Rogers and McIntosh Are Nearing Returns From Injuries

By Jason La Canfora
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Defensive coordinator Greg Blache hinted yesterday that cornerback Carlos Rogers could play Saturday against the New York Jets, marking a significant accomplishment in his recovery from major knee surgery, and said linebacker Rocky McIntosh also will be ready to play a regular season game.

Rogers underwent season-ending knee surgery in November and was expected to miss about a year, but he has been impressive in practice. He was cleared for full contact a few weeks ago and has withstood a few accidental collisions in practices, including popping up after tangling with wide receiver Maurice Mann in practice yesterday.

Blache said Rogers may be playing in a game "sooner than you think." Rogers has been targeting a return in one of the next two games.

"The first time [Rogers] went down [in training camp] I remember gasping, then he bounced up," Blache said. "And each time he goes down and comes up it's like being a parent, and the baby falls the first time, and it's like, 'Oh my God.' . . . Then, by the time you have the sixth kid you realize they could bounce down the stairs, and they'll be all right."

Blache said McIntosh, who is coming off of major knee surgery, could play an entire game if needed. McIntosh is barely participating in team drills, but Blache said he is confident McIntosh will be ready to assume a large role at the start of the season.

"If we had to play a game tomorrow I'm certain that Rocky could go out there and play snaps," Blache said. "I don't think that's an issue. We just want to make certain we err on the side of caution to make sure he's well."

Starting free safety LaRon Landry is almost certain not to play Saturday. The results of an MRI exam showed he has a lingering hamstring strain, and Landry and cornerback Shawn Springs (Achilles' tendon) sat out all of yesterday's practices. Landry has been out roughly three weeks after initially expecting to miss just a few practices.

Coach Jim Zorn stressed Landry's decreased practice role "is not a setback" and said the second-year player is still building toward a full recovery.

Taylor, Randle El Sit Out

Defensive end Jason Taylor was held out of practice with plantar fasciitis, Zorn said, while starting wide receiver Antwaan Randle El rested his sore hamstring. Both participated in the morning session.

Zorn said Taylor missed practice earlier in camp because of the foot problem and was not bothered by it in last Saturday's game against Buffalo, but the problem "flared up" today. Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the tissue running across the bottom of the foot. "It's something we just have to watch," Zorn said.

Zorn said he does not believe the problem will become acute, and the team will allow Taylor, who will turn 34 on Sept. 1, sufficient rest.

Randle El's hamstring is not injured, Zorn said, but is bothering him a bit. "We held him out not wanting it to get worse," Zorn said. He is expected to be back soon.

Breaking Camp

The Redskins will break camp tomorrow afternoon and move out of the National Conference Center in Lansdowne. Tomorrow also will be their final two-a-day session of the summer. . . .

Rookie wide receiver Devin Thomas (hamstring) took full work and could play Saturday. Backup tight end Todd Yoder was back at the afternoon practice after attending his grandmother's funeral. Defensive tackle Lorenzo Alexander was back after missing Monday's practice for the birth of a child. . . .

Tackle Stephon Heyer (knee) began his individual work with the trainers yesterday but will not play Saturday. Rookie wide receiver Malcolm Kelly (knee) is working individually with trainers as well. . . .

Blache said reserve linebacker H.B. Blades could be back at practice next week. Blades has been out since undergoing knee surgery last month. Tackle Todd Wade (high-ankle sprain) is not likely to resume practicing until next week at the earliest. . . .

The Redskins re-signed defensive end Dorian Smith.

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