Here is what you need to know on this Wednesday, September 23, one day before the Redskins travel to play the Giants.
Jones shows surprising speed
Like many people, I was pretty surprised in the first quarter of the Redskins’ game against the Rams when Matt Jones took a handoff from Kirk Cousins, headed down the left sideline and rolled past everyone 39 yards to the end zone. I knew he had good feet and was quick for a guy his size but I never had him pegged as a player with impressive speed. After all, the stopwatch at the NFL Combine timed him at 4.61 in the forty.
But this was some, dare I say it, John Riggins type speed. Back in Riggo’s day there wasn’t any way to quantify how fast players were. But now the NFL has a GPS sensor on every player and they can track the speed of each player. I came across this tweet from Chris Wesseling, a blogger for NFL.com.
Only a handful of people on the planet can move like Matt Jones at 6’2”, 230. Next Gen Stats speed of 21.70 mph behind only DHB in Week 2.— Chris Wesseling (@ChrisWesseling) September 22, 2015
In case you don’t know, “DHB” is wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey, former of Maryland and the Raiders and currently of the Steelers. So Jones ran faster on the field than anyone on any NFL team in Week 2 with the exception of a speedy wide receiver.
Let’s do some math here. A person traveling at 21.70 m.p.h. will cover 40 yards in 3.77 seconds. Now, that not a legitimate 40 time since it doesn’t count acceleration time, only peak speed. Still, that is flat out moving for any player, let along one who is 6-2 and 230 pounds.
Jay Gruden said that the Redskins saw Jones’ speed on tape when he played for Florida.
“Yeah, he showed that when he burst out in the open field,” said Gruden. “And, you know, big, strong, fast men like that are hard to find. That’s why we’re very lucky to get him when we got him. He does have a rare combination of size and speed and he’s got good vision right now. We’ve just got to keep him going, keep him fresh.”
Jones’ run was the Redskins’ longest touchdown run since Robert Griffin III bolted 76 yards for six points against the Vikings in 2012. Jones doesn’t possess that kind of speed but he could turn out to be a special player if the Redskins find the right way to utilize that rare speed and size combination.
—Today’s schedule: Walkthrough before traveling to New York; no availability
—Days until: Redskins @ Giants Thursday night 1; Eagles @ Redskins 11; Redskins @ Falcons 18
In case you missed it
- Smash-mouth surprise
- Former Redskins CB David Amerson claimed off waivers
- Sooner or later, the Redskins will have to adjust their offense
- Season is over for Redskins rookie linebacker
- Even as starter, Kirk Cousins knows harsh reality of NFL
- The Redskins’ incredible shrinking draft classes
- Fantasy football waiver wire: Week 3
- Five early thoughts on Redskins vs. Giants