Redskins

Steelers' Roethlisberger to start against Chargers

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Steelers' Roethlisberger to start against Chargers

PITTSBURGH (AP) The Pittsburgh Steelers aren't taking any chances with their franchise quarterback's sprained right shoulder and dislocated rib.

Though the Steelers confirmed Ben Roethlisberger will return to the starting lineup on Sunday against San Diego after missing three weeks due to injury, Roethlisberger will take the field with a little extra protection.

Roethlisberger will play with a custom-fit rib/chest compression shirt and a layer of Kevlar-lined composite in his shoulder pads to help absorb hits to his clavicle and shoulder joint regions.

The padding, made by Unequal Technologies, has grown popular across the NFL. Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick wore a similar compression shirt after injuring his ribs a few years ago and dozens of players - including Pittsburgh safety Troy Polamalu and linebacker James Harrison - use Unequal CRT in their helmets.

The padding - about a half-inch thick- in Roethlisberger's shoulder pads is similar to the gear the company puts in its chest protectors for baseball catchers. Roethlisberger said last week his shoulder pads had been ``juiced up'' by the team trainers.

Whatever he's wearing, the Steelers (7-5) are eager to have him back on the field. Roethlisberger took ``90 percent'' of the first-team snaps on Thursday without any major issues.

``He looks like himself for the most part,'' offensive coordinator Todd Haley said. ``Now I don't know what he's feeling when he's doing some of those things. But it looks like he's moving around pretty good.''

Roethlisberger said he felt ``good'' but declined to expand. Haley doesn't expect there to be any limitations to the playbook though he joked he might not call as many designed run plays for his quarterback, who never met a play he didn't like to extend.

``I think he understands his body better than anybody,'' Haley said. ``He's the one that's got to make the decisions and we'll just try to put him in the best positions to succeed.''

The Steelers went 1-2 in Roethlisberger's absence, including a 23-20 victory over Baltimore last week behind backup Charlie Batch. While Batch's steady performance against the Ravens kept Pittsburgh's playoff hopes alive, the team hopes to hit its stride with a healthy Roethlisberger under center.

``When Ben's in it's just a whole different level of game planning and things that teams have to do just to compensate for how athletic he is,'' wide receiver Mike Wallace said. ``I think he brings a dimension to the team that nobody else can bring.''

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Bruce Allen to Oakland? Why the Redskins executive could be heading west

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Bruce Allen to Oakland? Why the Redskins executive could be heading west

The Raiders made a major move on Monday when they fired General Manager Reggie McKenzie, and while that’s interesting on its own, it might be of particular interest for Redskins fans. 

Jon Gruden, in his first year of a 10-year, $100 million contract, proved that he has full control of the Raiders football operations by getting rid of McKenzie. 

For any student of history, it’s easy to point out many ties between Gruden and Washington’s Bruce Allen. 

Gruden and Allen worked together for years both in Oakland and in Tampa. Allen and Gruden got fired in Tampa, and a few years later, Allen got the top football job with the Redskins. Once a coaching vacancy opened up in 2014 and with Jon Gruden retired, Allen hired his brother Jay Gruden to be head coach. 

Speculation obviously points to a possible reunion for Allen and Gruden in Oakland, and on Monday night, NFL Network reported that the Redskins president will be on a short list to possibly get that job. 

Ian Rapoport reported that Allen, along with Mark Dominik and Jimmy Raye, are potential candidates for the new Raiders vacancy, and that Jon Gruden has final say on who gets that job. 

Beyond their time working together, Allen also owns a house in California. It’s also worth pointing out the Redskins are more than 30 games below .500 with Allen in charge of personnel for the better part of the last decade. 

The Raiders are schedule to leave Oakland and move to Las Vegas in 2020. 
 

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All signs point to T.J. Oshie returning to Capitals lineup vs. Red Wings, not official yet

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All signs point to T.J. Oshie returning to Capitals lineup vs. Red Wings, not official yet

ARLINGTON, Va. -- As the Washington Capitals took to the ice Monday at MedStar Capitals Iceplex for the first time since returning from a three-game road trip, T.J. Oshie joined them, but he did so wearing a red jersey. The color Oshie was wearing is significant not because of his fashion but because of what it means for his status.

A light blue jersey indicates a player is a non-contact participant in practice. The fact that Oshie was in his regular red means that he was full-go on Monday, and it is a good sign that he could be able to return for Tuesday’s game against the Detroit Red Wings.

Oshie has missed 11 games after suffering a concussion after a takedown by Winnipeg Jets defenseman Josh Morrissey on Nov. 14. It was the fifth concussion of Oshie’s career.

“I feel like each time it gets more and more frustrating,” Oshie said to reporters after practice. “But I stuck with it. Some good workouts and skates with [strength and conditioning coach Mark Nemish] and [Brooks Orpik] was here all week, so I had some company. I had a lot of support from the guys behind me asking me, texting me seeing how I'm doing, so those kind of things kind of get you through it. Plus, the holidays, family in town, I spent time with the girls at home and [my] wife. It was a good little break.”

When an injury keeps a player from skating, their typical progression starts goes from off-ice workouts, to on-ice workouts, to being a limited participant in practice, to a full participant and then to returning to the game lineup. Oshie had been skating with Nemish during the team’s road trip and has evidently progressed to the point that he was able to step right into practice on Monday without the need for the non-contact jersey.

Not only was Oshie a full-participant, but head coach Todd Reirden was seemingly not concerned about easing him back in. Oshie skated on the top line alongside Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom. He also took part in drills on the team’s first power-play unit.

“He's a special player in all aspects of the game, but certainly in the power play for us in that diamond spot,” Reirden said. “He does a really good job on the entries in terms of controlled entries. When we do have to dump pucks in, he's great on recoveries. His work ethic and instincts to be able to win puck battles, I just think it increases our whole intensity of the way our power play recovers pucks.”

Everything that happened on the ice Monday was a positive sign for Oshie’s recovery, but both he and Reirden said only that he was a “possibility” to play in Tuesday’s game.

“I've been hoping to play for a week,” Oshie said. “I'm hoping to play [Tuesday]. We'll see, see what the training staff says, see what the doctors say, see what the coaches say.”

Reirden added: “The plan was for him to go through practice today, and we'll see how he does later this afternoon and re-evaluate [Tuesday] morning as he continues to get closer to getting cleared to play."

Based on how Oshie progressed directly to full practice and by how much he was utilized during practice, every indication is that Oshie will be back in the lineup Tuesday at Capital One Arena.

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