Commanders’ Ron Rivera reveals when Chase Young will return to practice
By Jerry Trotta
The Washington Commanders are winners of two straight, but their defense has quietly been steadily improving over the last month. The defensive line is a huge reason for that, and the unit could welcome its most talented player back to the fold in the coming days as Chase Young is nearing a return to practice.
On Sunday, Young met with Dr. James Andrews for a check-up on his surgically-repaired knee. According to Ron Rivera, everything went well and the head coach revealed after Sunday’s win over Green Bay that it’s “more than likely” Washington opens Young’s 21-day return window from injured reserve on Wednesday.
From there, Young will have 21 days to get promoted to the active roster or he’ll spend the remainder of the season on injured reserve.
That … isn’t going to happen.
Unfortunately, though, Young won’t make his season debut against the Colts this weekend. After initially planning to open Young’s return clock on Wednesday, Washington is taking a cautious approach with its former second overall pick.
It’s disappointing given the excitement that followed Young’s meeting with Dr. Andrews, but it’s not like Young suffered a setback. In fact, the delay will only last a few days, with the former Defensive Rookie of the Year expected back at practice next week, as Rivera told reports on Thursday.
Commanders’ Chase Young will return to practice next week, per Ron Rivera.
"“Only because he really hasn’t done the football conditioning aspect of it, I would say the chances right now [of Young playing Sunday] are very slim,” Rivera said about why Young won’t play in Week 8. “And again, we want to be fair to the kid. We want to make sure the conditioning is right and that he can do all the football things he’s gonna need to do, because the last thing you want to do is get him out there too early.”"
As much as we all want Young out there, there’s no sense rushing him back when he’s seemingly one week away from returning.
Even when Young is activated, we’d expect Washington to have him on a pitch count as he works his way back into shape. While a physical specimen and chiseled like a greek god, there’s a difference between being in shape and game shape. Odds are it takes Young a few weeks to get his stamina back up to speed.
Caveats aside, this is massive news for the Commanders. Jon Allen, Daron Payne and Montez Sweat have been doing yeoman’s work in Young’s absence this season. Through seven games, the trio has combined for 70 pressures, 12 sacks, 20 quarterback hits, 38 hurries and 53 defensive stops, according to PFF.
And to think Young is on the verge of rejoining them.
Again, don’t expect to see Young on the field even next weekend. Who knows? Maybe he’s so eager to play that the coaching staff gives him a few snaps. Either way, a Week 10 return against Houston is definitely in the cards in light of Thursday’s news.
Start the countdown, folks. No. 99’s season debut is officially loading.