ASHBURN, Va. (AP) -Marcus Washington is out at least a week. Jason Campbell is officially ``day-to-day.'' Given the circumstances of their injuries, the Washington Redskins couldn't ask for much better news.
Washington and Campbell were injured in Saturday night's 12-10 preseason loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, and they spent much of Sunday afternoon at Redskins Park getting treatment for soreness and swelling. Washington has a dislocated right elbow, and Campbell's MRI exam confirmed the initial diagnosis of a bruised left knee.
Campbell and coach Joe Gibbs said they'll see how the knee feels as the week progresses before deciding whether the third-year quarterback will play in Saturday's game against the Baltimore Ravens. It's customary for a team to err on the side of caution in dealing with the starting quarterback in preseason, but Gibbs wants Campbell to get as much work as possible after last year's slow start.
``I think you've got to play, certainly with a young quarterback,'' Gibbs said. ``Do you always run a risk? Yeah, you run a risk in preseason anytime. With Jason being a young quarterback and also because of what happened last year to the whole team, we got off to such a poor start that we want to make sure this year that we took a different approach. ... Obviously preseason is one thing and regular season is something else. I think we'll work through this and see how they both bounce back.''
Washington had a large brace on his elbow, which rested in a black sling. He said he was already making progress - he can put his socks on by himself - and he remained optimistic that he can return in a couple of weeks, or at least in time for the regular season opener Sept. 9. Trainer Bubba Tyer ruled Washington out for this week and will provide an update next week.
``Just going to let nature take its course,'' Washington said. ``You really can't do a lot right now.''
Both players initially thought they were much worse off. Campbell, hit on the knee by Steelers defensive end Brett Keisel, said the only thing that saved him was moving his leg just a little at the moment of impact so that it wasn't planted firmly on the turf. The entire stadium went silent, feeling the season had just taken a dramatic, downward turn.
``I know my heart jumped,'' Campbell said. ``That's my first time experiencing a knee hit.''
Washington said his hand went numb and his elbow looked ``real disfigured'' after it got caught between two helmets while making a tackle. The training staff popped the elbow back into place, and he'll probably have to play with a brace when he returns.
Washington's replacement at strongside linebacker probably will be Khary Campbell or Lemar Marshall. Washington had hip, elbow and knee injuries last season but came to camp rejuvenated this season, hoping to stay healthy as he took a more aggressive role in the defense.
Campbell's injury heightens the contest for the No. 2 quarterback job between Todd Collins and Mark Brunell. Gibbs declined to say who will start if Campbell can't play against the Ravens. Brunell relieved Campbell in the first preseason game, and Collins came in after Campbell was hurt Saturday.
Collins finished 10-for-13 for 74 yards and a touchdown pass, while Brunell went 5-for-12 for 56 yards. The numbers are skewed, however, because both played many snaps with backup linemen and receivers.
Overall, Gibbs gave good reviews to the defense, which hasn't allowed a touchdown in two preseason games, but the other side of the ball remains a concern, especially the reshuffled offensive line that allowed three sacks and couldn't generate a running game.
``There are a number of things that we're really off on, that we need to get going,'' Gibbs said. ``Our rush is not anywhere near where we want it. I think that's obvious to everybody, and that's the key to what we do.''
Notes: WR Mike Espy, who ruptured his patella tendon in the game, had surgery Sunday and is out for the year. He had been the favorite to make the roster as the No. 5 receiver. ... WR James Thrash missed the game with a muscle pull in his chest but is expected to return to practice this week. ... LG Todd Wade (shoulder) is also expected to return this week. ... Tyer said LT Chris Samuels (knee) is progressing well but is probably at least another week from taking part in a full practice. ... Tyer said there was no change in the status for RB Clinton Portis, who has been out nearly three weeks with tendinitis in his knee. ... The players have Monday off and will resume practice Tuesday.

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