Teams plan, football laughs.
The Washington Football Team spent significant dollars and most of its offseason servicing the notion that Ryan Fitzpatrick would be the answer at quarterback this season. It was settled law in Ashburn. The rightness or wrongness of the decision to not move up in the draft for one of the many young quarterback prospects in the first round in April, or to make a big deal for a veteran, was no longer daily talk-radio fodder. Fitzpatrick, 38, was the guy.
That lasted less than a half.
After Charles Leno Jr. got beat badly to the inside by Chargers linebacker Uchenna Nwosu, and Nwosu delivered a teeth-chattering, second-quarter, blindside hit on Fitzpatrick, “Fitzmagic” was snuffed out. And it will likely be dark for some time, with the NFL Network reporting that Fitzpatrick has a hip subluxation. A subluxation is a partial dislocation of a joint; a full hip dislocation usually, at minimum, requires a two- to three-month recovery. A partial dislocation, or subluxation, isn’t likely to heal by Thursday against the Giants. We’ll all know more after an MRI exam Monday.
In the interim, with a “full” 16-game season starting Thursday against New York after Sunday’s opening 20-16 loss to the Chargers, and the expected starter out of uniform for a while, the question sits there, ready to be begged:
Not really ever, but certainly not at least until Newton shows up for work with a legit vaccination card. (It would help as well if he could do a news conference without a hole in his hat, but I get that high fashion is not for people my age. At first, I thought he had a squirrel on his head.)
This isn’t the time or place for vagaries about whether a team’s starting quarterback has gotten a COVID-19 vaccine. Newton has every right to refuse to get vaccinated for whatever reasons are his. And Washington, along with any other team, has every right to not sign him. At any rate, he hasn’t shown anything in the past year-plus while in New England that leads me to think it’s worth the considerable headache and mixed messaging to bring him here. You want to sign him in March and give him a full offseason, OTAs, etc., and see what he has left? Sure, take the shot. But not now, under these circumstances.