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Isaac Redman may have made the club from the tub but he won't keep the starting job that way

The fact Isaac Redman was kept over Jonathan Dwyer isn't so much of a surprise, even if Redman didn't participate in the final two preseason games. Felix Jones eventually overtaking him for the starting running back job won't be a surprise either, if it happens.


In a roundabout way, Steelers running back Isaac Redman made the club from the tub.

The axiom signifies that is never to happen. A physical impossibility. Redman has been on the shelf since Aug. 15 when he met the working end of a Larry Foote tackle, rendering him unconscious and more or less inactive. He did not play in the team's final two preseason games, yet, of the two $1.3 million running backs on the team, Redman stuck while Jonathan Dwyer - the team's leading rusher in 2012 - cleaned out his locker.

Some might think that automatically gives Redman claim to the least stable position on the team.

After a season in which the starting running back changed from week-to-week, why should 2013 be any different? Dwyer is gone (even Baron Batch is gone), and Felix Jones has entered the mix. After two better-than-mediocre performances in the final two preseason games against Kansas City and Carolina, respectively, Jones may very well have simply taken the job away from Redman.

The tub-bound Redman may have the luxury of being named to the Steelers roster while bound to a cold-water-holding apparatus, but that doesn't give him a starting job, either.

One school of thought is Redman was simply held back because the team's decision on Dwyer was either made, or the battle turned into Dwyer vs. Jones with Redman receiving a first-round bye. That's entirely possible. The fact Jones can return kicks - something they apparently hold in high regard, even though less than half of them are returned anymore - holds some weight.

It's hard to imagine Jones actually getting the ceremonial starting spot, both on the depth chart and the first carry of the game. Maybe the plan will be "one guy goes until he screws up," a more blunt description of the infamous "run-by-committee" approach that worked so not-well last year.

The overall point being if Redman made the team while not lugging the rock nearly as often as his now-unemployed batterymate, how long will his entitlement last?

As weird as this sounds, Redman is, by far, the highest paid running back on the Steelers' roster, and until Le'Veon Bell returns (thought to be after the first few games of the year), he's going to have to stay on the field and out of the tub in order to get carries.


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