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Washington Redskins Injury Update: London Fletcher Has Knee Drained

Yahoo Contributor Network
COMMENTARY | Suffering from the wear and tear that's expected to at least occasionally impact a veteran who's played in the NFL for 16 years, Washington Redskins linebacker London Fletcher recently had his knee drained.

According to head coach Mike Shanahan, Fletcher should be ready to go when the Redskins square off against the Minnesota Vikings in their Week 10 matchup.

Fletcher has experienced his share of struggles this season. Accustomed to providing the Redskins with an abundant source of big plays on defense, Fletcher has failed to be the consistent playmaking force that we've learned to know and love since his arrival in Washington in 2007.

After notching a career-high five interceptions in 2012, Fletcher has delivered a goose egg in the statistical category through the halfway mark of 2013. He's also registered a zero in the passes defended column, which is an accurate depiction of the troubles he's experienced covering the opposition this year.

If Fletcher's knee causes him to miss any time, he'll be replaced in the lineup by fellow veteran interior linebacker Nick Barnett. Since earlier in the season, due to Fletcher's erratic play, the plan has been for Barnett to provide Fletcher with a breather or two on a consistent basis.

Typically, Fletcher's absence would be devastating to the Redskins' defense. However, if Fletcher continues to struggle, the team won't miss anything if Barnett's forced into extended action.

After providing such stellar performances throughout the course of a long and distinguished NFL career, it's a bit of a shame to see Fletcher playing so poorly in 2013. The Redskins' defense plays at its highest level when Fletcher is a difference-maker, so they'll need the veteran linebacker to get his second wind as the team makes a run at the postseason.

Hopefully, Fletcher can put father time on the backburner and turn things around in the second half of the season, starting with the Redskins' Week 10 battle with Adrian Peterson and the Vikings.

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Drexel Perry's a freelance writer who covers the Washington Redskins and the Washington Wizards for Yahoo Contributor Network. For additional sports talk, follow him on Twitter @DrexelPerry.

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