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After Derrius Guice injury, it's not time for Redskins fans to hit the panic button

After Derrius Guice injury, it's not time for Redskins fans to hit the panic button

Bad news hit Redskins fans on Friday afternoon when the word emerged that Derrius Guice would miss the season with a torn ACL. 

The news is sad, undeniably, as Guice offered a charismatic personality off the field and a dynamic talent on the field. 

The news, however, is not cause for panic.

Guice looked like the best running back on the Redskins roster during training camp in Richmond. He has speed and size, moves to go with a patient run style.

Still, this is a player that had never produced in the NFL. 

Last season, the Redskins won seven games despite the worst injury situation in the NFL. Rob Kelley and Chris Thompson played a combined 17 games, out of 32 possible, and Samaje Perine led the team with 603 rush yards.

The run game was bad, but it didn't start that way. In their first four games, Washington rushed for more than 100 yards three times. In a Week 2 win over the Rams, the Redskins piled up a very impressive 229 rush yards.

Then, the injuries mounted. Kelley went down and so did members of the offensive line. 

The point isn't to make light of the Redskins run struggles in 2017. The team averaged just 3.6 yards-per-carry, and was terrible on third down and short-yardage situations. 

Guice could have helped. That is obvious. 

The point, however, is that Washington can still win games without Guice. No matter how impressive the rookie looked in Richmond, it was no sure thing he would produce in the NFL. And it's equally not a sure thing that the Burgundy and Gold will have the same injury struggles, or run game struggles, in 2018. 

With a healthy offensive line, there is a data sample that shows a combination of Thompson, Kelley and Perine can produce on the ground. The mobility of Alex Smith should help the ground game as well. 

Losing Guice stings, no doubt, but it doesn't mean the Redskins 2018 season has sunk before it even begins. 

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Redskins teammates defend Mason Foster after his critical Instagram messages are leaked

Redskins teammates defend Mason Foster after his critical Instagram messages are leaked

For yet another week at Redskins Park, members of the team were forced to face non-football questions despite still being in the mix for a playoff spot.

This time around, the topic at hand was Mason Foster. On Tuesday, private messages between the linebacker and another Instagram user were leaked, and in those messages, Foster was critical of the Redskins and their fans. 

In the locker room on Wednesday, though, multiple players backed Foster and vouched for his character.

"All I know is what I see from him everyday, and I have nothing but good things to say about him as far as a teammate and a person," Jonathan Allen, who explained that he hardly pays attention to social media during the season and didn't see the Foster exchange, said.

"He's actually my favorite guy in the locker room," Vernon Davis said. "I'm sure he was just in the heat of the moment and he didn't really mean what he said... We all have moments where we're frustrated and stressed."

Foster wasn't available to reporters Wednesday. In the messages, he wrote in part, "F— this team and this fanbase." He also referenced that he's made out to be a "scapegoat," which doesn't sit well with him.

Like Davis, Adrian Peterson figured No. 54 was venting to the person and there wasn't anything more to read into it than that.

"I didn't think it was that big of a deal," Peterson said. "He's one guy that I haven't questioned his effort at all on the field this year. I'm sure he regrets it now, now that everyone knows about what he was saying privately."

"But it doesn't change anything for me," he added. "When he's out there, he's giving 110-percent."

Foster becomes just the latest defender to stir up controversy. DJ Swearinger, Zach Brown and Josh Norman have all been at the center of issues, too, as the unit is deteroriating both on and off the field with the season nearing its conclusion.

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Zach Brown sees 'writing on the wall' and expects to leaves Redskins after the season

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USA Today Sports

Zach Brown sees 'writing on the wall' and expects to leaves Redskins after the season

Last season, fans loved Zach Brown. They clamored for the team to re-sign him this offseason and let the tackling machine do his thing in the middle of the Redskins defense. 

Things appear to have changed. 

He got benched last week during the 40-16 blowout loss to the Giants after missing a few days of practice with an illness. For Brown, that was a clear message. 

"I'm just sitting here just doing what I'm supposed to be doing 'till it's time for me to leave," Brown said Wednesday. "You see the writing on the wall. It is what it is. Just here now I just got to contribute to the team and help us get to the playoffs."

Time for him to leave?

That's an eye-catching quote from Brown, who was the biggest defensive signing the Redskins made in the 2018 offseason. Not to mention he was heading towards a Pro Bowl selection in 2017 before injury ended his season with three games remaining. 

The Redskins signed Brown to a three-year, $21 million deal in March. He got more than $5 million this season, but should the Redskins release Brown after the season, the team would save $5.75 million and take a $3 million cap hit. 

The Redskins started rookie Shaun Dion Hamilton in Brown's spot last week against the Giants, and head coach Jay Gruden hinted that Hamilton will continue to get more work in a recent interview on the Redskins Talk podcast. 

"It's been very frustrating. You get benched and it's not like you get a reason or anything for," Brown said. "Just got to keep doing things, just got to keep practicing. You've just got to just stay ready. But at the same time it's frustrating. It's frustrating on anybody to get benched and you not know the reason."

On the season, Brown has 80 tackles and two forced fumbles. 

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