Redskins 411: Jimoh in the Spotlight


Posted Dec 13, 2005


Redskins 411 12.13.05--The Redskins may be forced to give a more prominent role to Ade Jimoh, a special-teams demon who has provided some nervous moments when he's lined up on defense.

 
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As if the Washington Redskins could be any more banged-up at cornerback, rookie Carlos Rogers had his bruised left biceps in a sling on Monday after being hurt in the first quarter the previous afternoon at Arizona.

Rogers' tenuous status for Sunday's critical NFC East game with Dallas added to the list that includes fellow starter Shawn Springs' strained groin and strained lower back suffered at Arizona and third corner Walt Harris' strained calf suffered in practice last week.

"It puts us in a tough situation at corner," Redskins coach Joe Gibbs said. "We'll just have to see how all these things play out."

If the three regular corners can't play, the Redskins will be forced to go with little-used Ade Jimoh and perhaps practice squad corner Dimitri Patterson against the Cowboys, although free safety Sean Taylor is swift enough to play the position.

Jimoh has never started during his three seasons but made a huge tackle on star receiver Larry Fitzgerald on third-and-1 at the Washington 29 during the Cardinals' final drive.

"It was fun to be out there and to be able to help my team," said Jimoh, who relieved the injured Springs in the third quarter.

Quotes and Notes

--Chris Samuels sprained his right knee and right ankle on the final series at Arizona, but the offensive left tackle won't skip a chance to sweep the Cowboys, a team he can't stand. Samuels taunted Dallas fans as he left the field following Washington's stunning 14-13 comeback victory in Week 2 at Texas Stadium that broke the Redskins' 10-game losing streak there.

"My knee's not in that bad a shape," said Samuels, who'll likely miss at least Wednesday's practice. My ankle's a little swollen, a little painful. I'll get that down, and I'll be ready for Dallas."

--With 105 rushing yards at Arizona, running back Clinton Portis pulled a little further ahead of Stephen Davis' team-record pace of 2001. Davis gained 1,432 yards. With 1,184 in 13 games, Portis is on track for 1,457.

"Clinton is on a mission," guard Randy Thomas said. "He's trying to carry this team, and I appreciate him. We should continue handing him the ball."

Indeed, coach Joe Gibbs has called Portis' number at least 26 times the past three games. Portis didn't have many carries in any of the first 10 games.

Player Notes

--LB LaVar Arrington, inactive at Arizona with a bruised thigh, should practice on Wednesday and play Sunday against Dallas.

--DT Joe Salave'a, out the past two games with plantar fasciitis in his left foot, will return to practice on Wednesday and should play Sunday.

--WR James Thrash, who has missed the past three games with a pulled hamstring, will return to limited practice on Wednesday.

--DT Cedric Killings, sidelined the past two games with a pulled groin, should practice on Wednesday.

--KR Antonio Brown's 91-yard touchdown at Arizona and the 94-yard touchdown by Ladell Betts on Nov. 13 at Tampa Bay gave the Redskins their first pair of kickoff return scores in a season since Eddie Saenz took two all the way back in 1947.

Report Card vs. Cardinals

PASSING OFFENSE: D-plus -- QB Mark Brunell had an ugly first half with three interceptions in the red zone, only one of which was tipped. Brunell also fumbled twice but didn't lose either. Brunell was accurate when not picked (18-for-28), but 122 yards is pathetically little to show for all those throws. WR Santana Moss caught seven passes but uncharacteristically dropped two and averaged just 8 yards a catch. WR Taylor Jacobs had a lone 7-yard catch. H-back Chris Cooley couldn't hold onto Brunell's second pass and had it bounce into the hands of Arizona's Antrel Rolle. Cooley didn't help his Pro Bowl cause with just 26 yards on four catches. TE Robert Royal had two grabs for 23 yards  RB Clinton Portis had three catches for 16 yards. The offensive line didn't allow any sacks.

RUSHING OFFENSE: A-minus -- Portis had a nifty 23-yard run early, a fine 15-yard touchdown midway through and a powerful 8-yard effort when his team absolutely needed it as he continued his strong five-game stretch with 105 yards on 26 carries. RB Ladell Betts struggled in his return after missing three games with a knee injury. OT Jon Jansen joined H-back Mike Sellers in leading the way on Portis' TD run. Jansen also saved a big turnover by recovering Brunell's botched handoff to Portis at the Washington 24 in the fourth quarter. G Derrick Dockery was caught holding. Royal blocked well. After being overwhelmed by the Cardinals for most of the fourth quarter as the Redskins tried to kill the clock, the line, led by G Randy Thomas, came up big on Portis' sealing 8-yard, third-down run, which allowed Brunell to kneel in victory.

PASS DEFENSE: C -- FS Sean Taylor had a dazzling early interception, missed a couple of tackles, and got a break from the officials when he was beaten by WR Anquan Boldin (who had a big day) for a critical apparent first down that was overruled at the end of the third quarter. CB Carlos Rogers was beaten by fourth receiver LeRon McCoy for an early touchdown and committed a bad late pass interference penalty while playing with a bruised biceps. CB Shawn Springs played well until he was hurt. SS Pierson Prioleau sacked QB Kurt Warner and hung in there to recover the fumble. DT Demetric Evans beat Fred Wakefield for a terrific sack. The rest of the line wasn't very noticeable, although Phillip Daniels sacked Kurt Warner on the first play but had it overturned by a penalty. MLB Lemar Marshall knocked down a couple of passes. LB Marcus Washington got another. LB Chris Clemons pressured Warner into an incompletion.

RUSH DEFENSE: A -- Taylor stopped J.J. Arrington on the climatic fourth-and-2 at the Washington 29 with 2:03 left after CB Ade Jimoh, pressed into service after Springs was hurt, dropped Larry Fitzgerald for a 1-yard loss on third-and-1. Marshall stripped Arizona RBs J.J. Arrington and Marcel Shipp. LBs Washington and Warrick Holdman, playing for the injured LaVar Arrington, recovered the fumbles. DT Cornelius Griffin had a tackle for a loss.

SPECIAL TEAMS: A -- KR Antonio Brown was cut after setting up Chicago's only points with a fumble in the opener, but he justified his re-signing Sunday with a 90-yard kickoff return touchdown to put Washington ahead in the third quarter. Brown had come close to breaking one earlier before being tripped up by ex-Redskin R-Kal Truluck. K John Hall hit a 41-yard field goal. P Derrick Frost boomed a 55-yarder to get Washington out of trouble in the fourth quarter. The coverage units did a good job against dangerous return man Reggie Swinton.

COACHING: B-plus -- Joe Gibbs didn't abandon the run despite trailing at halftime. Gibbs stuck with Portis and had his quarterback just hand off and dink and dunk his way to victory. Gregg Williams' ailing secondary had some trouble with Boldin but did a fine job on Fitzgerald. The defense gave up four big pass plays in the second half, but none for touchdowns. Special teams coach Danny Smith has done a terrific job despite losing Hall, top tackler Sellers and return specialists Betts and James Thrash for at least one game apiece with injuries.



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