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Outlook not bright for 'Skins

July 03, 2005

OK, so it's late June and all the talk is about baseball, the success of the Orioles and the upcoming midsummer classic. Yet, as big a baseball fan as I am, I cannot wait for football season to come around. I am, and have been my entire life, a diehard Redskins fan. I'm usually the optimistic fan, every year knowing that there was a chance that the 'Skins would go to the Super Bowl. However, over the last couple years my optimism started to vanish.

Then came last year when owner Dan Snyder hired Joe Gibbs. Being only 21, my memory of Gibbs is sparse, yet everything I remember about him is great. However I have to say that my optimism has dwindled this year.

Last year, it was so hard to watch Mark Brunell throw like a high school quarterback, only to be relieved by the highly overrated Patrick Ramsey. Many Redskins fans consider Ramsey to be the future of the club. If this is true, I'll just stick to college football and watch more talented quarterbacks play.

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Why Ramsey was ever drafted in the first place is still a wonder to me. Everybody tells me the same thing, Ramsey broke the Tulane career passing record. Honestly, I couldn't care less, especially since those same people fail to mention that he also broke the career interception record at that school. Timmy Chang of Hawaii set the NCAA career passing yards record - and the interception record - yet wasn't taken in this year's NFL Draft? The only explanation is that Steve Spurrier is not coaching in the NFL anymore, because only he would be so bold to pick a guy like Timmy Chang - like he did Ramsey.

Ramsey has a throwing arm, there is no doubt about that. The man can throw the ball down the field. Unfortunately, he tends to throw the ball down the field to open spaces or to the other team. His decision making keeps me scratching my head. Losing Lavernaeus Coles will be tough, but the addition of Santana Moss should help. Clinton Portis should be able to have another good year as long as the offensive line stays healthy.

The Redskins defense should be good because of coordinator Gregg Williams, but not as good as last year. Hopefully, a healthy Lavar Arrington can actually contribute this year and Sean Taylor can stay out of trouble.

The fate of the team rests on one man, and that man is Joe Gibbs. He has the uncanny ability to adjust and learn quickly. Hopefully he learned enough from the atrocity that was last season. Before he came along I said it was impossible for Ramsey to go to the Super Bowl, but under a genius like Gibbs, anything is possible.




This week's guest columnist, Eric Ware, is a resident of Hagerstown. Comments on his column can be sent to sports@herald-mail.com

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