Redskins’ offensive line might face more shuffling because of injuries

The Washington Redskins’ battered offensive line is dealing with more injuries, as left guard Maurice Hurt sat out Wednesday’s practice with a knee injury while right tackle Sean Locklear was limited because of a sprained ankle.

Hurt — drafted in the seventh round out of Florida State and a practice squad member at the start of the season — had started the last two games at left guard, where Kory Lichtensteiger opened the season as the starter. After Lichtensteiger suffered a season-ending knee injury in the fifth game of the season, Will Montgomery slid over from center to left guard for two games while Erik Cook stepped in at center.

In the same game that the Redskins lost Lichtensteiger, starting left tackle Trent Williams left with a high-ankle sprain, forcing Locklear to start the next two games at that spot. Then last week, with Jammal Brown going down with a groin injury against San Francisco, Locklear took over at right tackle, and started there last week.

Now the Redskins may have to do more revamping to an already revamped offense.

Options don’t abound, however. If Hurt can’t play, only Montgomery and Cook have experience playing guard, but Cook struggled at center and coaches seem reluctant to play him at guard. The only other tackles on the roster are Tyler Polumbus, who joined the team last week, and rookie Willie Smith, who hasn’t played a snap all season.

The practice squad roster includes guard Eric Olsen and no other linemen.

“We’re trying to decide that right now, what direction we’re going to go,” Redskins Coach Mike Shanahan said. “We have a couple of options that we’re messing around with, and obviously we’re not going to share all of those options. But we’re going to try to come up with the best formula to give us the best chance to win.”

The injuries only exacerbate the problems in the run game, where Washington has lacked any sort of consistent production in the last five games.

“That’s definitely the biggest factor,” Shanahan said of the lack of continuity on the offensive line. “An offensive line has got to work together as a unit. If you don’t work as a unit, it’s hard to get everything down.”

In the Tailgate Zone: Coach Mike Shanahan hasn’t won as many games in D.C. as even Jim Zorn. How patient should owner Dan Snyder be with his coach?

Mike Jones covers the Washington Redskins for The Washington Post. When not writing about a Redskins development of some kind – which is rare – he can be found screaming and cheering at one of his kids’ softball, baseball, soccer or basketball games.

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