Wizards

Bills place DE Kelsay on IR; promote 2 players

Bills place DE Kelsay on IR; promote 2 players

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) His neck wrapped in a brace, Buffalo Bills defensive end Chris Kelsay was having difficulty coming to grips with landing on the season-ending injured reserve list for the first time in his 10-year career.

What's worse, Kelsey understands he can't contribute to helping the Bills make a late-season playoff push.

``To be kind of standing on the sideline and watching it from afar, it's disappointing,'' Kelsay said Wednesday, shortly after the team announced he had been placed on IR. ``I'm envious of those guys being able to go out there and contribute and do what they're capable of doing.''

Kelsay is out after partially tearing a ligament in his neck during practice last month. After missing two games, he aggravated the injury in a 20-13 loss at Indianapolis two weeks ago.

Buffalo's 2003 second-round draft pick had only missed seven games due to injury before this season.

Kelsay has been informed that the ligament is expected to heal on its own, and that surgery is not required at this time. With no timetable of when Kelsay will be healthy, the Bills (5-7) needed to free up roster spots to address other injury-depleted positions in preparing to host St. Louis (5-6-1) on Sunday.

Offensive lineman Keith Williams and cornerback T.J. Heath were both promoted from Buffalo's practice squad.

Williams adds depth to a line that will be without starting center Eric Wood (left knee) and starting right tackle Chris Hairston (right ankle). Wood is expected to miss between two and four weeks, while coach Chan Gailey said Hairston could miss up to three weeks.

Both were hurt in a 34-18 win over Jacksonville last weekend.

That means Sam Young, at tackle, and David Snow, at either guard or center, will both be making their first career starts on Sunday.

Buffalo's also down at cornerback with Aaron Williams (right knee) Leodis McKelvin (back) and Justin Rogers (foot) nursing injuries.

McKelvin practiced on a limited basis, but said his back felt better after it stiffened before the game against Jacksonville. Receiver Stevie Johnson (left hamstring) was held out of practice after being hurt Sunday, but said he expects to be ready to play against St. Louis.

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Ted Leonsis maintains optimism amid harsh reality of John Wall injury

Ted Leonsis maintains optimism amid harsh reality of John Wall injury

CAPITAL ONE ARENA -- It might be quite a while before we see John Wall on the court playing for the Wizards again.

It was already well-known Wall will miss extended time as he recovers from a ruptured Achilles tendon, a rehab that usually takes at least 11 months. But it is starting to sound more and more like he won't play in the 2019-20 season at all.

Wizards managing partner Ted Leonsis shared that harsh reality on Monday during a press conference at Capital One Arena.

"Our highest-paid player, our five-time All-Star, may not play at all next year. He probably won't play at all next year," Leonsis said.

If Wall follows the general timeline for the surgery, he could come back sometime early in 2020. A 12-month recovery would have him return in early February.

If Wall missed all of next season, he would return to start the 2020-21 campaign after a 20-month recovery. That would be nearly double the rehab time many players have taken for the same injury over the years. He would be 30 years old by then.

But Wall and the Wizards have reason to be extra patient. He is entering the first season of a four-year, $170 million supermax contract. Punting the first year, even if he is making $38 million, could be worth it in the long run if it means he returns to his All-Star form.

The Wizards are also likely to have a gap year of sorts anyways. They retooled their roster with young, inexperienced players. The odds they make the playoffs this season are lower than they have been in years. The Wizards are taking the long view and they know getting Wall's rehab right is paramount.

Leonsis and team officials currently get daily reports on Wall's progress. After making the supermax investment, they are taking extra measures to ensure he is holding up his end of the bargain. The Wizards closely monitor his weight and have a rotation of physical therapists working with him every day.

If it were up to Wall, he would be more likely to return next season. The team is the side taking extra caution.

"Trust me, nobody wants to get back to the court more than John Wall," GM Tommy Sheppard told NBC Sports Washington. 

"But I've tried to manage this with him and say there is no calendar or clock that is going to tell you to come back. You're going to come back when you're 100 percent healthy. Anybody who has watched him in the playoffs play with broken hands and all of the aches and pains he's had over the years and he still showed up and played at a high, high level. You know you need to monitor him a little more than most. That's the kind of player that is going to try to sneak back on the court any time he can."

What Leonsis said publicly has been the belief behind the scenes in the Wizards organization for quite some time. They are preparing for next season as if he won't play, 

"We have to see if John Wall comes back and how he looks and how he plays," Leonsis told NBC Sports Washington. "If John Wall can come back at 80 percent the year after [in 2020-21], I would be really happy because then we would have a great, great backcourt."

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Redskins365 Episode 1: The Future Starts Now

Redskins365 Episode 1: The Future Starts Now

Over the 2019 offseason, the Washington Redskins periodically released episodes to a new series called "Redskins 365". Here, viewers can get an all-access look into all the important moments leading up to the 2019-20 season. In episode 1 titled "The Future Starts Now" the Redskins begin their journey toward improvement following the conclusion of the 2018-19 campaign.

The episode begins immediately following the disappointing end to Washington's season as players participated in locker cleanout day. A somewhat somber atmosphere, the likes of Shaun Dion Hamilton, Adrian Peterson, Ryan Kerrigan and Trent Williams reflect on the season and look ahead to 2019.

Following that, it's on to the additions and changes on the coaching staff. Head coach Jay Gruden gives his thoughts on new defensive staff hirings Ray Horton and Rob Ryan as well as Kevin O'Connell's jump to offensive coordinator. Ryan and O'Connell also explain their excitement for next season in their respective roles.

With the coaching staff puzzle becoming clear, the episode transitions to the NFL Combine. Gruden along with Senior Vice President of Player Personnel Doug Williams, President Bruce Allen and Director of College Scouting Kyle Smith take you through the Combine process. Discussions about the interview process and what the Redskins are looking for in players give insight into how evaluations are done. 

The Combine portion has a heavy focus on players Kyler Murray, D.K. Metcalf and Montez Sweat among others. Released on March 20, one can see and hear from Sweat before the idea of him becoming a Redskin came to fruition and listen to Metcalf's thoughts on Jay Gruden.

Head Strength and Conditioning Coach Chad Englehart also makes an appearance, discussing his viral moment with Ed Oliver at the combine and the fraternity-type bond conditioning coaches in the NFL share.

Washington's journey toward success in 2019 began the moment the clock ran out on the 2018 season. Episode 1 of "Redskins365" picks up right in that preliminary stage.

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