By Jason La Canfora
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, April 7, 2006
Washington Redskins starting center Casey Rabach will spend three weeks in a cast and on crutches after injuring his lower left leg in an all-terrain vehicle accident last Friday, Director of Sports Medicine Bubba Tyer said. Rabach's ATV turned on him while he was riding near his Virginia home, and he required surgery to repair a significant wound on his leg, ankle and calf muscle, Tyer said.
Rabach, 28, declined to elaborate on his injury as he left Redskins Park yesterday, but said it is not long term and he should recover quickly. He directed questions about the injury to the team's athletic training staff, and Tyer said that when Rabach is off crutches he should be able to resume normal workouts. Organized team activities begin in mid-May. The team is taking every precaution in its care for the injury, however, given the severity of the cuts Rabach suffered.
"He had a huge open wound on his leg," Tyer said. "We're treating it with antibiotics and watching it very closely. We don't want to take any chances with an infection."
Former Redskins defensive lineman Brandon Noble missed all of last season with a dangerous infection -- methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) -- that likely will end his playing career, and the athletic training staff, like those of all NFL teams, has long enforced stringent hygiene policies around Redskins Park to guard against spreading bacteria. MRSA is a sometimes debilitating condition that is becoming increasingly common in the general population, according to health experts.
Rabach, who underwent offseason shoulder surgery, did not re-injure his upper body. "Luckily, there were no problems with his shoulder at all," Tyer said.
Tyer said an orthopedic surgeon and a plastic surgeon were required to close the wound, but the team does not expect any complications. "Once it heals up he'll be fine," Tyer said. "But that was one ugly open wound."
The Redskins made Rabach their offseason priority in 2005, signing him almost immediately upon the start of the free agency period that March. Rabach spent four seasons with Baltimore after being selected 92nd overall by the Ravens in 2001, playing both guard and center. The Redskins have tried to bolster the depth of their interior line recently after cutting veteran center Lennie Friedman during the season and releasing veteran Cory Raymer last month.
Redskins Notes: Tyer said guard Randy Thomas continues to make strides in his recovery from a broken leg, but his workout plan is limited for now, lifting weights but not running. Middle linebacker Lemar Marshall also is on a limited program while recovering from a shoulder injury. Running back Clinton Portis, who had nagging wrist and neck problems through 2005, is doing well and is cleared for all action, Tyer said, and tackle Chris Samuels is progressing after suffering from knee problems throughout last season. Tyer said he expects Thomas and Marshall to be cleared for contact by minicamp in June. . . .
Retired offensive lineman Ray Brown said he is "leaving all options open" about joining the organization in some capacity, but is currently involved with other projects. Brown is in Memphis working on completion of a community center, while his wife is starting a support organization for the wives of professional athletes. "I love the Redskins organization and they're heading in the right direction," Brown said, "but right now I've really just been relaxing and working on a few things that interest me outside of football." . . .
The contract recently signed by defensive lineman Demetric Evans is for three years, with base salaries of $600,000 this season and $700,000 the following two seasons.