Redskins running back Chris Thompson is coming along well in the healing process as he recovers from a broken fibula.
The leg will heal but the decline in the productivity of the Redskins offense after he went out for the season in Week 11 will remain on the record.
Last week he was out at Redskins Park with his right leg in a boot after having the cast removed the day before. He said that he had just started rehab and that he could be ready to participate in OTAs, which start in May. It should be noted that the Redskins tend to be very cautious about letting players who are coming off of injuries participate in much of anything before training camp.
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And that tends to go extra for very important players like Thompson. How valuable was Thompson? In the 10 games in which he played, the Redskins averaged 23.8 points per game. In five games without him, the average is 18.8. That five-point differential doesn’t really tell the whole story; the competition was much stronger when Thompson was playing. In their first 10 games, they played seven times against teams who are either in the playoffs or still alive for a spot going into Week 17 and they have played just one such team since.
How good a season was Thompson having? He had 510 yards receiving and 294 yards rushing in his 11 games. That’s the most receiving yards any Redskins running back has had in a season since Larry Centers got 600 in 2000. And since the 1970 merger only two other Redskins running backs, Joe Washington in 1981 and Clarence Harmon in 1980, have had at least 500 receiving yards and 290 rushing yards in a season.
Thompson will be 27 when next season starts so there is every reason to believe that he will come back with a strong 2018. Jay Gruden and everyone else associated with the Redskins’ offense sure hope that he does, for 16 games this time.