John Hall is one Washington Redskins player who can't wait for Sunday's game in Dallas. The 10th-year kicker badly missed a 48-yard field goal attempt that could have tied Monday's 19-16 loss to Minnesota in the closing seconds. That errant kick followed an August in which Hall didn't make any of his four attempts past 40 yards and injury-plagued 2004 and 2005 seasons.
"I would be lying if I said I wasn't," Hall said yesterday when asked whether he was eager for another chance just six days after his critical miss. "Until you've been in that situation and had that result, you just don't know what a bad feeling that is to let the team down and everyone's giving their blood, sweat and tears to win the game. It's like a kick in the groin, a kick in the gut.
"No one wanted it to go through the posts more than I did. [September 11] was an important day for a couple of cities and a lot of people other than just football fans. It meant a lot to me. But my wife and I had a real positive talk about it being just one kick. I woke up the next day and saw my [1-year-old son Brady]. He was like, 'Da-da, let's play.' Things like that put it in perspective."
Wynn improved, Springs not
Cornerback Shawn Springs performed extensive agility drills during the special teams part of practice but otherwise remained on the sideline, where he has been since having abdominal surgery Aug. 15. Springs said he won't be ready for the Cowboys. However, defensive end Renaldo Wynn, who didn't play Monday for just the second time in his five years with the Redskins, said the right ankle he sprained Aug. 26 at New England was much better.
"I feel good," Wynn said after going through the full practice. "This was a big test for me. I expect it will be sore tomorrow morning, but I think I'm good to go."
Springs is listed as doubtful on the injury report. Wynn and tight end Christian Fauria (leg contusion) are probable.
Portis the weatherman
Last week, running back Clinton Portis' evaluations of his ailing shoulder were all a matter of percentages. Asked yesterday after the first practice of the week what the forecast was for this week, Portis laughed and said, "Cloudy." Coach Joe Gibbs said Portis took limited work and that his role for Sunday would be decided as the week progresses. Portis is officially questionable.
They keep coming back
With Pierson Prioleau lost for the season with a torn knee ligament, the Redskins re-signed fellow safety Curry Burns, who was one of their final cuts Sept. 2.
Burns shouldn't get comfortable. The Redskins worked out former Carolina and Jacksonville safety Deke Cooper after practice.
Fullback Nehemiah Broughton, who was cut Tuesday, walked into the facility in late afternoon to sign a practice squad contract, Broughton, a seventh-round pick in 2005, would replace last year's fourth-rounder, Manuel White, who badly injured a knee during Saturday's workout.
Defensive tackle Kedric Golston, the 196th pick in April's draft, joined linebacker Rocky McIntosh (35th) as the only Redskins rookies to play in the season opener. Golston played about 15 snaps and was credited with three tackles.
"It's a start," Golston said. "It was a lot more intense than preseason, a lot more bodies flying around, a lot more physical."