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Redskins Notebook

Same Story, Different Name: Daniels Likely Out for Year

By Jason La Canfora
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, December 6, 2004; Page D14

Defensive end Phillip Daniels recovered from his second major groin injury to play in yesterday's 31-7 victory over the New York Giants at FedEx Field, but did not make it to halftime. Daniels, who has missed eight games overall, picked up a sack on his first series back but headed to the locker room late in the second quarter with a dislocated bone in his left wrist that is expected to end his season.

Daniels will see a specialist today to confirm the diagnosis, but Coach Joe Gibbs said it is unlikely he will play in the final four games. "It looks like we're going to miss Phillip Daniels for the rest of the year," Gibbs said. "It seems like every week we have a surgery and guys who are hurt, but I'm really proud of the character of our team."

Sean Taylor, left, and Shawn Springs celebrate after forcing the Giants to go three and out during the second quarter. (Toni L. Sandys - The Washington Post)

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Linebacker Mike Barrow will miss the entire season with a knee problem and starting safety Matt Bowen is out for the season with a knee injury, as is return specialist Chad Morton. Safety Andre Lott is out for the season with a shoulder injury, starting right tackle Jon Jansen suffered a season-ending Achilles' tendon injury in the preseason and linebacker LaVar Arrington has missed the last 10 games with a knee injury and is listed as week-to-week.

Daniels, a key free agent signing in the offseason, has performed well when he has been able to play, but has managed only two complete games; he left a Week 2 loss to the Giants with an injury and aggravated his groin problem against Detroit a month ago, leaving that contest as well.

Defensive lineman Demetric Evans, who was replaced by Daniels at times this season, was inactive with an ankle injury, and defensive tackle Jermaine Haley, who started one game this season, was out with a knee injury.

Home Losing Streak Ends

The Redskins snapped a four-game slide at FedEx Field and a string of five straight losses against NFC East opponents. Washington had never lost four straight home games in a season before under Gibbs, who last coached here from 1981 to 1993, and was in a 2-8 rut at home dating back to last season. The Redskins have not finished above .500 within the division since 1996 and entered yesterday's game 6-21 against existing NFC East teams dating back to the 2000 season.

"Since I've been here in the past three years we've had a lot of difficulty with division games," quarterback Patrick Ramsey said. "And I think it's very encouraging to win this game in the fashion that we did."

Harris Is Something Special

Redskins cornerback Walt Harris made his second big special teams play of the season. Harris recovered a blocked punt for a touchdown in Washington's last win, at Detroit Nov. 7, and Harris, whose sore knee nearly kept him out of the game, broke free to block a punt against the Giants late in the second quarter. It led to Washington's third touchdown and a 21-0 lead.

"In places where I've been other coaches haven't put me in a position to do this," Harris said. "But [special teams coach] Danny Smith does a great job of putting guys in a position to make plays." Overall, however, the Redskins' special teams lagged again, allowing a 92-yard kickoff return for a touchdown. . . .

The Giants totaled just 145 net yards yesterday and 38 rushing yards (2.5 per carry) . . . .

Offensive lineman Mark Wilson, who made his NFL debut Nov. 28 in Pittsburgh, was out with a knee injury, so the Redskins dressed Vaughn Parker for just the second time. Cornerback Garnell Wilds, who was added from the practice squad Saturday, also was inactive, as were offensive lineman Jim Molinaro and receiver Antonio Bryant. . . .

The Giants were playing without a slew of key defensive players, including Pro Bowl end Michael Strahan, who owns the NFL's single-season record for sacks. . . .

Receiver Laveranues Coles (hip), defensive tackle Joe Salave'a (knee) and cornerback Fred Smoot (wrist) suffered minor injuries but continued playing. Gibbs said left tackle Chris Samuels (knee and ankle), linebacker Marcus Washington (wrist) and right guard Randy Thomas (hamstring) played with significant pain. . . .

Tight end Robert Royal caught his first NFL touchdown pass.

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