Two days since his benching in Baltimore hasn’t calmed down Redskins running back Clinton Portis.
During his weekly appearance on the John Thompson Show, Portis was still verbally agitated with not playing after the opening series of the second half Sunday night. Among the highlights:
* On the benching: “London Fletcher played in the game and didn’t practice all week. I haven’t missed a meeting, I haven’t missed a practice. It kind of shocked me, too.”
* On Jim Zorn saying he made mistakes: “If you go back and watch the film, I guarantee you won’t see me make mistakes. But maybe he’s watching a different film than me.”
* On communication with coaches: “I need to know, too. If it is, I want to know about it. If it’s an issue with me, tell me that. Outside of Jim Zorn and the coaches on the team and maybe the quarterbacks, I guarantee I know the system better than anybody else. I guarantee that on blitz pick up, I don’t miss my man. If anybody has a problem with me, they need to talk to me. I don’t know what’s going on.”
* On practicing: “What I need to be around for is Sundays. If there’s a problem with me not practicing and we can’t do it that way … then you [feel the] need to split ties with me, split ties with me but don’t throw me out like I don’t pay attention, that I don’t know what’s going on, that I’m making mistakes and that I’m the problem.”
* On adjustments needed for the offense: “We got a genius for a head coach so I don’t know. I’m sure he has everything figured out. That’s up to him. All I can do is when he calls the plays, execute to the best of my ability.”
Zorn’s turn on the radio comes at 4 p.m.
UPDATED (4:10 p.m.): During his appearance on 980 moments ago, Zorn said Portis was not benched but again mentioned that Portis wasn’t as fine as he should have been in the passing game, a result of not practicing.
“[Not practicing was costly] is hard to say because the first couple weeks he didn’t practice, he gained 145 yards and 123 yards. But as the time went on, it wasn’t that we weren’t getting the running ability, he was doing great things in blocking and his effort was high. He would tell you this and I agree with him whole-heartedly, when he is playing the game, he’s giving you his best effort.
“He’s very wicked on the football field. He’s what you want. What I wanted on the field Sunday and each week, I felt in certain parts of the game, he was getting out on routes but it wasn’t exact and quick and I thought, ‘OK, here’s an opportunity for us to get Ladell in, who has practiced and knows it because he’s rehearsed it and rehearsed it.’ I just made the decision not to give [Portis] that chance.”
Zorn said he expects Portis to practice Wednesday.
“He’s gotten himself healthy,” Zorn said. “I’m looking forward to having him out there every snap practicing and getting ready for the Cincinnati Bengals so we can utlitize him on every down. From what I understand from our trainers, his knee is fine, his neck is no longer stiff.”