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Jay Gruden Denies Josh Doctson Had Heel Drained while Brian Mitchell Stands Firm on Report

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Jay Gruden denied a Brian Mitchell report that Redskins wide receiver Josh Doctson had swelling in his heel drained prior to him suffering a sprained AC joint and bruised shoulder on a play where he came down hard during practice on Wednesday. On Thursday, Mitchell nonchalantly dropped the tidbit about Doctson, stirring the pot of more concerns about Doctson’s questionable health.

The report circulated another day with the Redskins off on Friday but after Saturday’s morning practice, Gruden addressed the report saying he did not know where the report came from.

“I don’t think I’ve ever heard of a heel being drained,” Gruden told reporters. “So, I don’t know where that came from. That is not true, but he’s going to do a little something out here today. We’ll see. I’d be surprised if he went full-go, but he did not have his heel drained. He just got it stepped on. No, he’s fine.”

Before anyone questions the integrity of the former Redskins great turned reporter, keep in mind it’s not uncommon for coaches to deny or at least shoot down reports, especially concerning a player’s health. Maybe Gruden is unaware of the matter, although that’s highly unlikely due to him being the team’s head coach and giving him the benefit of doubt that he would check with everyone need be on the matter before speaking so strong during a press conference. And while Mitchell’s report may be inaccurate, it may not be of any wrongdoing on his part. Maybe the source got the information wrong?

Or maybe there was a misunderstanding in the message relayed to Mitchell from the source?

Hard to believe Mitchell would just make up such a story, so there had to be some legs to it. Given Doctson’s health, it’s not farfetched although draining normally happen in knees or elbows. Doctson did miss much of his rookie season in 2016 because of a mysterious Achilles injury and he did have an MRI done prior to this year’s training camp.

Mitchell isn’t taking Gruden’s denial lightly either. He spent time this weekend doubling down on his report and saying he had a “reputable” source.

If you thought the Redskins would have a quiet training camp with Kirk Cousins now in Minnesota, you thought wrong. Doctson’s health has become the highlight of the drama of Redskins’ training camp. Mitchell appears set for a standoff with Gruden over the legitimacy of his report. This will make Doctson’s health even more intriguing, and only time will tell who has the right information.

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