- The Washington Times - Saturday, August 4, 2007

Having flourished during nine months of rehabilitation, several offseason practices and the first eight days of training camp, today is huge for Washington Redskins safety Pierson Prioleau.

He gets to hit somebody.

Prioleau sustained a torn ACL in his right knee during the opening kickoff of last year’s first regular season game. The scrimmage against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T; Bank Stadium will be his first live contact since the Redskins have done very little hitting and zero tackling through eight days of training camp.

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“It’s going to be interesting because it will be live and it will be full out and against another team,” he said. “I’m anxious about it and excited about it at the same time because I know it’s going to be my first real test.”

Prioleau said he wouldn’t have been ready to play in a game about six weeks ago.

“That would have been a forced situation and I wouldn’t have been 100 percent,” he said. “But now, if we had a game Sunday, I’d be ready to go.”

Prioleau is wearing a compression sleeve on the knee but not a brace.

“A little bit of it is a mind-set, but it has a lot to do with restriction,” he said. “I want to be able to run and I know the brace will restrict that.”

Prioleau has participated in all 11 camp practices.

“Every single day he gets more confident,” assistant head coach-defense Gregg Williams said. “Him playing in the trenches, those are the things he has to get over. He has overcome everything else so far. … His movement’s great, his strength is great and now he has to take a shot on it to understand how strong it is. The scrimmage will be a hurdle for him.”

Scrimmage plan similar

Today’s scrimmage will follow the format used the last two seasons: kickoff return/coverage, 7-on-7 passing drills (15-play sets) and, starting around 1:10 p.m., several 10-play sets of 11-on-11.

The coaches met yesterday afternoon to determine the quarterback rotation and how much the starters will play.

“On the 11-on-11, we don’t like to say because I don’t want the players to know how long they’re going to go,” coach Joe Gibbs said. “We’ll program the whole thing out but I want everybody to think they’re going to go.”

Yesterday’s practice was used to semi-game plan for the Ravens.

On offense, associate head coach Al Saunders said the 11-on-11 drills will be run-heavy.

“It’s the only time we have an opportunity to work on the running game in a live situation,” he said. “The emphasis will be on that and the evaluation of the young players.”

Seven to sit out

Although some healthy starters aren’t expected to play in the 11-on-11 drills, the Redskins have ruled out seven players from all activities: running back Clinton Portis (knee), left tackle Chris Samuels (knee), receiver Mike Espy (knee), cornerback Jerametrius Butler (hamstring), tight end Tyler Ecker (groin), linebacker Dallas Sartz (hamstring) and fullback Pete Schmitt (shoulder).

“We’re short right now and it worries me,” Gibbs said. “We have a lot of guys that probably won’t be able to go. They’re not major things, but we’ll hesitate putting them in the scrimmage.”

Wade drops weight

Left guard Todd Wade sat out the 65-minute practice because he lost too much weight in the heat — 17 pounds Wednesday and 12 pounds Thursday.

Wade said he will take part in the scrimmage.

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