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Phillip Daniels Update

Starting defensive end Phillip Daniels hyper-extended his left knee on the first play of 7-on-7 drills (I was right the first time on that, then confused myself on the previous post). He is going for an MRI right now and the coaches expect a medical update this afternoon.

Coach Jim Zorn said he did not know the extent of the knee sprain at this time and is hoping for the best, though it could turn out to be a significant blow. "We're hoping all it is is hyper-extended," Zorn said.

Daniels, 35, looked bad as he was being carted off, with a towel over his head and his head hung low. Demetric Evans, who took Daniels' starting spot in drills, said he thought that by the sound of Daniels's voice after the injury it was not too severe, and was keeping his fingers crossed. (Evans adopted Daniels' weight-lifting program this offseasoon to improve his upper-body strength, something Daniels is noted for.)

The Redskins have failed to upgrade the defensive line through a significant signing - or a first-day draft choice - for much of this decade, an issue since 2004, when Joe Gibbs took over. Evans is the only experienced end who provides depth, with youngsters Chris Wilson and Alex Buzbee now with the second team. Both lack the size and heft to be every-down ends at this point in their career.

It is one of the thinest spots on the roster, and a reason why some rival execs were shocked the Redskins did not use one of their high picks on the position in the last few drafts. Daniels has been injury-prone much of his career, and this injury was somewhat freakish, as bodies ended up tangled at the line of scrimmage after the snap.

Daniels is a versatile veteran, who has played increasingly as a tackle in recent years, with his legs slowing but his upper-body still powerful. He is entering his 13th season.

We'll post the full scope of the injury as soon as it is determined.

By Jason La Canfora  |  July 20, 2008; 10:32 AM ET
 
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