Strong safety Brandon Meriweather recorded seven tackles and an interception in his Redskins debut. (Patrick Smith/Getty Images)


Redskins strong safety Brandon Meriweather said that he felt “fine” despite spraining his right knee and missing the majority of the second half of his team’s 31-6 victory over the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday.

Meriweather said that he believes that he could have returned to action, but that he and the team took a more cautious approach because Washington has a short turnaround this week and will play at Dallas on Thursday.

“It was more thinking about the future than me going back in there when we were already up by so much, and the defense was actually playing great,” Meriweather said.

Sidelined for the final two weeks of the preseason and the first nine games of the regular season with a sprained MCL and PCL in his left knee, Sunday represented Meriweather’s debut as a member of the Redskins.

Signed in the spring as a free agent from Chicago, the Redskins were counting on the former two-time Pro Bowl player to bring stability and big-play capability to the strong safety position. But Meriweather went down with injury in the preseason, and twice re-injured the same knee while trying to make his comeback.

At long last, Meriweather suited up on Sunday, and wasted little time making his presence felt. In one half of football, the University of Miami product recorded seven tackles, an interception and two pass breakups.

“He brought a lot of energy, brought a lot of intensity, seeing things a little differently than someone might have. I loved it,” said Redskins cornerback DeAngelo Hall. “When he got down here, we talked about getting out there on the field and playing. It took a couple weeks, but we finally got him out there, and he definitely was a playmaker. You could tell he was out there on the field. Any time you have a guy out there like that with you, they’re going to make plays.”

But on the fourth play of the third quarter, Meriweather went down in a heap despite not sustaining any contact, and clutched his right knee. After being helped off the field and checked on the trainers table behind the bench, Meriweather walked around, and jogged up and down the sidelines, but didn’t return.

A victory by the Redskins, and the short turnaround that awaits, softened Meriweather’s disappointment of not being able to finish the game.

Meriweather expects to be able to rebound quickly, and said it felt good just to be back on the field again. Teammates said his energy was part of the reason why they got off to such a strong start, but Meriweather downplayed that notion.

“I don’t think it was just me,” Meriweather grinned. “I actually think the fact that all four starters were actually out there together for the first time, just brought an upbeat to our defense. We realized that everything falls on us, so we played like it.”