RICHMOND | The Redskins plan to establish an in-season schedule for re-sodding the playing surface at FedEx Field to avoid the worn out surface that drew widespread criticism from players and league officials at the end of the 2012-13 season, general manager Bruce Allen said Thursday.
“Once the schedule comes out [in April], our people are ready to commit to a schedule so we have some new sod for the end of the year,” Allen said. “But obviously it’s not going to grow. We’re not in Florida. But we think that is going to address the playing field in December and, hopefully, January.”
Installing artificial grassy turf is not an option, Allen said. The Redskins have FieldTurf installed in their indoor practice facility. Coach Mike Shanahan strongly favors playing on natural grass.
The natural surface at FedEx Field amounted to painted dirt in many spots, especially between the hashmarks, by the time the Redskins hosted Seattle in the Wild Card round of the playoffs on Jan. 6.
Seattle defensive end Chris Clemons tore the ACL in his left knee in that game. He blamed the field condition. His agent called the turf “crappy.”
Also in that game, Redskins star quarterback Robert Griffin III suffered a right knee injury that required surgery to revise the reconstruction of the ACL and to repair the lateral collateral ligament in his right knee. His knee buckled when he turned and leaned down to pick up a fumble on a torn up section of the field.
“We missed an opportunity last year during a window between the seventh game and the 10th game to re-sod the field,” Allen said.