Minicamp Report: Day Two

The weather dried up on Wednesday, yet no one thought it was for the better. After all, a bitter wind blew all day and the temperature, which was supposed to reach 60-degrees, never cracked 40. The wind chill was even worse. Which is why coach Steve Spurrier made the first big change of his career.

After about two minutes Wednesday morning, Spurrier, dressed in shorts again, turned around and headed for the locker room. He emerged in long pants and a heavier coat.

He's no fool.

''It got colder,'' he said, when asked to explain the move by one bundled-up TV reporter. ''That cold north wind came in today. It was definitely a windbreaker long pants day today.''

Ahh, but not everyone is so shaken by the weather. In the morning, offensive linemen Jon Jansen and Ross Tucker both wore only shorts and their short-sleeve jersey.

But Tucker wisened up in the afternoon, wearing a long sleeve shirt underneath his jersey.

Meanwhile, Jansen wasn't affected. When practice resumed in the afternoon, he stayed in short sleeves and shorts.

. . .Spurrier might have the reputation of being a wise-acre coach. But he doesn't offer up zingers all the time. One reporter tried to get him to say something witty about the schedule, which is expected to be announced Thursday. The reporter asked who he'd want to open with: Dallas or two teams in SEC territory, Tennessee and Jacksonville.

''We'll just show up where they tell us to play,'' he said.

. . .The Redskins continued to work on all facets of their passing game. Suffice to say, there will be plenty of three and four receiver sets. Receiver Reidel Anthony continued his up-and-down camp with a few more drops today. The kid to watch: receiver Justin Skaggs. He runs good, hard routes and is tough. He'll be a fun one to watch this summer.

''He's doing well,'' Spurrier said. ''They're all doing well. We may only add one receiver before training camp. This group here is good enough to play.''

But will it be enough to land Skaggs a roster spot? Stay tuned.

. . . Move of the day: receiver Jacquez Green juked inside on corner Fred Smoot, then cut back outside for an open reception. Why? Because Smoot was still on the ground, victimized by the move. The receivers have an advantage over the corners and it's shown by how many times they were open. Too bad the quarterbacks haven't always found them.

. . . Green is listed at 5-foot-10. To which we say: no way. Yours truly is 5-foot-9 and looked down on Green during an interview. Makes you appreciate how tough, and how quick, he must be to play in this league.

. . .Turns out Spurrier has another relative in camp. His son, Scotty, a high school freshman, who has served as a ballboy during the workouts. Mostly, he tosses a ball around with his friend.

. . . By the way, Sage Rosenfels and Danny Wuerffel continued to rotate with the first unit. It's way too early to read into anything.

. . . Spurrier said Champ Bailey or Jacquez Green will return punts, which both did during drills today. Jon Jansen and Mark Fischer also long snapped again today, backing up Ethan Albright. But don't read too much into Jansen doing this job: he's done it during mini-camps and training camps in each of his first three seasons. It's not his best skill.

. . . A new Dan Snyder? It could be. The man who only wore suits altered his fashion style this week. On Tuesday, Snyder wore sweatpants, tennis shoes and a burgundy Redskins jacket. Today, he wore sneakers, slacks, a sweatshirt and a nice-looking Redskins leather jacket. Trust me, people noticed. And the change is good.

. . . Danny Wuerffel didn't realize the controversy he would start by wearing No. 7. Well, guess what. The Redskins message board wasn't the only place that discussed this move. Talk radio did as well. By the way Joe Theismann is the only Redskin ever to wear that number.

''I certainly didn't want to ruffle any feathers,'' Wuerffel told The Journal Newspapers. ''When I first got on the team I asked about it and they said you can't have it so I didn't ask any more questions. But Coach Spurrier and [owner Dan] Snyder talked about it and made some changes. I've got so much repsect for Mr. Theismann and all that he's done. If it becomes a major issue we could re-address it. I'm excited to wear his jersey and hope he's proud fo the way I play in it.''

. . . Spurrier noticed a few bad habits picked up by Wuerffel.

''He was patting the ball and holding it with one hand,'' Spurrier said. ''He was a little better this afternoon. But we're not big believers in patting the ball and holding it in one hand. He's picked up a lot of bad habits over the last three, four years.''

. . . Guard Ross Tucker, the starting right guard for the moment, was heading out tonight to meet ex-teammates Cory Raymer and Stephen Alexander for a farewell dinner.

. . . Marvin Lewis can't wait to unleash linebacker LaVar Arrington on opponents.

''LaVar is a great kid,'' Lewis told The Journal Newspapers, ''and I enjoy his temperament. He's special. He has a great aura about him and this game is not too big for him. That was just how Ray [Lewis] was. They walk in and command their presence and they command a feeling of confidence. That's what LaVar has to have. He has to become the leader of this team.''

And that will mean being a better pass rusher.

''That will be part of his role,'' Lewis told The Journal. ''He has to do it all. If you want to be the MVP of the NFL you've got to demonstrate that you can do everything.''

. . .Overheard on the sidelines: broadcaster Frank Herzog razzing partner Sam Huff that the Redskins were going to force him to learn Japanese, in preparation for the game in Osaka. We can't print Huff's response. But take a guess what the NFL's former toughest guy would say. And you'd be right.

John Keim covers the Redskins for The Journal Newspapers and is a correspondent for Pro Football Weekly.


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