- The Washington Times - Sunday, September 30, 2012

TAMPA, Fla. — It wasn’t bad enough for the Washington Redskins that they had suffered plenty of injuries in games and practices so far this season. Sunday brought a unique, scary scene about two hours before they kicked off at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Brandon Meriweather collided with an unsuspecting Aldrick Robinson during pregame warmups, knocking both out of the game well before it started.

“Both of them were ready to go. They were just warming up,” coach Mike Shanahan said. “I’ve never had that in my coaching career to have two guys go out in pregame.”

Meriweather, who was running toward the end zone, went down awkwardly and was writhing in pain on the ground and grabbing his left knee, the same knee that had sprained ligaments in it. This would have been the safety’s Redskins debut, but now he’s set to have an MRI to determine the severity of the injury.

“Serious enough not to play. Quite sore. You could tell he was sore. But I don’t want to say anything until we take a look at the MRI,” Shanahan said. “He was ready to play. He had a good week of practice. He was fired up, and it was a tough setback for him because he was ready to go.”

Robinson, who has stepped up in the absence of receiver Pierre Garcon, suffered a concussion and was unconscious on the field for about a minute, according to Shanahan.

It was not immediately certain what Robinson’s status would be moving forward.

Garcon returns

With Robinson out, Garcon’s return from a two-game absence with a bruised right foot was essential for the Redskins. Garcon knew all week he was going to play.

It was an uneven day for Garcon. He finished with just one catch, though it was a big one for 20 yards. He also had a costly 15-yard personal foul that he didn’t want to talk about.

“It feels good to get back out there and help the team out as much as I can,” Garcon said. “It was a good experience.”

Williams guts it out

For much of the week it appeared as if Jordan Black would start at left tackle in place of Trent Williams, who suffered a bone bruise in his right knee last week. Black got most of the starting reps in practice, but there Williams was, taking every snap against the Buccaneers.

“To just have a few reps during the week and to come out and play at the level that he played, gut it out throughout the whole game, I don’t think I’ve seen a guy do that since I’ve been coaching,” Shanahan said. “To miss as much time as he did, to watch the way he walked around the locker room, the facility, and to come out and play the way he did really says a lot about him.”

Williams said he felt he owed it to the fans and the city to play, obviously in pain.

Morris steps up

Shanahan spoke confidently of Alfred Morris last week as an every-down running back. Sunday at Tampa Bay, Morris showed why.

Finding holes and running defenders over, Morris eclipsed the 100-yard mark for the first time in his NFL career. He finished with 113 yards and a touchdown.

Extra points

With no sellout, Sunday’s game was blacked out in the Tampa area. It was easy to see why, given the swaths of empty seats in the upper bowl at Raymond James Stadium.

⦁ Running back Ryan Grant, signed this past week to replace Roy Helu Jr., was inactive. That left Morris, Evan Royster and Darrel Young as the only running backs.

• Stephen Whyno can be reached at swhyno@washingtontimes.com.

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