Redskins safety Reed Doughty has been ruled out of Sunday’s game against the Denver Broncos.
Doughty suffered a concussion in last week’s game against the Chicago Bears. He had been listed as questionable after Friday’s practice at Redskins Park, but did not even travel with the team to Colorado.
That leaves Washington’s depth at safety in shambles heading into a game against quarterback Peyton Manning and the NFL’s top offense. Free safety Brandon Meriweather had already been suspended one game for a pair of illegal hits in the Chicago game.
That leaves a host of inexperience at the position. The safeties who will likely be active include Jose Gumbs, primarily a special teams player, rookie Bacarri Rambo, inactive the last three weeks, and Trenton Robinson, cut by Philadelphia on Oct. 8 and signed last week by Washington.
Jordan Pugh, who made the Redskins out of training camp, was cut to make room for Robinson. But he was brought back this week once it was clear Meriweather would be punished. It is likely reserve corner E.J. Biggers will shift to safety and start. He has seen limited action there this season.
“Oh, it’s difficult when we’ve got everybody, you know?,” cornerback Josh Wilson said early in the week before the status of Meriweather and Doughty was clear. “But if we don’t have Brandon, that could make it even tougher. But like I said, it’s the next guy up. You’ve got to be able to step up to the responsibility and win the job.”
It is a difficult blow for Doughty, who is a native of Greeley, Colo., played at Northern Colorado and has never played a game in Denver as an NFL player. But all week – he was limited in practice on Wednesday and Thursday and didn’t participate on Friday – Doughty said he would not let that affect his decision. His body would determine his status. There’s too much at stake beyond football.
Redskins coach Mike Shanahan said on Friday that Doughty needed to pass his remaining cognitive tests on Saturday to be cleared to play. That, obviously, didn’t happen. Washington’s team plane left for Denver on Saturday afternoon. Doughty watched the start of Friday’s practice in sweatpants and without a helmet as his team began final preparations for Sunday’s game in Denver.
“There’s a lot riding on this for me and the fact that family and friends are gonna come, but I’m also going to listen to my body and do something that’s best for this football team this week, that’s best for me and my future as well,” Doughty said.