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Redskins looking to shore up secondary


Ron Lynn, who once beat John Elway with the help of the Stanford band, probably could use the help of a tuba player or two this Sunday.

"I've seen more than enough of him over the course of a long time," Lynn, the Washington defensive coordinator, said yesterday as he started to prepare for the Redskins' game against Elway's Denver Broncos.

Lynn was coaching at the University of California in 1982, when his team beat Stanford with the five laterals on a kickoff return through the Stanford band.

But when Lynn went against Broncos twice a year in six years as the San Diego Chargers defensive coordinator, the Chargers were 3-9.

Lynn will be in a difficult position this week because he may be without his second and third cornerbacks as he tries to contain Elway.

Muhammad Oliver, the third corner, was lost for the season last week with a knee injury in practice. Tom Carter, who usually starts with Darrell Green, went out against the Oakland Raiders Sunday with a pulled hamstring and may not be able to play Sunday.

They may also be without guard Tre Johnson, who sprained his ankle on the first play against the Raiders. But Carter's loss would be more critical because the team is thin at the position.

Coach Norv Turner said he won't know until later in the week whether Carter will even dress for the game.

That leaves rookie Scott Turner in a starting role, although Sebastian Savage and corner Darryl Morrison may see more action.

"We're talking about playing our fourth and fifth corners," Lynn said. "We're going to have to do it by committee, I guess."

The Redskins yesterday signed Robert Bailey, who was waived by the St. Louis Rams earlier this season, to give them depth at corner, although he probably won't play much Sunday. To make room for Bailey, they cut third-string quarterback Jeff Brohm.

That means that Heath Shuler will dress as the third-string quarterback even though his separated shoulder is still healing. If Gus Frerotte and Trent Green are injured, he'd have to go in and hand off.

Talking about the injury situation at cornerback, Lynn said: "It's tough for anybody. Dallas is bemoaning the fact they lost one [Kevin Smith]. They still have their third and they just signed another guy [Deion Sanders]."

Compounding the problem is that the Redskins are having trouble generating a pass rush, so Jeff Hostetler was able to pick their zone apart Sunday, completing 22 of 29 passes for 205 yards.

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