- The Washington Times - Monday, November 24, 2003

MIAMI — Exit Patrick Ramsey, enter Tim Hasselbeck.

Ramsey, the Redskins’ No.1 quarterback since last December, overcame the pain in his injured right foot to start last night but his second series ended with a familiar scene: Ramsey being helped to the sideline in pain after being sacked for the 30th time this season.

Although Ramsey seemed to have re-injured the foot as well as his right shoulder, the report from the Washington bench was he was being held out of the game because he was woozy, but not with a concussion.

Hasselbeck, whose prior NFL experience consisted of three passes in the Nov.2 loss at Dallas and didn’t join the Redskins until Oct.22, looked supremely confident after he took over for Ramsey on the second series.

Hasselbeck engineered an 11-play, 43-yard drive which ended with John Hall’s 31-yard field goal that cut Miami’s lead to 7-6. The former Boston College quarterback, who was 3-for-6 for 25 yards on that first drive, topped that performance with his second series. He completed all four of his passes for 59 yards including a gorgeous 37-yard touchdown strike to wideout Laveranues Coles against Dolphins Pro Bowl cornerback Patrick Surtain.

The Redskins reached Dolphins’ territory for a fourth time on Hasselbeck’s third series on consecutive throws to halfback John Simon and receiver Patrick Johnson. Then on second-and-9 from the Miami 16, Hasselbeck showed good feet and took off and ran for 11 yards. He was 10-for-14 for 106 yards in the first half as the underdog Redskins built a surprising 20-10 lead against the league’s top-rated scoring defense which was averaging 14.7 points going into the game.

Ramsey, whose right foot was in a walking boot as late as yesterday morning at the team hotel in order to protect the badly bruised bone, looked fine on his first four passes. He even stepped up to avoid the rush on one of them. But on his fifth pass with 8:57 left in the first quarter, Ramsey was tossed to the ground by Dolphins Pro Bowl defensive end Jason Taylor at the Miami 12. As the quarterback was going down, Taylor appeared to step on his right foot and the other defensive end, Jay Williams, helped throw Ramsey down on his right shoulder. Ramsey, who was 1-for-4 for seven yards to that point, was quickly attended to by the Redskins’ medical staff who eventually helped him to the sideline.

Ramsey missed almost all of last week’s practice time with the foot problem which he first suffered in training camp and then reaggravated the past two games against Seattle and Carolina.

Last night, Ramsey completed his first pass to Coles over the middle for a 7-yard gain on third-and-5. Ramsey badly missed Trung Canidate on a screen on the next play and overthrew Darnerien McCants from the shotgun on third down as Washington’s first series ended at the Miami 49 after gaining only 15 yards.

The Redskins’ only alternative to starting the ailing Ramsey was Hasselbeck, who was signed when experienced backup Rob Johnson was cut after never meshing with coach Steve Spurrier or the Fun ‘n’ Gun offense. The only other quarterback in the organization is rookie Gibran Hamdan, who has been on the practice squad all season.

Before last night, the 25-year-old Hasselbeck was more famous for his family than his quarterbacking. He is the brother of Seattle starting quarterback Matt Hasselbeck, the son of former NFL tight end Don Hasselbeck and the husband of former “Survivor 2” contestant Elisabeth Filarski.

The 6-foot-1, 211-pound Hasselbeck, signed as an undrafted rookie by Buffalo in 2001, was cut before training camp and then picked up and released by Baltimore. After playing in NFL Europe the next spring, Hasselbeck was signed by Philadelphia. He got into two games as a holder but was waived this summer.


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