- The Washington Times - Monday, November 5, 2001

Washington Redskins linebacker LaVar Arrington may miss 2-to-4 weeks with a high ankle sprain from what he believed was "a dirty play."
Arrington was hurt on the opening play of the third quarter when he chased Seattle running back Shaun Alexander on a three-yard sweep. Arrington appeared to trip over a fallen player with no one apparently behind him. However, Arrington still suspected someone hit him from behind.
"I heard two different stories somebody said [a Seahawk] tried to cut [block] somebody else and rolled on me and another said he went right for my legs," Arrington said. "If he went for my legs that's not what the game's about. If that didn't happen, then it's part of the game. There might be too much leeway for [offensive linemen]. You make a play and they can come hit you from behind. They cut my game short."
Several defensive players offered conflicting versions of the play and no one said they saw a Seahawk intentionally hit Arrington. However, many were upset over Arrington's third injury of the season. The team's hardest hitter has already missed one game with a sprained knee and nearly one half with an apparent concussion.
The Redskins are off until Nov. 18 when they play Denver and Arrington wouldn't project his return other than to say the injury was "pretty bad."
"I'm just happy it's not a knee or broken," Arrington said. "I have never felt a pain like I felt on that field. I just knew it was broken. I just accepted it so it was a bonus that it's just a sprain."

Sackin' em up
Redskins defensive end Bruce Smith added two more names to his list of sack victims yesterday.
Smith brought down first-year starter Matt Hasselbeck for an 8-yard loss in the second quarter after linemate Kenard Lang had flushed the Seattle quarterback from the heart of the pocket. Hasselbeck was Smith's 66th victim during his 17 seasons. Midway through the third quarter with another assist from Lang Smith made Seahawks backup quarterback Trent Dilfer victim No. 67. Smith also forced Dilfer to fumble on the play.
"Michael [Jordan] likes to make [opponents] look bad. I like to make them feel bad," Smith said with a smile. "I called a stunt and picked Kenard's guy. So he came around free and flushed the quarterback. I squeezed through the gap. When he ducked up under Kenard, I was there to make the play."
The sacks gave Smith a team-high 31/2 this season and 1841/2 for his career, 131/2 shy of the retired Reggie White's NFL record.
Smith's earlier takedowns this season came against Trent Green and Kerry Collins. The 38-year-old's most frequent victim is the long-retired Ken O'Brien of the New York Jets, whom Smith sacked 171/2 times while playing for Buffalo. Smith has sacked New England's Drew Bledsoe 121/2 times. Jeff George, who began the season as Washington's starter, is tied for third with the retired Dan Marino with 91/2.

Red-hot red zone
The Redskins scored touchdowns on three out of four trips into the red zone (inside the opponents' 20) after converting a league-low 8.3 percent of the time entering the game. And the fourth trip resulted in a field goal.
"I should hope it's because we worked so hard," coach Marty Schottenheimer said. "We've spent a lot of time in that area. Generally in the season we spend time on it on Friday. Right now we go in and work on it on Thursday, and even sometimes on Wednesday."

Carter keeps it up
Backup running back Ki-Jana Carter continued to produce in an increased role, rushing 10 times for 57 yards and catching two balls for 11 yards. He now is entrenched in third-and-long situations.
Carter's key play came in the third quarter, when he rushed 12 yards on a third-and-5 sweep. Three plays later wide receiver Michael Westbrook caught a touchdown pass that essentially sealed the game at 27-7.
Carter's 5.7-yard average rush followed two rushes for 40 yards in the win over the New York Giants a week earlier. The 1995 No. 1 overall draft pick, who signed with the Redskins in training camp, is averaging 8.3 yards a carry.
"That's the kind of mentality I have: Every time I touch the ball I try to score," Carter said. "And the line did a great job. Anytime you see a back have over a 10-yard run, without the line it wouldn't have been there unless maybe you're Barry Sanders. All I had to do was get the ball, make my read and try to get to the hole."

Champ's pick
Champ Bailey has established himself as one of the league's top cornerbacks in only his third season, but after recording five interceptions in each of his first two seasons as a Redskin, he had only one entering yesterday's game.
Bailey's first-quarter interception of Matt Hasselbeck put the Redskins' offense in business at the Seattle 30-yard line. They could muster just five yards on the drive, hampered by a Tony Banks intentional grounding penalty, but it was enough to put Brett Conway in position to kick a 43-yard go-ahead field goal.
"I was a little disappointed with myself," Bailey said. "It wasn't as easy as everybody thought getting those picks, but when you get your hands on them, you dont get many opportunities. You have to take advantage of them."
Bailey stepped in front of Seahawks receiver Darrell Jackson along the right sideline to make a leaping grab. Jackson had some separation from Bailey but Hasselbeck's throw was short, allowing Bailey to make up ground.
Although Bailey was voted a Pro Bowl starter last season, Hasselbeck made the mistake of not giving Bailey the proper respect.
"I basically just underestimated Champ Bailey's athletic ability and his ability to recover and get back on the ball," Hasselbeck said.
However, if Bailey had adhered to the coverage scheme, he might not have been in position to make the play.
"Actually, it's not my responsibility to take that pass, to defend that route," Bailey said. "But as a corner, I know it's tough on the safety to come over and make that play."

Strong reserves
Tight end Stephen Alexander could return from an ankle injury in two weeks, but reserves Zeron Flemister and Walter Rasby are making sure they pick up the slack in his absence. Offensive coordinator Jimmy Raye continued to make throwing to the tight end a part of the offense yesterday, when Flemister and Rasby each caught two passes, including Rasby's 7-yard touchdown reception. The pair entered yesterday's game with three catches combined on the season but demonstrated they can factor in the team's offensive game plan.
"We needed to show Jimmy, need to show the whole team [that we could play] because Stephen's a great tight end, those are some hard shoes to fill. But were working really hard to try to fill them," Flemister said.
Said Rasby: "The thing about it is, just think when he comes back, just think about how much better we're going to be then."

Coleman's sack
In recent weeks, Marco Coleman has had to watch from the sideline has his mates on the defensive line made big plays. In his second game back from an elbow injury, Coleman got in on the action yesterday by forcing a critical turnover.
The Seahawks were driving for a score that would have cut the Redskins' lead to six when, on a first-and-goal play from the 5, Coleman wrapped up Matt Hasselbeck and forced a fumble that Bruce Smith recovered. The play, Coleman's first sack of the season, erased Seattle's chance to stay within striking distance. Instead, the Redskins took a 20-7 lead to the locker room.
"On the goal line, West Coast [offense] teams like to run the bootleg.The quarterback rolled out. I couldn't see behind me, but it had to be great coverage by the guys behind me because he had to hold the ball which gave me a chance to get there," Coleman said. "It felt great man, it felt real good, especially with this bum arm. I'm just out there trying to hold my spot."

Tricky Thompson
The Redskins benefited from trick plays the one that they executed and the ones the New York Giants didn't in last Sunday's victory, and yesterday tried to pull another surprise on their opponent. The defense didn't bite on the Redskins' flea flicker attempt early in the second quarter yesterday. Tony Banks got the pitch back from Stephen Davis and although the coverage was tight, still tried to find Derrius Thompson down the right side. Thompson had to swat the ball away from cornerback Shawn Springs just to prevent it from being intercepted.
"We have a couple plays in the gadget bag. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don't work," coach Marty Schottenheimer said. "Thompson was on the receiving end of fellow wideout Kevin Lockett's scoring strike against the Giants, but Thompson said he's not a secret weapon of sorts it was just coincidence that he was the intended target on the two plays.

Wise move
Marty Schottenheimer chose to challenge an apparent 9-yard completion to Darrell Jackson on the first play of the second quarter, and the play was reversed Schottenheimer's first successful reversal in four challenges this season. The first-down play would have given the Seahawks second-and-1 at their own 35, but instead the Redskins forced a punt after wideout Koren Robinson, in the backfield as a tailback, couldn't handle a poor pitch from Matt Hasselbeck.

Punt, pass and kick
Carrie Schneider of Derwood, was the only local winner of the Punt, Pass and Kick at halftime, taking the 14-15-year-old girls division. Other winners were Darren McCloud (Glenn Allen, Va.), Jacqueline Brewer (Winchester, Va.), Sherlonda Pulley (Surry, Va.), Jordan Kirk (Weber City, Va.), Katherine Flint (Natural Bridge, Va.), Dennis Smith (Hampton, Va.) and Michael Leccadito (Yorktown, Va.).

Inactives
Linebacker Donte Curry, offensive tackle Ross Tucker, guard Alex Sulfsted, defensive end Dorian Boose, defensive tackle Donovan Arp, tight end Stephen Alexander and receiver Darnerien McCants were inactive.


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