- The Washington Times
Wednesday, September 15, 2021


Washington quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick‘s on-field thigh injury put the NFL team in an all-too-familiar position in asking a familiar question: Who’s next?

Quarterback Gus Frerotte strained his neck by head-butting a padded concrete wall as part of a touchdown celebration during a game against the New York Giants in November 1997.

Ron Rivera was Washington’s head coach when Alex Smith was down-and-out with what many NFL fans considered a career-ending injury to his leg in November 2018.

But not only did Smith heal, he played during the 2019-20 season, and the story of his medical recovery and incredible comeback on the field in 2020 were TV gems.

That same year, the Washington Football Team signed veteran QB Ryan Fitzpatrick to a one-year contract and Taylor Heinicke to a two-year extension.

So it is by default that we are for Heinicke becoming the starting quarterback and Coach Rivera adding 24-year-old Kyle Shurmur to the WFT’s QB deck.

Meanwhile, the New York Giants are preparing to smack the WFT on Thursday night during another November game in FedEx Field. And while I’m fairly confident our defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio knows, as you do, that Lawrence Taylor is retired as the Giants‘ defensive pit bull, the terror No. 54 unleashed one November night in 1985 will never be forgotten.

LT moved toward and on Joe Theismann, and as soon as he hit, other players, coaches, officials and fans knew it was a good hit with bad results.

There was no return to the gridiron for Theismann, either, as his right leg healed slightly shorter than his left.

LT expressed his apologies and Joe Theismann, who loved football talk before LT’s sack, still talks the talk but doesn’t play the game.

There’s no definitive word that Fitzpatrick‘s MRI indicates he will be off the field because of injury, and that’s good news — really good news.

The thing is we need to repeat — that is, repeat our success as the NFC East champions. To do that, we must keep the Giants out of the win column.

• Deborah Simmons can be reached at dsimmons@washingtontimes.com.

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