- The Washington Times - Thursday, August 21, 2003

His right hand unbandaged and his chin strap buckled for the first time this week, Patrick Ramsey participated fully in practice yesterday morning.

After Ramsey spent a productive two hours running the Washington Redskins offense, coach Steve Spurrier did not hesitate to name him as the starting quarterback for tomorrow night’s preseason game against the Baltimore Ravens at FedEx Field.

“He’s going to be able to play a little bit,” Spurrier said. “Obviously, I don’t think we’re going to play him a whole half like we did last week. But he needs to play. Hopefully, we’ll get him a quarter or so of action.”

After sitting out most of the previous three days with a bruised knuckle at the base of his right index finger, Ramsey looked sharp and emerged satisfied with his progress.

“Much better,” he said. “I was able to throw the ball. I felt pretty good about the way it came off. I was pleasantly surprised.”

Ramsey hurt himself during last week’s loss to New England when he slammed his hand into an opposing player’s face mask. He stayed in the game and wound up completing 13 of 24 for 149 yards and an interception.

Ramsey won’t take any extra precautions tomorrow to avoid another injury.

“If I play tentatively, I won’t play well,” he said. “You have to make sure the guys who are blitzing are picked up and note when they come, but after that you have to look through them. Or else you’ll never be able to get the ball down the field.”

Spurrier plans to leave his first-team offense in the game for about two quarters, like last week. Ramsey, though, figures to come out a little sooner.

“He needs to play, but he needs to be healthy,” Spurrier said. “So it doesn’t make sense to put him out there to get hit a whole bunch.”

Chase to see some action

Defensive tackle Martin Chase made his first practice appearance in a Redskins uniform and will see limited action tomorrow night.

“This is a big opportunity for me,” said Chase, who was acquired Wednesday from New Orleans for a seventh-round draft pick. “I definitely want to make the most of it.”

Wearing jersey No. 72, the 6-foot-2, 310-pounder got some reps with Washington’s third-string defense. Already fairly familiar with the Redskins’ scheme after playing under Marvin Lewis in Baltimore in 1998 and 1999, Chase thinks he can have an immediate impact with his new team.

Though he’s started only four games in five professional seasons, Chase will have a chance to crack Washington’s lineup. A self-described “run-stopper” and “blue-collar player,” he’ll compete with fellow newcomers Bernard Holsey and James Cannida for playing time alongside new nose tackle Jermaine Haley.

New minority owners

The Redskins will make a formal announcement today on the sale of a minority stake in the franchise to three investors, an NFL spokeswoman and a team spokesman said.

It is a foregone conclusion that NFL owners will approve the “re-syndication” of Mort Zuckerman’s shares. The league’s finance committee already has approved Dwight Schar, a local real estate executive; Robert Rothman, a Florida businessman; and Fred Smith, chairman of FedEx.

Extra points

The Redskins’ offensive line woes continue. Starting right guard Randy Thomas will not play tomorrow because of a sprained right ankle. Thomas joins center Larry Moore (sprained knee) and backups Wilbert Brown (sprained elbow), Rod Jones (sprained ankle), Tre Johnson (sore Achilles’ tendon) and Brandon Winey (undisclosed injury) on the list of banged-up linemen.

Rookie Derrick Dockery will start in Thomas’ place, a major accomplishment for the third-round draft pick.

“It means a lot,” Dockery said. “I’m a rookie, I’m excited. I have to step up to the challenge. I want it to be where there’s not a drop-off in performance from the first-team guys to the second-team guys.” …

Trung Canidate will start his third game at running back, but Spurrier plans to get Ladell Betts into the game early. Betts will be making his preseason debut after recovering from a sprained elbow. … The Redskins will make their first roster cuts Tuesday. The team is allowed to keep 65 players, plus anyone with an NFL Europe exemption.

Staff writer Jody Foldesy contributed to this report.

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