The Metrodome's artificial turf is a fast...

MINNEAPOLIS --

January 23, 1992|By Ken Murray

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Metrodome's artificial turf is a fast track made to order for the big-play makers from the Bills and Redskins. The two offenses have virtual matching parts:

The Bills have slippery running back Thurman Thomas and the Redskins have the quicksilver Ricky Ervins. The Bills have a dangerous receiving trio of Andre Reed, James Lofton and Don Beebe, and the Redskins counter with The Posse -- Gary Clark, Art Monk and Ricky Sanders. The Bills have quarterback Jim Kelly, who led the AFC with a rating of 97.6, and the Redskins have Mark Rypien, who was second in the NFC with a rating of 97.9.

Buffalo can't wait to get on the Metrodome rug with its no-huddle offense and the big strike capability of Kelly. But the Redskins may have a key component for Sunday's game in Ervins, the 5-foot-7 dynamo who gained 4.7 yards per rush while working as Earnest Byner's caddy.

Clark is the Redskins' receiver the Bills will find toughest to contain. The Redskins can probably minimize the damage of Reed and Lofton. But they'll need help working against Don Beebe (12.9 per catch, six TDs).

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