After the Washington Redskins' first training camp practice, coach Mike Shanahan told reporters that right tackle Jammal Brown had been placed on the physically unable to perform list due to his recurring hip injury. Rich Campbell of the Washington Times reports via Twitter that Brown's hip tightened up on him Wednesday and that he will have an MRI.
This is distressing first-day news for the Redskins for a couple of reasons. First, an offseason of yoga and other new training was supposed to have resolved Brown's hip problems, and the Redskins were counting on him coming to camp healthy. And second, they really don't have any good options to replace him.
The Redskins looked at tackles during free agency, bringing in Demetress Bell when his name was Demetrius and before the Eagles signed him to be their left tackle in the wake of the Jason Peters injury. But they didn't sign anyone, and as of minicamp last month their hope was that Brown would be healthy enough to start for them.
What they do have going for them is that the season is still six weeks away, and this is a problem that could blow over. But because it's Brown, and because it's the hip, there's a here-we-go-again feel to it. The best thing they can say about potential replacements Willie Smith and Tyler Polumbus is that they got some experience late last year when Brown was hurt and left tackle Trent Williams was suspended, so they're a little more prepared to step into the zone-blocking scheme than they were a year ago. They also have former Buccaneers tackle James Lee, a five-year veteran, in camp, and they like sixth-round draft pick Tom Compton, though he's a rookie and likely a long-term project.
Basically, if Brown is hurt, the Redskins start the season with their offensive line a bigger question mark than it already was. And considering that they have a very pricey rookie quarterback to protect and that their run game depends on the cohesive blocking schemes of the line, this is no small issue.