Moss Misses Practice Again, Is Questionable

By Howard Bryant
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, November 2, 2006

Wide receiver Santana Moss missed his fourth consecutive practice yesterday, signaling that the Washington Redskins' most important receiving option may be unavailable for Sunday's game against the Dallas Cowboys.

Moss missed both practices before the Redskins' bye week and has not participated in either practice this week with a sore left hamstring. He did not want to provide details on his status, preferring to let his appearance on the field -- or his non-appearance -- speak for itself.

"I'm not really going to know until I get on the field and test it out," Moss said. "If you can't do certain things walking, it makes no sense to assume that you can do it running."

Moss apparently injured his hamstring in the 36-22 loss Oct. 22 in Indianapolis. Since he joined the Redskins, Moss has played in all 25 games, including the playoffs, and has played in 38 consecutive games overall. The last time Moss was inactive for a game was as a member of the New York Jets, on Oct. 17, 2004, against San Francisco.

Coach Joe Gibbs did not rule out Moss for Sunday's game; he was listed as questionable. "I think we'll know more later in the week," Gibbs said.

Moss is the Redskins' leading receiver with 435 yards and three touchdowns on 28 receptions in seven games. Moss is averaging 15.5 yards per catch, his lowest since the 2003 season.

"I'm never going to think ahead, anyway," Moss said of playing Sunday. "I don't want to say this is going to happen, or that is going to happen. I'm just going to go with the flow."

Wide receiver David Patten has an injured hamstring and did not practice. Patten has been inactive for the past three games, missing two with a left quadriceps injury. Patten also was a non-injury inactive against Tennessee Oct. 15. Director of sports medicine Bubba Tyer said Patten, who is listed as probable, injured himself at practice Monday.

Just Sit Right Back

Joe Bugel, assistant head coach-offense, calls left tackle Chris Samuels Gilligan, as in the title character from "Gilligan's Island." The reason? Like the shipwrecked sailor, Samuels is alone -- in Samuels's case, at left tackle, usually against the opposing team's best pass rusher. Against Dallas, it will be the second time he has gone against DeMarcus Ware. Against Indianapolis, he went against Dwight Freeney.

Even against the New York Giants, with Michael Strahan at left end, Samuels did not have a day off, with Osi Umenyiora considered just a shade below Strahan.

"I told him a long time ago he's going to be Gilligan. That's why we pay him all that money," Bugel said. "He's the Pro Bowler. Besides, you can't give help to everyone. Otherwise, you won't have anyone out there running pass routes. He likes it. He likes the challenge."

Bugel said Samuels graded well against Freeney, who beat Samuels and was credited with defending a pass, but did not record a sack. "It's tough. There's no let-up," Samuels said. "But that's what they pay me to do. You have to get it done. You know those players are good players, but you have to have a positive attitude."

Memories Are Fresh

The Cowboys scored 25 points in the fourth quarter Sunday in a win at Carolina, and the Redskins have lost three games in a row. But Dallas Coach Bill Parcells hasn't forgotten last year's 35-7 Redskins win at FedEx Field or Chris Cooley, who scored three touchdowns in that game. "He looks like they've got him involved," Parcells said of Cooley, who's caught touchdowns in each of the last two games. "He's a player I thought a lot of. We had him down here prior to the draft, a guy we were very interested in, and when they picked him I was of the opinion that they got a very good player. He's turned out to be just that."

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