- The Washington Times - Monday, October 27, 2003

Danny Wuerffel won’t be rejoining the Washington Redskins anytime soon.

Sources close to Wuerffel said yesterday that the out-of-work quarterback doesn’t intend to accept the Redskins’ offer to return and back up Patrick Ramsey. And coach Steve Spurrier, who made the offer to Wuerffel personally last week, said he believes the former Heisman Trophy winner is contemplating retiring from football altogether.

Spurrier called Wuerffel last week and offered him a chance to re-sign with Washington after the team released veteran backup Rob Johnson. While Wuerffel, who has been in New Orleans the last two months doing ministry work and taking care of his pregnant wife, Jessica, was contemplating the offer, the Redskins signed journeyman quarterback Tim Hasselbeck to fill the void.

The details of Washington’s offer to Wuerffel remain unclear, but Spurrier suggested yesterday that his longtime protege isn’t interested in returning and is thinking about life after football.

“There was a call made to see if there was any interest,” Spurrier said. “That’s about where I want to leave it right now. … The feeling is that Danny’s sort of said, ‘Hey, I’ve had enough of that football,’ and wants to concentrate on his ministry work in New Orleans. I think that’s pretty much where he is right now.”

Sources close to Wuerffel, who spent all of last season and this preseason with the Redskins, said the quarterback isn’t ready to retire but isn’t going to take Washington up on its current offer.

That leaves the Redskins with Hasselbeck, who was signed only five days ago, and rookie Gibran Hamdan, who has been on the practice squad all season, as their only backup quarterbacks. Ramsey did not finish either of Washington’s last two games.

Spurrier has not decided who will be his No.2 quarterback Sunday in Dallas. Hasselbeck, who has never taken a snap in an NFL game, has been studying the Fun ‘n’ Gun offense and could become proficient enough to back up Ramsey this week. If not, the club could sign Hamdan, its seventh-round draft pick, off the practice squad.

Canidate’s status uncertain

Though Trung Canidate said yesterday he is optimistic he can return this week from a high ankle sprain, Spurrier lumped the starting running back among the injured players he said are doubtful for Sunday’s game.

“I would say right now doubtful,” Spurrier said of Canidate, who missed the Redskins’ last game at Buffalo. “But he’s going to try to do some running this week.

Canidate had a more positive outlook, saying he still hopes to play Sunday, though he hasn’t fully tested his ankle.

“I’ve just got to do some more cutting and see how it all comes together,” he said.

If Canidate is unavailable, the Redskins would be dangerously thin at running back. Ladell Betts, who started in place of Canidate in Buffalo, has a fractured right forearm and will not be ready to play this week. (Betts is scheduled to have his arm X-rayed again today to see how it is progressing.)

The only other true halfback on Washington’s roster is undrafted rookie Sultan McCullough. Spurrier, however, yesterday said he likely would split the workload between scatback Chad Morton and fullback Rock Cartwright if his top two backs can’t play.

Along with Canidate and Betts, Spurrier listed cornerback Fred Smoot (bruised sternum) and guard Dave Fiore (knee surgery) as doubtful.

Nose tackle Jermaine Haley (fractured thumb) has been practicing with a cast and hopes to play Sunday after sitting out the last game.

Cornerback Rashad Bauman has a sprained left ankle and was walking around Redskin Park yesterday in a protective boot.

Extra points

The Redskins’ coaching staff has received reports from consultants Joe Bugel and Foge Fazio, who were both asked last week to review game tapes and offer suggestions. Spurrier said he talked with Bugel at length on the phone but did not reveal details of the legendary Redskins offensive line coach’s assessments. …

The Redskins shuffled backup offensive linemen, releasing Mitch White and re-signing Brad Bedell one week after making the exact opposite roster moves.

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