Washington Redskins strong safety LaRon Landry said he anticipates playing Monday night against the Dallas Cowboys after missing the first two weeks of the regular season and the last two preseason games with a strained hamstring.
Landry spent the first three weeks of the preseason strengthening his Achilles but then strained his right hamstring during a workout on Aug. 18. He had hoped to recover from the second injury in time for the regular season opener, but suffered another setback eight days before the game and remained shelved for another two weeks.
Now fully confident that he can play without suffering another setback, Landry is lobbying for a return to action this week.
“Each day has been progress, positive strides and I didn’t have a hiccup or any negative movements and I anticipate playing this Monday night,” said the fifth-year pro, who last season recorded 85 tackles, a forced fumble, an interception and a sack in nine weeks of action. “I’m going to do everything I can in practice so coaches can evaluate me and hopefully I’ll be out there. It’s all up to Coach Shanahan at this point, how he sees my progress and if I look comfortable out there. But I’m looking forward to it.”
Landry took part in Wednesday morning’s walkthrough and anticipated practicing fully with the team later that afternoon. During Week 1, Landry went through one practice but was limited. He remained limited in all of last week’s practices.
His plan is to ramp up his workload each day this week and prove to coaches by Saturday that he is game ready.
“I’m going to go practice today, I’m going to do what I can, and hopefully each day I can do more and more. But I’m not going to go out there today and overdo it and kill myself, so that way hopefully I can play Monday night,” said the 6-foot, 227-pound Landry.
Teammates said Wednesday morning that Landry – never one to go half-speed – already is having difficulty pacing himself.
“Just watching him in walk-through this morning, running around. Everybody’s jogging and this kid is full speed,” cornerback DeAngelo Hall said. Linebacker “Lorenzo Alexander is one of the toughest guys around and he hit Zo one time and he was like, ‘Dude, calm down!’ But I can’t be mad at him, because that’s LaRon. He’s full speed, he has a motor and he’s ready to go.”
Landry chuckled when asked about teammates asking him to tone things down.
“Calm down? Don’t calm me down. Untame this beast,” he said. “It’s been a while. I’ve been counting down these days. This has been four weeks since Baltimore. Man, I haven’t played a game since Week 9, so especially on a Monday night, what would you do?”
Landry said he isn’t worried about rust and thinks he can pick up where he left off last season, and take things to an even higher level.
“Man, that’s an attitude,” he said when asked if the layoff would hurt his tackling skills. “It ain’t anything about fundamentals and all that, it’s an attitude. Tackling comes with an attitude, a passion. It’s all what you can do. And my attitude, I’m a tackler. I’m a hitter and a tackler. As far as tackling, I may have hit a guy wrong before, but I’m a tackler.”
Meanwhile, starting right cornerback Josh Wilson, who left Sunday’s game with a back injury, said that he is starting to feel better. Wilson remained on the ground for several minutes after trying to make a tackle, and almost had to be carted off the field.
“I feel all right,” he said Wednesday. “Definitely sore. I’ll do what I can.”