Despite having to proceed through the early stretch of training camp at a slowed pace, Hightower said he remains confident that his surgically-repaired left knee will fully heal in time for him to play in the season opener Sept. 9. “I’m just getting better each day,” Hightower said Monday. “I didn’t [regress] at all. I don’t think it’s any area of concern. I just went out there the first couple days to see how my body felt, and I just keep getting better. I’m still on track. I’ll be out there Game 1.” Reported by the Washington Post
Hightower suffered the season-ending surgery last October and has spent the last eight months working his way back to full strength. Hightower, who re-signed with Washington as a free agent in May, was healthy enough that the Redskins didn’t open training camp with him on the Physically Unable to Perform list. But HC Mike Shanahan has openly said that Hightower is far from 100 percent, and coaches have limited the four-year veteran’s workload. According to Post staffer Mike Jones, Hightower hasn’t held back when he does get carries in live action. But his knee remains sore, and he still moves with a noticeable limp when running and walking. The Redskins’ medical staff has closely monitored Hightower to ensure that he doesn’t put himself at risk of a setback. Remember: It's widely believed Hightower will be the starter over Roy Helu and Evan Royster if he's ready to go Week 1. We'll continue to suggest a cautious approach to this one.