Jordan Reed and Barry Cofield expected to miss significant time

September 8, 2014

Washington is planning on being without Jordan Reed for some time. (Thomas B. Shea/Getty Images)

Redskins coach Jay Gruden said that nose tackle Barry Cofield is believed to have a high-ankle sprain, and that tight end Jordan Reed is nursing a “mild” hamstring strain. Both underwent MRI exams, but the extent of the findings weren’t known as of Monday afternoon. But Gruden is planning as if both starters will miss significant time.

“We’ll see how it goes with the trainer. It’ll probably be a week, or two, or three. We’ll see,” Gruden said.

Cofield sprained his ankle late in the first half and didn’t return. Reed strained his hamstring late in the first quarter. He also did not return.

Cofield wore a walking boot on Monday at Redskins Park but did not speak to reporters. Gruden said that he also has some soreness in his groin and that he possibly could be a candidate for the short-term injured reserve list, but that no decision has been made as of yet.

Barry Cofield, Johnny Manziel Barry Cofield pressures Johnny Manziel in the preseason. (Evan Vucci/Associated Press)

With Cofield sidelined, Chris Baker will slide over from left end to nose tackle, and Jarvis Jenkins will take over at end.

Gruden said he has confidence that Baker, a third-year pro, can get the job done.

“He finished the game at nose. Did a very good job at nose,” Gruden said of Baker. “Our depth is being tested a little bit on the defensive line.”

Reed’s injury robs the offense of one of its most versatile and explosive players. Durability also has been an issue for the second-year tight end, who appeared in only seven nine games last season and has been on the injury report for eight separate injuries since Washington selected him in the third round of the 2012 2013 draft.

“It’s very difficult. You have a lot of formations and part of your game plan designed around him – playing him outside, in the slot and all that when he goes out after the seventh play of offense, it hurts you a little bit,” Gruden said. “Luckily we had other things we could do. Didn’t do them very well, but we were able to do some other things. But he was a major part of the game plan, especially in the red zone.”

Niles Paul took on a larger role in the offense with Reed sidelined. Gruden said Washington would probably work out a few free agent tight ends this week. Logan Paulsen is the only other tight end on the roster.

Have a Redskins question? Send an e-mail to mike.jones@washpost.com with the subject line “Mailbag question,” and it might be answered on Tuesday in The Mailbag.

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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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Liz Clarke · September 8, 2014