The veteran center was placed on Injured Reserve on Sept. 27 after suffering a calf injury. The designation opens up a 21-day practice period before a potential return.
The Washington Redskins on Wednesday announced that center Kory Lichtensteiger has been designated for return, commencing a 21-day practice period while he remains on Injured Reserve.
Additionally, the team signed cornerback Dashaun Phillips back to the practice squad after being called up to the active roster last weekend before being waived on Monday.
Lichtensteiger was placed on Injured Reserve in September after suffering a calf injury during the Redskins' Week 3 victory over the New York Giants.
Prior to being removed from the game in the second half, the eight-year veteran started and played all 125 snaps during the Redskins' first two games of the season.
After Lichtensteiger was placed on Injured Reserve, the Redskins bumped Spencer Long over to center from guard and signed veteran center John Sullivan.
Long has started Washington's last nine games, but was removed from Sunday's loss to the Arizona Cardinals with what was later diagnosed with a concussion.
Redskins head coach Jay Gruden said on Monday that Long remains in concussion protocol while also hinting at a potential return for Lichtensteiger.
"I think right now if Spencer can't go then we'd probably have to make a roster adjustment and we'll have to see where Kory is," Gruden said. "We'll have to see. Ronald Patrick's on our practice squad, that's an opportunity. [Shawn] Lauvao is our backup center if he can't go right now, so I'd like to keep him at guard. He hasn't done a lot of center work, so we'd have to get somebody in here, somebody up."
When healthy, Lichtensteiger has started his last 24 appearances at center after playing left guard during his first four seasons with the Redskins.
The 31-year-old was also designated to return off Injured Reserve last year after he suffered a neck injury midway through the regular season. He would start the Redskins' Wild Card Round game against the Green Bay Packers after missing the final 11 regular season games.
After Long exited Sunday's game, he was replaced in the lineup by Sullivan, who had exclusively played special teams for Washington for his first eight appearances in a Redskins uniform.
While Sullivan had never been requested for his services mid-game before – he was a backup for his entire rookie season in 2008 but didn't appear on an offensive snap – the Notre Dame product didn't have any issues being put into the game on short notice.
"You know it's funny, in the lead up, knowing I was going to be in this backup role, I thought it would be really tough to come in cold [and] midstream," Sullivan said. "But the second you know you are going in there, your adrenaline kicks up and you're good to go. You don't really have a chance to think about the grand scheme of things, you just react and go in there and do what you're coached to do."