The Washington Redskins took a risk yesterday and consequently lost linebacker Stuart Anderson to the Cleveland Browns.
The Redskins tried to reactivate Anderson from the injured reserve list, hoping to slide the third-year player, who is noted for special teams play, past league-wide waivers. But Cleveland claimed Anderson before the Redskins could reclaim him.
"I really didn't think it was fair to Stuart for him to be healthy (from a groin pull) and to be ready to play without us trying this," Coach Joe Gibbs said.
Gibbs said the team will reactivate all-pro wide receiver Charlie Brown from the injured list today, so that he can play in Sunday's game against Buffalo at RFK Stadium. Gibbs did not say which player would be released upon Brown's reactivation.
The Redskins waived Anderson, from the University of Virginia, in a similar way as part of the team's final preseason cut. They did so, with the intention of recalling him. The team planned on recalling Anderson yesterday, too, General Manager Bobby Beathard said.
A team is allotted five reactivations a season in which players do not have to be exposed to waivers. The Redskins have used three of those moves (Clint Didier, Ken Coffey, Mark Murphy) and will use a fourth today for Brown. A team may reactivate an unlimited number of players by exposing them to league-wide waivers, if it chooses to take a risk with waivers.
"We obviously wanted Stuart back, but we had only one more (non-waivers) reactivation left," Beathard said. "We know 100 percent sure that we couldn't get Joe Washington (running back who seems nearly ready to return from the injured list) through waivers.
"We took a calculated risk."
"I don't think it's hit me yet, what's happened," said Anderson, who said he has no ill feelings toward the Redskins. "I guess it shows me that at least somebody thinks I can play. I just want to play football and I couldn't do that from injured reserve."