by Grant PaulsenBy Grant Paulsen

1. Chris Chester sprained his left ankle

Chester was blocking on a Roy Helu run during the early stages of Monday’s practice at Redskins Park when he suffered what Mike Shanahan deemed a “mild” ankle sprain. The only Redskins offensive lineman who started all 16 games at his projected position in 2011, Chester was replaced on the first-team line by rookie guard Adam Gettis for the remainder of practice.

“He’s got a mild ankle sprain, I believe it’s the left ankle,” Shanahan said after practice. “You never know with ankles, hopefully it will be alright here in the next day or two. You don’t know for sure. You’re just hoping that it’s mild and it’s not too serious.”

Shanahan added that Chester is not expected to undergo an MRI. His status for Thursday’s game will be in doubt if he isn’t able to practice on Tuesday, but his status is uncertain for now.

2. Kory Lichtensteiger says he’ll be ready for the season-opener

Washington’s left guard will not play in Thursday night’s preseason game in Buffalo and he may not play in the preseason at all. But Kory Lichtensteiger did say that he is fully expecting to be on the field when the Redskins inaugurate their 2012 season in New Orleans for a week-one match up with the Saints.

“Preseason is a maybe, but [the] season opener? Yeah. I expect to be healthy for that,” Lichtensteiger said.

They 27-year-old guard tore his ACL and MCL last October 16th and after sitting out the final 11 games of Washington’s season, Lichtensteiger was expecting to participate in a setback-free training camp. That didn’t happen, though. After just a few days of practice he tweaked his recovering knee on the final play of a practice and decided to undergo a minor arthroscopic procedure last week.

“I feel okay, a week out now,” Lichtensteiger said. “It feels better than any other surgery I’ve ever had so I guess that means it was nice and minor. It was kind of one little tweak in practice. I jogged off the field and thought I was okay [but] it started feeling worse and worse through the night. The next day I kind of pulled myself out of walk-through because it was hurting.”

Lichtensteiger says he was healthy when he returned to practice and he doesn’t expect his knee to present any lingering issues moving forward.

“It was a minor thing. The prognosis is good, that’s the encouraging thing for me.”

3. Robert Griffin III is ready to play in his first NFL preseason game

As he continues to look ahead to his first taste of NFL game action, now three days away, Griffin says he’s more anxious than nervous. He also knows that Washington’s fans are going to have lofty expectations and hopes for him in his first game action.

“I’m going to be ready to go, I think the team’s going to be ready to go. It’s going to be fun. It’s football, that’s what we do. I’m just going to go out and have fun and do what coach asks me to do.”

Griffin said he’d ideally like to lead Washington’s first-team offense on one sustained, long drive that resulted in points. “Maybe six to 12 plays,” he suggested. He did note, however, that he expects to play a little more than that. (Mike Shanahan is already on record as saying Griffin and the Redskins’ starters will play about 12 to 20 snaps on Thursday).

“You guys are putting more pressure on the game than I am,” Griffin said. “It’ll be an eye-opening experience and I look forward to it.”

The first-year quarterback and reigning Heisman Trophy winning passer says he should have no fewer than six family members in his cheering section in Buffalo on Thursday night.

Punt: Chris Cooley says he is expecting to play some fullback in Thursday night’s preseason opener against the Bills…. Josh Morgan returned to practice and participated in team drills for the first time in six days. Getting back on the field Monday should give him a decent chance to play in the preseason-opener…. Anthony Armstrong wore a “no-contact” yellow jersey Monday. He was the only non quarterback donning yellow as he continues to recover from a sprained shoulder joint…. WR Darius Hanks had to be helped off the field after making a diving catch and landing awkwardly on his arm and shoulder durting 11-on-11 work…. Brandon Banks and Terrence Austin worked as Washington’s kick returners during special teams drills.


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