- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 28, 2016

RICHMOND — After Josh Doctson was unable to participate in organized team activities because of a left Achilles tendon strain, the Washington Redskins‘ rookie wide receiver did not appear overly concerned about the missed time.

The coaching staff, for that matter, did not seem so either. Doctson sustained the injury during rookie minicamp and then aggravated it in OTAs. In June, the 22nd overall draft pick said he was frustrated because he tried to play on it, but that “I’ll just look back at this moment and laugh. I’ll be all right.”

Now the injury appears to be more worrisome since Doctson was placed on the physically unable to perform list on Thursday. Left guard Shawn Lauvao, tight end Derek Carrier, inside linebacker Perry Riley Jr. and wide receiver Reggie Diggs were also placed on the list. Outside linebacker Junior Galette, who tore his right Achilles tendon working out last Sunday, was placed on the reserve/non-football injury list.

“I’m not really concerned because I know my body, and I’ve never really had lingering problems,” Doctson said on Thursday after the Redskins‘ walkthrough. “I heal fast. My first time really being injured was my senior year, and that was a broken wrist. I’ve had hamstrings and stuff like that, but I always heal up quick, so I’m not really worried about it.

A player can return from the PUP list at any time during the preseason but once they practice, they cannot go back on it. If a player begins the regular season on the list, they must sit out six weeks.



During OTAs, Doctson was limited to catching passes off to the side and didn’t participate in team or individual drills. Redskins coach Jay Gruden has maintained that Doctson has stayed sharp in meetings to learn the offense, but this is not the start Doctson had envisioned for his rookie season.


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The plan for now is to keep Doctson sidelined until the team is certain he is 100 percent.

“We weren’t very satisfied with the way his Achilles was coming along,” Gruden said. “He still had a lot of soreness in the morning when he’d wake up. We just want to try to get another treatment. I don’t think he’s very far away. We’re being probably more cautious right now because it is a significant deal. The Achilles for a wide receiver with his explosion, we want it to be 100 percent. We don’t want it to re-occur, so we’re trying to nip it in the bud right now.”

Lauvao is recovering from five total surgeries on his feet and legs after sustaining a lateral left ankle fracture in Week 3 last season. Gruden said on Thursday that Lauvao is “very close” to returning. He is expected to compete with Spencer Long for the starting left guard position.

“I feel good, just following what the team tells me,” Lauvao said. “Any time it comes to injury in this business, you want to err on the side of caution. I’m out here working, making sure I’m taking care of everything. I’m eager man, I’m hungry. It was frustrating to watch last season.”

 

Gruden said that he doesn’t have “a lot of concerns” and that Lauvao is likely to return to the field Saturday or Monday the latest. 

 

Carrier, who tore his right ACL and MCL in December is the least surprising of the group.

Riley, who broke a bone in his right foot in December also, was in a walking boot for the majority of OTAs, but was able to do some light running toward the end. The Redskins‘ inside linebacker echoed Lauvao’s sentiment. Riley said he feels like he should be ready to practice “in a couple of days,” but the team has held him back until they are certain he is ready to go.

“It’s frustrating, but at the same time I understand,” Riley said. “It’s probably the smartest thing to do, but me being a competitor and an athlete and football player, I want to get out here and play as soon as possible.”

After having the initial surgery in December, Riley tried to rush back for the Redskins‘ wild-card round game against the Green Bay Packers and the injury didn’t heal properly. He underwent a second procedure in February.

Diggs, a 6-foot-4 wide receiver who signed as an undrafted free agent out of Richmond, had arthroscopic knee surgery after rookie minicamp in May.

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