The Washington Times - October 24, 2012, 03:53PM

A foot specialist diagnosed receiver Pierre Garcon with a plantar plate tear in his right foot Wednesday, a source said. His status will continue to be determined on a weekly basis

The plantar plate is a soft tissue structure that connects the base of the toe and the metatarsal, the long bone that goes to the toe. It cushions the bottom of the metatarsal head, which is why the tear causes Garcon significant pain when he pushes off and sprints.


There is no specific timetable for Garcon’s return, although it could make sense to try to bring him back after the bye week. The Redskins return from the week off on Nov. 18, and five of their final seven games are against NFC East opponents.

“It could very well happen that way, but…we don’t know what’s going to happen with Pierre,” coach Mike Shanahan said. “I’m taking this day-by-day, listen to the doctors, see what they recommend, and obviously I’m not going to force somebody to play if the doctors don’t think he is ready or…Pierre doesn’t feel like he’s ready.”

The decision to send Garcon to see Dr. Robert B. Anderson was not prompted by a setback. The foot injury just was not getting any better.

“He was sore when I talked to him [Tuesday],” Shanahan said. “He said it hadn’t improved at all. He went swimming, they put him in a pool, and it didn’t even improve in that area. Just for peace of mind I said, ‘Hey, why don’t you go talk to a specialist?’ …You get a chance to go one-on-one and see what he says and hopefully something positive comes out of it.”