Here is what you need to know on this Thursday, December 20, three days before the Redskins take on the Eagles.
Injury concerns diminish quickly
Every Monday and Tuesday we at CSNwashington.com take a look at what we think the major storylines for the week are going to be to plan out our coverage. One of the main issues we were going to focus on was injuries. There were three offensive starters who missed all or part of the Cleveland game—Robert Griffin III, Will Montgomery, and Tyler Polumbus. We planned on following these injuries day to day to keep you abreast of how they were progressing.
But as of now we are looking at trashing our coverage plan. Griffin practiced fully and is on track to start Sunday if there are no setbacks. Montgomery practiced fully with a Grade 2 sprain of his MCL and he is expected to go. Polumbus didn’t practice but Mike Shanahan said that he has no symptoms of the concussion he suffered on Sunday. Shanahan thinks that the right tackle will be ready to go full in practice on Friday and that should put him on track to play on Sunday.
That would mean that in Week 16 the Redskins will be starting the same 11 offensive players they did in Week 1 with the exception of tight end Fred Davis. All of the key reserves who were available in New Orleans also will be available in Philly but running back Roy Helu Jr. Although they have been hit hard be injuries on the defensive side of the ball the Redskins can’t complain about the health of the offense.
So although we will keep you up to date on any new injury developments, we will happily devote less coverage to ailing Redskins and examine other aspects of the team in more depth.
Jones doubts Skins-Boys will be flexed
We normally don’t pay much attention to the utterings of Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. But since we have mentioned here that it is likely that the Dallas Washington game on Dec. 30 will be flexed into a prime time spot we thought it would be good to mention that Jones believes otherwise.
“Right now it’s scheduled to be played as [scheduled],” he said. “I’m doubtful that one will be changed.”
It is possible that FOX is fighting to keep the game on its air and, after the network lost the winner in, loser out Cowboys-Giants game in Week 17 last year to NBC. FOX pays a good chunk of change to the NFL for broadcast rights and the suits can’t be happy about seeing a ratings bonanza go to the competition.
However, there is only so much that they can do. FOX and CBS can’t protect any Week 17 games from being flexed like they can earlier in the season. The contract says that NBC can pick the game they want and there is a strong preference for them to go with an elimination game, essentially giving them an early playoff game.
Then there is the fact that no other matchup is likely to be nearly as attractive. On The Big Lead they go through some possibilities like Packers-Vikings and Ravens-Bengals. But nothing approaches having the juice of RG3 and the Redskins going up against the ratings-magnet Cowboys for a spot in the playoffs.
Jones is certainly a well-informed source so it would be a mistake to reject what he said out of hand. But all of the other tea leaves point to an 8:20 start to Cowboys-Redskins on Dec. 30.
11:30—Practice (closed to the media after first 30 minutes)
After practice (approx. 1:45)—News conferences by Mike Shanahan, Kyle Shanahan, and Jim Haslett, open locker room.
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Day until: Redskins @ Eagles 3; Cowboys vs. Redskins @ FedEx Field 10; First round of NFL playoffs 16