Garcon, Meriweather to start for Redskins

November, 18, 2012
11/18/12
11:55
AM ET
LANDOVER, Md. -- Washington Redskins wide receiver Pierre Garcon, who injured his foot in the season opener in New Orleans and has played bits of only two games since, is active and will start Sunday's game against the Philadelphia Eagles at FedEx Field. Safety Brandon Meriweather, who has missed the entire season so far with knee injuries, also will start.

Garcon's foot may not yet be 100 percent, and in fact it may not be all year. But the Redskins' coaches said last week that they wanted him to play if he could, even if he's not at full strength, since he opens up some options for them on offense. Garcon injured his foot on an 88-yard touchdown catch in the season opener that showed off the reason they signed him, but he hasn't been a factor since, and my guess is that they'll be judicious about how and how much they use him. Garcon is important as a downfield blocker as well as a receiver, but they have other guys who can block and don't catch the ball as reliably. The key is to maximize the benefit of having Garcon on the field while also making sure he doesn't injure himself worse.

Meriweather was brought in to play strong safety in a Redskins defense that believes he can help in run support and in blitz packages, so it's likely he helps them defend LeSean McCoy more than he helps them defend DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin.

For the Eagles, quarterback Michael Vick is inactive as expected due to the concussion he suffered last week, and rookie Nick Foles will make his first start at quarterback. Wide receiver Jason Avant is also inactive after injuring his hamstring last week. But right guard Danny Watkins, who missed the last three games with an ankle injury, is active and starting for the first time since Week 6.

The full list of inactives for the Eagles-Redskins game:

EAGLES

QB Michael Vick
WR Mardy Gilyard
RB Chris Polk
OL Nate Menkin
DE Vinny Curry
DE Phillip Hunt
WR Jason Avant

REDSKINS

QB Rex Grossman
WR Dezmon Briscoe
CB Richard Crawford
LB Mario Addison
G Adam Gettis
OL Maurice Hurt
DE Doug Worthington

UPDATE (12:35 pm ET): The Eagles announced that newly signed Jake Scott will start in place of Watkins at right guard.

Dan Graziano

ESPN New York Giants reporter

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