Jim McMahon will be out of action for at least three weeks with sprained ligaments in his right knee, but the Philadelphia Eagles quarterback won't be placed on injured reserve.
"We look for him to be back in three to four weeks," Eagles coach Rich Kotite said yesterday. "That's all we know at this point."
McMahon's right knee collapsed under him in the first quarter of Monday night's 23-0 loss to the Washington Redskins. He was replaced by Pat Ryan.
"He's very tough, a resilient guy," Kotite said. "But maybe the better guess is four weeks. We'll find out. I'm not putting him on injured reserve."
Kotite said Ryan and rookie Brad Goebel would work equally in practice this week and he would decide on the starter against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at the end of the week.
He also said he'd try out a couple of quarterbacks today but expressed doubt that anyone signed could be ready to play by Sunday.
Among those available are John Fourcade, Chuck Long, Steve Pelluer, Anthony Dilweg, Gary Hogeboom and Tony Eason.
Kotite dismissed the possibility of making a deal for a quarterback on another team's roster.
"People are not going to give up a solid backup. They fear what happened to us," he said.
* Nine investors, including Jeb Bush, a son of President Bush, submitted Touchdown Jacksonville!'s application for an NFL expansion franchise.
The group, with a net worth of about $500 million, dropped its nationwide search for a lead investor and decided to stay with prominent Florida businessmen, The Florida Times-Union reported.
Tom Petway, chairman and president of TD Jax, will be the general partner of the new group. Under league rules, he must pay 30 percent of the franchise fee and control 51 percent of the voting stock.
The NFL plans to expand by two teams for the 1994 season, with the franchises to be awarded no later than the fall of 1992. Eleven cities submitted applications for teams last month.
Petway, a native of Miami, is founder and chairman of Home Builders Insurance Services Inc., and the Prudential Network Realty.
Seven of the nine members live in Jacksonville. Bush lives in Miami.
* An investment group will not meet today's deadline for filing an application and a $100,000 fee to have Hawaii considered for a NFL expansion franchise, according to one of its members.
The five-member group led by California real estate investor Christopher Eberhart could not get up enough money, attorney Randall Yee said Monday night.
* PATRIOTS: The NFL says it might become a financial partner in a $160 million domed stadium to keep the club in New England, Massachusetts Gov. Bruce G. Sundlun said.
Sundlun said he envisioned a stadium near the Statehouse and the downtown Convention Center that already is under construction. It would be built over railroad tracks near the Amtrak station so Boston fans would have easy access, he said.
The governor and economic development director Joseph R. Paolino Jr. met with NFL president Neil Austrian and Jay Moyer, the league's executive vice president and counsel, for about an hour Monday.
NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said Sundlun was told the league had no plans to become an equity partner in any stadium.
"We're willing to invest our time in trying to put some of this together and invest some of our relationship with corporate sponsors to buy luxury boxes, that sort of thing," Aiello said.
Paolino stepped in to clarify.
"That's how he [Sundlun] looks at money. If they're able to decrease your debt, he looks at it as money," Paolino said. "If they sell luxury boxes, that's money."
* STEELERS: A magistrate ordered running back Tim Worley to face trial on a charge of drunken driving after officers testified Worley defied their orders.
Worley, 25, faces formal arraignment on the charge Dec. 10. If convicted, he could be suspended for up to four games under the NFL's substance-abuse rules.