- The Washington Times - Sunday, September 16, 2012

ST. LOUIS — Before Robert Griffin III took a snap in the first quarter Sunday, two key Redskins defenders left because of injury.

Defensive end Adam Carriker was helped off after injuring his right knee 21 seconds into the game. He never returned, spending much of the game sitting with a wrap the size of a bowling ball on the knee.

Then outside linebacker Brian Orakpo injured his right chest after sacking Bradford minutes later. Orakpo wasn’t happy and chucked his helmet 10 yards as he staggered to the sideline, but returned with 4:51 left in the first.

Orakpo partially tore his left pectoral muscle in last season’s finale and needed offseason surgery to repair the problem.

The extent of the injuries wasn’t immediately clear.

“It’s tough,” linebacker London Fletcher said. “You’re talking about two marquee players. It’s the opportunity for another guy. It’s football. The next man has to be ready.”

Garcon sits, Robinson starts

Wide receiver Pierre Garcon was inactive because of a right foot injury. Aldrick Robinson started in his place as Washington’s ‘X’ receiver.

Garcon had four receptions for 109 yards and a touchdown last week against New Orleans. He left that game after his 88-yard catch-and-run for a touchdown.

The Redskins listed Garcon as questionable on the team’s injury report. Garcon did not practice Wednesday, and he was limited in practice on Thursday and Friday. Garcon and the Redskins were pessimistic about his status.

Coach Mike Shanahan said Garcon would be a game-time decision, but he did not take the field hours before the game with other receivers.

Shanahan was hopeful about Garcon’s status Friday because he saw improvement. Shanahan said Garcon’s availability depended on whether he could tolerate the pain in his foot. Garcon would not risk further damage to his foot, Shanahan said.

Garcon did not answer reporters’ questions all week.

Robinson had four catches for 52 yards and a touchdown against New Orleans.

Washington’s six other inactive players were strong safety Brandon Meriweather (sprained left knee), quarterback Rex Grossman, defensive lineman Chris Baker, newly signed safety Jordan Pugh and rookie offensive linemen Josh LeRibeus and Adam Gettis.

DeJon Gomes started in Meriweather’s place, as he did last week, when he had a key interception in the fourth quarter.

Meriweather exercised on the field during pregame warm-ups, which could bode well for his chances of playing next Sunday against Cincinnati in Washington’s home opener.

This is the second straight week Grossman was inactive, leaving rookie Kirk Cousins as the backup quarterback.

Wilson’s big moment

Josh Wilson stands just 5-foot-9, but the Redskins’ cornerback delivered a big moment on the first play from scrimmage. After Rams quarterback Sam Bradford zinged a 12-yard pass to Danny Amendola, linebacker Perry Riley ripped the ball away. Wilson scooped it up and sprinted 30 yards for the sixth touchdown of his career.

Entering Sunday, four of Wilson’s touchdowns came via interception returns and the other on a kickoff return as a rookie in 2007.

No Nike or Adidas logos for RG3 during warm-ups

A week after Robert Griffin III covered up the Nike logo on his warm-up shirt, the Redskins’ quarterback — and Adidas pitchman — dodged the swoosh again.

When Griffin warmed up before facing the Rams on Sunday at the Edward Jones Dome, he wore a plain gray T-shirt over the white long-sleeve warm-up shirt.

No logos were visible.

Last week, a strip of white tape with “HEART” scrawled in black marker covered Griffin’s swoosh.

His Adidas affiliation included the company sponsoring a 74-foot moving projection of the quarterback, complete with Adidas logos, on the Newseum’s first amendment tablet last month.

Nike is in its first season as the NFL’s official outfitter.

The Fisher ‘stache

As part of an effort to break the Guinness world record for the largest gathering of people wearing false mustaches, the Rams gave away fake Jeff Fisher mustaches Sunday during their home opener.

Fisher, in his first season as Rams head coach, is known for his salt-and-pepper mustache.

A Rams advertisement claimed mustaches “enhanced the ability to read opponent offensive and defensive formations and strategies.”

Fisher is a nominee for the Robert Goulet Memorial Mustached American of the Year award presented by the American Mustache Institute.