ASHBURN, Va. (AP) --- There he is, the latest craze among the Washington Redskins' backup quarterbacks. Throw a couple of touchdown passes in a preseason game, and suddenly the fans are in love.
''I've got to throw for three next time, right?'' Washington rookie Chase Daniel said with a smile Monday. ''But that's how it is, especially here in the national capital.''
Of course, a quick reality check shows Daniel won't be starting on opening day or anytime soon after that, but his performance in his preseason debut --- 6-for-8 for 58 yards with two touchdown passes in Saturday's 17-13 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers --- gave a significant boost to his employment prospects.
Colt Brennan of the Washington Redskins is 7-for-17 for 85 yards with two interceptions in the preseason.
Undrafted out of Missouri, Daniel entered training camp with long odds to make the Redskins' roster. However, coach Jim Zorn declared Monday that Daniel was now on solid footing in a battle with Colt Brennan for the third-string job.
''The competition right now is for the number-three spot,'' Zorn said. ''And Chase is making a statement about that.''
Brennan, in his second year out of the University of Hawaii, was expected to challenge veteran Todd Collins for the No. 2 spot behind Jason Campbell. Brennan was the star of last year's preseason, but is 7-for-17 for 85 yards with two interceptions this August.
Zorn indicated Brennan --- but not Daniel --- will play in the second half against the New England Patriots on Friday, then both will get a chance in the preseason finale against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
If Daniel wins the third-string job, what's next? A false Internet rumor linking him to Jessica Simpson? That's what happened with Brennan a couple of weeks ago.
''Hopefully not,'' Daniel said. ''My girlfriend wouldn't like that very much.''