Josh Norman sits out practice; Redskins hope Montae Nicholson can return

The Washington Redskins had five players who couldn't practice Wednesday, including one newcomer to the list: cornerback Josh Norman.

Norman rested because of a sore knee, coach Jay Gruden told reporters. He did not think it was serious, but they wanted to give Norman a day of rest just to be sure. The Redskins want Norman available for Sunday's game vs. Arizona to help covering receiver Larry Fitzgerald.

Norman was joined on the sidelines Wednesday by linebacker Zach Brown, who continues to deal with various issues to his hip, Achilles and toe. He also was sick. Right tackle Morgan Moses (ankle) and left tackle Trent Williams (knee) have been resting on Wednesdays. Safety Montae Nicholson remains sidelined by a concussion.

The Redskins miss Nicholson in the secondary. His combination of size and speed make him a good option to develop -- and he would allow D.J. Swearinger to play more strong safety where he's better suited. But Nicholson has missed five of the last six games because of injuries -- the last three with a concussion and two others with shoulder injuries.

Even with the playoffs out of the question, the Redskins would still like Nicholson to play again in the final three games, if possible.

"He's obviously showed a lot of promise and we love him as a player and an athlete and the more we can get him to play this year, the better," Gruden said. "We'll be patient with him, obviously his health is number one, and we want to make sure he's 100 percent. We have to make sure he's 100 percent, and he has to feel right for him to be comfortable out there."

The Redskins also had five players who were limited: center Chase Roullier (hand), receiver Ryan Grant (ankle), linebacker Ryan Anderson (ankle), defensive lineman Terrell McClain (toe) and receiver Maurice Harris (concussion).

The Redskins placed tight end Jordan Reed on the injured reserve list Tuesday. Gruden said Reed was scheduled to visit Dr. Robert Anderson, the noted foot specialist, to determine if he'll need surgery to fix his toe. Reed had fractured the toe, leading to issues with his hip and then hamstring.

Also, rookie defensive lineman Jonathan Allen remains on injured reserve. The Redskins could activate him off the list at any time, but Gruden reiterated that they will only do so if he's completely healed from Lisfranc surgery. Otherwise, he won't play.