This group struggled. Alfred Morris wasn’t able to break anything off, which isn’t a huge concern considering the Steelers are a very good defense.
I was surprised to see Keiland Williams get more carries over rookies Chris Thompson and Jawan Jamison.
Williams continues to be productive, excluding his turnover exchange with Grossman.
Roy Helu really wasn’t featured in yesterday’s game, but he was used in the two-minute drill and scored on an untouched 30-yard run. As long as Helu stays healthy, I’m a big fan and hope to see his speed and versatility utilized in the regular season.
Thompson had three carries, one of which was a fumble. I would like to see the former Florida State product get some more work in the offense, but his development as an NFL running back is a long ways away.
I liked what I saw out of Jamison. Nothing flashy and he appears to fit the Shanahan zone-running scheme.
Like a lot of positions, there’s a backlog of running backs. The question remains out there: Who is going to carve out a role?
Alfred Morris is clearly the team’s starter, and he’ll be the workhorse until his productivity waivers. Roy Helu seems to have solidified his role as a third-down back and receiver out of the backfield.
That leaves us with Evan Royster, Williams, Thompson and Jamison.
Royster and Williams seem to be very transparent in their skill sets. They do all the “little” things right. They’re good blockers, pass-catchers and if there are four yards to gain, they’ll get you those four yards—no more, no less.
That leaves us to Thompson and Jamison. Could both be destined for the practice squad? Last year, they basically survived the season with just two running backs (Morris and Royster), so it will be interesting to see how this pans out.
Lastly, it was nice to see Eric Kettani get some playing time. His problem is that his competition is one of the best fullbacks in the league—Darrel Young. Either way, he’s someone everyone can root for. (He’s in the military for those that don’t know.)