- The Washington Times - Saturday, October 15, 2005

The Washington Redskins’ revolving door at cornerback will continue tomorrow in Kansas City. Shawn Springs likely will be sidelined with an ailing lower leg, though Walt Harris will return after missing two games with a strained calf.

Top draft choice Carlos Rogers, who filled in for Harris on the left side against Seattle and Denver, will take Springs’ spot on the right side against the Chiefs with only little-used Ade Jimoh in reserve. Jimoh played most of last week’s game after Springs was hurt.

Springs, who originally was injured in practice Oct. 6, said he felt better yesterday than he had earlier in the week.

But Redskins coach Joe Gibbs said: “It doesn’t look good for Shawn.”

Springs, 30, missed six games with a broken thumb as a rookie in 1997, three with a hamstring injury in 2001 and four with a shoulder injury in 2003 as well as single games in 2002 and 2004 — his first with the team.

Gibbs said yesterday was the best kicker John Hall has looked since pulling his right quadriceps in the Sept. 11 season opener, kicking 18 balls. However, rookie Nick Novak will fill in for Hall for a fourth consecutive game.

Running back Clinton Portis said he’s ready to play following his return to practice yesterday after two days on the sideline with a calf injury he sustained against the Broncos.

The news wasn’t as good for reserve runner Ladell Betts, who is still out with an injured groin. Gibbs said seventh-round pick Nehemiah Broughton likely will be activated for the first time and join Rock Cartwright in backing up Portis.

“I’m excited,” said Broughton, who led Washington with 36 carries and two touchdowns in preseason. “A lot of people back home [in North Charleston, S.C.,] have been waiting to see me play.”

That’s also true of Betts’ family and friends, but the Blue Springs, Mo., native likely won’t play in his first NFL game at home.

“It’s pretty frustrating that this happened, especially now,” said Betts, who bought more than 40 tickets for the game. “I feel all right, but I’m not 100 percent. Coach Gibbs always says if you’re not 100 percent, let somebody else get in there and get their opportunity.

“I think we will take it to Sunday morning and see how I’m doing.”

Watching and waiting

Lost in the focus on linebacker LaVar Arrington’s lack of playing time has been another veteran who has not been on the field. Center Cory Raymer, who started the final 14 games of 2004 and has been a regular for most of his 11 seasons, has been active each week but has yet to play.

“I make up for it by doing what I can to help the team and having fun in practice,” said the 32-year-old Raymer, who lost his job when Washington signed free agent center Casey Rabach in March.

Raymer didn’t handle it as well in 1997 when he was inactive for the first 10 games after missing most of 1996 with injuries.

“I still remember when [offensive line coach] Russ Grimm came up to me [before the opener] in Carolina and told me I was inactive,” Raymer said. “I felt sick to my stomach. It was embarrassing as heck.

“But that was the wake-up call I needed.”

Indeed, when Raymer finally got back in the lineup in Week 11, he didn’t come out again until he tore an ACL in August 2000.

Boys will be

Kansas City offensive coordinator Al Saunders was far from upset about the bar room brawls involving kicker Lawrence Tynes and backup quarterback Todd Collins during training camp.

“If your kicker and quarterback are getting in fights, you’re probably going to have a pretty tough football team,” Saunders said.

Saunders’ high-powered offense leads the NFL with 24,659 yards and 1,845 points during his four-plus seasons, but the Chiefs have yet to win a playoff game and have had just one winning season.

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