- The Washington Times - Monday, September 5, 2011

The Washington Redskins have nine rookies on the 53-man roster, but their group of veterans is deep also - when healthy. Monday represented some semblance of good news in that department as tight end Chris Cooley and safeties LaRon Landry and Oshiomogho Atogwe practiced.

Atogwe practiced fully, and though Cooley and Landry were limited, they were with the first team in the first workout preparing for Sunday’s season opener against the New York Giants.

Atogwe should be fine, and though coach Mike Shanahan cited “progress,” he didn’t know if Cooley or Landry would play.

“Have to evaluate [Landry] and [Cooley] the whole week,” he said. “And then make a decision at game time, see how they practice and see how the knee works out.”

Cooley, who had arthroscopic surgery on his left knee after last season, is a particularly important piece of an offense that has plenty of questions. There are seven receivers on the roster, but beyond the duo of Santana Moss and Anthony Armstrong, the Redskins lack for game-changers on the outside.

Having to respect Cooley’s presence at tight end could open space for those receivers as well as the likes of Jabar Gaffney (career high 65 catches last season) and Terrence Austin.

Cooley, whose status for Week 1 seemed to be in question a couple of weeks ago, declined comment Monday.

Landry, who injured his hamstring Aug. 19 in pregame workouts in Indianapolis, previously had said that he hopes to be in the lineup against the Giants.

Roster moves

On Monday, the Redskins announced their eight-man practice squad, with the final three members seeming to shore up light places on the regular roster.

The team announced it added nose tackle Chris Baker, guard Eric Olsen and quarterback Jonathan Crompton to the squad. Along the defensive line, Baker’s presence around the team could offset the release of Anthony Bryant just as Olsen’s does with Artis Hicks. Crompton is insurance because the Redskins only kept two quarterbacks - starter Rex Grossman and backup John Beck.

The five previously reported practice squad members are guard Maurice Hurt, cornerback Nate Ness, receiver Aldrick Robinson, running back Evan Royster and defensive end Doug Worthington.

When players found out about Grossman getting the nod, they also learned who the captains would be - Santana Moss on offense, London Fletcher and DeAngelo Hall on defense and Lorenzo Alexander on special teams (which will rotate week to week).

“I’m still going to be the guy that I am,” Moss said. “Being the captain is being recognized for what you do.”

Commemorating 9/11

Former Secretary of State Colin L. Powell will serve as the Redskins‘ honorary captain Sunday as part of the 9/11 tribute at FedEx Field.

Players and coaches will wear NFL 9/11 ribbons as either patches or pins, and all fans will receive American flags. About 150 family members affected by the attack on the Pentagon are set to honored in a pregame ceremony.



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