By Tarik El-Bashir
Four days after rushing for 96 yards in his NFL debut, Alfred Morris sees plenty of room for improvement entering Sunday’s game at St. Louis.
His focus this week in practice will be accepting handoffs while keeping his eyes looking for the hole in the line and scanning the field in front of him, rather than watching Robert Griffin III.
“Just trusting Robert and knowing he’s going to get me the ball,” Morris said. “And not – when I’m going to get the handoff – looking at him because it takes my eyes off what I’m supposed to be looking at.”
Morris said the problem is an old one, which is why it has been so difficult for him to shake.
“It’s an old habit that I picked up in college because I had some exchange problems with my quarterbacks,” the 23-year-old said. “I broke it. But then it kind of crept back in. It’s that saying, ‘Old habits die hard.’ I’m going to kill that habit this week and it’s not going to come back up.”
Watching the handoff, Morris said, limits his ability to see outside running lanes, making his “track” too narrow.
“That split second of looking at the ball throws everything off,” he added.
Overall, though, Morris said he was pleased with his first NFL game. He even graded out well in pass protection, a concern given his inexperience, after watching the game film.
“Not too many blitzes came my way, maybe two of them, and I picked them up,” Morris said. “That was unfortunate because I was looking forward to contact.”