What the Week 8 Injury Report Could Mean For the Redskins
The Redskins have a couple of guys on their injury report this week that could impact their decisions and game plan for the Broncos:
DE Stephen Bowen:
-Bowen has a torn PCL muscle in his right knee and is going to try to play through the injury. Even if he is able to still play this year, Bowen is likely going to be limited both in terms of snaps and effectiveness. Bowen had been struggling already this year so any additional loss of effectiveness is a serious problem. Against the Broncos the Redskins probably wanted both Bowen and Cofield to play as much as possible given that they are the two best pass rushers among the linemen. Bowen though probably can’t play as many snaps meaning more will fall on the back-ups, who have been very inconsistent this year.
S Reed Doughty:
-Being from Colorado, Doughty definitely wants to play in this game, but it doesn’t look too promising with him not being able to practice on Friday. If he doesn’t pass the concussion test, it’s going to get ugly in this secondary. Though he typically sits in passing situations with Brandon Meriweather out, Doughty would be in line to see more playing time than you’d expect. Now those snaps are going to go to the likes of Jordan Pugh, Bacarri Rambo, Jose Gumbs and Trenton Robinson (with E.J. Biggers likely playing a lot of FS). Also Doughty has been one of the few special teams players to actually make some positive plays this year, so with him out it could lead to some big returns.
-Hankerson was a full participant Friday so he is probably expected to play, but a foot injury can definitely limit a receiver. If he can’t go 100% that means more of Josh Morgan which is not good for the offense.
NT Chris Neild:
-Neild has been dealing with a calf injury since the Raiders game and will probably be once again ticketed to the inactive list. Even if he was fully healthy, it is doubtful that Neild would be active (though Bowen’s status could impact this), as the Broncos will likely spread the field most plays with three wide receivers. For the Redskins to match-up they will likely pull a defensive lineman off the line. With the Skins likely using two defensive linemen most snaps and probably don’t need a true nose tackle, Neild would have little value in the game.
TE Jordan Reed:
-Reed has been the Redskins best weapon this season, and just had a break-out game versus the Bears. He’s dealing with a hip issue that he suffered in that game, that shouldn’t hinder him too much. The real concern here is if it gets worse due to taking a hit or falling on it. He did have to leave the Bears game for a little while to work on his hip and if it get’s worse it could knock him out of the game.
TE Logan Paulsen:
-Paulsen is still coming back from the knee injury he suffered in the Raiders game. While he’s played the last two weeks he hasn’t been all that effective. Though he isn’t a top target the Redskins need all hands on deck if they want to win this game, so if Paulsen can be a bigger factor that definitely helps. Paulsen’s blocking is also a concern as it hasn’t been as effective this year, particularly these past two weeks. Running against Denver is tough enough, but to do so without some of your guys being 100% is going to be nearly impossible. Hopefully Paulsen can pick-up his game in this area.
C Will Montgomery:
-Montgomery is dealing with a sore knee and while he’s expected to play if he suffers a setback, it could be a big problem for the Redskins. Denver is one of the toughest and loudest places to play, so the idea of Kory Lichtensteiger having to come in and center for RGIII, is not a good situation for the Redskins. The other factor is if the knee injury affects Montgomery’s blocking. The Broncos have some big strong defensive tackles that do a great job of getting penetration inside.This has been a big area of concern for the Redskins and they can’t afford any more issues.