Guice (knee) was on the field Tuesday for the start of Washington's offseason workout program.
It's merely strength and conditioning work without any pads, but his participation supports coach Jay Gruden's stated belief that the running back can be ready for individual drills at OTAs and full practice participation at the start of training camp. An infection in Guice's knee created major complications during the early stages of his rehab from mid-August surgery on a torn ACL, but he seems to have made up for lost time with an aggressive approach throughout the winter. The 2018 second-round pick hopes to earn the lead role in a crowded backfield, competing with 34-year-old Adrian Peterson and passing-down specialist Chris Thompson. Given the question marks at quarterback and wide receiver, Gruden likely intends for his running backs and defense to carry the team in 2019.
Coach Jay Gruden anticipates Guice (knee) doing individual drills at OTAs and then being a full participant for the start of training camp, Tarik El-Bashir of The Athletic reports.
Guice has been aggressive this offseason with his rehabilitation from a torn ACL, making up for lost time after a post-surgery infection required intravenous antibiotics and three additional procedures. He's posted videos of sprinting and agility workouts on Twitter, though he doesn't quite seem to be cutting at full speed. Washington surely still views the 2018 second-round pick as its lead back of the future, but things could get crowded this upcoming season with passing-down specialist Chris Thompson still under contract and 34-yea-rold Adrian Peterson recently re-signed. That said, Guice has the highest ceiling of the bunch given his combination of youth (turns 22 in June), size (225 pound) and speed (4.49 40). Health and receiving skills are the big question marks.
Peterson initially signed in mid-August after Guice suffered a torn ACL in the preseason opener, ultimately finishing the season with 1,250 scrimmage yards and eight touchdowns as a 16-game starter. Meanwhile, the rookie second-round pick suffered a major setback early in his recovery, requiring three additional procedures and a seven-week course of antibiotics to treat a post-surgery infection. Guice has made up for lost time since the end of the season, with a report from mid-February suggesting he's regained his upper body strength and resumed straight-line sprinting. Assuming he's ready for training camp, Guice will compete with Peterson for carries while Thompson presumably handles most of the passing-down work. The crowded backfield is far from ideal for fantasy purposes, but each of the three players has enough talent to provide considerable value if he finds his way to a stable workload. Given his age, draft pedigree and potential versatility, Guice has the highest ceiling of the bunch.
Guice (knee) provided a detailed account of his rehab process Monday on the Redskins' official website, noting that he's regained his upper body strength and resumed sprinting but isn't yet ready for full-speed lateral movement.
While he isn't ready to discuss a timeline, Guice did provide some useful details on his recent progress, with an emphasis on rebuilding strength/flexibility in his lower body after a post-surgery infection required additional procedures and a lengthy period of rest. He spent most of his time in Louisiana and Florida during the early phase of recovery, eventually returning to the Redskins' team facility in Virginia toward the end of the regular season. The 21-year-old running back now seems to be making up for lost time, working aggressively with the team training staff and rarely traveling back home. Guice will be 13 months removed from the initial injury when Washington takes the field for Week 1 in 2019.
Guice (knee) posted a video of himself sprinting on a practice field Wednesday.
Guice also posted a workout video three weeks ago, providing evidence that his rehab process is on schedule or at least not too far behind. He developed an infection after mid-August surgery to repair an ACL tear, requiring a seven-week course of intravenous antibiotics. The infection may have initially pushed things back, but the 21-year-old has the benefit of both youth and freakish athleticism. Guice's quick rehab progress and commitment to working at the team facility could leave the Redskins hesitant to make a significant financial commitment to Adrian Peterson, who is scheduled to become an unrestricted free agent. The 33-year-old might be too expensive as an insurance policy if the team is confident Guice will be ready for the lead role by Week 1.