By Bill Coats
Thursday, Oct. 23 2008
Some 45 minutes after practicing for the first time in nearly two weeks,
Orlando Pace pronounced himself fit for duty. "Everything is good," Pace said
Wednesday afternoon at Rams Park. "I went through the whole practice and felt
pretty good."

Given that cue, coach Jim Haslett wasted no time in announcing that the
seven-time Pro Bowler would start Sunday at New England.

Pace missed last Sunday's game against Dallas after suffering a slight tear to
his right thigh muscle early in the fourth quarter the week before at
Washington. Adam Goldberg started in his place at left tackle and "did a nice
job" in the 34-14 victory over the Cowboys, Haslett said.

"It makes you as a coach have some confidence that guys can step in and fill
the role and do a good job," he added.

Pace wound up taking part in all the drills Wednesday, including the 11-on-11
"team" segment.


Safety Todd Johnson, who was hospitalized after sustaining a bruised kidney
Sunday, watched practice from the sideline. He has been ruled out for the
Patriots game, as has wide receiver Drew Bennett (foot).

As expected, Steven Jackson (thigh), Adam Carriker (ankle) and wide receiver
Derek Stanley (concussion) sat out. Cornerback Tye Hill (knee) did individual
work on the side.


Stanley was unconscious for about 20 seconds after colliding with Cowboys
defensive back Keith Davis while trying to cover a punt. Stanley was taken to a
hospital, where it was recommended that he spend the night. But Stanley signed
himself out.

"I felt pretty good," he said. "I'd rather go home and relax."

Stanley dressed, stretched and caught a few passes Wednesday before he was
ordered off the field because he hadn't been cleared medically. "They told me I
had to come in," Stanley said. "If it was up to me, I'd have been out there the
entire practice. I feel great."


Haslett's stint as Scott Linehan's successor began about as inauspiciously as
possible: running back Steven Jackson fumbled at the Rams 3-yard line on their
second play from scrimmage. The Redskins recovered and took a 7-0 lead on the
next snap.