Something in the air?

Maybe it was the sun. Or the steamy Washington day. Could be that the Redskins are getting a bit tired of each other. Whatever the reason, they sure seemed to be grumpy today. It's been a long time since we've heard this much cussing on the field. Players swore at players and coaches cussed at players. It started early when defensive coordinator Marvin Lewis barked at the first unit because they walked from the huddle.

''Let's go!'' he shouted. ''We're walking around here! Quit walking around!''

During a seven-on-seven drill, defensive back Kenneth Grant got too close to receiver Justin Skaggs on a route. Skaggs caught the ball and Grant spun him around. After the play Skaggs spiked the ball at Grant's feet. Which didn't sit well with other defensive backs. Safety Ifeanyi Ohalete shouted at Skaggs, ''You've been doing that all day!'' And corner Fred Smoot, about 30 yards away, walked out at Skaggs and called him a ''punk a--.'' Among other things.

The fun continued during a two-minute drill when offensive line coach Kim Helton yelled at guard Ross Tucker for missing a blitz. Helton's face reddened as he walked near Tucker and yelled: ''In a critical situation, you're going to have a brain fart?!''

Even special teams coach Mike Stock got into the act, chewing out some of his troops, telling one unnamed player, ''Don't waddle! Get your a-- out of the way!'' Then, after a return he shouted at Leonard Stephens, ''Don't squat in there! It's an isolation block. Get your a-- out of there. You squatted in the damn hole!''

To which some players on the sidelines said: ''Whooooaaaa''.

. . .Running back Ladell Betts returned to practice and is expected to play Saturday.

. . . Receiver Justin Skaggs had a nice over-the-shoulder catch in the front left of the end zone, barely getting his feet down.

. . . Safety Joseph Ricot intercepted one pass and nearly picked off a second in practice today.

. . . Tackle Reggie Coleman and left guard David Loverne worked with the first unit today, splitting time with Rod Jones and Kipp Vickers, respectively.

. . . For those who like to know such things: the first defensive line in goal-line situations includes Del Cowsette and Carl Powell, along with Renaldo Wynn, Dan Wilkinson and Bruce Smith.

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