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Redskins Face Test In Third Preseason Game

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The Redskins will have their regular season dress rehearsal in Thursday night's preseason game against the Baltimore Ravens.

Most teams treat the third preseason game as the first full test for their starters, and the Redskins are no exception.

Head coach Mike Shanahan expects to play his starters at least the first half.

"This is the first time we have had a game plan in all facets of the game," Shanahan said. "I think most teams throughout the National Football League do that with the third preseason game and sometimes the fourth preseason game so you can get back into the swing of things and how you do things during the season."

Shanahan did not announce a starter at the quarterback position. It'll either be John Beck or Rex Grossman, but both will see playing time.

"It really doesn't matter who starts [the Ravens game]," Shanahan said.

Quarterback aside, Shanahan said preparing for the third preseason game is like preparing for a regular season game.

"It's a little bit of an adjustment because it's the first time your team works as a scout team from an offensive and defensive perspective," he said. "You have a lot of different free agents and a lot of different draft choices that are here for the first time and they see how you practice with tempo without pads."

After two preseason games, the Redskins rank No. 1 in the NFL in total offense and defense.

Does it matter, though? It's preseason, after all.

"You always try to play as well as you can," Shanahan replied. "If you keep on getting better every day, then it has a chance to carry over into the regular season. I'd sure like to be at the top than the bottom."

Shanahan has ruled out running back Ryan Torain and linebacker Edgar Jones. Torain is rehabbing a fractured hand and Jones is recovering from a concussion. Both are expected to be available for the Redskins' preseason finale on Sept. 1.

Defensive end Adam Carriker is questionable for the Ravens game. He missed last Friday's preseason game in Indianapolis with blisters on his feet.

"If he's not able to go full speed, then I'll try to get him some playing time against Tampa Bay," Shanahan said.

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