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News & Notes: Heat Is On As OTAs Resume

The Redskins began their third week of OTA practices on Monday with dry heat and summer-like humidity sweeping over the Washington, D.C., region.

Temperatures were in the mid-90s as practice began late in the morning. It was expected to top 100 degrees by mid-afternoon.

Fortunately, there was also a warm breeze that eased some of the humidity during practice at Redskins Park.

"I like the heat--I think it gets guys loose," head coach Jim Zorn said after practice. "The thing we have to do is not allow the heat detract from the concentration that these guys need to be effective.

"We're going to keep that on the forefront to make sure we have enough water and Gatorade to keep [players] hydrated."

It was the club's eighth OTA practice.

Absent were Clinton Portis, Cornelius Griffin and Shawn Springs. Portis and Griffin were both excused from practice for personal reasons. Springs has not attended any of the voluntary OTA sessions in June.

Antwaan Randle El, Carlos Rogers, Rocky McIntosh and Erasmus James were among players jogging and working out under the watchful eye of physical therapist Larry Hess. All four are rehabbing knee injuries.

The Redskins' OTAs run through Thursday and then the team breaks until training camp.

Zorn, who has spent most of his life in mild but rainy Seattle climate, has experienced some wild weather this month. Last week, there were a series of violent thunderstorms and tornadoes that swept though the region.

Monday's practice was a warm-up, so to speak, for the Redskins' training camp practices in July and August.

The heat and humidity of Washington, D.C., summers is something Jon Jansen knows all too well.

As the longest-tenured Redskin, Jansen is preparing for his 10th training camp.

"A lot of the guys who have been here understand what training camp is going to be like here," Jansen said. "I think [the heat and humidity during Monday's OTA practice] helps the rookies and young guys to get their minds right as how it's going to be [during training camp].

"They have to be ready. They have to prove they can do it."


The Redskins have re-signed linebacker Rian Wallace and defensive end Dorian Smith, the team announced on Monday.

Wallace and Smith take the roster spots of fourth-year cornerback Eddie Jackson and undrafted rookie Bryan Wilson, who were released.

Wallace was previously with the Pittsburgh Steelers from 2005-06. He played in 16 games, recording nine tackles and one interception that he returned 30 yards for a touchdown.

Wallace, 6-3 and 243 pounds, was a fifth-round draft choice by the Steelers in 2005. He played his college ball at Temple.

Smith, an undrafted rookie, played two years at Oregon State as a junior college transfer, but started just one season. The 6-3, 260-pounder recorded 72 tackles, 22 tackles for a loss and 15 sacks.

Wallace and Smith were on the Redskins' roster earlier this offseason.


After Monday's OTA practice, Redskins players and coaches reacted to the news that New York Giants defensive end Michael Strahan planned to retire from football.

Jon Jansen and Strahan competed in some epic battles over the years. Strahan once called Jansen his toughest matchup.

"I enjoyed playing against him," Jansen said. "You always had to be smart against him. He could play the run or the pass at the same time. Obviously the game of football will be different without him there because he was a personality in New York and he was a terrific player."

Added Chris Samuels: "He was a warrior. He came to play every week and we knew it was going to be a tough battle. Plus, he always cracks a couple jokes [during games]. He's a funny guy out there. He was a great all-around player."


The entire Redskins team was invited by owner Daniel M. Snyder to attend a sneak preview of the summer movie "Hancock" after the club's OTA practice.

Four buses pulled into Redskins Park early afternoon and took coaches, players and team officials to a nearby multiplex.

Jim Zorn called the event, which included a post-movie meal of Johnny Rocket's hamburgers, a "great team bonding activity."

"Hancock," which stars Will Smith and Charlize Theron, was directed by Peter Berg, a close friend of Snyder. Berg has been an attendee at Redskins games and training camp practices over the years.

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