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Third year running back Derrius Guice came into this season with a lot to prove. As a player adjusting to a new head coach after two years of back-to-back season ending injuries, now was the time for him to show that the Washington Football Team didn’t waste a second-round draft pick.
Instead, Guice is facing domestic violence related charges after turning himself in to Loudoun County authorities.
Shortly after the news became public, Washington disseminated a statement announcing that the team was releasing Guice. The quick decision to let Guice go is a strong signal that Head Coach Ron Rivera means what he says about changing the culture.
Also, with the recent allegations surrounding women within the organization, there was no way they could keep him around.
The charges against the former running back are numerous and stem from three different incidents at his Ashburn home in February, March and April. The charges include one count of strangulation, three counts of assault and battery and one count destruction of property. Guice was booked at the Loudoun Adult Detention Center and released on $10,000 bond.
We have released RB Derrius Guice pic.twitter.com/L3mOP8GCIX
— Washington Football Team (@WashingtonNFL) August 7, 2020
Prior to the opening round of the 2018 NFL Draft, rumors about Guice’s character popped up at the last minute. Specifics were never revealed but he maintained his character was nothing to worry about. Nonetheless, the rumors impacted Guice’s draft stock and he slid to the second round, where Washington picked him.
Since then, Guice has only played in five games total due to multiple knee injuries. He tore his ACL during the preseason of his rookie year and suffered a torn meniscus and sprained MCL in 2019. With Guice perceived healthy coming into 2020, running back coach Randy Jordan recently discussed what he brings to the table:
“Derrius has a whole set of tools that a lot of players don’t have,” Jordan said. “He can catch it, he can run it, he can block. All those things you ask a running back to do and also get the tough yards in the short yardage situations and make those explosive plays.”
“The biggest thing I tell him, ‘your best ability is your reliability and your dependability.’ That’s something that he’s shown through the offseason,” Jordan continued. “He has worked his butt off and changed his body. So far in terms of what I’ve seen, he’s done a great job of getting himself prepared for this upcoming season.”
Unfortunately, Guice has never reached his full potential in the NFL and it’s quite possible no one will ever know what he could have accomplished. His exit adds some relief to the running back competition which will now focus on Adrian Peterson, Antonio Gibson, Bryce Love, J.D. McKissick, Peyton Barber and Bryce Love.