Chase Young Injury Update: Is Washington set to be without their star pass rusher?

What is the latest on Chase Young's injury after the second-year defensive end left Sunday's game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers?

Former No. 2 overall pick Chase Young is done for the season due to a knee injury. An MRI on the Washington Football Team edge defender’s injured right knee confirmed that he tore his ACL in Sunday’s win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, coach Ron Rivera announced Monday.

Chase Young is out for the season with an ACL injury

Young’s knee buckled when he engaged Buccaneers left tackle Donovan Smith while rushing the passer Sunday afternoon. Medical personnel had to essentially carry Young off the field — he later appeared on WFT’s sideline on crutches.

A torn ACL can only be repaired surgically, and the typical rehab window is roughly 11 months, meaning Young might not be physically ready for the 2022 season opener. He will almost certainly miss Washington’s OTAs and minicamps, and it wouldn’t at all be a surprise if he is on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list when WFT’s 2022 training camp opens in a little over eight months.

Will Young make a full recovery?

With any reconstructive surgery, there’s at least some risk Young won’t be the same player when he does return. A 2017 study published in The American Journal of Sports Medicine found that defensive players who “successfully returned [from ACL reconstructive sugery] were above-average NFL players before their injury but comparatively average after their return.”

Young is statistically an above-average player, but he hasn’t been a great one. In 24 games since Washington selected him with the second overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft, Young has recorded 9 sacks, 37 pressures, and 16 quarterback hits. Still just 22 years old, there was hope that Young would blossom with experience. But that plan has been put on hold for at least the next nine months.

Who will step up for Washington?

With Young out, expect to see more of James Smith-Williams and Casey Toohill, WFT’s primary backups on their depth chart. Toohill had 4 tackles in Week 10. Smith-Williams played 38 of a possible 48 snaps against the Buccaneers but had just 1 tackle.

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