- The Washington Times - Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Washington Redskins quarterback John Beck is determined not to let his recent demotion halt his progress.

“I do believe that I can get better, and I will,” he said Wednesday in his first public comments since coach Mike Shanahan replaced him with Rex Grossman last Sunday. “I don’t feel like where I’m at right now is where I’m going to be stuck at.”

Beck was his usual positive self Wednesday morning. He has moved forward from whatever sting he felt when Shanahan told him the news last Saturday.

“This isn’t the first rodeo I’ve been through in my life of going through adversity or being in a situation where for whatever reason things aren’t working,” he said. “You just continue to grind because I truly believe in the phrase: ‘Tough times don’t last. Tough people do.’ “

Beck’s record as an NFL starter fell to 0-7 after losing all three of his starts after taking over in Week 7. He understands that the Redskins, whose losing streak reached five last Sunday, don’t have the luxury of enduring his growing pains right now.

“I could see areas that I progressed, and I could see areas that I still needed improvement.” Beck said. “It’s a tough spot when you know that you’re in a spot where you need to still learn, but, hey, the time is now.”

Beck alluded to frustrations related to how he was coached from week to week during his three starts. During the 10-sack game against Buffalo, coaches wanted him to get rid of the ball quicker. Then against San Francisco, they wanted him to hold it longer.

Beck said he has reverted to the approach he took early in the regular season after Grossman was named the starter. He’ll work to improve his timing and decision making while running scout team plays in practice.

“My belief in me stays the exact same as it was before,” he said. “I’m grateful for the opportunity that I did get to go play in some games, to be able to be back out in live bullets because that’s where the ultimate learning experiences come. I was able to gain a little bit more experience, and whatever happens next, happens next. I just have to be ready.”

Davis ‘beat up’ in larger role

Tight end Fred Davis is feeling the physical effects of his full-time role as the season enters Week 11. Typical of his expanded responsibilities this season, he played each of the Redskins‘ 51 offensive plays last Sunday against Miami. It’s an adjustment from the No. 2 tight end role he has had the past three years.

“I’m beat up a little bit,” Davis said after practice Wednesday. “Still have a little ankle sprain, but I feel good enough to go. The treatment is helping. I’m getting used to needing massages, all that kind of stuff, and treatment.”

Shanahan would like to limit Davis’ playing time a bit to keep him fresh, but he doesn’t have that luxury because Davis is his best offensive weapon. Davis leads the team with 43 catches and 587 receiving yards.

“We put a lot of pressure on Fred in that position,” Shanahan said. “But Fred’s given us everything he’s got.”

Injury updates

The injury outlook was grim for the Redskins‘ depleted offensive line as they began preparing for Sunday’s game against Dallas. Right tackle Jammal Brown (left groin) and right tackle Sean Locklear (ankle) were limited in practice. Left guard Maurice Hurt (knee) sat out.

• Linebackers London Fletcher (ankle) and Keyaron Fox (knee infection) missed practice. So did strong safety LaRon Landry (Achilles tendon) and receiver Niles Paul (toe).

• Free safety Oshiomogho Atogwe (knee) and running back Tashard Choice (hamstring) fully participated.