Injuries to Trent Williams, Brandon Scherff highlight Redskins' health issues

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For the Washington Redskins, the pain of losing to the Philadelphia Eagles was bad enough, but it won't linger. The pain from the injuries suffered during the game might. The Redskins are dealing with multiple injury issues as they prepare for Sunday's game against the Dallas Cowboys.

Considering the Redskins are 3-3 -- and 0-2 in the NFC East -- Sunday's game is vital. And with their bye week done, the Redskins don't have the ability to rest players without them missing a game.

The offensive line, in particular, is hurting, with four of the five starters and the top backup dealing with injuries. Redskins coach Jay Gruden said it impacted his playcalling Monday, and he went with more bootlegs and rollouts to avoid having Kirk Cousins sitting in the pocket.

Here's a look at the injuries and their impact:

Tackle Trent Williams

The injury: A bad right knee that will require surgery to repair ligament damage whenever he stops playing this season. He suffered the injury in Week 3 against the Kansas City Chiefs but has yet to miss a game. He hasn't practiced the past two weeks and has entertained taking a week or two off to see if it helps.

The impact: Until Ty Nsekhe returns, the Redskins would have to use T.J. Clemmings if Williams can't play. As of now, Gruden clearly has been reluctant to do so. Williams can still play at a rather high level, which is remarkable. There are times on run blocks when it appears his leg might be an issue, when he needs more strength to either hold off a backside pursuer or to seal his man inside, or if there is a sudden change in direction.

"Very limited movement," Williams said. "It's extremely tough playing the position where movement is key. I've got guys coming right down the middle, and you don't have the base you're accustomed to having, so you have to try and find different ways to get the job done. It's tough."

Guard Brandon Scherff

The injury: A Grade 2 MCL sprain of his right knee and a sore back. Gruden said he hasn't yet ruled him out for Sunday. Players sometimes miss multiple games with the injury; others have been able to play. The Redskins are holding out hope for the latter.

The impact: If Scherff can't play, then the Redskins start shifting pieces around. They can use rookie Chase Roullier at guard and keep Spencer Long at center. Or they can insert Roullier at center, his more natural spot, and move Long to guard. Or they could start rookie Tyler Catalina, returning from a concussion. Regardless, there's a downgrade with Scherff playing at a Pro Bowl level. His ability to block in space on screens is a big help as well.

Tackle Morgan Moses

The injury: He's dealing with two sprained ankles and has also dealt with other aches and pains throughout the first six games. Moses has quietly built a reputation for being able to play through a lot. He's considered day-to-day. The good news for Washington is that Moses' issues aren't long term.

The impact: With Williams ailing, they need Moses to stay healthy enough to keep playing. If for some reason he can't go, then Clemmings or Catalina would take his place Sunday. Moses has done a solid job this season, so there's a natural dropoff.

Center Spencer Long

The injury: Knee/quad tendinitis. Gruden said Long was "pretty sore" Tuesday. It caused him to miss five snaps Monday night, but he did finish the game. They'll have a better feel for Long's status when they resume practice Thursday.

The impact: Roullier was impressive during the summer, so if he must play he shouldn't be overwhelmed. Handling protection calls, a major part of a center's job, will be crucial. Roullier showed an ability to anchor well in pass protection. There's a chance Washington would be forced to start rookies at center and guard if Catalina has to start at guard. That's not ideal, though the likelihood of that actually happening is uncertain.

Tackle Ty Nsekhe

The injury: Core muscle injury. He was originally scheduled to miss three to six weeks. Nsekhe was hurt in Week 3, so he's still in that timeframe. He did jog during pregame warmups Monday, a good sign. And he worked on a side field in practice late last week, another step. But Gruden said Tuesday that Nsekhe wasn't yet "ready to go."

The impact: Had Nsekhe been available, the Redskins might have rested Williams against the 49ers or Eagles. They trust Nsekhe and would be fine with him starting if needed.

Corner Josh Norman

The injury: Fractured rib. Gruden said Tuesday that he expects Norman to practice this week. He was limited last week, then did not practice Saturday and did not play Monday. He's missed two games.

The impact: Quinton Dunbar has played well in his absence, so it's hard to say the defense has struggled minus Norman, or that they lost Monday because he was out. Norman had been playing well in the first four games; he helps against the run, and his ability to play multiple looks helps. However, Monday's game was not about corner play. But you always want one of your best players available, so his return will provide a boost.

Defensive lineman Jonathan Allen

The injury: He suffered a Lisfranc injury against San Francisco and is out for at least eight weeks and possibly the rest of the season.

The impact: Washington started Ziggy Hood as its nickel tackle alongside Matt Ioannidis. Hood also plays nose tackle in their base front, so it's easy to get worn down facing double teams. His snap count didn't jump (it was 36 compared to 42 the previous game). Allen was providing a quality push in the middle, working well with Ioannidis. The Redskins used an occasional look on third-and-long with only one defensive lineman (Terrell McClain) and three outside linebackers as pass-rushers. They also used second-year Anthony Lanier on eight snaps. It was his first action of the season. The Redskins miss Allen, as you would expect when a talented first-round pick goes down.