- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 12, 2007

The Washington Redskins upgraded their receiving corps yesterday by signing Reche Caldwell to a one-year contract.

Caldwell, who was released by the New England Patriots at the end of training camp, confirmed the deal on his way out of Redskin Park. He flew home last night and will return in time for tomorrow’s practice. He will have three practices and a walkthrough before Monday’s game in Philadelphia.

Since his release from the Patriots, Caldwell had worked out for the New York Jets and talked with Dallas and Minnesota.

To make room for Caldwell, the Redskins placed right tackle Jon Jansen on the season-ending injured reserve list. Jansen is scheduled for surgery on his fractured and dislocated right ankle later this week.

The Redskins also waived running back Marcus Mason, leaving a roster spot open. If Mason clears waivers, he probably will be signed to the practice squad.

Caldwell, 28, led New England with 61 catches for 760 yards (four touchdowns) last season and added 16 catches in the playoffs.

But Caldwell became expendable after the Patriots acquired Randy Moss, Donte Stallworth and Wes Welker during the offseason.

“There was a slight saw-it-coming just because of the numbers,” said Caldwell’s agent, Tony Fleming. “But he was comfortable there, so there was a slight surprise because he felt he had a productive year last season and had proven himself.”

Caldwell’s arrival is a clear indication the Redskins may be tired of the lack of production from Brandon Lloyd. Lloyd started last year as the No. 2 receiver, but was demoted during the offseason in favor of Antwaan Randle El. In 16 games with the Redskins, Lloyd has 23 catches and no touchdowns.

Wade will start

On Monday, Todd Wade surmised he would be the Washington Redskins’ new right tackle. Yesterday, his suspicion was confirmed in a meeting with coach Joe Gibbs and assistant head coach-offense Joe Bugel.

Wade will start Monday night in Philadelphia, replacing Jon Jansen, who sustained a season-ending ankle injury last week. Rookie Stephon Heyer will be the back up.

“I assumed it was going to happen,” he said outside Redskin Park yesterday. “Maybe it’s wrong to assume sometimes, but I was right. I look forward to the challenge. I’m excited about it.”

Wade is the obvious choice over Heyer just because of experience. Wade has started 86 NFL games, and Heyer has played in just one.

It’s already been an eventful season for Wade. He re-signed with the Redskins to be the starting left guard. But the transition was bumpy and made worse by a shoulder injury that robbed him of practice time. When the team acquired Pete Kendall on Aug. 23, Wade moved back to tackle. Inactive for the Miami game, he will start against the Eagles.

Wade said his shoulder injury, a torn labrum, will require him to wear a brace but isn’t a problem.

“I feel great,” he said. “It’s going to be there all season, but it’s temporary pain. It’s a lingering issue guys play with all the time. I was full speed in practice all of last week.”

Injury news

On his weekly radio show yesterday, Gibbs said cornerback Shawn Springs was limited against Miami because of a minor hamstring problem. Since Springs didn’t miss any practice last week, he did not appear on the injury report.

Meanwhile, defensive end Phillip Daniels (sprained foot) is out of his walking boot-type cast but isn’t expected to practice tomorrow.

“I’m feeling a lot better — it’s sore, but I’m coming along,” he said. “They’re probably going to hold me for a little while. They told me to shoot for Saturday.”

Sheppard likely out

Philadelphia cornerback Lito Sheppard (sprained MCL) isn’t expected to play Monday night.

The Eagles’ secondary was battered against the Packers. Will James, who will replace Sheppard, suffered a bruised quadriceps; Joselio Hanson, who will take over James’ nickel back spot, has a concussion; and safety Sean Considine sprained his knee.

Practice squad shuffle

In addition to Caldwell, the Redskins worked out tight end Kelly Griffeth and offensive linemen Justin Geisinger and Fred Matua. Geisinger was later signed to the practice squad. Receiver Burl Toler and linebacker Anthony Trucks were released from the practice squad.

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