CARLISLE, PA., AUG. 15 -- Cornerback Brian Davis visited a St. Louis specialist over the weekend and was found to have a substantial amount of scar tissue in his right leg. Davis believes it contributed to a recurring quadriceps pull.

Davis said the scar tissue probably was left over from the original injury, suffered in his rookie season of 1987, and the specialist hoped that therapy to reduce it should make reinjury less likely.

Davis has pulled muscles in essentially the same area three times in four years and said he visited the specialist "because I had to find out if there was something more."

The injuries had puzzled the Redskins, who have begun to wonder if Davis ever will hold up for an entire season. The irony is that he is among the team's hardest workers, a fitness fanatic who lifts weights and does both sprints and long-distance running in the offseason.

"What's so frustrating is that I work very hard," he said. "I know I'm in shape, and then I come in and get hurt running half speed the first day. It just didn't make any sense."

He will continue to take treatment on the leg and tonight began some light running.

"I'm going to take my time and when I get back, hopefully, I'll be back for good," he said.

The Redskins list him as their starting right cornerback, although when he returns he probably will have to beat out Martin Mayhew, who started late last season and has had a good camp.

No matter who starts, there will be plenty of playing time, with so many teams using three wide receivers. Davis's return would boost probably the team's weakest area. Rutledge Clear to Play

Jeff Rutledge is likely to get some action against the Steelers in Friday night's RFK Stadium exhibition. Coach Joe Gibbs never says how much his quarterbacks will play and today would say only that Rutledge had been cleared.

Rutledge was decked by Buffalo rookie Marcus Patton 12 days ago in a scrimmage. He suffered a slight separation of the right shoulder, it is still sore and discolored. But he has returned to practice, and while he still has some pain, he at least can get the ball downfield.

"I'm not throwing it like I was, but it's better," Rutledge said. "It doesn't feel right, but I look at films and see it looks okay. I'm optimistic. That would have been a bad way to mess up your season."

Gibbs was noncommittal about rookie passer Cary Conklin, who has a sore right knee. It appears that Rutledge has moved ahead in the competition for the third spot and that Conklin could be headed for a season on injured reserve.