Portis Sits Out Redskins' Practice With Stiff Neck

"He's still trying to loosen up his stiff neck. . . . He did take a pretty good bash in the head," Coach Jim Zorn said of Clinton Portis, above. (By Jonathan Newton -- The Washington Post)
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Friday, December 5, 2008

RB Clinton Portis (knee, hip, neck) watched practice for the second straight day. Portis has continued to experience neck soreness after being injured as he was tackled in the second quarter of Sunday's 23-7 loss to the New York Giants at FedEx Field.

"He's still trying to loosen up his stiff neck," Redskins Coach Jim Zorn said. "I think we've talked about it for the same way the last three weeks. And each week, he seems to start getting a little bit better, but he did take a pretty good bash in the head. It really did stiffen up his neck like a whiplash." . . .

CB Shawn Springs sat out practice again yesterday because of a lingering calf injury, but Zorn expressed hope Springs would play Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens.

"I think Springs will end up going," Zorn said. "We're trying to rest him, but with Shawn, he will go out and test it. He has to explode in so many directions at a split second, he's veteran enough to say: 'You know what? I can't do this.' That's what I'm going to wait to hear. And if he can, I believe he will."

Springs has sat out five games because of his calf injury, which he aggravated in the game against the Giants. . . .

DE Andre Carter (foot), MLB London Fletcher (foot) and DT Kedric Golston (bone spurs) also did not practice. . . . Reserve LB Alfred Fincher returned to practice after missing Wednesday's workout for personal reasons.

ยท BLACHE PRAISES FLACCO: Defensive coordinator Greg Blache is impressed with Ravens rookie QB Joe Flacco.

"For a young quarterback to come in and do all the things he's done in this league is exceptional," Blache said. "His ability to read the coverages, to manage the offense, to handle pressure and pressure situations, I think the guy's done a phenomenal job.

"And the coaches have done a good job of giving him packages and giving him things that fit him and allow him to grow faster than a lot of other people. They didn't force a system on him. I think they created a system around him that allowed him to be the best that he could be."

Flacco has completed 61 percent of his passes for 2,276 yards and 12 touchdowns with nine interceptions for Baltimore (8-4), which trails the first-place Pittsburgh Steelers by one game in the AFC North. In the Ravens' 34-3 victory over the Cincinnati Bengals last Sunday, Flacco completed 19 of 29 passes for 280 yards. He threw two touchdown passes and had a 119.9 passer rating.

"Every week you see them doing a little bit more. As he grows, they're letting the package grow right along with him," Blache said.

-- Jason Reid

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