Washington Redskins running back Tim Hightower is presently listed first on the team's first official depth chart. Evan Royster and Roy Helu round out the top three spots. Hightower underwent ACL surgery on his left knee in November and just two months ago wasn't even cleared to practice. On July 27, head coach Mike Shanahan told reporters that Hightower was "not close to 100 percent."
Shanahan is old school which in this case means he's using the depth chart as a carrot on a stick. Every reasonable football fan knows that the top three should be reversed with Helu first, Royster second and Hightower in third. The fact that it is how it is should be viewed as purely motivational only. This is classic Shanahan. Like always, relying on any back coached by Shanahan is risky bet.