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Stambaugh Heading Back to NFL

April 25, 2002 - arenafootball2 (af2) - New Haven Ninjas News Release

New Haven, Conn. - New Haven Ninja quarterback Phil Stambaugh is heading back to the National Football League when he signs with the New York Giants this weekend. The Giants have unofficially agreed to terms with Stambaugh, who will compete for the team's number three spot.

"I'm happy this opportunity came up," said Stambaugh on the move. "My agent and the fact I was playing with the Ninjas both helped me get to this point."

All along it was Stambaugh's goal to return to the NFL, and he joined the Ninjas with in mind. By playing with the arenafootball2T team, Stambaugh was able to keep in shape and have a solid tryout. The Giants brought him in for a tryout Thursday, April 18, and contacted him over this past weekend. He will participate this weekend in the Giants' rookie-free agent minicamp.

"This is what playing Arena Football is all about," said Head Coach Rick Buffington. "The goal is to move up, whether it's from af2T to Arena FootballT or to the NFL or CFL. I'm happy for Phil because I knew this is what his goal was from the start."

Stambaugh has been in three NFL camps, having been signed as a rookie free agent with the Buffalo Bills. After being cut by the Bills, Stambaugh was signed by the New Orleans Saints who allocated him to NFL Europe, where he threw for 1,166 yards in the 10-game season for the Fire. Upon his return to the States, he was released by the Saints, but claimed off waivers by the Jacksonville Jaguars to be the team's third quarterback.

The 6-3 signal caller rewrote the Patriot League record books while at Lehigh, setting career marks for completion percentage (63.71%), yards (9,669), and touchdowns (78). The two-time All-ECAC honoree earned the Patriot League's Player of the Year award in 1998.

The loss of Stambaugh moves backup quarterback Jarrod Rouanzoin into the starting role this Saturday when the Ninjas host Connecticut rival, the Mohegan Wolves at the New Haven Coliseum at 7 pm.

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