IRVING, Texas -You don't have to follow the Redskins or even the NFL all that closely to have heard of Robert Griffin III. The rookie quarterback has made explosive plays through the air and on the ground all season and has the Washington Redskins one win away from the playoffs. He was even named to the Pro Bowl on Wednesday, edging out Drew Brees and Tony Romo.
But he hasn't done it all alone. In fact, he isn't even the only rookie on the team that is contributing in a huge way. While Griffin was the highly anticipated No. 2 overall pick in last year's draft, the Redskins used their seventh round choice on Alfred Morris out of Florida Atlantic.
Morris earned the starting running back position prior to the Redskins' first game, and has exploded on to the scene already proving himself to be one of the league's best rushers.
The Redskins are the No. 1 ranked rushing offense in the NFL. At 162.3 rushing yards per game they are more than doubling the per game rushing yards of the Cowboys.
When asked about what he took from the Cowboys' last matchup with the Redskins on Thanksgiving, defensive lineman Marcus Spears had some surprising comments about the Washington defense.
"RGIII is the phenom that everybody loves, but this running back has been killing people," Spears said. "If you watch it from a football-game plan, as a player who's going to play in the game standpoint, this running back is actually probably the most dangerous guy on the football team on offense."
Spears went on to point out that the Redskins strength is their running game and Morris is the catalyst of that ground attack.
"That's not to take anything away from RGIII, but when you look at the film (Morris) is averaging almost 120 yards rushing per game," Spears said. "Usually when teams can do that they win. So we got a lot on our hands."
Spears' assessment is all that far off. Morris is the fourth leading rusher in the NFL this season and has already accumulated 1,413 yards on the ground and 10 touchdowns. He has gone for over 100 yards six times including his 113-yard game against the Cowboys.
Jason Garrett credited Mike Shanahan's ability to evaluate and find running backs that others pass over and get them to play at a very high level.
"You go back to his time at Denver and he's had a number of guys who have played for him that were not always high-round picks in the draft, but they can come in and be really effective runner," Garrett said. "He's been doing that for years and years and years."