In the second year of his four-year, $17 million contract, Washington Redskins left guard Shawn Lauvao couldn't make it past Week 3 in 2015 because of a serious ankle injury. Now, after more than 10 months and five offseason foot surgeries, the 6-foot-3 offensive lineman is finally ready to hit the field.
"He's going to practice today," head coach Jay Gruden announced Monday prior to Washington's second padded practice of training camp. "Fired up to see Shawny out there."
Gruden has every right to be fired up because Lauvao had a major impact on the Redskins' ground game before suffering his injury, albeit in a small sample. Washington racked up 171.5 rushing yards per game through first two weeks of the season. That average plummeted to 87.4 yards the rest of the way. Many factors contributed to that discrepancy, but Lauvao's absence was certainly one of them.
However, the Arizona State product will not just be pushed right back into the starting lineup. Rather, he will have to fight for his first-team snaps.
"[Lauvao] has been out for a while now, so those guys have gotten all those reps – especially [guard Spencer Long]," Gruden explained. "When Shawn comes back, the job is not going to be handed to him. He’s going to have to come out and earn it. It’ll be a good battle."
No matter who wins that battle, Lauvao or Long, left tackle Trent Williams seems to be fine with it based on what he said in a recent interview with ESPN 980's Rick "Doc" Walker.
UPDATE: Lauvao worked some with the first team at left guard and flashed some of his previous form according to Breaking Burgundy's Ben Standig at Training Camp.
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