- The Washington Times - Monday, July 29, 2002

17 Southeastern Conference players, including six former Florida Gators, on the Redskins' 83-man roster.
10 Redskins older than 30. Two seasons ago Washington was the NFL's oldest club.

"Oh, it hurts!"
Linebacker LaVar Arrington after yesterday's penultimate wind sprint. On the final one he and linebacker Jeremiah Trotter raced to a tie.
"I'll probably see the inside of my hotel room, the inside of the bus and inside of the stadium."
Offensive tackle Jon Jansen on his lack of tourism plans in Osaka, Japan.

QB battle rages on

CARLISLE, Pa. Attendance returned to normal (a few hundred) following Saturday's surge to 7,000 for fan appreciation day. Yesterday's spectators didn't get the live full-contact work that was on display Saturday, but they did see extended demonstrations of the quarterback battle as coach Steve Spurrier ran third-down and red-zone drills.
The passers' play was spotty early, and the crowd groaned and griped after Shane Matthews botched an easy toss. But Sage Rosenfels got things going with a spiral to Jacquez Green, who executed a perfectly timed leap and catch, and the work gradually grew sharper.
Danny Wuerffel closed the third-down drill by completing a bomb to Kevin Lockett, who got cornerback Chandler Smith totally turned around, then nailed three touchdowns in four attempts at one point in the goal-line session.
Green had another sweet grab late when he held on to a Matthews pass in the deep right corner of the end zone. It was one of the few times in camp that rookie corner Rashad Bauman was beat.
Former Redskins quarterback Joe Theismann was on hand in anticipation of his commentating role on the ESPN broadcast of Saturday's exhibition in Osaka, Japan. He said it was tough to gauge the quarterbacks in practice because the defense had grown accustomed the play-calling, making it tough for the offense to look sharp.
"I think the only way we, as observers, are going to be able to evaluate it properly is in games," Theismann said. "Everybody is going to have to play and perform in games."
His dominant thought regarded the quarterback race's wide-open nature. NFL coaches usually have favorites or at least preconceived notions when players are competing for jobs, he noted. Rarely do they hold an unbiased audition at the game's key spot. He added that rookie Patrick Ramsey's absence benefits Rosenfels, Matthews and Wuerffel.
"It gives them all extra throws," Theismann said. "It gives you more of a chance to get comfortable, more of a chance to know what Steve wants."

Extra points
Tackle Jon Jansen, running back Jimmy Watkins, linebackers Jeremiah Trotter and LaVar Arrington and wide receiver Justin Skaggs continued to be among the top finishers in the wind sprints that closed practice. Gassers aren't based on speed, of course, just pure effort after a long workout on the field.
Offensive lineman Chris Samuels once again stayed for a few more sets of sprints after practice, joined this time by rookie lineman Dustin Keith. Young defensive linemen Donovan Arp and Otis Leverette hung around to work on their pass-rush moves.
Theismann is fired up about calling Spurrier's debut, saying, "I wouldn't want to broadcast another game in the league than a Redskins game, even if I wasn't a former Redskin. With all the anticipation, with all the questions that surround this football team, it's a great place to be."

At a glance
Today's practices: 9:30 a.m., 4 p.m.
Weather: 92 degrees, partly cloudy
Health watch: Defensive end Bruce Smith (knees), defensive tackle Santana Dotson (calf) and offensive lineman Wayne Smith (hip) missed practice. Wide receiver Darnerien McCants (wrist) and guard David Loverne (elbow) were limited to individual work.

Jody Foldesy

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