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News & Notes: Alexander Moves Into Starting Lineup

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Lorenzo Alexander is expected to start ahead of Andre Carter at outside linebacker for the second game in a row.

Alexander brings more versatility to the position as a pass rusher and a cover linebacker.

Carter is developing a niche as a pass-rushing linebacker, long regarded as his strength.

"We want to keep Andre a little bit more fresh in our nickel package," head coach Mike Shanahan said. "He did a great job in the nickel package and we thought Lorenzo would give us a little more flexibility in some of the things we do with our coverage out wide. I think it'll work out great."

Alexander started in last Sunday's 17-12 win over Philadelphia and posted two tackles. Carter saw significant action as well and logged three tackles and a sack of quarterback Michael Vick.

Alexander has played multiple roles ever since he entered the league. With the Redskins, he has seen action at defensive line, offensive line, tight end, special teams, and now linebacker.

"I'll have the same role, all over the place again, not doing one set thing during the game," Alexander said.

So far this season, he has posted 12 tackles and one sack and he leads the Redskins with eight special teams tackles. He leveled a bone-crushing tackle on Eagles kick returner Jorrick Calvin last week, a hit that several players said set a tone.

"Lorenzo seems to do this each week, regardless of the other team," Mike Shanahan said. "That was one of the best hits I've seen since I've been in the NFL. That was an explosion on the sidelines. That was very, very special."

Brian Orakpo and London Fletcher both said that Alexander brings energy that other players can feed off of during the game.

"Coaches felt like 'Zo was making some plays in there, so he deserved to start," Fletcher said. "He has done a great job when he comes into the ball game. He makes plays on special teams and he makes plays on defense. He's a playmaker."


-- PORTER JOINS PRACTICE SQUAD

The Redskins signed free agent running back Quinn Porter to the practice squad on Thursday.

Porter, 6-0 and 205 pounds, entered the NFL as an undrafted rookie free agent with the Green Bay Packers on April 30.

In 2010 preseason, he rushed for 77 yards on 21 attempts and had one catch for six yards. He also served on punt and kickoff returns.

Porter was waived by the Packers on Sept. 6.

The Redskins, of course, play the Packers this Sunday. Mike Shanahan said he has already asked Porter for a scouting report on the Packers.

Porter played college football at Stillman (Ala.) College, appearing in 37 games. He finished his career with 2,788 rushing yards on 511 attempts and 24 touchdowns. He also added 68 receptions for 887 yards (13.0 avg.) and 12 touchdowns.

As a senior, he was a first-team All-Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference selection.

That season he led the conference with 1,247 rushing yards on 194 attempts and nine touchdowns in nine games.


-- WILLIAMS STILL LIMITED IN PRACTICE

Left tackle Trent Williams remains has been in Redskins practice this week, but Mike Shanahan said he is improving.

"He did better," Shanahan said on Thursday. "I'm hoping that there's not a setback and that he'll get a little bit better [on Friday]. He's making strides."

If Williams is unable to play, then Stephon Heyer would draw the start for the third week in a row.

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