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Updated Redskins offensive depth chart after Jamison Crowder's MRI, plus Trey Quinn news

Updated Redskins offensive depth chart after Jamison Crowder's MRI, plus Trey Quinn news

Nothing comes simple in the NFL, and for the Redskins offense, nothing comes easy either. The unit struggles to score, and the injuries continue to pile up on that side of the ball too. 

With a red-hot Texans team coming to FedEx Field this Sunday, the Washington offense will again be undermanned. 

Jay Gruden already ruled out six-time Pro Bowl left tackle Trent Williams for this week's matchup against Houston, and the coach said there was a "pretty good chance" Chris Thompson would miss the game as well. 

Expect the Redskins to roll out the same offensive line that played for most of the win against Tampa:

LT: Ty Nsekhe
LG: Jonathan Cooper
C: Chase Roullier
RG: Tony Bergstrom
RT: Morgan Moses

Just because the same starting five will take the field against Houston doesn't mean there hasn't been more upheaval on the Redskins offensive line. Rookie tackle Geron Christian injured his knee in temporary work against Tampa and is now out for the season. That means the Redskins third tackle for Houston will be Austin Howard, who was signed last week. 

More importantly, it means right now the Redskins are living on the edge. Literally. With Williams already ruled out, Washington only has three tackles on the roster for Sunday, and both Nsekhe and Moses were limited in Wednesday's practice and are playing through a number of injuries. 

While things seem one injury away from a dire situation on the O-line, the situation seems more fluid at wide receiver.

Rookie wide receiver Trey Quinn got moved to the active roster on Wednesday after news came out of another MRI for Jamison Crowder.

Quinn was injured in the season opener in Arizona and moved to injured reserve. He's missed the last eight games but could give the passing game a boost, especially because it sounds like Crowder will miss his sixth straight game.

Gruden revealed that Crowder had another MRI on his ankle "to make sure that we’re not putting too much work on him right now, make sure he gets healed. We don’t think it’s that far away but we do probably need to take a little more time."

Asked if Crowder could eventually land on the IR, ending his season, Gruden said, "we hope not."

Not having Thompson and Crowder are two huge losses for QB Alex Smith. Kapri Bibbs has been a solid stand-in for Thompson, but it's not the same. Quinn now has a chance to help in place of Crowder, and in turn, let Maurice Harris get back to working in outside. 

For Sunday's game against Houston, Josh Doctson will start and play the X receiver position. If Quinn can get up to speed quickly and work in the slot WR role on Sunday, then Harris will lineup opposite Doctson at the Z position. 

If there is any good news, or at least stable news, Alex Smith, Adrian Peterson, and Jordan Reed all seem healthy. In fact, Reed wasn't on Wednesday's injury report at all, and Peterson said he's beginning to "feel all the way healthy."

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It's not just Alex Smith - Derrius Guice also dealt with post-surgery infection

It's not just Alex Smith - Derrius Guice also dealt with post-surgery infection

During the last month, the average Redskin fan learned more about post-surgery infections than most football fans ever considered. 

The news surrounding Alex Smith's recovery from a broken leg has been upsetting, particularly that Smith has dealt with a serious infection and had to undergo multiple procedures to clean up the wound. Smith's situation was unique, he broke the tibia and fibula in his right leg, and the fracture wasn't clean

Still, alarming news emerged this week that Smith was not the only Redskins player to deal with post-surgery infection. 

Rookie Derrius Guice injured his knee in the preseason, ending his season and ruining a full offseason of momentum. Before he ever played a game, Guice became a fan favorite with his engaging enthusiasm. Then, he injured his knee in the preseason and was lost for the year. 

For many players, surgery is tough, but then rehab begins. 

For Guice - like Smith - that wasn't the case.

After his knee surgery, Guice suffered an infection that lasted two months and required three additional procedures, The Washington Post reported. That required seven weeks of antibiotics which included significant use of IVs, swelling, flu-like symptoms and having his knee drained. 

The experience forced Guice to stay in Louisiana for months, closer to Dr. James Andrews office in Gulf Breeze, Florida, and away from his Redskins teammates in Ashburn. 

Now, finally, Guice is feeling better and expects to be all the way back for offseason work in 2019. That's great news for the Redskins.

Guice was considered to be the focal point of the Washington offense before the knee injury in the preseason, and he's a running back with immense potential. 

On some level, however, it's quite alarming that both Smith and Guice suffered infections after major injuries. 

Smith's injury was grotesque enough that there were immediate worries of infection. Even with the advanced concern, the infection still came. 

Guice's injury was severe, but not like Smith. And still, the infection came. 

It would take a forensic medical team to compare the situations and figure out if there is something the Redskins need to address. That won't happen on this page. 

At the same time, however, what were the odds back in training camp that the Redskins' then starting quarterback and running back would not only need surgery on their leg, but both would suffer from post-op infection? 

Like many things with the Redskins' 2018 season, there seem to be more questions than answers. The good news, Guice should be back for 2019. As of now, the same can't be said for Smith. 

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How Redskins quarterback Josh Johnson is cramming for his first start in seven years

How Redskins quarterback Josh Johnson is cramming for his first start in seven years

REDSKINS PARK The surprise has worn off now and the work has begun in earnest for Josh Johnson, who will start his first NFL game in seven years when the Redskins play the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday.

That is not something he or the Redskins would have thought possible during the summer. Alex Smith was going to be the new starting quarterback and Colt McCoy was set to be his backup. Then Smith and McCoy sustained broken legs in a nine-day span last month and the unthinkable happened. 

Behind an offensive line decimated by injuries once again, Johnson at least moved the ball when called upon down 40-0 against the New York Giants on Sunday at FedEx Field. Redskins coach Jay Gruden immediately made the decision to give Johnson the start against Jacksonville. A career backup now on his 12th NFL organization will start for a team whose season has cratered during a four-game losing streak. 

Johnson says he’s ready and that his journey around the NFL is part of the reason why. The Redskins had an extended practice on Wednesday with scripted sessions and walk throughs at the beginning and end to get him comfortable with the offense. He’s familiar with Gruden thanks to their time together in Tampa Bay and Cincinnati, when Gruden was the offensive coordinator. But it’s a lot to cram into one week and the playbook will naturally be limited.      

"It has helped because I’ve been around a lot of different quarterbacks, a couple Super Bowl quarterbacks, a Hall of Fame quarterback, first-round picks, fifth-round picks,” Johnson said. “I’ve experienced coaching from numerous coaches and you pick up on some common traits. You pick up on different things where you can apply it when necessary whether it is preparation, performance, mental stability. Everything becomes a full circle, so it’s getting me ready for Sunday."

But prior to Sunday’s loss to the Giants, Johnson last threw a pass in a game on Dec. 11, 2011. Ironically, that came for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers against the Jaguars in a 41-14 loss. Johnson’s last start was the week before that in a 38-19 loss to the Carolina Panthers. 

Cam Newton was a rookie. So was Redskins linebacker Mason Foster, who was Johnson’s teammate that day, too, as a starting rookie linebacker for the Buccaneers. Johnson appeared in two more games with Tampa Bay and then began his journey around the NFL. 

His stops included Cleveland, Cincinnati and San Francisco twice each, Indianapolis, Buffalo, Baltimore, New York with both the Jets and the Giants, Houston, his hometown Oakland Raiders this past offseason and now the Redskins.

“The one thing that I really respect about Josh Johnson is he is a very confident guy,” Gruden said. “He believes in his ability to be a quarterback in the National Football League despite being on [12] teams. He has a skill set that’s pretty good but hasn’t been able to stick anywhere, but still, the game's not too big for him.” 

Indeed, Johnson came on with 5:31 left in the third quarter and his team down 40-0 against New York and completed 11 of 16 passes and had seven carries for 45 yards with a passing touchdown and a rushing touchdown plus two two-point conversions. He didn’t look nervous. 

With Washington’s situation at both left and right guard so disastrous because of injury, there isn’t much Gruden can do to change the playbook. Johnson’s mobility allows the Redskins to use him a little differently than Mark Sanchez, who originally took over for McCoy but struggled against New York and was benched.

Johnson is still grasping the new terminology, though. He was with Gruden in Cincinnati in 2013, a backup on a team that made the playoffs, but much of that wording was changed when Gruden arrived in Washington in 2014. But Jon Gruden – Jay’s brother and the Raiders’ head coach – once told Johnson to keep a manual on what coaches across the NFL are doing when he was between jobs so he’d be prepared if a call came. It did, but this time from a familiar face. They all hope it helps. 

“To come back and kind of experience a similar culture and being in something that I've been comfortable with before, it's kind of a blessing for me,” Johnson said. “Because I don’t really have to go through the rigors of a coach trying to figure me out. It's more of just figuring me in.”

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