- The Washington Times - Tuesday, December 4, 2001

The Washington Redskins are becoming thin at tight end. Stephen Alexander is expected to miss at least two games with a broken ankle, while Walter Rasby and Zeron Flemister also were hurt in the 20-14 loss to the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday.
An MRI yesterday confirmed Alexander's broken right ankle was an aggravation of a past injury instead of a new one that would have been more serious. Coach Marty Schottenheimer said he won't make a quick decision on whether to place Alexander on injured reserve for the rest of the season, though it is an option if the injury lingers more than two games. Alexander broke a small bone just above the high ankle sprain that recently sidelined him four games and most of two others.
"It felt as good as it ever has [before it was re-injured]," Alexander said. "I was pumped up, running around."
Schottenheimer hopes for Alexander's return to provide another needed receiver, especially for medium-range passes that have been the offense's mainstay. After catching 47 passes last season, Alexander was expected to grab 60 in the new offensive scheme this year. Instead, injuries have limited him to just nine.
Rasby may miss practice tomorrow with a sprained right ankle while Flemister was limited in the light workout yesterday because of general soreness. Both are expected to play against the Arizona Cardinals Sunday, and are instrumental in blocking schemes and short passes.
"We have to do it all run down the field, block the big guys, be dirty, be pretty," Rasby said.
Said Flemister: "We're pretty beat up, but it's a long week and a lot of treatment should have us ready."
Flemister has been one of the team's sleepers this season, averaging 12 yards on nine catches. He played just five games last year and caught his only pass in the opening drive. However, Flemister has grown past his strong special teams play that earned him a roster spot.
"Zeron's a pretty good runner after the catch," quarterback Tony Banks said. "It's just a matter of his being so young and understanding the timing of getting open."
Meanwhile, guard Ben Coleman (hamstring) and running back Ki-Jana Carter (shoulder) may be rated questionable on the injury list tomorrow. Coleman's backup, Matt Campbell, will probably miss his third straight game with a dislocated kneecap, leaving David Brandt as the successor. Carter's third-down role would be filled by fullback Donnell Bennett or kick returner Michael Bates.
Banks' sprained ankle was sore, but he expected to practice tomorrow. Schottenheimer was uncertain whether backup quarterback Kent Graham would take extra snaps in practice as a precaution.

Odd man out
A botched substitution left the Redskins with 10 players on the field during a key third-down conversion that led to Dallas' go-ahead field goal. Schottenheimer declined to name the player that didn't report when Cowboys running back Michael Wiley gained 46 yards on third-and-2 near the third quarter's end. Dallas later kicked a 37-yard field goal for a 10-7 lead with 13:44 remaining.
"The player who was supposed to be in there was on the sidelines; didn't know he was supposed to be in there. Those things are inexcusable," Schottenheimer said.
The Redskins also called timeout in the first quarter to avoid an illegal formation penalty because there wasn't an eligible receiver on the end of the line. Schottenheimer blamed a mix-up in the huddle for the mistake.

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide