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Roster Evaluation Begins

Head coach Joe Gibbs met with his assistant coaches and the personnel department Thursday afternoon and evening at Redskin Park to begin the evaluation of the current roster.

The process is expected to take the better part of the next few days. Next week, most of the staff is headed to Mobile, Ala., to evaluate collegiate players in advance of the Senior Bowl on Saturday, Jan. 24.

"It was our first day of looking at the film," Gibbs said on Thursday evening. "I think it went well. The idea was that we'd sit down and start discussing all the positions and what we're looking for as coaches.

"We had a great exchange. At different times, we started talking everything over and we started looking at our personnel."

Gibbs said he watched more game film of quarterback Patrick Ramsey on Thursday and again came away impressed. The two met for the first time on Wednesday and had a brief discussion about Ramsey's off-season rehabilitation and Gibbs' offense, among other things.

"We've been looking at film in here and I was impressed with Patrick," Gibbs said. "He seems like a sharp guy. We talked about things [on Wednesday]--his off-season program, getting his [injured right foot] out of the cast and getting to a point where he can get going again. I think he's an impressive young guy. It's going to be fun working with him."

Ramsey spent part of Thursday afternoon at Redskin Park rehabbing his right foot. He had surgery on the foot in mid-December to repair a bone bruise, the result of an old injury that flared up during the 2003 season. He has been wearing a protective boot on the foot after having the cast removed recently.

Ramsey said his rehab is in the beginning stages. He is working on strengthening his leg, putting ice packs and heating pads on the foot and undergoing massage therapy.

"I'll probably be able to jog around by early March--maybe a little bit earlier," he said.

Ramsey said he was eager to delve into Gibbs' offense and learn the basics so that he can get a head-start prior to off-season mini-camps and quarterback clinics.

"I know Coach Gibbs is very, very busy right now, so whenever he gets the opportunity, I'd love to just get started and learn basic things so that I have a knowledge of how his offense runs," Ramsey said. "We'll get to know each other a lot better I'm sure over the upcoming months."

Regarding his coaching staff, Gibbs said he was still working to attain several more assistants.

He has announced that Joe Bugel will serve as assistant head coach and former Buffalo head coach Gregg Williams will serve as the defensive coordinator.

Three longtime Gibbs coaching associates--Ernie Zampese, Don Breaux and Jack Burns--will serve on the offensive staff. Zampese worked with Gibbs when both were assistants in San Diego and Breaux and Burns coached for Gibbs in Washington.

Their job titles have yet to be decided, though, mostly because the breadth of experience among Zampese, Breaux and Burns is so extensive that they could oversee several positions.

"We have great flexibility on the offensive side--although I want Don to have some freedom there," Gibbs said. "With Ernie doing some of the things he's going to do for us, I want he and Don to work together on some projects.

"I think giving Don more freedom--he may have the freedom to walk out of practice and do some other stuff--is one of the key ingredients here. So we're probably going to bring in someone else to coach the running backs and work with him."

In addition, Gibbs' son Coy will also be on staff, possibly in an offensive assistant/quality control role.

Gibbs has said he wants to wait until the entire staff has been assembled before formally announcing any other coaching hires and official titles other than Bugel and Williams. The NFL's hiring procedures have slowed the process down as he attempts to recruit coaches from other teams, he explained.

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