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Following latest trends, look for carnage at Lambeau
Latest: Thursday September 28, 2000 01:37 PM
By B. Duane Cross, CNNSI.com
ATLANTA -- Upon further review, the "No Fun League" isn't all that bad.
Compared to Keyshawn Johnson's diarrhea of the mouth (not mention his
uncontrollable middle finger) and Terrell Owens' pathetic midfield displays,
St. Louis' "Duck Down" touchdown celebration was tame! How many news
conferences this week, Key? And kudos to the San Francisco brass for having
the chutzpah to fine and suspend Owens.
Johnson's off-field and Owens' on-field antics were inexcusable -- and
both received just due. The NFL, never one to shy away from pre-game hype,
should be ashamed no one had the common decency to pull Johnson aside and
quell the offensive remarks directed at New York Jets head coach Al Groh and
receiver Wayne Chrebet. Furthermore, the 49ers beat the league to the punch
and disciplined Owens -- if the league even contemplated action.
Hello? Does anyone in New York have a finger on the viewing public's pulse?
Did the NFL learn anything from the Ray Lewis fiasco? Does the XFL have the
NFL on the run -- before the first body slam ... er, kickoff?
Chicago visits Green Bay on Sunday for the 159th time. What is one to expect?
After all, this is the oldest rivalry (if not the most heated) in the NFL,
certainly more so than the five-month spat between Johnson and the Jets, or
the decades-old Dallas-San Francisco feud. The Bears-Packers series dates to
a 20-0 Chicago Staleys victory in 1921.
If recent history holds true, look for carnage along Lombardi Avenue.
| Welcome back |
Any truth to the rumor several season-ticket holders in the Dawg Pound have offered a seat to Art Modell for Sunday's game? Baltimore visits Cleveland, but no word on Modell's travel plans. (He did not attend last season's game at Cleveland.)
| Golden nugget |
San Francisco's last winning streak was a three-game stretch during Weeks 2-4 of last season. The Niners defeated Arizona for their second win during that streak. Looking to start another streak, Frisco plays host to the Cards.
| .500 history |
Dick LeBeau is the third Cincinnati head coach to assume the reigns during the season. Homer Rice replaced Bill Johnson after five games in 1978 and lost his debut. Bruce Coslet replaced Dave Shula after seven games in '96 and won his opener.
| House of horrors |
Seattle visits Kansas City, where the Seahawks are 5-17 all-time. The Chiefs have won 16 of 18 against Seattle at Arrowhead after losing three of the first four games in the series.
| Flattery -- Ravens rookie Jamal Lewis posted the first 100-yard game from the heralded first-round Class of 2000 running backs -- four weeks into the season, and two weeks after sixth-round pick Mike Anderson turned the trick. |
| Flag -- The Bengals' offensive line has allowed 16 sacks in three games. Is it any wonder Akili Smith's QB rating is 41.3, or that RB Corey Dillon is averaging just 2.0 yards per carry? |
| Flattery -- The Packers' Darren Sharper had 10 tackles and intercepted two passes Sunday. The much-maligned DB has been one of the league's early season surprises, but as teammate Antonio Freeman points out, this is a contract year for Sharper. |
| Flag -- Even though he apologized, Chicago QB Cade McNown threw a flag at Bears fans for roughing the passer. He chastised fans for booing, but what has he given them to cheer about? |
| After two consecutive weeks of hearing "We blew it" from the NFL, Pittsburgh
head coach Bill Cowher is climbing the walls. It's bad enough having to watch
the Steelers' defense, but playing the opponent and the officiating crew is
too much to ask.|| |
| Cincinnati is 0-3, has scored seven points and has been shut out in
consecutive games. As a head coach, Dick LeBeau is doing the right thing:
Offensive coordinator Ken Anderson will now call the plays. After all, isn't
that his job?|| |
| With basically an entirely new crew at the skilled positions, it's only a
matter of time before New Orleans' offense finds its stride. If it measures
up to the Saints' defense, St. Louis will have its hands full trying to fend
off the "Who Dats." |
| Atlanta is 2-2 and still within hailing distance of the Rams. But among the
teams with .500 or better records, the Falcons have the largest points scored
/ points allowed differential. Atlanta has scored 85 points while yielding
121, a difference of 36 points. |
| New York Giants at Tennessee (1 p.m. EDT) -- With all the talk about
Washington and Tampa Bay being the preseason NFC favorites, the G-Men fell
through the cracks. "Thunder and Lightning" falls upon the Music City in what
may prove to be a Super Bowl preview.
| Indianapolis at Buffalo (1 p.m. EDT) -- The offensive juggernaut that
pummeled Jacksonville on Monday night takes its show on the road, where the
Bills have been lying in wait. Will the bye week be a blessing or hindrance
for the Bills? Does it matter against "The Triplets"? |
| Tampa Bay at Washington (4:15 p.m. EDT) -- While the Wrinkledskins were
brought down to earth several weeks ago, the Bucs' crash-landing was none
less spectacular. What promises to be a big-time game will come down to
Washington's "O" against Tampa Bay's "D". |
| New England at Denver (4:15 p.m. EDT) -- Without a doubt, Pats-Broncos is
the dog of the day, with respect to the Miami-Cincinnati matchup. This game
doesn't even offer the allure of seeing what a first-game head coach will do;
it's just more ineptness by the Patriots. |
| Athletes saying "God helped me do this," or "God helped me do that" has
become commonplace. But using God to justify tacky on-field theatrics ... well,
Terrell Owens took showmanship to a new level Tuesday. Saying he was "praying
to God" during his touchdown antics in Dallas, Owens should remember that
Deion Sanders also played on the star-studded Texas Stadium turf, but never
acted like he'd been overtaken by the spirit during a TD celebration. And
Deion has God's ear. Just ask Him while writing that $24,294 check to cover
your one-game fine. |
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