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News & Notes: Betts Questionable For Broncos Game


With Clinton Portis sidelined for Sunday's game against Denver due to a concussion, Ladell Betts is slated to start for the first time since 2006.

Betts continues to struggle with a sprained ankle, though, and he is listed as questionable.

"Ladell was limited [in Friday's practice]," head coach Jim Zorn said. "He has two more days to get it going. I suspect he'll play."

For his part, Betts said his ankle was "headed in the right direction" following Friday's session.

"It gave me some optimism as far as playing Sunday," he said.

Betts has not started a game since Dec. 30, 2006. He rushed for a career-high 1,154 yards that year after Portis was suffered a fractured hand midseason.

After Portis suffered a concussion last Sunday in Atlanta, Betts came in and provided spark to the Redskins' struggling offense.

Betts rushed for 70 yards on 15 carries and had a 1-yard touchdown run in the third quarter.

Asked about returning to the starting lineup, Betts replied: "It's going to be fun. I embrace the opportunity and I want to give this team a spark. I want to give the fans something to cheer about."

Overall, Betts has 91 yards on 26 carries this season.

With Betts still slowed by injury, Zorn said he would likely give carries to Rock Cartwright and Quinton Ganther.

Cartwright had seven carries for 16 yards against Atlanta last Sunday. Ganther, originally signed to the roster on Oct. 20, would be making his Redskins debut.

"It'll be [running back] by committee, I'm sure," Zorn said, "unless Ladell feels great. But those guys will play regardless."


Hunter Smith took part in special teams practice on Friday and lofted a series of punts to test his injured groin.

If Smith experiences no soreness on Saturday, then he is likely going to be the punter for Sunday's game against Denver.

If not? Then Smith could be placed on injured reserve.

"Hunter punted very well [Friday]," Jim Zorn said. "He will be the guy if all goes well [on Saturday]. We'll know more then."

Added Smith: I punted the ball well and I feel well...I want to be the punter for this football team."

Sam Paulescu's future with the team is in the balance.

He would be released if Smith is healthy.

The Redskins need to add depth to safety after Chris Horton went on injured reserve. The team is expected to sign rookie Lendy Holmes from the practice squad.


Stephon Heyer is listed as questionable for the Broncos game with a sprained knee

He was limited in practice this week.

"He'll have another day of rest before [Sunday's game]," Zorn said. "I suspect he'll be out there. He felt a lot better [in Friday's practice]."

Heyer would make his first start at right tackle since Week 6. He shifted to left tackle after Chris Samuels suffered a season-ending neck injury.

If Heyer is unable to play, then D'Anthony Batiste would likely start on Sunday.

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