According to NFL.com's Dan Hanzus, the Washington Redskins are considering a trade for Miami Dolphins running back Steve Slaton, following the release of Tim Hightower. Hanzus cites a tweet from Mike Jones of the Washington Post, claiming the Redskins are considering dealing wide receiver Anthony Armstrong in exchange for Slaton.
That would be a smart move for the Redskins following their decision to let Hightower go. Adding a veteran runner to a backfield loaded with youngsters can't hurt, especially if it's the right runner.
Despite some lean recent seasons, Slaton could fit that bill. He became an instant star in 2008 as a member of the Houston Texans. Slaton rushed for 1,282 yards that season and was a a dynamic playmaker in the same zone scheme the Redskins currently utilise.
However, things soon went downhill from there. Injuries and issues with ball security brought a sudden end to Slaton's tenure in the AFC South. He joined the Miami Dolphins in 2011 but was limited to only 17 carries, as Reggie Bush lead the ground game for the AFC East outfit.
There are plenty of reasons not to deal for Slaton, but there are there also reasons to recommend a move. He is a natural zone-runner, having learned the system under long-time Mike Shanahan assistant, Gary Kubiak.
Having a runner with true scheme experience can only be useful in a backfield populated by youngsters still learning the requirements of the system. Although Alfred Morris has been a preseason success, that doesn't always translate to positive production once the real action begins.
Yes, the Redskins have Roy Helu in reserve, but he has had his own durability issues in his short pro career. Adding Slaton to the mix would keep the competition for carries high, something Shanahan is fond of.
It would also give the Redskins dependable and scheme-ready insurance should injuries strike, or rookie jitters adversely affect Morris once the regular season begins.