- The Washington Times - Friday, December 5, 2003

What had been assumed for several days was made official yesterday: Washington Redskins quarterback Patrick Ramsey will not play tomorrow against the New York Giants.

Unable to return to the practice field after aggravating his injured right foot in practice Wednesday, Ramsey will be in street clothes at Giants Stadium. Tim Hasselbeck will make his second straight start for the Redskins, with rookie Gibran Hamdan backing up.

“He’s not going to play,” coach Steve Spurrier said of Ramsey. “His foot’s bothering him, and the trainers and doctors are advising him not to play.”

Thus ends another frustrating week for Ramsey, who continues to hold out hope that he can play again this season but is beginning to realize that it may not happen.

“It’s much more frustrating,” he said. “I went out there [Wednesday] and I felt pretty decent. I mean, I’m not going to be able to go out there without it hurting. But it didn’t feel like it was affecting my ability to throw as much as I expected it to. [Now] it’s awfully sore again.”

Ramsey, who has acknowledged that he will need offseason surgery to repair his fractured foot, will be re-evaluated by doctors Monday. He wants to try practicing again next week but concedes that a decision whether to shut down for the season is drawing closer.

“I want to play, just for experience and to become a better quarterback, but at the same time [the foot is] kind of hindering me,” Ramsey said. “Nobody’s really said that [it would be best to shut down now]. But it’s something that we’re definitely going to consider, maybe on a more serious level, on Monday.”

Hasselbeck, who completed 22 of 42 passes for 231 yards in last Sunday’s loss to New Orleans, prepared all week as though he will start against the Giants in the Meadowlands. He said he was convinced on Wednesday that Ramsey would be ready to return but now is beginning to realize his stint as starting quarterback likely will extend through the final four games.

“I still look at it as week to week,” Hasselbeck said. “But obviously the longer Patrick’s out — and it looks like his foot’s not getting any better — it looks like that surgery they’re talking about could be more of a possibility before the end of the season. Which would mean it would be me the rest of the way.

Injuries and more injuries

Running back/kick returner Chad Morton missed his second straight day of practice with the flu and was downgraded to questionable for tomorrow’s game. Morton also has a sprained ankle but was able to play the last two weeks. If he can’t go tomorrow, Patrick Johnson would take over return duties again.

Spurrier said center Larry Moore, who missed four games with a foot injury, will be back in uniform tomorrow. Moore, though, will back up Lennie Friedman, who has played well since becoming a starter last month.

Short day

With the sloppy conditions at Redskin Park yesterday — about 6 inches of snow fell overnight — the team held only an abbreviated, walkthrough-style session on its turf practice field.

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