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Evaluation continue for 'Skins

WASHINGTON - With their first Richmond, Va., training camp in the books, the Washington Redskins moved back to their Ashburn headquarters over the weekend, and on Monday, the evaluations continue as the team plays its first home game of the preseason, against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The jobs along the first offensive and defensive units already appear set for the most part, aside from a couple of positions where injuries could cast a degree of doubt. But spots in the rotation, whether at running back, receiver, kick returner, defensive back - and the difference between second- and third-string as opposed to not making the team at all - remain undetermined.
Monday's game also will provide further seasoning for players like backup quarterback Kirk Cousins and tight end Fred Davis.
Cousins has a good feel for the offense but lacks extensive game experience. Davis, after missing the bulk of last season, has showed encouraging signs but he can use game reps to further knock off rust.
Coach Mike Shanahan said he expects to use Cousins for roughly a half, and then Rex Grossman and Pat White - both battling for the third-string quarterback spot - to split the second half.
Davis last week made his return from a ruptured Achilles' tendon sustained in Week 7 of the 2012 campaign. He played 13 snaps in the preseason opener, making two catches for 14 yards and a touchdown.
This week, Shanahan said Davis will receive more extensive playing time against the Steelers to further gauge his recovery.
"Fred will play more than he did in the first game," Shanahan said. "He will probably play close to half. He'll switch off there in a little bit. You are hoping that he keeps on improving, he feels very comfortable in himself in football shape. What I have seen thus far in camp is very encouraging because he has played well, he has caught the ball well, he has blocked well, and hopefully he can continue to do that."
Said Davis: "I want that. I've been out nine months. I'm ready for any opportunity, preseason or anything. I'm going to play it like it's a real game."
Monday could provide the first look at rookie running back Chris Thompson, a fifth-round pick out of Florida State, whose speed and athleticism could provide a spark. Alfred Morris has the starting position locked up, and Roy Helu Jr. and Evan Royster played well last week as they compete for No. 2 back duties.
But Thompson didn't play against Tennessee.
Thompson missed all of the offseason practices this spring and endured a slow start to camp while completing recovery from ACL surgery last fall. But this past week, he practiced fully for the first time. Thompson said he expects to play Monday, both as a running back and kickoff returner as he looks to make up for lost time. And coaches are eager to see what Thompson can offer now that he has fully recovered.
"Hopefully from this point on, he'll be healthy enough that we'll be able to continually be able to let him grow," running backs coach Bobby Turner said.

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