ASHBURN — Another game, another slew of injuries for the banged-up Washington Redskins.
The Redskins will be without rookie Jonathan Allen for the next 3-4 weeks after the defensive lineman suffered a lisfranc sprain in his left foot during Washington’s 26-24 win Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers.
And, with a secondary already banged up, safeties Montae Nicholson (shoulder aggravation) and Stefan McClure (left knee hyperextension) were hurt, as well. Starting cornerback Bashaud Breeland has a knee sprain.
Of the Redskins’ new injuries, Allen’s is most troubling. Taken with the 17th overall pick, the Redskins drafted Allen out of Alabama to anchor their defensive line. Now, Gruden said Allen will visit Dr. Robert Anderson for a further diagnosis.
Allen had 10 tackles and a sack in five games.
“It’s an impact,” Gruden said. “He’s been playing well. We have a good group of defensive lineman and we had a good strong rotation going.”
Gruden said Anthony Lanier would replace Allen on game-days. Lanier joined the Redskins as an undrafted free agent in 2016. He’s been inactive in every game so far, but Gruden said Lanier has gotten much stronger in the weight room.
“We’ll see how it translates on game days,” Gruden said. “He could be apart of the rotation, not just on third down. He might have to play some early downs, but he’s a guy that’s hopefully is getting better at not just rushing the passer, but playing the run.”
Statistically, Allen hasn’t had a dominant season, but he played a significant role on the Redskins’ defensive line — appearing on 50.2 percent of Washington’s defensive snaps. The Redskins use Allen as their right defensive end, but rotate the defensive line to keep players fresh and give teams different looks.
This year, the Redskins have allowed just 88 rushing yards per game, eighth-best in the NFL, due to a stronger presence up-front and the addition of linebacker Zach Brown and safety D.J. Swearinger.
Gruden said Allen already plays like a veteran.
“He has got great fundamentals,” Gruden said. “He’s got a great idea of run/pass, how to get off blocks. He has got strong hands and he was getting a pretty consistent pass rush push. He doesn’t have a lot of sacks obviously, but he was getting push in the pocket, which was critical for the interior guys so the edge guys can get home.”
As for Hopkins, the kicker has a right hip rotator muscle strain. Gruden said he learned of the injury Monday morning after Hopkins got an MRI. Hopkins missed a pivotal extra point near the end of the 49ers game.
Gruden didn’t rule out Josh Norman (fractured rib) making his return, either, adding the cornerback will increase his exercise and running and will be re-evaluated mid-week.
“We don’t want this thing to get re-injured obviously, but if he can go, I’m sure Josh will go,” Gruden said.
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