Linebacker Brian Orakpo said his initial reaction when he got hurt during the first half of the Washington Redskins’ preseason game Saturday night in Chicago was that he’d re-injured his left pectoral muscle badly enough for his season to be in jeopardy.
But Orakpo was wrong. An MRI exam Sunday showed no serious damage and Orakpo said Monday that he expects to be in the lineup—as his agent, Ben Dogra, indicated Sunday—for the regular season opener Sept. 9 in New Orleans.
“I thought, ‘I’ve worked this hard, trying to get back,’ and I felt a pop and thought I was done, to be honest with you,” Orakpo said after the team’s practice Monday at Redskins Park. “But it wasn’t what we expected and that’s a good thing. It’s a good thing [orthopedist James] Andrews, the one who did my surgery, was on the sidelines as well. So he checked it out and the X-rays and MRI came out negative, and so [it is] good to go.”
Orakpo underwent surgery in the offseason after suffering a partially torn pectoral muscle in last season’s finale. His injury Saturday came when he tried to tackle Bears wide receiver Devin Hester.
“I feel a lot better,” Orakpo said. “We got some good news, as far as what happened. So I’m going to be optimistic about it…. It is good news that it isn’t as serious as we thought. So I should be ready to roll.”
Redskins Coach Mike Shanahan said Monday that there is no tear in Orakpo’s muscle this time. Shanahan said the injury is not serious and Orakpo should be okay. But Shanahan said that neither Orakpo nor safety Brandon Meriweather, who hurt his left knee Saturday, will play in the remaining two preseason games.
Meriweather declined to comment Monday about his injury. Shanahan called Meriweather’s playing status day to day. According to Shanahan, no surgery is needed, but Meriweather’s knee was swollen and sore Monday.
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