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News & Notes: Griffin Back At Practice

Defensive tackle Cornelius Griffin participated in practice on Thursday, the first time he has done so in three weeks.

Griffin remains listed as questionable on the team's injury report with a hip injury. The Redskins host the San Diego Chargers on Sunday at FedExField.

Griffin's return to the lineup would be a boost to the Redskins' defense, particularly as they prepare for a multi-faceted San Diego Chargers offense that includes running back LaDainian Tomlinson, quarterback Drew Brees, fullback Lorenzo Neal, wide receiver Keenan McCardell and tight end Antonio Gates.

If Griffin is unable to play for the fourth consecutive game, assistant head coach-defense Gregg Williams will again use a group of linemen that includes converted end Demetric Evans and tackles Cedric Killings and Aki Jones, among others.

"We have tried to keep fresh guys in there," Williams said. "We have had a plan for whoever has had to play that position. If their talent level is not the same as Cornelius Griffin, then we have to do some things from a scheme standpoint and a coaching standpoint to take advantage of the ability of that player."

The Redskins' defense misses Griffin's impact in the pass rush. He gets off the ball well at the line of scrimmage and helps collapse the pocket on passing downs.

"Each week we hope to continue to get better in some of those one-on-one pass rushing situations," Williams said. "Even if you pressure or blitz you need to be able to win one-on-one pass rush situations."

-- SCHOTTENHEIMER SET FOR RETURN

Marty Schottenheimer coached in Washington just one season, so this week's storyline of Schottenheimer returning to FedExField feels more like a sub-plot. That's a contrast to last week, when the return of Oakland's Norv Turner to Washington and FedExField was one of the top stories of the week.

Schottenheimer coached the Redskins for one season in 2001 and guided the team to an 8-8 record after starting the year in disastrous fashion: an 0-5 record.

"I only spent one year in Washington, so I'd be less than honest if I said that it was going to be something different than most other games," he said. "If I had coached there longer, I'm sure that I would have had much the same emotion as when I went back to some of the other places I've coached."

Schottenheimer believes he did as good a coaching job as he has ever done in his one season in Washington. The team finished its last 11 games with an 8-3 record.

"When go 0-5, you find out a lot about people," he said. "We found out about our people. They stepped up and played every week like it was the most important game of the year. I'm very proud that we ended up 8-3, and I'm sure our players and the organization was, too."

Asked if he wonders why he did not coach longer in Washington, Schottenheimer said: "No, it was pretty straightforward. Dan [Snyder] and I sat down and talked about what he wanted to do and the way he wanted to do it. I didn't feel like that was what we initially set out upon. I don't believe there is anyone around who can doubt that Dan Snyder wants to win. I respect him for that."

-- OTHER INJURIES

Running back and kick returner Ladell Betts did not practice on Thursday as he continues to recover from a knee injury. He remains listed as questionable on the team's injury report.

Running back Clinton Portis (illness) and defensive lineman Nic Clemons (knee) were added to the team's injury report. Both sat out Thursday's practice, but are listed as probable for Sunday's game.

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