Phillip Buchanon rejoins Redskins

ASHBURN, Va. -- Washington cornerback Phillip Buchanon was back on the field Tuesday, having served his four-game suspension for violating the NFL's policy on performance-enhancing substances.

Buchanon went through the light practice before the players took off for a five-day bye-week break.

The 10-year veteran wasn't allowed to have any contact with the team during his suspension.

"It was different for me," he said. "Honest mistake. Things happen, so I just put it in God's hands, and I look forward to trying to make plays."

Buchanon declined to say which substance caused him to be suspended.

The Redskins will need to cut a player from the 53-man roster to make room for Buchanon. Coach Mike Shanahan said he will make that move later in the week, with Buchanon perhaps playing against Philadelphia after the bye.

"He's going to help us right away," Shanahan said. "I've got to check out here in the next couple of weeks what type of shape he's in, and hopefully he can help us against Philly."

Buchanon injured his shoulder during the preseason, but Shanahan said it "looked pretty good" during the practice. Because of the injury, Buchanon will be reporting to the Redskins Park training room for treatment this week while his teammates are away enjoying the time off.

"I had my bye week the first four weeks," he said.

Buchanon, in his second year with the Redskins, is expected to contribute on the nickel packages. DeAngelo Hall and Josh Wilson are the starters, while Kevin Barnes, Brandyn Thompson and Byron Westbrook have all seen playing time at cornerback this season.


Shanahan on what he expects his players to do during the break: "I've asked them to at least get a couple of good days of running in. I told them God's watching, so we have to go by the honor system. But we've got guys who understand that we're four games into the season and we've got a lot to get done." ... Shanahan is also giving the coaches a mini-vacation. He said the staff will spend some time looking at film on Philadelphia before taking a long weekend.