LANDOVER, Md. (CBSDC/AP) — Washington Redskins punt returner Richard Crawford is out for the season with a left knee injury.
Coach Mike Shanahan said Crawford tore the lateral collateral ligament in his knee and possibly the anterior cruciate ligament in Saturday’s 30-7 win over the Buffalo Bills.
Crawford, a seventh-round draft from Southern Methodist, was injured on a 3-yard punt return in the first quarter.
The 23-year-old won the job as punt returner in midseason 2012 after the team benched an unproductive Brandon Banks. He returned eight punts for 156 yards in 2012, including a 64-run return that set up the winning field goal in an overtime win over the Baltimore Ravens.
Rookie Chris Thompson took over the punt return duties after Crawford left Saturday’s game and perhaps bolstered his chances of playing in September, but isn’t counting on immediately being awarded the job.
“We still have a bunch of other guys back there,” said Thompson. “Whoever coach feels is the best man to go back there I’m fine with it.”
Thompson says he hasn’t returned punts since he was a senior in high school, but says he felt “real comfortable” in the role this weekend.
Head coach Mike Shanahan said the rookie did well in the role, adding the team still has “a couple options.”
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