Chris Cooley's latest injury that has sent him to injured reserve is a tough setback for the popular Washington Redskins' tight end. Whether it was his broken finger or his troublesome nagging knee injury that did him in, the result is still the same. Now, the Redskins' tight end must wonder about his future in Washington. Has he played his last game for the Redskins?
Cooley is technically under contract until 2014, but this is the NFL, where players can be released. With Fred Davis emerging as a legitimate option, it may not be wise for the Redskins to pay Cooley his $3.8 million base salary for next season. The Redskins may consider restructuring the deal to keep him in the fold at a lower salary, which could be a fair compromise if they feel Cooley still has something left and if Cooley agrees to it. However, Cooley will be 30 next season and has already shown signs of slowing down. After playing in all 80 games in his first five seasons, Cooley has missed 20 games in the past three years.
If this is indeed it for Cooley, what a Redskins career it has been. He ranks first in franchise history in receptions for a tight end with 428, which is also good for fifth overall among any receiver who has played for the franchise. He was a mainstay in the organization when everything else was unstable and will be remembered as a fan favorite no matter what happens at the end of the day. We will have to wait and see what the Redskins elect to do once the 2011 season ends.