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Redskins RB Hightower has torn ACL; WR Moss out 5-7 weeks

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Posted Oct. 24, 2011 @ 3:04 p.m. ET
By PFW staff

Updated Oct. 24, 2011 @ 7:42 p.m. ET

Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan confirmed Monday that RB Tim Hightower suffered a torn ACL in Sunday's loss to the Panthers and will miss the rest of the season.

WR Santana Moss underwent surgery on his fractured hand and will miss 5-7 weeks.

Hightower tore his ACL in thie third quarter. He had rushed for 88 yards on 17 carries before the injury. He is the team's leading rusher with 321 yards.

Moss has 25 catches for 301 yards and two touchdowns this season. The Redskins play the Bills in Toronto in Week Eight.


The way we see it

Things have gone from bad to worse in Washington, as the Redskins are making their hot start look like a fluke. Hightower looked like a great offseason acquisition. Luckily for Washington, there is depth with RBs Ryan Torain and Roy Helu, but there is a reason Hightower got the bulk of the carries. He also had 10 catches.

With Moss out, WRs Jabar Gaffney, Anthony Armstrong and rookies Niles Paul and Leonard Hankerson will have to step up. TE Fred Davis leads the team in receiving and opponents will start zeroing in on him.


PFW fantasy spin

Hightower's loss is a fantasy owner's gain. Removing him from the equation makes life easier for us. It leaves Ryan Torain as the starter. Torain has been a bust since his breakout Week Four game (19-135-1) and has a two-game total of 12-17-0. His opponents were the Eagles and Panthers, two of the worst defenses at stopping opposing running backs. Regardless, he'll be the one likely to shoulder the load, with Roy Helu backing him. Helu is a watch-list player, as he's averaging only 4.5 attempts for 21.8 yards and zero TDs.

The team will increase the playing time of WRs Anthony Armstrong and Jabar Gaffney, but the question remains whether Gaffney is good enough to handle the role of a No. 1 receiver. We don't know, but we don't think he can. Because of that and the limited talent that Armstrong and Gaffney can offer, QB John Beck or Rex Grossman will lean on TE Fred Davis as the outlet or check-down receiver.

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