Running back Sultan McCullough, two cornerbacks and two offensive linemen were among the players named to the Redskins' eight-player practice squad on Monday.
The practice squad is as follows:
- Ryan Boschetti, DT
- Rufus Brown, CB
- Nic Clemons, DL
- Pita Elisara, OL
- Ben Nowland, OL
- Sultan McCullough, RB
- Gari Scott, WR
- Garnell Wilds, CB
Head coach Joe Gibbs said he told the practice squad players to prepare during the week as if they would be playing.
"At some point, some of them are going to get an opportunity to get activated, and then they're going to have their chance," Gibbs said. "That's all they want is a chance. That's what the practice squad can do, it'll give you a chance to continue to improve as a player."
McCullough is perhaps the most notable name on the list. He was locked in a training camp competition with Ladell Betts, Rock Cartwright and John Simon to become the backup running back.
McCullough led the Redskins in rushing yards and receptions during the preseason. He compiled 212 rushing yards on 61 carries, a 3.4 yards-per-carry average, with one touchdown. He also led the team in receptions with nine for 52 yards.
McCullough is a USC product who signed with the Redskins as an undrafted rookie in 2003. He made the roster coming out of training camp and spent the 2003 season on the Redskins' 53-man roster. He saw action in one game.
"For someone who made every play and worked hard, Sultan did and he didn't miss anything," Gibbs said. "I told him that's to his credit. If someone even picked him up [on Sunday], I thought it would be good for him. If not, I told, 'We really like you. You're a play away from stepping up and playing.'"
Both Brown and Wilds are undrafted rookies. They were cited by assistant head coach-defense Gregg Williams as having solid camps. Brown, 5-9 and 188 pounds, played collegiate ball at Florida State. Wilds, 5-11 and 196 pounds, played at Virginia Tech.
Elisara and Nowland both played in NFL Europe this spring. Elisara, 6-4 and 305 pounds, can play tackle and guard. Nowland, 6-2 and 298 pounds, has played mostly center throughout his career but has gained experience at guard this preseason.
Boschetti, a UCLA product, got off to a fast start in preseason play, recording 1.5 sacks in the Hall of Fame Game against Denver on Aug. 9. Overall in the preseason, the 6-4, 295-pound defensive tackle logged five tackles.
Scott is a second-year player out of Michigan State who has experience both as a kick returner and wide receiver. During preseason, he caught six passes for 84 yards, including a 33-yard touchdown pass from Tim Hasselbeck in the Hall of Fame Game. He also returned 13 punts for a 5.6-yard average and seven kickoffs for a 20-yard average.
Clemons spent the entire 2003 season on the Redskins' practice squad after signing with the team as an undrafted rookie. The 6-6, 278-pound defensive lineman played his collegiate ball at Georgia.