Redskins head coach Jay Gruden said Wednesday both defensive players recently underwent surgery, but that Su'a Cravens' procedure was minor after he felt a "little pain" in his knee.
Washington Redskins head coach Jay Gruden confirmed on Wednesday that safety Su'a Cravens and linebacker Trent Murphy underwent successful surgeries.
Cravens underwent a knee scope while Murphy began his process of recovering from a torn ACL and MCL. Both injuries were suffered during last week's preseason opener against the Baltimore Ravens.
While Murphy has already been placed on Injured Reserve and is out for the year, Cravens' procedure was minor although there is no concrete timeline on his return to the field.
"Once the swelling went down, they re-checked it and he felt a little pain, so they just cleaned it up a little bit – the meniscus – and he'll be fine," Gruden said.
Cravens suffered the injury on the third play of the game for Washington's first-team defensive unit, as the second-year USC product tried to jump over a pile following an incompleted pass attempt by Ravens quarterback Ryan Mallett.
In his absence, the Redskins have been using Deshazor Everett at strong safety. The Texas A&M product is just in his second season at the position after a transition following a rookie campaign at cornerback.
"He was a corner; he converted to safety and he really wasn't very comfortable playing safety yet," Gruden said of Everett's transition last year. "It's a major adjustment period. As an offensive guy, I think a DB's a DB right? 'It's a DB, just go back there and play safety.' But it's a lot harder than you think – angles, positions, communication, run fits, finishing plays, all that stuff.
"I think he's becoming more and more comfortable playing a middle third, playing a half, playing quarters. His run fit responsibilities – when they shift out to empty, when they go unbalanced – I mean there's a lot of things a safety has to communicate and I think he's learning more and more and feeling more comfortable."
As for the loss of Murphy, Redskins senior vice president of player personnel Doug Williams knew he was going to be a "big part of our outside linebackers" once he returned from a four-game suspension to start the season.
After Murphy recorded just six sacks in his first two seasons, the 2014 second-round pick experience a breakout year in 2016, recording nine sacks with three fumbles forced. From Weeks 2-7, the Stanford product recorded six sacks.
Without Murphy, the Redskins will seek more consistent contributions from the likes of Preston Smith, Ryan Anderson and Junior Galette among others opposite Ryan Kerrigan.
Galette, once healthy, could help ease the pain of losing Murphy.
"I'm [going to] give him a little credit, too, from this standpoint – how many guys can have two Achilles on different ankles and work as hard as he has to get back to this point?" Williams said. "I think he did that. I mean, he can't control a little tweak of the hamstring. I do believe if we can get him on the field, we'll see some of the Junior Galette that we are looking for. I'm [going to] give him the benefit of the doubt and say I think we can get something out of him."