Ashburn Report: Gibbs Keeps an Even Keel

Ashburn, VA 10.26.05--Joey T. pays a visit and we get John's opinion as to who will handle the kicking duties on Sunday.

...Former Redskin quarterback Joe Theismann visited Redskins Park today and said there's a different feeling in the locker room.

''I've been coming here for years and when I walked through the locker room, the first thing I thought of is, 'There's joy in Mudville.' It's a happy locker room, an excited locker room. There's energy. Those are the things that Xs and Os don't see.''

Theismann is right. This is a happy place now and has been for a while. And it's why some of us (including yours truly) thought the Redskins would be better than expected. There's a lot of time left in the season, but the Redskins have the intangibles.

...Just a hunch: LaVar Arrington will not play nearly as much as he did this past Sunday.

. . . Of course, Joe Gibbs isn't paying attention to what any analyst says or thinks right now. Nor should he.

 ‘'You get talked up one day and talked down the next,'' Gibbs said. ‘'It can go in a hurry. This week, if things don't go well, I know what's coming.''

...Look for placekicker John Hall to kick Sunday. The Redskins wanted him to stay healthy and kick for two weeks straight. This is the second week and Hall said he's ready. He said the same thing last week, but the coaches wanted to wait one more week just to be sure.

But don't be surprised if they wait until the last possible moment to make a decision, which could be early Saturday evening. That would prevent another team (Dallas, perhaps) from signing Nick Novak. And it would give the Redskins a safety net if Hall struggles through the game and they need to sign another kicker Monday.

. . . Injury report: DT Cornelius Griffin (hip), DL Aki Jones (hamstring), DL Cedric Killings (ankle), S Sean Taylor (ankle), DL Joe Salave'a (foot), LB LaVar Arrington (hamstring), QB Mark Brunell (calf), C Casey Rabach (ankle), CB Carlos Rogers (ankle) and Hall (quad) are listed as probable. Griffin, Jones, Killings and Taylor did not practice.

For the Giants: CB Will Peterson (back) is out; WR Plaxico Burress (shoulder) and LB Carlos Emmons (pec) are questionable.

...Jon Jansen on the resurgence of the NFC East: ''The biggest thing is that it's a physical division. Teams run the ball to win games and the defenses are physical. Guys come up and smack you. And the fans want to be blue-collar fans.''
...This is the latest the Redskins have had a winning record since the 2000 season. Unbelievable.

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