Ramsey, teammates learning

Patrick Ramsey learned something about playing quarterback in the NFL on Sunday. And his teammates learned something about him. Against Tennessee, Ramsey was lauded for his ability to step up in the pocket, keeping his eyes downfield, and waiting until the last second to find a receiver. He usually did.

But after the New Orleans game, the coaches told Ramsey he must learn to sometimes tuck the ball away, picking up five or six yards and avoiding a negative play. Ramsey threw four interceptions and several others should have been picked.

Once, Ramsey stepped up in the pocket, slid to his left and threw back toward the middle. It was nearly intercepted. But it also was a play in which Ramsey should have simply run.

''[The receivers] are better with the ball than I am,'' Ramsey said. ''I'm trying to get the ball to those guys. But when I step up in the pocket and they run 20 yards downfield and there's four guys on two and I have one linebacker 10 yards downfield, then there's five yards I can make up. Especially when they don't expect me to run.

''The moral of the story is I need to learn when to pick my battles. It's hard for the competitor in me, but for the realist, someone who is trying to be a good player, I know that's the right thing to do. I have to have a switch in my brain that says it's time to get off this, get rid of it and get ready for the next down.''

Meanwhile, his teammates were overwhelmed by his ability to stand in the pocket, take a hit and never complain. Instead, Ramsey would always keep his eyes downfield while in the pocket.

''He showed me he has the toughness that it takes to be in the NFL,'' right guard Brenden Stai said. ''He showed that he could withstand hits that some other quarterbacks would have been on the bench for. He's very resilient and that's important, especially at quarterback.

''You can get a guy who all of a sudden his eyes drop because he's looking for the pressure. It's hard to bring those eyes back up. His eyes were always up. That gives you an indication he has a lot of potential to be a good quarterback. For a young guy he's shown a tremendous amount of maturity.''


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