The Redskins yesterday reached the 45-man NFL regular-season roster limit by releasing slump-ridden kick snapper Ted Fritsch, backup quarterback Kim McQuilken, running back and kickoff returner Bobby Hammond and linebackers Don Hover and Kevin Turner.
Defensive end Mat Mendenhall, the Redskins' second round draft pick, who has never fully recovered from a ruptured appendix a year ago, was put on the injured reserve list and will be outfor the season.
The team then put defensive end Joe Jones (sprained ankle) and rookie tackle Jerry Scanlan (injured knee) onthe regular season injured reserve list. Jones and Scanlan can be activated without going through waivers after four weeks.
With those two roster spots available, the Redskins re-signed tight end Grady Richardson -- Don Warren and Phil DuBois, the only other tight ends on the roster are hurt -- and signed rookie center Jeff Bostic to take Fritsch's place as the snapper on puntsand field goals.
Coach Jack Pardee said the team's final cutdown left it "vulnerable at some spots, but we felt it was a gamble we had to take."
Richardson, who played three games with the Redskins last season, was released by the team just last week.
Bostic, from Clemson, was cut by theEagles last week. He said yesterday he hasn't made a bad snap since he started centering as a sophomore in high school.
As expected, cornerback Lemar Parrish ended his six-day walkout and was back with the team yesterday. He was returned to the 45-man list from a special left-camp category.
Yesterday's moves leave the Redskinswith only two quarterbacks, five running backs, two defensive ends and five linebackers on the active roster.
Normally, Pardee would like to carrythree quarterbacks, six running backs, three defensive ends and seven linebackers.
Dalas Hickman plays both defensive end and linebacker, which will help provide depth at both positions but still leaves the Redskins vulnerable to injury.
Pardee also said defensive tackle Diron Talbert would have to play some defensive end, as well.
There are 10 new players on the roster, four of them rookies: running back Rickey Claitt, wide receiver Zion McKinney, Bostic and Art Monk, the No. 1 draft choice from Syracuse. Monk is the only 1980 Redskin draft choice still active.
Some of yesterday's moves were necessiatated by injuries, others by the fact that next Monday night's season-opening game against the Dallas Cowboys is not regarded as just another opener. Once the Redskins have played that game and the injured have healed, the roster imbalance probably will be corrected through more moves.
"We had to completely change our thinking on two spots after last Friday's game," Pardee said, referring to the injuries to tight ends Warren and DuBois and the continuing errant snapsof Fritsch.
The release of Fritsch, a special teams leader and originator of the term Wild Bunch to describe the special teams, was particularly tough for Pardee, the coach said, "but I had no choice.
"What a shame," Pardee added, lowering his head and shaking it. "The best snapper in the league couldn't hit the side of a barn. We tried to let him work his way out of the problem and it didn't happen. When couldn't gamble on him with the importance of Monday night's game. The way things are going, I'm sure it was a risk Ted wouldn't take either if he was a coach."
The release of McQuilken gives the backup quarterback job to Mike Kruczek, who threw only six passes in the preseason and didn't play at all against Tampa Bay.
"It's tough enough to get two quarterbacks the work they need in practice," Pardee said. "With three, Mike didn't get a lot of work, but with two, he'll have a chance to develop.
"I pray it doesn't happen, but if Joe (Theismann) goes down with an injury, the plays we would have to use are more suited to Mike."
Pardee added that it is possible thatMcQuilken could be brought back.
"They didn't make me any promises," McQuilken, a two-year Redskin, said, "but coming back isn't something I'll count on.
"I know cutting me was a move they didn't really want to make, but because of injuries, roster limitations and the situation they had to do it. It didn't come as a surprise.
"I thought I did well in the preseason, but I don't think it came down to performance problem anyway, but a roster space problem."
Of the two reserve quarterbacks, McQuilken has a better chance of clearing waivers than Kruczek, who was obtained during training camp from Pittsburgh for a fourth-round draft choice in 1981. The Redskins also did not want to have wasted that draft pick by waiving Kruczek, nor were they impressed by McQuilken's three-for-eight performance against Tampa Bay Friday.
Hammond was the No. 1 kickoff returner in the preseason, but he, like McQuilken, was caught in the numbers game.
"Either a defensive back or an offensive back had to go." Pardee said. "We're short now with only five runningbacks, but we'll have to get by."
Punt returner and defensive back Mike Nelms, who didn't return a single kickoff in the preseason, is apparently the new kickoff return man.
"He'll return them for now, at least," Pardee said. "If you can return punts, you can return kickoffs."
Pardee said the decision came down tokeeping either Hammond or Claitt. Claitt, the leading preseason rusher, won. "He's just more valuable to us right now than Hammond," the coach said.
Pardee added that Mendenhaill would benefit from a year's work on injured reserve.
"The first thing we will do is a complete physical workup on him to find out what hurts his stamina so much," Pardee said. "Once he is okay physically, so he isn't just trying to survive practices, then we can work on making him better as a player."
The Redskins had considered the drafting of Mendenhall as a coup, but stamina problems hindered him throughouttraining camp.