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Mike Shanahan: “I’ve never even insinuated a starter”

Kyle Shanahan, Mike Shanahan

Washington Redskins offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan, left, talks to his father, coach Mike Shanahan, during practice on fan appreciation day at the team’s NFL football training camp at Redskins Park, Saturday, Aug. 6, 2011, in Ashburn, Va. (AP Photo/Luis M. Alvarez)


Redskins presumed starting quarterback John Beck was limited in practice Monday because of a groin injury, but hopes he’ll be recovered enough by Friday to suit up in Washington’s preseason opener.

But will Beck be the starter? Mike Shanahan says he wouldn’t assume that.

“First of all, I’ve never mentioned a starter,” Shanahan said on NFL Network via Dan Steinberg of DC Sports Bog. “I’ve never even insinuated a starter. I said I had a lot of belief in John Beck, I had a lot of belief in Rex Grossman. We’re gonna play the best player at the end of camp, but I do believe in both those guys.”

Shanahan is right. He never said Beck was the guy. The guy Shahanan wrote a book with -- ESPN’s Adam Schefter -- first declared that Beck was going to be the starter on ESPN on draft weekend.

We’re not sure whether to read much into Shanahan publicly keeping his options open, but it makes sense. If Beck tanks in the preseason, Grossman should at least have a chance to be the guy.