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Redskins draft countdown: RB Ronald Jones has great instincts but he a fit in Washington?

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Redskins draft countdown: RB Ronald Jones has great instincts but he a fit in Washington?

Redskins draft countdown

Ronald Jones

Running back
USC

Ronald Jones has the proper combination of speed and power to be a top-notch NFL running back. But what sets him apart from some of his college peers is his vision. Rarely do backs coming out of college have Jones’ ability to read blocks and his knack for taking the right path to daylight. Jones has traits that should translate quickly into solid production on the NFL level. 

READ ALSO: SEPARATING FACT FROM FICTION IN THE REDSKINS' RB SEARCH

Height: 5-11
Weight: 200
40-yard dash:4.65

Projected draft round:1-2

How he fits the Redskins: I’ll be looking at a lot of running backs in the next couple of weeks and I’m sure that you are familiar with Doug Williams saying that there “ain’t no doubt” they need to upgrade at running back and Jay Gruden’s promise that they will have another RB by the end of the draft. They like Chris Thompson in his role and maybe Samaje Perine can get some carries but they are looking for a quality, all-around back. Ronald Jones has the resume to fill that role. 

Film review: vs. Colorado, vs. UCLA

—Jay Gruden said he wants a back who can gain yards between the tackles. Jones can do that, and he consistently picks up three or four extra yards after contact. 

—Jones does need to get a chance to build up a little bit of steam. On several occasions, there was contact in the backfield and he generally went down easily. 

—He wasn’t asked to pass protect much. Once he had an issue with either his decision or he just made a bad block. He brushed a pass rusher in the middle of the field and then continued on his pattern, leaving San Darnold running for his life. 

—Jones also can find the edge, with a good knack for knowing when to plant his foot and turn upfield. He ran a stretch play and cut back completely against the flow to score a touchdown against the Buffalos. 

—He also can react well and bounce to the outside to pick up yardage when the inside is clogged up. 

—He doesn’t always get away from tacklers. On a swing pass, a defender was able to bring him down with one arm. 

—Jones utilizes his pad level well. Against UCLA he got low and powered in for a touchdown from two yards out. 

—Again, he’s not all about power. On a fourth and one against Colorado there was a defender right in the hole ready to make the stop but Jones made a little move to elude him and pick up the first. 

Potential issues: His 40 time at the combine was a very pedestrian 4.65 seconds, a performance that tied for 19th among running backs. Only six had slower times and none of them are thought to be first- or second-day prospects. He did pull up lame with a hamstring during that run and certainly, that had an effect. The injury wasn't healed in time for his pro day so the speed remains a question mark.

He also may be a touch small for an every-down back but some time in an NFL weight room should fix that. 

There is some debate over whether or not RB Derrius Guice is worthy of the 13th pick. There is no question that Jones would be a reach there. He is a player who could go off of the board in the late first or early second rounds, out of the Redskins’ reach. 

Bottom line: If the Redskins are not concerned about his 40 time—and he does seem to play faster than the stopwatch said—they could well go for him in the second round. 

Redskins draft countdown

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerNBCSand follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.

 

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Roger Goodell releases statement condemning racism, admits NFL was wrong not listening to players

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Roger Goodell releases statement condemning racism, admits NFL was wrong not listening to players

Over the past couple of weeks, several athletes and many others have made their voices heard on the racial injustices in America following the death of George Floyd.  A number of NFL stars released a joint video statement late Thursday evening, requesting the league to speak up more on the matter.

The NFL had previously released a statement last Saturday expressing condolences to the families of Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbery, but it didn't speak on the racism that black Americans are constantly faced with.

On Friday, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell issued a strong response to his players, condemning racism and admitting the league was wrong in not listening to its players earlier.

"We, the National Football League, condemn racism and the systematic oppression of black people," Goodell said. "We, the National Football League, admit we were wrong for not listening to NFL players earlier and encourage all to speak out and peacefully protest."

Below is a transcript of Goodell's entire statement:

It has been a difficult time in our country, in particular, black people in our country. First, my condolences to the families of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and all the families that have endured police brutality. We, the National Football League, condemn racism and the systematic oppression of black people. We, the National Football League, admit we were wrong for not listening to NFL players earlier and encourage all to speak out and peacefully protest. We, the National Football League, believe Black Lives Matter. I personally protest with you and want to be a part of the much needed change in this country. Without black players there would be no National Football League. And the protests around the country are emblematic of the centuries of silence, inequality, and oppression of black players, coaches, fans, and staff. We are listening, I am listening, and I will be reaching out to players who have raised their voices, and others on how we can move forward together for a better and more united NFL family.

These issues were first brought to the NFL forefront in 2016, when ex-San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick kneeled for the national anthem as a way to peacefully protest and raise awareness for racial injustice in America. Kaepernick has not played a snap since he parted ways with the 49ers following that season.

Redskins running back Adrian Peterson said Friday that he, along with many of his peers, plan to kneel for the anthem when the season returns this fall.

Goodell's statement, which directly addressed police brutality and racial injustices in America, is a sign the NFL is moving in the right direction regarding these issues.

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WATCH: Ron Rivera returns to Redskins Park for first time since March

WATCH: Ron Rivera returns to Redskins Park for first time since March

For the first time in over 11 weeks, head coach Ron Rivera and several members of the coaching staff returned to Redskins Park on Friday.

The Redskins' video crew documented the staff's return to the Ashburn facilities, as the team had several safety precautions in place for the coaches when they arrived.

In the video, you can see Rivera and several staff members go through a temperature check, making sure each one of them was healthy enough to report. There video also showed there are plenty of hand sanitizer stations throughout the lobby of the facility, too.

Additionally, everyone shown in the video was wearing a mask, including a pretty sweet custom one for the head coach.

Rivera's mask featured the head coach's signature 'Riverboat Ron' logo, which is also his profile picture on Twitter.

Friday marked the first time in almost three months that Rivera was allowed to report to the Redskins facilities, as the league sent out a memo to all 32 clubs on March 19 that all facilities must close due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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The NFL announced on May 19 that teams were allowed to reopen facilities should state and local regulations allow it, but head coaches were not permitted. Earlier this week, the league finally allowed head coaches to return as early as Friday. 

The league has yet to announce a date when players are allowed to return to team facilities. As it stands now, only those players who are injured or undergoing medical treatment are allowed in the building.

As Rivera returned to work, he explained he only has one thing in mind as he plans for the few months ahead.

"The biggest thing is starting to get everything set for training camp," Rivera said. "We have everything ready just in case we get the opportunity for some work with the players before the end of OTAs and minicamp, but the biggest thing we can do now is start to get ready for training camp."

When Redskins training camp will begin has not formally been announced yet, but the team's annual fall camp is expected to begin at some point towards the end of July. Washington will not be traveling to their typical Richmond location, as the NFL announced earlier this week that all training camp activities will be held at each team's respective facilities.

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