Washington Redskins' Most Positive Preseason Surprises So Far

Matthew Brown@mlb923Correspondent IAugust 19, 2013

NASHVILLE, TN - AUGUST 08:  Running back Roy Helu #29 of the Washington Redskins runs behind teammate Darrel Young #36 against the Tennessee Titans during a pre-season game at LP Field on August 8, 2013 in Nashville, Tennessee.  (Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images)
Frederick Breedon/Getty Images

Though it doesn't mean much in the long run, a spotless preseason record provides a nice confidence boost. For the Washington Redskins, it's nice just to discuss something that isn't the created rift between Robert Griffin III and head coach Mike Shanahan.

In an effort to stay positive, the Redskins need to focus on the positives of this preseason rather than where the media is focused.

One of the most impressive signs we've seen thus far is the backfield depth with Roy Helu and Evan Royster behind Alfred Morris. With Morris poised to repeat, or exceed, his 1,613-yard rookie campaign and a healthy complement of versatile backs, the Redskins offense looks ready to rumble.

Helu and Royster combined for 27 carries and 109 yards in the preseason win over the Tennessee Titans, a game in which Morris didn't register a single carry.

Even rookie Jawan Jamison made an impact, scoring on a 30-yard run in the fourth quarter against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

A Shanahan-coached team with a strong ground game is hardly a surprise, but it shows the Redskins have players capable of producing and taking the pressure off of Griffin and the passing game.

Another excellent sign from this preseason is the early production from the bigger names in search of redemption.

Fred Davis caught a nice touchdown pass in the preseason opener while Brian Orakpo, who looks hungry enough to eat somebody, powered his way for a sack against the Titans.

There haven't been a lot of surprises this preseason, or really during training camp.

Bacarri Rambo has been a bright spot in the revamped secondary, even more so since Phillip Thomas was lost for the season with a Lisfranc fracture.

Kirk Cousins has played well this preseason, as expected, keeping the spot under center nice and warm for RGIII for the season opener.

Arguably the best part of this preseason has been the "next man up" mentality, a product of the additions made over the last couple of offseasons.

There would be cause for concern if London Fletcher or Trent Williams went down for a substantial period of time, just because they're irreplaceable in their roles. However, the depth at outside linebacker is loaded with talent, even with Rob Jackson set to sit out the first four games of the season due to suspension.

Maybe it is a product of the relative health of the roster thus far with no major injuries affecting the starters.

Even Brandon Meriweather has seen some action during camp and figures to be the starting strong safety alongside Rambo at free safety.

Not to sound like everything is alright and nothing could go wrong, but there's a different vibe around the Redskins these days. Now that Shanahan has had the chance to fix the many mistakes of previous regimes, Washington looks to be back on the track to respectability.

Preseason success rarely matters come opening day, but better to head into the season as defending NFC East champions with some confidence than the sort of turmoil that has infected the team for much of the last 20 years.