The Washington Redskins have decided to bring offensive lineman Ray Brown off injured reserve and activate him for Saturday's NFC wild-card game in Philadelphia.

Brown was placed on injured reserve with a sore knee after training camp, then broke his right hand at midseason.

Now his 1990 season will begin in 1991. He'll be a backup tackle to Jim Lachey and Joe Jacoby and an insurance policy in case Lachey's sore right shoulder doesn't allow him to play the entire game. That's not expected to be a problem; Lachey participated in most of yesterday's practice.

But it's a bonus for Brown, 28, who was one of the most-coveted of the 1989 Plan B signees -- the Redskins outbid Denver and several other teams with a four-year, $1.152-million offer. He played in seven games as a backup last season.

"This is why I came to the Redskins," he said. "I thought this would give me a chance to be in the playoffs, and it's exciting."

He said the season had been "frustrating at first, being injured again. I worried people would start thinking I was injury-prone. I was also worried about losing that edge you have when you're playing. Finally, I just decided to focus on getting ready to play when I was called on. It didn't do any good to sit around pouting. It's tough, but I took pride in coming to practice and working hard. That was my game."

He spent his first three pro seasons with the Cardinals: "In Phoenix, they'd tell us, 'This is how you block counter trey' and slap on a film of the Redskins blocking counter trey. Everyone tried to copy the Redskins."

A player will be released or sent to injured reserve today to make room for Brown. . . .

Wide receiver Gary Clark (sore knee) was the only Redskin to miss yesterday's practice, but he's expected to be at full speed by Saturday. . . . Markus Koch, who has missed two games, likely will return to starting right defensive end. . . . Earnest Byner was named NFC offensive player of December.