- The Washington Times - Friday, August 26, 2016

LANDOVER — Robert Kelley and Keith Marshall were expected to get the bulk of the carries in the Washington Redskins‘ 21-16 win against the Buffalo Bills on Friday night at FedEx Field with running backs Matt Jones and Chris Thompson out.

It was supposed to be a lengthy audition for the rookies who are vying for the third running back slot on the roster, but that quickly changed toward the end of the quarter. With 6:28 to play in the first quarter, Marshall rushed for a 3-yard gain and was tripped up. He landed hard and sprained his elbow, leaving the rest of the first-half carries to Kelley.

Kelley, who had been having a strong preseason, continued to do so by rushing for 51 yards on 12 carries.

Marshall’s injury underscored a bruising night for the Redskins. Outside linebacker Ryan Kerrigan, right tackle Morgan Moses, cornerback Quinton Dunbar and left guard Spencer Long all sustained injuries during the game.

Coach Jay Gruden said that Marshall and Kerrigan, who strained his groin on the opening series, will undergo MRI examinations on Saturday. 

On the Redskins‘ third offensive series, backup tackle Ty Nsekhe was at right tackle in place of Moses, who had a left ankle injury. Moses came back in for a series, but then left the game again. Dunbar injured his shin with 10:53 to go in the second quarter after recovering the football following Rashad Ross’ muffed punt. Both Moses and Dunbar are day to day, according to Gruden. In the third quarter, Long, who was playing center at the time, sprained his right ankle. He returned in the fourth quarter. 

Jones sprained his left shoulder against the New York Jets and was ruled out for the remainder of the preseason. Thompson has been “banged up” according to coach Jay Gruden and Friday’s absence was rest related. Defensive end Chris Baker also did not play and was resting, but does not have any serious injuries.

If Marshall’s injury keeps him out of the fourth and final preseason game, the Redskins‘ running back depth could be exceptionally thin. They also have Mack Brown, who rushed for 43 yards on 11 carries.

“We just have to do our best, spend a lot of time with Larry Hess, our trainer, and when they are right we need to protect them in practice,” Gruden said of the running back injuries. “But they need the reps somehow and that will be the biggest challenge, getting Matt back on the field in practice so we can get the looks he’s going to see against Pittsburgh [in Week 1].” 

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