The Washington Redskins are optimistic that Robert Griffin III will return this season. Less clear is how much more Griffin can take before the “injury-prone” label supersedes anything else he accomplishes in his NFL career.
An MRI exam Monday revealed that Griffin doesn’t have any broken bones to go along with his dislocated left ankle, which means he doesn’t need season-ending surgery and could theoretically return in a couple of months if all goes well with his rehab. Kirk Cousins will be the starting quarterback for much — if not all — of the rest of the year.
“This game, we only get to play it for such a short period of time,” safety Ryan Clark said, “so, for me, it’s more just being sad for Rob. The football part of it goes on. The game? The NFL ain’t never missed a play. They’re going to keep playing no matter who’s in those jerseys.”
Griffin was hurt when his left ankle planted awkwardly into the turf during the first quarter of Sunday’s 41-10 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars.
His MRI results will be sent to a specialist for further analysis, and Coach Jay Gruden said he won’t have a timetable for Griffin’s return until the leg has been in a cast for a few weeks.
Drug policy changes near finalization
The NFL and the players’ union are close to finalizing the drug policy changes they tentatively agreed upon last week.
Union spokesman George Atallah told the Associated Press on Monday that the “drug policies are currently getting finalized.” League and NFL Players Assn. attorneys and officials are reviewing the documents and could approve them this week.
One key element is how the changes affect players currently under suspension, including Denver receiver Wes Welker (four games) and Browns receiver Josh Gordon (entire season). Their bans would be reduced, and the union wants to see that happen before Week 3 games are played.
Bears’ Tillman out for season
Chicago Bears cornerback Charles Tillman will sit out the remainder of the season after tearing his right triceps.
The Bears placed the two-time Pro Bowl player on injured reserve Monday. Tillman came up clutching his arm in pain in the third quarter of Sunday’s win at San Francisco after he got tangled with the 49ers’ Michael Crabtree during a run along the sideline by Colin Kaepernick.
He was seen weeping on the sideline.
Tillman suffered a similar injury against Detroit last November. The Bears left open the possibility of a comeback by placing him on IR with a designation to return, but he wound up missing the remainder of the season.
This time, there’s no doubt — Tillman is finished for the year. Whether he has played his final game for the Bears or in the NFL remains to be seen.
He’s 33, in his 12th season and operating on a one-year contract so his future already was up in the air.
Miami Dolphins running back Knowshon Moreno is expected to be sidelined for at least a month because of a left elbow injury, and the team has re-signed Daniel Thomas to shore up the position. …A person familiar with the situation says New Orleans Saints running back Mark Ingram has a broken hand. … Arizona Coach Bruce Arians says outside linebacker John Abraham will return to the Cardinals on Tuesday. Abraham left the team last Tuesday after sustaining a concussion in the Cardinals’ season-opening victory over San Diego. Arians had said that Abraham was contemplating retirement, wondering whether he still has the fire to play the game. … New York Giants cornerback Walter Thurmond is going to miss the remainder of the season because of a torn pectoral muscle. … The San Diego Chargers say running back Ryan Mathews has a sprained medial collateral ligament in his right knee. Coach Mike McCoy won’t say how much time Mathews is expected to miss, other than “he’ll be out for a little bit of time.” … The Jacksonville Jaguars will be without versatile tight end Marcedes Lewis for six to eight weeks because of an ankle injury. … Washington Redskins safety Brandon Meriweather has returned from his two-game suspension for a helmet-to-helmet hit. … A person familiar with the deal says the Oakland Raiders have reached an agreement to sign free-agent receiver Vincent Brown. The Raiders waived linebacker Bojay Filimoeatu. … Gruden said Redskins wide receiver DeSean Jackson, who also Sunday’s game in the first quarter, has a Grade 1 sprain of the AC joint in the left shoulder. … Panthers Coach Ron Rivera isn’t sure whether Greg Hardy will play Sunday night against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Rivera also said Monday that the team hasn’t considered releasing the Pro Bowl defensive end who is involved in a domestic violence case. He added that Hardy will continue to practice and attend team meetings, but the coach won’t make a decision on when Hardy plays until later this week. … San Francisco 49ers Coach Jim Harbaugh insisted Monday that public pressure will not sway his decision to play Ray McDonald during an investigation into the defensive lineman’s arrest on suspicion of domestic violence.