Terry McLaurin Walks Off Monday Night Game — What Happened to Washington Commanders WR?

“Scary Terry” became involved in a different kind of scare on Monday Night Football, a scare for fans of the Washington Commanders.

What Happened to the Star Commanders WR?

Before halftime of their Week 2 preseason contest against in-state Maryland rival the Baltimore Ravens, the 2022 Pro Bowler landed awkwardly on his right leg and was slow to get up.

Then came the next scene at FedEx Field: Him walking off the football field. At first, doctor of physical therapy Jeff Mueller believed McLaurin injured his ankle in looking at the footage.

But turns out per the Commanders, it was his toe.

“WR Terry McLaurin has a toe injury and won’t return to the game,” the team’s X account posted at the start of the third quarter.

Before the ailment, McLaurin showcased the same routes and release that’s turned him into a rising star at wide receiver.

Per ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter, X-Rays came out negative for McLaurin’s toe ailment.

McLaurin Developed Knack for Staying Healthy Before Monday

Prior to the Ravens contest, McLaurin established himself as a wideout who steered away from injured reserve.

In his last two seasons, McLaurin not only played in all 17 games — he earned all 17 starts, giving him a streak of 35 consecutive games with a start. The last time he was listed as “inactive” was on December 27, 2020 due to an ankle sprain. That came during the season he caught his most regular season receptions at 87 and 1,118 yards.

But in the next two seasons, McLaurin has produced two more 1,000-yard campaigns including a career-high 1,191 in his first Pro Bowl campaign.

And during the time he hasn’t missed regular season action, he’s caught 77 passes in both seasons and has scored 10 combined touchdowns (five in 2021 and five in 2022).

McLaurin one year ago signed a blockbuster three-year, $68,364,000 deal with the Commanders during a record-setting market for NFL wide receivers. He joined names like Stefon Diggs, Davante Adams, Cooper Kupp and fellow 2019 draft class mate Deebo Samuel as wideouts who wrote their signature on their new mega deals.

Where Do the Commanders Go From Here in the WR Room?

Initial thoughts are McLaurin could be facing a turf toe ailment.

If it’s on the mild side for the now fifth-year WR, it’ll mean missing the final preseason game but he could be ready for the season opener — as mild turf toe ailments take up to two or three weeks to heal.

That’s the good news. The bad news is there’s a brief stoppage for Washington to witness the chemistry build between McLaurin and new starting quarterback Sam Howell.

With McLaurin injured, who else do the Commanders turn to in the meantime?

Howell did feed the ball to one WR he’s familiar with: Dyami Brown, who was not only his Commanders teammate last season but also a past North Carolina Tar Heel like the new QB1.

Howell additionally found Antonio Gibson for six points before the second quarter ended.

But outside of the two who scored for the Commanders, there’s veteran options like Curtis Samuel to trust in McLaurin’s absence. Samuel caught 64 passes for 656 yards and scored four touchdowns in his first full season with Washington as he was limited to just one start in 2021 with the team due to groin and hamstring injuries.

Then there’s one intriguing young talent in the WR room with Jahan Dotson entering his second season. While he caught just 35 passes for 523 yards on 61 targets, he still led all Commanders receivers with seven touchdowns last season.

Washington will have no shortage of options in the WR room as McLaurin deals with his toe injury. Still, this unit reaches full strength with McLaurin healthy.

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