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American Football: Feel the rush: Redskins

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Ben

posted on Aug, 22 2004 @ 09:04 AM
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Mark Brunell and Patrick Ramsey looked good in their latest round of quarterback competition, especially when they handed off.

The Washington Redskins ran for 181 yards, controlled the ball for 41 minutes to beat the Miami Dolphins 17-0 Saturday night.

Miami (1-1) made five first downs -- none in the second half -- and totaled just 98 yards. By the second quarter, the offense was drawing boos from the crowd of about 30,000.

Brunell, acquired in an offseason trade to challenge for the starting job, played four series and led touchdown drives of 63 and 43 yards to help the Redskins (2-1) take a 14-0 halftime lead.

"A good night all around," Brunell said. "It was easy for us when we got the running game going."

Incumbent Ramsey led Washington to a score for the first time this preseason, directing a 14-play, 68-yard drive that ended with a field goal to start the second half.

Coach Joe Gibbs was pleased that the offense committed no turnovers after throwing four interceptions in the previous game.

"We made a real correction from last week," Gibbs said.

A.J. Feeley, seeking to supplant Jay Fiedler as the Dolphins' quarterback, led Miami to three first downs before the opening series ended with a fumble by receiver Chris Chambers. The Dolphins, plagued with bad field position, went three-and-out on their next three possessions before Fiedler took over.

"There are a lot of things we need to do differently," Feeley said. "But we have two more games."

For Washington, Clinton Portis and Rock Cartwright scored on 1-yard runs, and Ola Kimrin kicked a 26-yard field goal.

Brunell went 7-for-9 for 79 yards. Ramsey was 3-for-8 for 41 yards.

"Our offensive line did an excellent job," Ramsey said. "They made it easy for us quarterbacks."

Third-team running back Sultan McCullough led the Redskins with 56 yards in 16 carries.

Despite making four changes in the offensive line this week, Miami struggled with pass protection, and the running game also sputtered. Travis Minor, who became the starting running back when Ricky Williams retired, rushed for 15 yards in eight carries and is averaging 1.2 per carry in the first two games

"This was not real good in any area," coach Dave Wannstedt said. "Probably the only good thing tonight was that we didn't get anybody hurt."

Feeley finished 4-for-8 for 36 yards.

"He handled himself well," Wannstedt said. "He didn't force any balls or do anything crazy."

Fiedler went 4-for-9 for 41 yards in two series. One ended with a punt, and the other when Fiedler fumbled a snap on a sneak.

The Dolphins could take consolation that help for the offense is on the way. They sent unsigned Pro Bowl defensive end Adewale Ogunleye to the Chicago Bears on Saturday for former Pro Bowl receiver Marty Booker and a third-round draft choice in 2005.

One of Miami's few highlights was a 49-yard kickoff return by undrafted rookie Fred Russell. Antonio Freeman, signed Monday by the Dolphins, saw action on a handful of plays and made one catch for 19 yards.

Feeley had the Dolphins on the move on the opening series before a jarring tackle by Sean Taylor forced Chambers to fumble. The Redskins recovered at their 37, and Portis scored eight plays later.

Taylor, Washington's top draft choice last April, started for the first time and made three tackles.

"He covers a lot of ground, and he's a big playmaker," Gibbs said.




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