Redskins Notebook

Rogers Works Some Overtime

The Washington Post's Jason Reid discusses how Redskins players have responded Jim Zorn's coaching style.
By Jason Reid and Jason La Canfora
Washington Post Staff Writers
Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Although the Washington Redskins' players were off yesterday, cornerback Carlos Rogers had work to do at Redskins Park. It would seem Rogers was entitled to a break as well as he played during Sunday's 23-17 victory over Philadelphia, but there's always room for improvement, he said.

"Just trying to establish myself and help my team, man," Rogers said. "Any man they put me on, my job is to shut 'em down. That's what I always try to do."

Against Philadelphia, Rogers drew the difficult assignment of DeSean Jackson and limited the standout rookie wide receiver to one catch for eight yards. Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb quickly turned to his second and third options in patterns because Rogers stuck tight to Jackson.

Kelly Feeling Better

The swelling in rookie wide receiver Malcolm Kelly's left knee subsided quickly after the Eagles game, and Kelly plans to practice this week in hopes of playing Sunday against the St. Louis Rams.

"It's been frustrating," said Kelly, out all preseason and in three of Washington's first five games because of injuries. "It was kind of bothering of me after the game, but it feels pretty good now. I iced it all day long [Monday], it's feeling good now, and I'm scheduled to practice all week. It wasn't even a deal where it was painful."

Kelly also was active Sept. 14 against the New Orleans Saints. He had his only reception, a six-yard gain, in the Redskins' 29-24 victory.

Coach Jim Zorn has expressed concern about some of Kelly's route running as he continues his NFL adjustment.

"I kind of felt [the knee] a few times, but then when I looked on film, I was still running just as good as I have been running," Kelly said. "It's wasn't a deal where it was slowing me down.

"I wasn't hesitant coming in and out of any of my routes. I wasn't hesitant when I was blocking. I guess it's just something I have to deal with."

Evans Gets Job Done

While the Redskins' pass rush is somewhat diminished without Jason Taylor at the left end spot, Washington has not suffered against the run in his absence. Defensive coordinator Greg Blache continued the rotation of linemen again Sunday in Philadelphia, and Demetric Evans had another fine outing filling in.

The Eagles and Cowboys were unable to move the ball on the ground consistently, and Evans has to get a lot of credit for that. He's also been able to switch to tackle in the nickel package, and with tackle Cornelius Griffin suffering a shoulder injury Sunday, Evans was more in demand than usual.

One would have to think opposing teams are noticing the job the Redskins did on Marion Barber and Brian Westbrook, and stopping the run will remain the primary objective Sunday. St. Louis doesn't have much going on, offensively or defensively, but running back Steven Jackson can be as good as anyone in the NFL.

He missed most of training camp because of a contract dispute and has had a slow start to the season, but he ran 33 times for 150 yards, including a 21-yard touchdown, against the Redskins in St. Louis in 2006.

Suisham's Success

Place kicker Shaun Suisham has made seven straight field goals, and his kickoffs have been much improved this season. The field goals he has missed have had less to do with his mechanics and more to do with the hold on the kick.

"I really don't know what to say," Suisham said. "Obviously, I hope to improve every year, and I feel I have improved a bit with kickoffs, but I still have a lot of room for improvement and hopefully in another year you'll be asking me the same questions again."

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