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Suisham Eyes Consistency

Shaun Suisham doesn't feel a sense of job security. Yet.

"I am just trying to make all of my kicks and be around here on September 9," he said after a recent training camp practice.

For a second-year kicker who has played in just 11 NFL games, it's somewhat surprising that the Redskins have not brought in a veteran to compete with him.

Not that Suisham is complaining.

The 6-0, 197-pound kicker out of Bowling Green impressed coaches down the stretch last season. He came in to replace ineffective Nick Novak, who replaced injured John Hall.

Suisham connected on 8-of-9 field goals and all 12 extra points.

"When he got the opportunity, I feel like he made the most of it," head coach Joe Gibbs said. "I feel like he was somebody we had no idea it would happen to. It happens out here all the time, We somebody get an opportunity when somebody else gets hurt and make the most of it. He was one of those guys."

Gibbs referenced Suisham's fourth-quarter, 52-yard field goal that tied the Redskins-St. Louis Rams game at 31-31 and sent it to overtime last Dec. 23.

"That kick saved my hide," Gibbs said.

Asked about the kick, Suisham's maintained an even keel. That's his nature.

"It's great anytime you make a kick, regardless of length, in any situation," he said. "It was great for me from a confidence standpoint. It was the first pressure kick that I have had since I've been in the NFL. It was a great opportunity and I was happy to have it."

Is he surprised that there's no other kicker on the roster?

"I've said it before, I am never competing against anyone else, in my mind," Suisham said. "I just take care of my business and then the coaches and staff can make their decisions based on that. It's out of my hands other than making the kick."

Of course, the team may bring another kicker in for evaluation at any time, particularly if Suisham struggled in an upcoming preseason game.

For now, Suisham says he is focused on staying consistent.

"The big thing I am trying to work on is the maturity level of being an NFL kicker," he said. "You don't have to kick every ball through the end zone, but rather just hit a really good ball and be smooth."


What would happen if either Shaun Suisham or punter Derrick Frost suffered an injury in Saturday's preseason opener?

Joe Gibbs joked that he would turn to special teams coordinator Danny Smith and "try and kill him."

But seriously, Gibbs said: "I think Danny has some plans made there. I'm not sure how good they would be. I think Derrick can kick, so that would be the way it would go there.

"If I had to guess, I would say Shaun can probably punt the best of who's here."


Veteran wide receiver James Thrash suffered a mild groin injury during Wednesday's practice and his status is uncertain for Saturday's preseason opener against Tennessee.

"He said he could practice [Thursday], but he always says he can go," Joe Gibbs said. "Anytime he says he has a little bit of an injury, it's something that we pay attention to. So we decided to hold him out today."

Wide receiver Brandon Lloyd sat out Thursday's practice due to shin splints and cornerback Jerametrius Butler remains slowed by a hamstring injury. Their status for Saturday's preseason game is also uncertain.

Defensive tackles Vaka Manupuna and Ryan Boschetti both have quad injuries. Manupuna did not participate in Thursday's practice.

Defensive tackle Joe Salave'a has a mild hamstring injury.

Prior to Saturday's preseason game, the Redskins will likely release a list of players who will not travel to Nashville.


Clinton Portis will travel with the Redskins to Tennessee to see the team's medical consultant Dr. James Andrews for another evaluation of his knee tendonitis.

"I think we are on the right track there, it's just a matter of how long it will take," Joe Gibbs said.

Portis said on Wednesday night that he pushed his workout regimen during the week, but that the injury flares up after he makes sudden cuts while running on the knee.

"Right now I think we found a way to contain it and we finally got to the problem," he said. "We're working in the right direction."

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