The Washington Times - October 15, 2009, 06:35PM

A modest question worth asking about a linebacker playing with a broken hand.

Can he function at a necessary level?

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That’s no knock on Maryland’s Demetrius Hartsfield, who has practiced the last couple days with his left hand taped up into a big club.

But if you basically had no movement in your fingers in one hand and were driving to work, would that be easy? I can sit here and promise you that I had a hand wrapped up, it would take forever to piece together this entry.

So it’s safe to say a linebacker would be a bit challenged by this sort of situation.

“I’m going to be real conscious of that,” Friedgen said. “If I don’t think Demetrius is being productive, I’ll put in Ben Pooler. Obviously, it doesn’t help him as far as catching the ball, though I can remember last year in practice [Adrian] Moten catching a couple one-handed. But if he starts favoring it and he can’t tackle, I’ll put the other guy in there.”

Friedgen, though, will probably go with Hartsfield for part of the game at the least.

“It looks the longer he goes, the better and more confident he gets with it,” Friedgen said. “But you saw it, it’s big. We should go in there before the game and put one of those 10-pound weights in there, like those old fighters. But I am a little concerned about it. He’s basically playing with one hand. He won’t be grabbing anybody [with his injured hand], I can tell you that.”

Patrick Stevens