- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 10, 2004

CANTON, Ohio — Right tackle Jon Jansen, one of the Washington Redskins’ best and sturdiest players, ruptured his left Achilles’ tendon last night in a 20-17 preseason win over the Denver Broncos in the Hall of Fame Game.

As coach Joe Gibbs made his preseason debut in his second stint with the club, Jansen suffered a shocking and demoralizing injury. Jansen was told by doctors that such injuries take four months to heal in the best-case scenario, but given his size he likely is looking at a five- to six-month rehab. However, the club is upbeat he can recover fully.

An MRI is scheduled for today to determine the full extent of the setback. Jansen felt the tendon pop and immediately knew what happened on the play in the first quarter. He said he wasn’t touched by a Broncos defender and that the injury occurred when he “turned to run downfield.”

Jansen, 28, is known as the “Rock” because he didn’t miss a game at the University of Michigan and has sat out just one play in his first five NFL seasons. Last night he was just starting to adjust to the idea of missing an entire season.

“For me personally, it’s a something that’s a challenge I’ve never dealt with before,” Jansen said in the locker room while standing on crutches. “I’ve never had to be helped off the field. I’ve never missed a practice. I’m disappointed and frustrated, especially with the new coaching staff. I was really excited about this season.”

The 1999 second-round pick also is a key veteran leader, the only player acquired by the Redskins before 2000. He was the offensive captain for last night’s game.

The injury occurred on a third-and-9 screen pass to running back Chad Morton. After the whistle, Jansen, on the opposite side of the field, momentarily tried to stand from a kneeling position but couldn’t. He hobbled off the field without putting any pressure on the ankle, his weight supported by Redskins trainers.

Seated on a metal bench on the sideline, Jansen buried his face in his hand several times. Quarterback Patrick Ramsey and long snapper Ethan Albright came over to say a word of encouragement. After a few moments, a trainer draped a towel over Jansen’s head and he was left alone.

It was unclear who will be Jansen’s long-term replacement. Journeyman Daryl Terrell subbed in at right tackle on the following series, but the most likely in-house replacement is Kenyatta Jones, who started in place of injured right guard Randy Thomas last night.

Jones, best known for throwing boiling water on his personal assistant while he was a member of the New England Patriots, started at right tackle for New England in 2002. Jones’ off-field incident was settled April29, when he received one year’s probation after pleading no contest to a felony assault charge.

Jansen’s injury came nearly a year after nose tackle Brandon Noble tore his ACL and MCL and dislocated his kneecap in a preseason game against the Patriots. Noble recovered remarkably well and participated in the first week of this camp but didn’t make last night’s trip because of a broken hand.

Rosenhaus, Taylor reunited

Safety Sean Taylor made a sparkling debut after officially re-hiring agent Drew Rosenhaus. Taylor intercepted a pair of passes, including one early in the second half that he ran in for a 3-yard touchdown.

Meanwhile, Rosenhaus attended the game and said the Redskins are interested in discussing a new contract for his client after Aug.1, 2005, as NFL rules permit.

“I have talked to the team, and they’re gracious enough to entertain discussions at the appropriate time,” Rosenhaus said in a pregame interview. “And [Dan] Snyder is the type of owner who wants to be fair with his players. So I feel confident that when all the smoke clears and all [this years first-round] deals are done, we’ll be able to see to it that Sean’s contract fits in where it should. We have some real issues with the way the deal was handled.”

Redskins vice president of football operations Vinny Cerrato declined comment, noting that a new contract can’t be done for a year. Rosenhaus acknowledged that dead period but said, “Obviously we can talk and outline a plan. But that’s really the extent of it right now.”

Taylor signed a seven-year, $18million contract July27, four days before full-squad training camp opened. The deal could be worth up to $40million with incentives but has been criticized within the agent community for not including enough guaranteed money.

Rosenhaus noted that Jeff Moorad, the lead agent on Taylor’s contract, is set to leave the business and become CEO of baseball’s Arizona Diamondbacks.

“In light of what’s happened with the primary negotiator of [Taylors] contract leaving the business, it does raise some issues that we’re looking into,” Rosenhaus said.

Extra points

Bailey and Redskins running back Clinton Portis, who were swapped in the offseason’s blockbuster trade, exchanged a hug at midfield during pregame warmups. Portis also ran through Denver’s stretch lines to greet a number of old teammates. Bailey stuck around midfield after embracing Portis and shook hands with several Redskins, including Morton. …

Noble and Thomas were among those who didn’t travel to Canton. Also absent: running back Ladell Betts (hamstring), defensive end Phillip Daniels (abdomen), linebacker Chris Clemons (ankle), cornerback Rashad Bauman (hamstring), wide receiver Cliff Russell (hamstring), offensive lineman Brandon Winey (ankle), linebacker Mike Barrow (knee) and wide receiver Taylor Jacobs (abdomen). …

The new WJFK-FM (106.7) broadcast team made its debut. Longtime color men Sam Huff and Sonny Jurgensen were joined by play-by-play man Larry Michael, who replaced Frank Herzog.

“I told them I feel like a free agent, coming to a veteran team,” Michael said before the game. “The adjustments need to be made by me, not them. By the same token, I’ve spent the past two days with them continuously — every meal, every minute. We couldn’t be more prepared.”

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