One is a veteran of 99 NFL games, while the other’s next will be his first.
But for 31-year-old Todd Wade and 23-year-old Andrew Crummey, Friday will not be an easy day. Both are offensive linemen vying for the final spot at the position on the Washington Redskins. At least one of them and possibly both will not be with the organization this weekend.
“I don’t know what to expect really,” Crummey said. “Coming out of college when you spent five years in one program, you identify yourself as a [Maryland] Terp like in my instance. I identify myself as a Redskin right now, but come Saturday I could be playing somewhere else.”
Crummey, an undrafted free agent, spent his entire collegiate career as guard. But he has spent time at center during this camp.
“I did it a little bit in college during spring ball but never in a game. That Jets game was the first time I’ve ever played [center] in a game,” Crummey said. “This past two weeks has been a steep learning curve for me. But it is good to have the ability to play multiple positions. I have film now of playing left guard, right guard and center, so all three of those could maybe help me down the line.”
At least Crummey had the ability to prove his worth Thursday night against Jacksonville. Wade has waited for his high ankle sprain to heal for much of training camp.
Wade was hurt in the exhibition opener against Indianapolis and hasn’t played or practiced since. Last season Wade injured his knee and tried to return too quickly, so this year he tried to take a more patient approach.
“I’ve learned that you can play tough guy, but by going out there you’re not helping yourself and you’re not helping the team,” Wade said. “Until I can go out there and play at 100 percent, players are just too good in this league not to. You’re going to get exposed, especially if you’re dealing with something in your legs. That’s the position I’m in now, but I feel like I can be ready next week.”
Wade said he has an inflamed bursa near his Achilles but hopes to return to practice next week.
Three reserves (Stephon Heyer, Chad Rinehart and Jason Fabini) are safely on the roster, and there might only be one more spot available for Justin Geisinger, Wade or Crummey.
“Oh yeah, for sure - that’s definitely in my mind,” Wade said. “I’d like to be [on the team] because I think I can help this team a lot. I’ve only played one preseason game, and I did everything I was supposed to do. I wish I had more film to show this new staff what I can do, especially when I am healthy.”
Kelly’s debut delayed
Second-round pick Malcolm Kelly was expected to make his debut with the Redskins, but after he complained of knee soreness during warmups, the training staff ruled him out because of swelling.
Kelly was a standout in the opening days of camp but injured his hamstring and then his knee and has not played while recovering from arthroscopic surgery. Part of the process for him has been overcoming the mental block.
“I think it’s bad, but it is not really. It has all healed up, and there’s no pain,” Kelly said Tuesday. “It is just a deal with my mind telling myself that it is OK to go out there, and I’m kind of hesitant on certain things. It can be like that with any injury, so it is just a little learning curve to get over. I’ll be all right.”