Redskins QB Brunell tests elbow, still expected to play Sunday
ASHBURN, Va. -- Washington Redskins quarterback Mark Brunell tested his itchy, injured elbow with a few 20-yard tosses at the end of practice Thursday. He remained probable for Sunday's game against his old team, the Jacksonville Jaguars.
"He threw today. He's going to practice tomorrow," trainer Bubba Tyer said.
The left-handed Brunell cut the elbow on his throwing arm during last week's 31-15 victory over the Houston Texans. He needed three stitches to close the wound and has kept the arm tightly wrapped all week to guard against infection.
Brunell wore a smaller bandage Thursday and kept scratching the elbow as he stood by his locker. His movement with the arm was restricted and he was careful to avoid sudden movements as he watched practice, using his right hand when he caught a ball or picked one off the ground.
Brunell has been cautious with the injury because an infected cut on the same elbow -- also, coincidentally, in the third game of the season -- caused him to lose his starting job with Jacksonville three years ago.
"From his past experience, he is concerned about it," Tyer said. "And it heightened our concern about it, and we're taking as much precaution as we can."
Todd Collins took most of the snaps during Thursday's practice, a further indication that Brunell will play. Coach Joe Gibbs has said that Jason Campbell will start if the team anticipates in advance Brunell will be out, while Collins is considered the No. 2 quarterback when an in-game replacement is needed.
Brunell also clarified when the injury occurred. He said the elbow was cut when it hit a defender's helmet after a pass to tight end Chris Cooley, instead of later in the game when he was shoved by Houston's Thomas Johnson during a fumble return.
Cornerback Shawn Springs' return won't happen this week -- and probably not next week.
Springs was a spectator again at practice Thursday, a day after traveling to Pennsylvania to see a specialist in a routine follow-up to the abdominal surgery he had Aug. 15. The muscle that was reattached during the operation is healing nicely, but a groin injury is delaying his return to the field.
Springs strained the groin in his right leg last week when he tried to return to practice.
"He has strained a few fibers in that muscle," Tyer said. "We'll take it week to week."
Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press
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