for a sure-fire first-round pick.

Portis is a great back. If nearly 1,500 yards and nine touchdowns is a “bad” year, then that is awesome. But I’m going in a different direction this season in the first round and probably taking him off my board.

  • One other Redskins note. WR Devin Thomas said that he practiced with the first team in OTAs. This would be great news for the offense and for Portis, because this team does need weapons. Keep an eye on him once training camp starts.

Adam Rank

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