Drawing a bead on Dunigan


October 29, 1994|By Ken Murray | Ken Murray,Sun Staff Writer

Baltimore rush end Elfrid Payton knows first-hand about Matt Dunigan's competitive spirit.

"He's got a great mentality, a linebacker's mentality," said Payton, who went to Grey Cups each of the previous two years with Dunigan and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. "I'd go to war with him any day."

Payton will be chasing Dunigan, not joining him, when Baltimore challenges Winnipeg for the CFL Eastern Division title today at Memorial Stadium. The game could hinge on the success or failure of Payton and O. J. Brigance in reaching the Bombers' quarterback.

"If you give Matt time, he'll pick you apart," Payton said. "It's a must that we get there."

Out seven weeks with strained knee ligaments, Dunigan won both starts after returning. Last week he led the Bombers from a 27-point deficit (twice) to beat the Hamilton Tiger-Cats, 46-44.

Dunigan, who threw for a record 713 yards earlier in the season, is tied with Calgary's Doug Flutie in the league's passing-efficiency ratings. He's thrown 25 touchdown passes and 12 interceptions.

Waking up the echoes

Memorial Stadium's last playoff game was on Dec. 24, 1977. A crowd of 60,763 watched the Colts lose to the Oakland Raiders, 37-31, in two overtimes when Kenny Stabler threw a 10-yard touchdown pass to Dave Casper. Bruce Laird, who will work on the WJFK radio team today, intercepted two passes for the Colts, returning one for a 61-yard touchdown.

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