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Need to Know: Meriweather still recovering from ACL

Aug 2, 2013, 6:00 AM EDT

Brandon-Meriweather-rehab AP

RICHMOND—Here is what you need to know on this Friday, August 2, six days before the Redskins open their preseason against the Titans.

Don’t worry about Meriweather–yet

The Redskins have had seven days of training camp practices and Brandon Meriweather has participated in very few of them. Although the starting strong safety often dresses in pads, he usually can be found in an area off to the side called the drill field, working out with other walking wounded such as Donte Stallworth (hamstring), and Chris Thompson (knee).

Meriweather is still recovering from the torn ACL that ended his year early after a number of other knee issues forced his season to start late. That ACL injury occurred in the Redskins’ Week 11 game on November 18. If you do the math you have a recovery period so far of about eight and a half months.

The “normal” rehab period for a torn ACL is seven to nine months. It seems that Robert Griffin III will be recovered from his knee injury in closer to seven months while Meriweather needs more like the high end of the recovery range.

“When a guy practices, you have a gut feeling of what he can do as you watch him in individual drills and team drills,” said Shanahan yesterday. “He is not ready to go in team situations yet . . . Right now, he is still getting individual work. We are still running him but we are not going to put him in team situations until we feel like he is ready to compete.”

While there is some cause for concern here there is no need to panic that the team’s best option at strong safety won’t be available on opening day. The benchmark to start doing that is about nine months after the injury. The Redskins play their second preseason game against the Steelers on August 19, one day after the nine-months past the injury mark. If Meriweather can play in that game, or the key third preseason game against the Bills on August 24, he should be good to go for the opener. If he misses both of those games, there will be some doubt.

There are more than five weeks to go until the Redskins’ season opener. Meriweather is close to being ready but the last stages of his rehab are taking some time. For right now, the Redskins have the luxury of that time but in a couple of weeks it will be running very, very short.

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Today’s schedule (all practices open to the public at the Bon Secours Washington Redskins Training Center)

10:00—Walkthrough practice, players available to media coming off the field

After walkthrough (approx. 11:30)—News conference with player TBA

3:20—Full practice, players available to media coming off the field

5:30 (approx.)—Mike Shanahan news conference

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In case you missed it

Days until: Redskins @ Titans preseason opener 6; Final cuts 29; Redskins @ Cowboys 72

Tandler on Twitter

IMO, if Thompson can be practicing in time for PITT preseason game and can stay healthy, he’ll have a good shot. Later or relapse, iffy.

— Rich Tandler (@Rich_TandlerCSN) August 1, 2013

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