Washington Redskins starting SS Brandon Meriweather will miss two to four weeks after re-injuring his left knee in practice Monday.

Meriweather sprained his MCL and PCL in what coach Mike Shananan called a freak accident. But it's the same knee that Meriweather hurt in the second preseason game vs. Chicago. He hasn't played since that game, but was on schedule to start at New Orleans on Sunday.

Meriweather declined comment, but Shanahan said the veteran was more optimistic about his timetable than the doctors.

The Redskins lost safety Tanard Jackson, who likely would have started in his place, to a drug suspension last week. So they'll probably turn to second-year DeJon Gomes or veteran Reed Doughty. Gomes is the faster of the two and he said he took reps with the first team in practice Wednesday.

John Keim covers the Redskins for the Washington Examiner. Follow him on Twitter @CBSSportsNFLWAS or @John_Keim.