This 'N' That at Redskin Park

Running back Stephen Davis did not practice Wednesday and still can't say anything more than that he's day to day. That's not good. Davis is always optimistic about his chances of playing. He's not like that right now and his sprained right knee still clearly bothers him.

But if Davis can't play, Kenny Watson will start. He rushed for 67 yards against Indianapolis and Seattle has a bad run defense. If ever there was a time not to have Davis, this is it. We're still not convinced that Watson can be a full-time back--until you post numbers like that against the Eagles of the world, that will remain in doubt.

Watson, though, did show he could play in a pinch. What more can you ask of him?

''Kenny did a tremendous job,'' quarterback Shane Matthews said. ''He made some unbelievable cuts that allowed us to get first downs and let us win. I'm not [surprised] because I've seen him do that in practice and in the preseason. A lot of people don't know who he is, but he's very talented and he's playing behind an All-Pro.''

. . . Meanwhile, left tackle Chris Samuels did practice, though he was held out of contact drills. Still, considering it was a rainy cold day, the fact that Samuels was on the field was a good sign.

. . . Look for the Redskins to sign receiver Willie Jackson. He'll be at Redskins Park on Thursday and, if all goes well, he'll be on the roster soon thereafter. Jackson comes with a little baggage, however. Atlanta cut him in part because of his attitude. There were questions about his work ethic and his lack of desire to block downfield--watch the Redskins wideouts to understand how important that is to Steve Spurrier (hint: it's very important).

But Spurrier knows and likes Jackson. Plus he's coming off an 81-catch season, something no other Redskins wideout can say. The question is, who gets cut? Kevin Lockett would seem to be in trouble considering he was inactive last week.

. . . The Redskins are done as a wide-open offense, sort of. They still want to throw the ball, but coach Steve Spurrier has finally realized he doesn't have the talent to play that way. Which is something everyone in the league knew long ago.

But Spurrier had to find it out for himself and the past two games the Redskins have been very balanced. If they play that way the rest of the season they'll contend for the playoffs. If not, they'll play for a high draft pick.

''Our team's personnel is not made to go out and throw it,'' Spurrier said. ''It's harder to do it in the NFL than in college. It's just harder. Our quarterbacks aren't real mobile as far as running around. We have to mix it up, like most teams do. I've never called as many runs on third down as I have in my whole life.''

What we wonder is this: how long can Spurrier be happy running this style of offense. Remember, he came to the NFL to see if HIS system could work. Now he's running a balanced attack that many teams do. At what point will he get bored? Of course, winning is never boring and ultimately that's what he wants to do.

. . . Receiver Darnerien McCants will be fun to watch develop over the next couple of years. He has big-play talent, but it'll take another year or so for him to become good. He's still sloppy at times with his routes and doesn't always know where to go (Matthews must remind him at times coming out of the huddle). But McCants' ceiling is high and when he gets it, he makes big plays. Just ask the Colts.


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