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Jansen Breaks Thumb, but Will Play Sunday

By Nunyo Demasio
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, September 6, 2005

Washington Redskins right tackle Jon Jansen suffered a small fracture at the base of his thumb late in practice yesterday. But the six-year veteran is expected to practice later this week -- the team is off today -- and play in the season opener Sunday against the Chicago Bears at FedEx Field. "Without a doubt he'll play with it," Bubba Tyer, the Redskins' director of sports medicine said.

Trainers will give Jansen a soft cast for the next few weeks to help the injury heal. "It's typical that as the weeks go by, the cast gets smaller," Tyer said.

Jansen suffered the injury in the last offensive series of the 90-minute practice. He was blocking and apparently jammed his thumb into a defensive lineman.

Trainers gave Jansen a splint after practice, but the 6-foot-6, 308-pound lineman didn't have it on as he departed Redskins Park yesterday. "Knowing Jon, he might have taken it off," Tyer said, chuckling.

Jansen -- who was unavailable to comment -- has been known for his ruggedness during his college and NFL career. He missed last season after rupturing his Achilles' tendon in the preseason opener. Before the injury, Jansen hadn't missed an NFL game through 80 consecutive starts, and had missed only one snap in his NFL career. The Redskins are relying on Jansen, along with new center Casey Rabach, to help bolster the offensive line.

Jacobs in Practice

Wide receiver Taylor Jacobs participated in his first practice since fracturing his big left toe before an Aug. 6 scrimmage against the Baltimore Ravens. Jacobs -- who described himself as being 80 percent -- said that he will be able to play in the season opener. "I see myself being available if they choose to activate me," Jacobs said.

Coach Joe Gibbs said: "I think that kind of [depends on] how he progresses this week. He looked pretty good today. We'll just have to see how sore he gets and what he looks like [tomorrow] or Thursday. But that will be something that kind of goes down to game day."

Jacobs has been frustrated by his latest injury because, after a strong offseason, the third-year veteran was expected to be Washington's third wide receiver.

"It just goes to show you, you really can't get drunk off praise," Jacobs said. "You go from fighting for a starting job to at the bottom of the [depth chart] again. It's frustrating, it's tough, but I can't really control it. I just had another unfortunate injury and you just have to keep fighting."

In his rookie season, 2003, Taylor had a promising training camp before suffering an abdominal injury in the preseason finale. Taylor -- a second-round pick -- fought through the injury to play in eight games.

Last season, Taylor suffered an injury during training camp that caused him to miss the season opener. But Taylor appeared in 15 games with four starts.

With the bevy of wide receivers at camp, Jacobs said that he didn't assume that his position was secure when the Redskins made their final cuts Sunday. "It was in the back of my mind," Jacobs said of being released. "I'm not arrogant or anything, but I know I have the talent. I know that I can play. Whenever I get the chance, and I can just stay healthy, it's a matter of time." . . .

The only players who didn't participate in yesterday's practice were safety Ryan Clark (knee) and linebacker Chris Clemons (hamstring). Clark is expected to practice tomorrow. . . .

The Redskins signed rookie cornerback Dimitri Patterson -- a Tuskegee product -- to their practice squad, giving the team eight players, the maximum number, on the squad. . . .

Linebacker LaVar Arrington is now sporting an Afro hair style.

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