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Roy Helu Jr. 'Very Excited' For Next Step In Career

Posted Jan 2, 2015

As Roy Helu Jr. prepares for a fifth season in the NFL, he's very excited about the opportunities that await him, possibly with the Redskins.

After four seasons in the NFL, Roy Helu Jr. wants to take the next step as a running back and expand on the role he’s taken behind Alfred Morris in recent years.

Will it be with the Redskins?

That remains to be seen, but he’s excited for the next step in his career.

“I’m very excited,” Helu Jr. said of his future. “Because it’s the first time I’ve gone into an offseason where I get to see what else is out there and I’m not restricted to a rookie pay scale.”

Helu Jr. said “there’s great possibilities out there,” but that he’d also “want to be back, simple as that.”

“I’ll probably look into [free agency] for the benefit of my family’s future,” he said. “But at the same time I had a great experience these last four years and if I’m back that’d be amazing. But it’s two parties that’d have to get together and have a common goal in mind.”

Drafted by the Redskins in 2011, the Nebraska product burst onto the scene as a rookie, recording three straight 100-yard rushing games between Weeks 12 and 14, while also hauling in a franchise-record 14 receptions against the San Francisco 49ers in his first-ever start.

Helu Jr.’s time in the starting lineup would be limited, though, as Morris would win the starting job as a rookie in 2012 before Helu Jr. was placed on Injured Reserve after Week 3 that season with nagging lower leg injuries.

In four seasons with the Redskins, the 5-foot-11, 215-pound running back has carried the ball 255 times for 1,132 yards and seven touchdowns.

He's been just as productive in the passing game, though, as he has hauled in 129 passes for 1,152 yards and three touchdowns during that span.

Throughout this season, head coach Jay Gruden used Helu Jr. in third-down situations as a pass-catching running back, an area he improved on throughout the season.

In eight games, Helu Jr. recorded at least 40 receiving yards.

“There are a lot of responsibilities on that third-down back as far as blitz pickups, then winning on routes against linebackers, sometimes against safeties, catching the ball and blocking,” Gruden said. “It’s a tough role and there’s a lot of demand for that role nowadays in the NFL."

As Helu Jr. enters his fifth season in the NFL, Gruden said it’s “very, very important” for him to keep growing his game.

“He’s got to do a better job in the blitz pickups and that’s going to be a huge stressing point.”

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