Thursday, September 12, 2013
Brandon Meriweather: 'I feel great'
By John Keim
ASHBURN, Va. -- Brandon Meriweather remains upbeat and confident. He also remains healthy and in line to start Sunday, provided he does not have yet another setback.
Meriweather practiced Wednesday in full for the first time since the last workout before the preseason finale. He said his groin, which kept him out of Monday’s loss to the Philadelphia Eagles, felt good. Washington Redskins coach Mike Shanahan said Wednesday that he expects Meriweather to play at Green Bay, barring another issue.
“Right now I feel great,” Meriweather said. “Whatever coach says that’s what I go by. He’s a smart guy, he knows his players, he knows our movements. He knows us very well so if he feels I’m ready to play I’ll go play.
“I try not to get my hopes too high or too low. I do what they ask me to do and form there I let coach make the decision.”
With Meriweather, it’s always about “right now” because of how little he’s played since coming to Washington. Meriweather has played 45 snaps since joining the Redskins last year. He worked out before the Eagles game, but his groin, which he hurt in a Sept. 2 practice, didn’t feel 100 percent.
The Redskins could use him Sunday against the Green Bay Packers and its high-powered offense. Defensive coordinator Jim Haslett hopes that’s the case, though he'll keep his fingers crossed for now.
“I’d love to have him back,” Redskins defensive coordinator Jim Haslett said. “I haven’t seen him play for so long. I’m not sure. But hopefully -- I said the same thing last week and he didn’t play so we’ll see.”
The Redskins used corner E.J. Biggers at safety against the Eagles, wanting his speed versus a team that posed a major threat in the open field. The problem Washington’s defense had in the first half was more in the front seven than the back four, with big holes created in part by the Eagles’ scheme.
Meriweather would add a strong safety with speed and experience at the position. He also knows that a team can only hang onto a player for so long before they seek alternatives.
“I can’t say I feel pressure because I believe everything happens for a reason,” Meriweather said. “Apparently it wasn’t meant for me to go out there last week. I just hope I’m ready this week. … It’s been very frustrating. I told you all last year the worst thing is sitting there watching your team go through something and you’re just sitting there watching.”
And he said he’s confident that his knee is fine.
“I’m confident in my trainers, I’m confident they did everything possible to get me ready,” said Meriweather, who underwent ACL surgery on Dec. 15. “I’m confident my coaches kept me out long enough and put me in at the right time. I’m confident I know the playbook well enough and I can go out there and perform whatever the coaches ask.”