Carlos Rogers and Rocky McIntosh returned to action on Saturday night, testing their surgically repaired knees in the preseason game against the Jets.
Their goal: feel normal on the field.
No soreness, no slowness and no hesitation.
"My knee didn't hurt at all," Rogers said. "Nothing held me back. It felt normal, natural--just like I had been out there all along.
"I thought I was going to be nervous, because it was my first game and I had been out of football for 10 months, but I felt pretty good."
Same for McIntosh.
"I just went out there and played at full speed," he said. "That's what I'm going to do no matter how I feel or what point I'm at. Once you step on to the field, it's either hit or be hit. And I don't want to be hit."
On Monday, Rogers and McIntosh were back at Redskins practice, getting ready for this Saturday's preseason game against the Carolina Panthers.
Neither reported any swelling, a sign that their knees were responding well.
Rogers played just a handful of snaps and was part of one tackle, but he was not really tested by the Jets' passing attack.
At linebacker, McIntosh was more involved in the action at the line of scrimmage. He finished with one solo tackle on Jets running back Thomas Jones.
"I think Carlos felt very comfortable," Jim Zorn said. "You saw quickness from and his ability to react to the play in front of him. Rocky stepped right up there and took people on. He didn't shy away from anything. But it was just a start for both of them."
Rogers said he expects to play up to 25 snaps in Saturday's game at Carolina.
"I feel like my quickness is back," he said. "I just need to get in on some tackles. This game against Carolina will be a bigger test because I'll play more."
Compared to McIntosh, Rogers' knee ligament injury was more serious.
While McIntosh was ready to start practicing early in training camp, Rogers returned in early August and had to show coaches he could handle daily work.
"I was determined to get back, and not let everyone tell me when I would get back because of what other guys experienced with their [knee] injuries," Rogers said. "I know my injury and I know my body--my whole goal was to take this offseason and work to get back."