Point-Counterpoint: Will injuries sink the Redskins?

Point-Counterpoint: Will injuries sink the Redskins?
October 28, 2011, 1:07 pm
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By Rich Tandler and Ryan OHalloran
Redskins Insiders
CSNwashington.comA few weeks ago, we were debating whether or not the Redskins truly were the NFC East favorite. Now today, we are debating whether or not they can be relevant to even the wild card picture going into November.Things change in a hurry in the NFL losing five offensive starters to injuries in a two-game span (three for the season) will do that. Can the Redskins overcome the loss of players, right the ship and piece together a respectable season? Or should we all just start studying quarterbacks who will be available in the top 10 in draft? Rich Tandler and Ryan OHalloran debate that in this weeks edition of Point-Counterpoint.Rich Tandler: Injuries do not have to kill a teams season. The Packers had 14 players on injured reserve last year, meaning they had to make and distribute more than a dozen extra Super Bowl rings. The big difference between the Pack and the Redskins (besides Aaron Rodgers) is Green Bay has been drafting depth for years while the succession planning concept is fairly new in D.C. But there is some depth on this team and I want to see guys like Niles Paul, Terrence Austin, Leonard Hankerson and Roy Helu play in expanded roles before I say that there is no way that the Redskins can win with these guys.Ryan OHalloran: The Redskins are just about finished. This weeks game against Buffalo is pretty much their Alamo. Lose and theyre 3-4, are running out of players and have the toughest part of their schedule still ahead of them. The depth on this years roster is better than 2010, but its still not at the point where they can sustain season-ending (or lengthy) injuries to key players. In a few years, after a couple of full drafts, perhaps. But not now. The storyline of this season come December could be that the Redskins should have drafted a quarterback so he could be ready to start the 2012 opener.Tandler: Two years ago nobody thought the Redskins had depth behind Chris Cooley when he went down with a broken foot. That was until Fred Davis, previously known best for sleeping through a wake-up call, came through with a strong performance in his place. Last year everyone was worried about the post-Clinton Portis era until Ryan Torain came in at running back and averaged 4.5 yards a carry. Depth pops up in response to a need. The Redskins could have enough to hang on, but we wont know until they take the field on Sunday and beyond.OHalloran: It will be stunning if the Redskins match last years win total of six. The injuries have already taken a toll and now back-ups are being asked to do things they havent had to do before in the NFL and some of them may get hurt, too. The scary part for the Redskins is they have 10 games remaining so more injuries could happen and when a team starts scraping the third and fourth spots on the depth chart for starters, then theyre in trouble.You can reach Ryan OHalloran by email at rohalloran@comcastsportsnet.com and you can email Rich Tandler atRTandlerCSN@comcast.net . Follow Ryan on Twitter @ryanohalloran and follow Rich @Rich_Tandler.