WASHINGTON — Two roster cut casualties for the Washington Redskins were claimed by the Colts, as both running back Matt Jones and receiver Matt Hazel will be making their way to Indianapolis.
Jones, a 2015 third-round draft pick, started the first seven games for the Redskins last season after a promising rookie campaign. He showed that he was capable in the role, averaging 4.6 yards per carry and a long of 57 yards.
However, Jones’ downfall was always ball security, as his three fumbles in 99 carries matched his number of touchdowns. He spent much of the 2017 preseason listed as the Redskins’ fifth-string running back, making his departure via roster cuts expected.
After general manager Scot McCloughan was jettisoned by the team this offseason, it became clear who was propping up Jones’ support. McCloughan called him the best back on the roster during training camp and has repeatedly used his Twitter Q&A’s to express support for the embattled running back.
Embattled no more, he will go to Indy where he will complement ageless wonder Frank Gore, journeyman Robert Turbin, and rookie Marlon Mack.
Hazel is a bit different, having been drafted in the sixth round by the Miami Dolphins in 2014. He has bounced from the Dolphins to Buffalo and Washington, earning but one career start in the NFL.
He joins a strong Colts’ receiver corps that includes T.Y. Hilton, Donte Montcrief and former Raven Kamar Aiken.
Both Jones and Hazel were brought to the Redskins organization under McCloughan’s personnel leadership.
On the flip side, the Redskins claimed some talent on waivers, adding offensive tackle T.J. Clemmings off of waivers to replace Su’a Cravens’ vacant roster spot.
Clemmings has experience at both right and left tackle, starting 30 games since 2015, and opening holes for Adrian Peterson and one of the NFL’s top-ranked rushing defenses. He switched from the defensive side of the ball in college and is still a developing talent on the offensive line.