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News & Notes: Salave'a Full-Go At Practice

Joe Salave'a took full work during Redskins practice on Thursday, a positive sign that the veteran defensive tackle will be available for Sunday's game against the Jacksonville Jagaurs.

Salave'a missed last week's game against the Houston Texans due to a calf injury. The injury has steadily improved and Salave's is listed as probable for the Jaguars game.

Meantime, cornerback Shawn Springs watched practice from the sidelines at Redskins Park.

Springs's status remains doubtful as he continues to recover from abdominal surgery in August and a groin injury suffered last week during practice.

If Springs is unable to play, Kenny Wright would start for the fourth consecutive game, opposite Carlos Rogers. Wright played the 2005 season with the Jaguars, starting 16 games.

On Thursday, associate head coach-defense Gregg Williams discounted the notion that, in the absence of Springs and Salave'a in recent weeks, the defense is searching for an identity.

"We will always be the same with the way we are on defense," Williams said. "We will be physical regardless of who goes out there. People don't want to hear about injuries. Fans don't want to hear about injuries. Coaches don't want to hear about injuries. You have to get lined up out there and go.

"If you ever come to watch this group of guys play, you know they are going to leave it all out on the field and give you every single thing that they have."



Clinton Portis said on Thursday that he emerged from the Texans game not needing any treatment for his shoulder, a positive sign that the Redskins' star running back is back at full strength.

"I feel good," he said. "I did not come in Monday or Tuesday for treatment. I have practiced all this week. So far nothing has changed. I have not aggravated anything, and after taking the number of plays, getting tackled and falling, I feel good."

Portis logged 16 carries for 86 yards and two touchdowns in the Redskins' 31-15 win over the Texans. He also caught two passes for 78 yards, including a 74-yarder on a shovel pass that ignited the Redskins' offense.

Asked if he expects to have more carries this week, Portis replied: "I can't tell you that. I am going to fall into the game plan. If I am on the sideline and they are giving Ladell the ball, and we are winning, I have no problem with that. At the same time, if I am in the game and they choose to rely on me, I am all for that, too."


Coaches and players acknowledged on Wednesday that they felt a sense of relief in winning their first game--preseason or regular--last Sunday in Houston.

"Everybody was down," Joe Gibbs said. "You lose four preseason games--which we were hoping to win some of those for sure--and then we lose two games in the first part of the year. One of them came down to the last play and the other one you lose to Dallas and play a tough rivalry at their place.

"Speaking for myself and all the players, we really appreciate our fans the way they stick with us and support us."

Added Chris Samuels: "We were down from the first two games, but now that we have one, we have a little swagger to us. But we know we have to get it done in this upcoming game. What you've done in the past, you can't take it with you."

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