July 24, 2008

For Jansen, Avoiding Injury Is Key Concern

Jon Jansen has experienced a plethora of injuries during his nine seasons in the NFL. Name a bone, and odds are Jansen has broken it.

Jansen came out of Michigan in the 1999 NFL Draft, and he quickly established himself as a force at the right tackles spot. He and Chris Samuels have been a fine set of bookends, paving the way for the likes of Steven Davis, Ladell Betts, and of course, Clinton Portis.

However, injuries have haunted Jansen since 2004, when he ruptured his Achilles tendon in the Hall of Fame game against Denver. After undergoing a tough rehabilitation process, Jansen returned in 2005, only to break both his thumbs.

This couldn't stop Jansen from playing every game with heavy, clumsy casts on both hands, as the 'Skins went to the playoffs.

Then in 2006, Jansen tore a hamstring and still managed to play a game on it in December. And yet the bumps in the road were not to cease in 2007, as Jansen broke his ankle and was lost for the season in Week One of the regular season.

Now, with a new season just beginning, Jansen has to prove he can overcome the injuries that have been dealt his way and renew his talented game. He did it in 2005, and now it's time to see if he can do it again.

He's a smart player who really enhances the chemistry along the offensive line, and his presence will be essential, especially in the running game, where Clinton Portis struggled to find holes throughout the 2007 season.

The warrior-like mentality he brings on game day would take the offense up a notch, and there would be nothing wrong with that. He's excited to get back, and the 'Skins are excited to have him. Here's to healthy season for Jansen.

Also, Phillip Daniels addressed the media following his season-ending knee injury. He said he still intends to return to football next season, despite the fact that he'll be 35. "I am not going to be done," he said, "I am still going to play. I'm going to rehab hard and come back."

Daniels was a solid force against the run and will be missed for his leadership. It was disappointing to lose someone so involved in the organization for the past several seasons. Redskins' nation wishes him well on his recovery.

At camp on Tuesday, defensive coordinator Greg Blache announced that LaRon Landry would start the season at free safety, resolving one of the bigger issues on the team. It was uncertain as to who would be starting at each safety spot, but now it appears that Landry will start at FS while Reed Doughty will start at SS.

"LaRon is an improved player," said Blache, "He's such a force back there, being able to play from sideline-to-sideline."

Blache is wise to stick to last year's starters. Doughty began to play very well at SS down the stretch, while Landry played reminiscent of another young safety the Redskins used to have. If it ain't broke, don't fix it, and Blache certainly stuck to that old adage.

In other NFL news, Luis Castillo of the San Diego Chargers agreed to a five-year contract extension valued at $43.1 million.

Also, Profootballtalk.com reports that there is a chance Roy Williams might undergo the chopping block in Dallas. Williams' lapses in coverage reportedly could cost him a roster spot, but as of now, that is simply hearsay.

The Giants signed their first-round pick Kenny Phillips, who earlier this year announced he would wear the No. 21 as a tribute to the late Sean Taylor. Phillips is from Taylor's alma mater, Miami, and he should help fill the void created in New York by the departure of Gibril Wilson.

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