Mike Shanahan isn't sitting tight at running back. Young runners Ryan Torain and Keiland Williams stepped up with Washington Redskins' ace tailback Clinton Portis out due to a groin injury. Portis will be out at least two more weeks according to Jason Reid at Redskins Insider.
Shanahan regards the practice squad as extensions of the active team. Both Torain and Williams spent time on the practice squad during the regular season. With both now on the active roster, it's slim pickings for runners on the practice team. For the Shanahans, that's reason to get busy. And they were real busy this week.
Washington released RB Quinn Porter and signed RB Jeremiah Johnson (Didn't they make a movie about him? Sorry, had to get that out.) to the practice squad on Tuesday, October 26. The Skins released Johnson and signed RB James Davis the next day, Wednesday, October 27.
Washington signed RB Javarris James to the practice squad earlier this month, only to have the Indianapolis Colts snatch him away by signing him to their active roster.
The 'Skins signed RB Chad Simpson to the active roster in September after he impressed the coaches with his play in the Redskins Bills preseason game. Simpson returned two kick-offs for 27 and 32 yards, but has yet to line-up with the offense. Simpson tweaked his hamstring during the Chicago game, which surely promoted the activity on the practice squad.
James says that coach Shanahan pointed to Torain as an example that he (James) too may have a shot at playing this season.
Not drawing any conclusions from this activity, other than to note that running backs are cycling in and out a lot. This story is more about Shanahan than Davis. I'm filing this factoid away as we try to figure out how the man thinks. I like what I see, though I don't yet understand what it all means.
Point after: Do any of these guys have to take the conditioning test when they sign with the team? Just asking.