Can Falcons shoot down RFK hex? NFL REPORT

September 22, 1994|By Vito Stellino | Vito Stellino,Sun Staff Writer

ASHBURN, VA. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS CONTRIBUTED TO THIS ARTICLE. — ASHBURN, Va. -- The Atlanta Falcons insist they don't believe in jinxes.

They may start believing if they don't beat the Washington Redskins on Sunday.

The Falcons have not won at RFK Stadium in Washington in 10 tries, a fact they're trying to brush off this week.

"Washington just had a better team for most of the years we played them," said wide receiver Andre Rison.

That doesn't explain last year, when the Redskins were 4-12 and one of the victories was a 30-17 verdict over the Falcons in Washington.

New coach June Jones said the task isn't simply winning in Washington, but winning on the road.

"It's really no different going to RFK for us than going to San Francisco or anywhere else," he said. "It's on the road against a good crowd."

The Falcons are 1-2, but Jones has his run-and-shoot offense clicking. It's fourth best in the league and will play against a depleted Washington defense that is ranked 19th.

The Redskins need a fifth defensive back against the run-and-shoot, but the two top candidates, Alvoid Mays (out, knee) and A. J. Johnson (questionable, ankle), are injured.

The Redskins may be forced to use Alan Grant, who was signed Tuesday. Grant played last year in Cincinnati, so he's familiar with the system of defensive coordinator Ron Lynn, who came from the Bengals.

Washington's best hope may be to outscore Atlanta in a shootout. But even its offense isn't in top shape. Running back Reggie Brooks sat out practice yesterday with a sore back and is listed as probable.

"I'm sure it will subside and the pain will go away and I'll be back out there [in practice]," Brooks said, "and hopefully I'll be out there Sunday."

Chiefs' grievance

Defensive tackle Tony Casillas has a new team, but his old team thinks he still owes it something.

The Kansas City Chiefs have filed a grievance against Casillas, seeking unearned interest on his $1.2 million signing bonus and various expenses they incurred in signing him.

Carl Peterson, the Chiefs' president, said the team showed great patience before releasing Casillas after he paid back the signing bonus.

Casillas, who signed with the New York Jets on Tuesday, said he would have been ready to report to the Chiefs if they had given him another week to complete more tests for high blood pressure.

Around the league

Defensive lineman Scott Davis has rejoined the Los Angeles Raiders after a two-week absence, saying he has resolved undisclosed personal matters that led to his leaving the team. . . . Los Angeles Rams coach Chuck Knox announced that Chris Chandler will start at quarterback against the Chiefs in place of Chris Miller, who suffered bruised ribs last week. . . . Arizona Cardinals coach Buddy Ryan hasn't named his starting quarterback for the team's next game Oct. 2 against the Minnesota Vikings, but he appears to be leaning toward Jay Schroeder. Ryan also worked out quarterback Rich Gannon and running back Barry Word but didn't indicate whether he will sign either player.

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