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News & Notes: Smoot Downgraded to Questionable

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Fred Smoot has been downgraded to questionable for Sunday's game against the St. Louis Rams at FedExField.

Smoot suffered a rib injury and was limited in practice on Friday. He was initially listed as probable.

Smoot, in his ninth NFL season, serves primarily as the Redskins' third cornerback in nickel packages and he backs up starters DeAngelo Hall and Carlos Rogers.

If Smoot is unable to play, then the Redskins would likely turn to second-year player Justin Tryon to fill his role. Byron Westbrook could also see action in the secondary.

It's also possible that rookie Kevin Barnes, the Redskins' third-round draft pick last April, could be active and see his first regular season action against the Rams.


-- RANDLE EL EXCELS

Antwaan Randle El made a quick transition to the slot, catching seven passes for a team-high 98 yards in the Redskins' season opener against the Giants.

Jim Zorn said that Randle El's versatility presents problems for defenses.

"Teams have to decide what they are going to do with Antwaan [in the slot]," Zorn said. "Maybe they will single him up, maybe they will double him up, but that gives someone else the opportunity to catch the ball."

Added Campbell: "I think he did a great job of maneuvering, catching balls and getting yards after catch. That's the biggest thing we wanted to improve on this season--yards after catch."


-- SPAGNUOLO SIDESTEP

St. Louis Rams head coach Steve Spagnuolo was reported to be a Redskins head coaching candidate in January 2008, prior to the Redskins hiring Jim Zorn.

Spagnuolo ended up returning to the New York Giants, where he was defensive coordinator, for another season. He signed on as Rams head coach last January.

Asked about interviewing with the Redskins, Spagnuolo deftly sidestepped the question.

"I'm here in St. Louis with the 2009 Rams," he said. "No second thoughts."

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