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Portis' Redskins career had its highs and lows

Portis' Redskins career had its highs and lows

Clinton Portis started off in Washington in a blaze of glory. His first carry as a Redskin came in the 2004 season opener at FedEx Field and it went for 64 yards and a touchdown. Portis Redskins career and the Joe Gibbs II era was off to a glorious start.His last carry in the NFL was not bathed in much glory. It came in Week 10 of the 2010 season at LP Field in Nashville. Portis had missed the previous five games trying to recover from a groin injury. With 1:29 left in the first half, he took a handoff from Donovan McNabb and gained three yards off of left guard. He got up but he immediately headed to the sidelines. It was apparent that the groin was bothering him again. The Redskins put him on injured reserve soon after that and he was released in March of 2011.According to reports Portistried out for a few NFL teams but he never did sign with one of them. Today heannounced is retirement at a news conference at Redskins Park. Portis wasclearly emotional during parts of a talk that lasted nearly 30 minutes.I think I had a great careeron and off the field, he said. I was truly blessed to play for two greatorganizations.Portis played his first twoyears in the NFL under Mike Shanahan in Denver. When Joe Gibbs, who Portis saidwas one of his favorite people, came to Washington in 2004 one of his firstmoves was to engineer a controversial trade that sent perennial Pro Bowlcornerback Champ Bailey and a second-round pick to the Broncos in exchange forPortis. The knock on Portis was that heskipped practice too much and didnt work hard enough in the offseason. Andmaybe he could have been better. Perhaps some of those 1300-yard seasons couldhave been 1500-yard seasons and the years where he gained 1500 or more couldhave been truly special.The criticism didnt botherhim. The negativity made me a man, said Portis.It is hard to see Portisgetting much more out of his body than he did. He had 2,230 rushing attempts inhis career, including four seasons with 325 or more carries in a five-yearspan. And you cant forget the wearand tear he created while dishing out punishment to blitzing linebackers. Hemay not have been the best overall running back in the business but none werebetter when it came to pass protection. Rarely would a game go by when hewouldnt stonewall someone trying to come in and do harm to his quarterback. Most games, it was more than one.He blocked and played physicalfootball like no one else, said Redskins owner Daniel SnyderHis career numbers were good but what Redskins fans will remember most about him, besides the costumes hewore to press conferences during the 2005 season, are the two season-ending stretches where Portis put the teams on his back and carried them into theplayoffs.The first was in 2005. TheRedskins had lost to the Chargers to fall to 5-6. Everyone knew they had to win out to get into the playoffs. They did it and Portis led the way, gaining over100 yards in five straight games as the Redskins won five straight games. They needed a similar miracle in 2007 and this time the mountain seemed even taller. Sean Taylor, one of Portis best friends on the team, was murdered in his home in Miami in late November.The day before his funeral, they lost to the Bills to fall to 5-7.Portis was not the statistical leader during the four-game winning streak they pulled off in Taylors honorbut he served as the emotional leader. Against Dallas in the season finale hescored on a 23-yard run and lifted up his jersey to reveal a T-shirt honoringTaylor.I cant think of a team that won a Super Bowl that had a better bond than us, on those 2005 and 2007 teamsthat I played on, said Portis.

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Trent Williams needs knee surgery eventually, but the timeline has many factors

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Trent Williams needs knee surgery eventually, but the timeline has many factors

PHILADELPHIA — Arguably the Redskins best player, all of the NFL knows that Trent Williams can still play at a high level while dealing with injury. 

How long Williams can play though injury seems the more important question though as reports emerged the left tackle will need knee surgery at some point. That could come in the next few weeks, or as Redskins fans hope, perhaps at the end of the season.

Currently playing with a torn medial patella-femoral ligament in his right knee, the six-time Pro Bowler has not practiced since sustaining the injury three weeks ago in Kansas City. He was able to gut out a strong performance last week against the 49ers, and is expected to do the same Monday night against the Eagles.

One factor that might be pushing Williams to play with such a damaged right leg is that backup tackle Ty Nsekhe is also out after having surgery on his core muscles. 

MORE: REDSKINS WEEKLY MVPS FOR EVERY GAME THUS FAR

Nsekhe is expected back relatively soon, but the timeline remains murky. When he can come back, perhaps Williams will reconsider his options. 

Surgery for the torn MPFL will leave Williams with a five or six-month recovery. 

It's obvious the Redskins' offense is best with Williams on the field. Nsekhe, however, proved a capable backup last season when Williams served a four-game suspension. 

Without Nsekhe, the Redskins would go to veteran T.J. Clemmings should Williams be unable to play. Nsekhe has not played since a Week 3 win over Oakland. The Redskins added Clemmings to the roster in early September, after their fourth preseason game. He spent the last two seasons with the Vikings. 

For now, the Redskins will continue to hope Williams can play through the pain.

"Trent is a tough guy, so we will see how it works, see how feels tomorrow and go from there," Jay Gruden said of Williams on Saturday. 

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Need to Know: Five Redskins under pressure vs. the Eagles

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Need to Know: Five Redskins under pressure vs. the Eagles

Here is what you need to know on this Sunday, October 22, one day before the Washington Redskins visit the Philadelphia Eagles for Monday night football.

Timeline

Today’s schedule: Travel to Philadelphia, no media availability

Days until:

—Cowboys @ Redskins (10/29) 7
—Redskins @ Seahawks (11/5) 14
—Giants @ Redskins Thanksgiving (11/23) 32

Final report on injures of note:
Out
: CB Josh Norman (rib)
Questionable: OT Trent Williams (knee), CB Bashaud Breeland (knee), S Deshazor Everett (hamstring), RB Rob Kelley (ankle),

FULL INJURY REPORT AND ANALYSIS

Five Redskins who are under pressure vs. the Eagles

Every NFL player is under pressure and the stress increased in games that are in the prime-time spotlight like the Redskins have on Monday night. But the spotlight is brighter on some players than it is on others.

—With a banged up defense, the Redskins are going to have to put up some points to win this game. That means that QB Kirk Cousins is going to have to help the Redskins get some points on the board. In the opener against the Eagles he threw a key interception, posted a season-low 72.9 passer rating, and got sacked four times. He has been playing better since then and he may need his best game of the year for the Redskins to pull out the win.

—DT Fletcher Cox is an All-Pro caliber defender and the battle between him and G Brandon Scherff will be important. But the Eagles other defensive tackle, Timmy Jernigan, is also a handful and it will largely be up to G Shawn Lauvao to keep him under control. Jernigan isn’t a great pass rusher (1.5 sacks, 10 pressures) but he tough against the run. The Redskins needs to establish a running game to win and Lauvao vs. Jernigan will be a key battle to get the ground game going.

—There still is plenty of time for WR Terrelle Pryor to have a breakout game and turn around his disappointing season. Monday would be an ideal time to start. He has 16 receptions on the season and with the exception of a couple of plays, his impact has been minimal. When the line gives Cousins time to throw the ball he will need a big target and Pryor is the ideal candidate.

—With Jonathan Allen on injured reserve, it will be up to DE Matt Ioannidis to continue to get pass pressure up the middle. Playing with Allen, the second-year player has 3.5 sacks and 16 pressures. He will need to keep that up in Allen’s absence. On Monday, Ioannidis and the rest of the pass rushers need to get Carson Wentz on the ground when they have the opportunity.

—As much as the Redskins would like to see Wentz take a bunch of sacks, chances are he will get away from the pressure on occasion and scramble to make a play. At times like that, S D.J. Swearinger and the rest of the defensive backs need to stay in coverage and not lose their men. It’s hard to cover a receiver for five seconds or more while the quarterback scrambles around but Swearinger needs to maintain his position as the last line of defense.

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page Facebook.com/TandlerNBCS and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.

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To update this tweet from the beginning of practice, Williams did practice on a limited basis and he is questionable for the game, although it is likely that he will play.

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