Tuesday, August 14, 2012
Redskins to lean on defensive-line depth
By Dan Graziano
While the defending Super Bowl champion Giants are up in Albany dealing with all manner of injuries to their defensive-tackle rotation, down in Virginia the Washington Redskins got a bit of bad news of their own on that front. Nose tackle Chris Neild, who spent last year as Barry Cofield's backup but made a big splash in the opening game against the Giants, has a torn anterior cruciate ligament and will miss the season.
It's disappointing news for a Redskins team that plans to rely heavily on its defensive front as a strength this season, but if there's one place at which they are deep enough to weather a loss of a player, defensive line is probably it. With Cofield, Stephen Bowen and Adam Carriker as starters and the likes of Jarvis Jenkins and Chris Baker on the bench, the Redskins remain prepared to rotate several defensive linemen from play to play without wearing anyone down too much. Baker, in fact, has been such a revelation in the offseason and in training camp that he was already pushing Neild for playing time and maybe even a roster spot.
So as long as they don't start having a run on defensive-tackle injuries the way the Giants have, the Redskins should be OK at the position. It's just a shame for Neild, who showed some good things last year.