Print and Go Back NFL [Print without images]

Friday, September 8, 2006
Portis says he'll probably return for second game

Associated Press

Clinton Portis

ASHBURN, Va. -- Redskins running back Clinton Portis is targeting Washington's second game for his return from a shoulder injury.

He essentially ruled himself out for the Monday night opener against the Minnesota Vikings. He wore a helmet and his No. 26 jersey during the entire practice Friday for the first time since partially dislocating his left shoulder four weeks ago, but said he was focusing on the upcoming games against Dallas and Houston.

"The way things look, bro, you'll probably be seeing 2-6 against Dallas," Portis said. "But who knows? If not, I should be ready for Houston. They want me to be 100 percent."

In a bit of a surprise, Portis said he was initially told he wouldn't return until the third or fourth game of the regular season, making the injury considerably more serious than originally portrayed by the Redskins.

"I'm actually ahead of schedule," he said.

Portis said he has had no full contact on his shoulder, which he hurt making a tackle in the preseason opener against Cincinnati.

"I tried to show coach that I still had it, but I don't think he fell for it," said Portis, who rushed for a franchise-record 1,516 yards last season. "I tried to hit the bag, but it was wet, so it didn't make me look too good."

Portis, who rushed for a franchise-record 1,516 yards last season, has started 31 of 32 games since joining the Redskins in 2004. Ladell Betts, who started the game Portis missed, is expected to start Monday.