Fans in Washington are still reeling from the team’s Week 5 loss to New Orleans.
The most frustrating part of the defeat? Washington had full control of the game. They won the time of possession battle in convincing fashion, tallied more first downs, and committed fewer penalties.
To make matters worse, Washington saw a few more big-name players leave the game due to injury. This marks the second straight game the Football Team has endured poor mid-game injury luck, though Week 4 was much worse.
The two most noteworthy injuries? That would be Sam Cosmi, who left with an ankle injury, and Curtis Samuel, who re-aggravated his groin injury.
With regard to Samuel, Ron Rivera acknowledged in his postgame presser that the speedy wideout is “week-to-week” with the injury.
We can only imagine how outraged fans are that Samuel can’t stay healthy. Seeing that he can’t shake this groin issue, should Washington consider shutting down the former second-round pick for the season?
Should Washington shut down Curtis Samuel for the season?
We have no joy tackling this subject, but it’s a fair question.
What exactly is the plan with Samuel? He played five snaps on Sunday before he was shut down. He was activated off injured reserve after missing months with the groin injury … then was limited to individual drills at practice leading up to Week 5. Then he was deemed healthy enough to be active, but couldn’t finish the game. How long does Washington keep doing the same song and dance?
Samuel’s groin clearly isn’t healing. It’s been lingering since the spring (four months) and caused him to miss all of training camp and the first three games of the season. We were shocked he was activated for Week 4, and it’s looking like that was a mistake, as Washington had a 21-day window to promote him to the active roster from IR. Why not exercise as much of that window as possible before drawing a more firm conclusion on his health?
It’s not like Samuel was a focal part of the game plan in Week 4. He played just 25 of a possible 67 snaps, or 37%. He managed four catches for just 19 yards in the game. Was it really necessary for him to be active? In hindsight, probably not, especially when you consider that the offense had been humming without him.
What does that even mean, Rivera? If you had to play Samuel more than you wanted to last week, he shouldn’t have been active. Period. It’s not that complicated.
The second-year head coach obviously couldn’t have foreseen Dyami Brown’s and Cam Sims’ injuries against the Falcons, but it was still a gamble to have Samuel out there, and it seems to have backfired.
How could Washington justify “wasting” a roster spot for a player who’s going to be week-to-week? Shutting him down for the season — or the foreseeable future — so his groin can heal up feels like the smart move.
Samuel signed a three-year, $34.5 million deal with Washington in the offseason, so he’s clearly an imperative part of the team’s future. Why run the risk of a potential long-term injury (or longer-term) by keeping him on the 53-man roster when he might not even be fully healthy for the rest of the year?