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Garçon moving closer to playing?


Garçon moving closer to playing?

Wide receiver Pierre Garçon and safety Brandon Meriweather were limited in practice Wednesday, but Coach Mike Shanahan acknowledged that it's possible both will play Sunday. 

Tackle Trent Williams, meantime, missed the first few minutes of practice because of an undisclosed ailment but participated fully, according to Shanahan. 

Garçon “practiced, so that’s a good sign,” Shanahan said of his No. 1 wide out, who has been sidelined the past four games with a plantar plate tear in his right foot. “So hopefully there’s no setback and he keeps on progressing.”

During individual drills – the only portion of practice that is open to the media – Garçon did not appear to be encumbered as he sprinted and cut while running routes alongside his fellow receivers. 

“That’s a big plus because he hasn’t been doing that for a long time,” Shanahan added. Asked if it’s conceivable that Garçon will suit up against the Eagles, Shanahan said: “Yes it is.”

Meriweather, meantime, spent the first portion of practice lining up with the starters on defense. He has yet to play this season because of a left knee injury.

“He looked good today,” Shanahan said. “He’s playing with a lot of enthusiasm and confidence. Just hope there’s no setback” Thursday and Friday.

As for Williams, Shanahan said his starting left tackle was a “full go” in practice. The coach did, however, acknowledge that Williams was late because of an injury. He just wouldn’t be specific about it.

“He was hurting a little bit,” Shanahan said. “Just a little bit sore.” 

Asked if it was the right knee he injured in the Cincinnati game, Shanahan cracked: “Body, I think. Age.”

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Statistic Surprise - Redskins used Su'a Cravens sparingly against Detroit

Statistic Surprise - Redskins used Su'a Cravens sparingly against Detroit

The Redskins got a boost Sunday when rookie linebacker Su'a Cravens returned to the field after missing two games with a concussion. Interestingly, however, Cravens did not provide the spark many expected as he played just 11 of 53 defensive snaps.

Certainly it's possible the 'Skins coaches decided to ease their rookie back in after suffering a head injury. But that logic seems flawed - Cravens was cleared by the NFL concussion protocol, and once a player is cleared, it's for full-game action. 

Another thought might be that the Washington defense excelled while Cravens was out. He missed Redskins' wins in Baltimore and home against the Eagles, two games where Joe Barry's group shut down the opposing offenses. It's definitely possible coaches elected to stick with a combination of Will Compton and Mason Foster on the field at the inside linebacker positions.

Looking at snap counts from Compton and Foster, it appears that's what the coaches decided. Compton played every defensive snap, and Foster was on the field for 40 of the defenses 53 snaps. 

What, if any, role change that means for Cravens will be interesting. Before his injury, Cravens' playing time was trending up, as he had 29 snaps against the Giants and 27 snaps against the Browns before being injured in the 3rd quarter. Cravens was on the field as the nickel and dime linebacker in most situations.

Sunday, that wasn't the case, as the team played a lot of nickel. Slot corner Kendall Fuller, another rookie, was on the field for 40 snaps. 

Easing Cravens back in slowly was likely by design, and for a second-round pick with a mountain of promise, a prudent course for the Redskins coaches. That said, as CSN's Rich Tandler likes to point out, in the NFL, cleared is cleared. 

Cravens has playmaking ability, he's displayed that already this young season. In fact, he nearly pulled down Lions QB Matt Stafford for a sack on Sunday despite what looked like an obvious hold. 

Scot McCloughan drafted Cravens just for that - despite being a positional hyrbid, the rookie is a 'football player,' just like McCloughan wants. This Sunday against the Bengals, with two weeks of practice after the concussion, it will be interesting to see how many chances Cravens gets.

Want more Redskins? Check out @JPFinlayCSN for live updates or click here for the #RedskinsTalk Podcast on iTunes or press play below.

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New #RedskinsTalk Podcast - Barstool Nate professes love for Kirk Cousins & London football

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New #RedskinsTalk Podcast - Barstool Nate professes love for Kirk Cousins & London football

JP Finlay catches up with  Barstool Nate as he professes love for Kirk Cousins and preview the Redskins game in London. Bonus: JP debuts a terrible British accent.

Click here for the #RedskinsTalk Podcast on iTunes or press play below.

Want more Redskins? Check out @JPFinlayCSN for live updates