For the first time in his NFL career, Redskins running back Chris Thompson will hit the open free-agent market this winter. And his future with Washington has never been bleaker.
Adrian Peterson, the team's leading rusher, is still under contract through next season. Derrius Guice, albeit three knee injuries in two years, has shown plenty of promise when on the field and is still under contract for two more seasons. Bryce Love, Washington's fourth-round pick in 2019, should be fully recovered from an ACL injury he suffered in December of 2018 when he was at Stanford. Even with Guice absent from the lineup last week, Thompson only had two touches against Philadelphia.
"Obviously, with [Derrius] Guice going down, I thought I'd have some opportunities," Thompson told The Sports Junkies. "You know the game plan, and coaches wanted to go a different direction with that. I'm just rolling with it as it goes."
With a crowded running back room in Washington in 2020, there's no guarantee Thompson returns to the Burgundy and Gold in 2020.
"At this point, I really don't know what's going to happen," Thompson said about his future.
Just two years ago, Thompson was arguably the most valuable weapon in the Redskins offense. Specializing as a pass-catching back, Thompson finished with a career-high 510 receiving yards and six total touchdowns in 2017 in just 10 games.
But durability has been an issue for Thompson. No. 29 played in just 20 of a possible 32 games from 2017-2018 while dealing with multiple injuries. Earlier this season, Thompson injured his toe against Miami, which forced him to miss five games.
Despite being sidelined multiple times in his career, Thompson believes he's just as healthy and talented as ever.
"I'm only 29. I'm not falling apart. I hurt my toe; I didn't break my leg or anything like that," Thompson said. "I just hurt my toe, and it happened to linger on longer than the doctors expected. But I'm not done. I'm still the guy I've been the last four years, regardless of what it may look like or what some people may think. I'm still that guy. I can still play. I have all the confidence in myself."
Washington is 3-11 and will miss the playoffs or its fourth straight year. The organization will in all likelihood have a new head coach in 2020, with the possibility of a new team president as well.
Thompson understands that the Redskins have major organizational decisions to make in the coming weeks, knowing that those decisions can directly impact his future with the only team he's ever played for.
"I'm just kind of waiting to see what happens and how everything folds out. There's obviously a lot of things that are going to change," Thompson said. "Figuring out the coaching situation and all that. I think when you get a new coach and maybe bringing some other new people in, or bringing in some new staff period, they're going to have opinions on stuff as well as who they want to keep, who they want to let go and stuff like that. It's really just a waiting game at this point."
At age 29, Thompson believes he has plenty of football still left in him. He remains one of the best pass-catching running backs in the league and has contributed on special teams in the past, too. If the Redskins don't retain his services, the running back is confident someone else will give him another chance.
"I know who I am as a player. I feel like there's going to be some need, and some teams may have some value out there for me, who knows?" Thompson said. "I may end up coming back here. This is my first time being in the situation, so it's kind of hard to talk about."
Washington's Week 16 contest against the Giants will be the Redskins final home game of 2019. Thompson can't help but wonder whether when he leaves FedEx Field on Sunday if that'll be the last time he leaves that stadium as a member of the Redskins.
"Just thinking about it, this week could be my last home game playing here, and I've been here for seven years," Thompson said. "It's those types of things that I think about because I love being here with these players and the fans and everything. That's the part of the business that sucks."
MORE REDSKINS NEWS: