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Anthony Armstrong has shown the Redskins he has good speed and good hands.
Doug Kapustin/ASSOCIATED PRESS
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Armstrong recalled his stint with them yesterday with a hint of disbelief in his voice four years after the fact.
The Roughnecks play in the Ector County Coliseum, which is also home to the Odessa Jackalopes--hence "The Jack Shack"--of the Central Hockey League. Because the Roughnecks began practice while hockey was still in season, club organizers laid the 50-yard Astroturf football field in the parking lot of the arena.
"Cars would drive by honking," Armstrong said. "If you missed a pass, the ball would be in the streets. It was pretty crazy."
Armstrong showed off a scar on one hand where a piece of gravel had been removed.
"We had an overly excited linebacker knocking people down," he said.
He played in 13 games that season and scored 22 touchdowns. He earned $200 per game.
a BREAK, AND THEN A CUT
The following year, Armstrong made the big jump to Dallas. The Desperados, that is.
He got their attention by running a 4.25-second 40-yard dash at an Arena Football League tryout. The Falcons weren't interested in him anymore, so he figured this was the next step.
He began 2007 on the Desperados' practice squad. He eventually made the active roster, but he injured his hamstring and was placed on injured reserve. Meanwhile, he got a job selling jewelry to pay the bills. He would report to work after practice.
He earned his break with a successful 2008 season. The Miami Dolphins tried him out just before training camp and gave him a roster spot for the summer.
In a cruel twist about a month later, though, Armstrong thought on cut day that he made the team.
"Nobody called me and said I was cut," he said. "I thought, 'I guess I made it.' I picked up my playbook for the week playing against the Jets, and then they were like, 'We're gonna cut you, but we're gonna put you on practice squad.'"
That was as close as Armstrong got until now. After the Dolphins cut him last summer, Redskins director of pro personnel Morocco Brown signed Armstrong to Washington's practice squad in later October.
REDSKINS AT JETSWHEN: Tomorrow, 7 p.m. WHERE: New Meadowlands Stadium, East Rutherford, N.J. TV: Comcast SportsNet, Channel 4 RADIO: WGRQ-FM 95.9