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Doing their thing at FedEx


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By Mark Maske

Washington Post Staff Writer

Wednesday, June 12, 2002; Page D5

Coach Steve Spurrier took the Washington Redskins on a field trip yesterday. Wanting his players and assistant coaches who – like him – are new to the Redskins to get a feel for FedEx Field, Spurrier put the team on four buses, braved Beltway traffic and conducted the second of the day's two practices at the club's stadium in Landover.

"We're trying to get a little comfortable with our house," Spurrier said. "We always pitched it around at the stadium at the colleges I worked at. At some point, you have to get off your practice field and play where you play your real games. . . . I'd been here before, but a lot of our assistants and a lot of our players hadn't been here."

The Redskins haven't had much of a home-field advantage in recent years, compiling an 8-8 record at FedEx Field over the past two seasons – the same as their record on the road. Spurrier said he intends to change that. And holding an occasional practice at the stadium will continue to be part of the team's routine even into the season, he said.

"We'll get here as often as we can," Spurrier said. "We're going to try to make FedEx Field the loudest stadium in the NFL, and to do that, we have to put on a show. We have to do our part first."

The outing came on the second day of a three-day minicamp that is scheduled to wrap up with a morning practice today at Redskins Park. Between three minicamps and three weeks of voluntary coaching sessions, the Redskins will have 26 practices this offseason before they report to training camp in Carlisle, Pa., on July 22.

"I think it just broke up the monotony, period," linebacker LaVar Arrington said. "It took me back to college because that's what you do in college. I don't know if he's still acting as a college coach or it's just how he feels, but I think it's good for the younger guys. I was looking for that game-day smell. It wasn't quite the same."

The session was closed to the public, and the stands were empty as the Redskins ran through drills for slightly more than an hour on the steamy afternoon. The players hurried back onto buses afterward to try to beat rush-hour traffic back to the team's training facility in Ashburn, but the Redskins had one advantage over frustrated commuters – a police escort.

Rookie quarterback Patrick Ramsey, the Redskins' first-round draft choice, said he imagined as he stepped on the field that a game-day atmosphere at FedEx Field would feel much like that when his school, Tulane, played LSU in front of a packed house at the Superdome in New Orleans.

"This place is awesome," Ramsey said. "You can't ask for a better place to play football."

Spurrier's offense has looked smoother on the practice field in recent weeks after a rugged beginning, with his players beginning to gain a better understanding of what they're supposed to be doing. But college football's most renowned offensive wizard during his tenure at the University of Florida acknowledged that the rest of the NFL probably isn't cowering at this point.

"Ain't nobody afraid of us yet," Spurrier said. "We need to do it on the field before anyone is afraid of the Redskin offense."

Redskins Notes: Agent Steve Zucker said he received a contract proposal from the Cincinnati Bengals for free agent wide receiver Michael Westbrook, and outlined the parameters of a counterproposal to the Bengals. Westbrook is discussing possible visits with other teams, Zucker said. Echoing sentiments expressed by Westbrook last week, the agent indicated that he does not expect Westbrook to re-sign with the Redskins. "I don't think there's much chance of anything going on with the Redskins," Zucker said. . . . The Redskins have remained in contact with agent Jack Reale this week about free agent defensive end Marco Coleman, and continue to hope to sign free agent defensive tackle Sam Adams.

Personally I like the idea of holding certain workouts at the stadium. You want these guys to think "This is my house"

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However, i wouldn't want Bufford to feel left out, even if he did only use 1 quote. Sheesh. I like the idea too. If it is your house, may want to live in it a bit more than 1/2 the year. Break it in a little more. make sure everything is in good order. Make it feel a little more like home. Like 8-0 home. :cool:

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