Two-minute drill

October 05, 1999|By Ken Murray

Questions

What's up with Titans RB Eddie George? He's averaging 2.9 yards a carry this season, gained only 26 yards on 15 carries against the 49ers, and has almost as many yards receiving (181) as rushing (222).

Are the unbeaten Rams for real? We'll know shortly. They play San Francisco on Sunday and are 1-17 against the 49ers this decade with 17 straight losses.

What has happened to Cardinals QB Jake Plummer? In four games, he's completing 48.9 percent of his passes with only two touchdowns and 12 interceptions. Not surprisingly, Arizona has lost three of the four.

Answers

Jets coach Bill Parcells may not always be able to identify a great quarterback (see Scott Brunner and Glenn Foley), but he sure can coach them up (see Vinny Testaverde). Much-maligned Rick Mirer (17-for-28, 242 yards, two TDs, two interceptions) was more than adequate in beating the Broncos for his first win as a starter since 1996.

The Browns are hero-makers. Last week it was Ravens QB Stoney Case. This week it was Patriots WR Terry Glenn, who had 13 catches for 214 yards, including a game-breaking 54-yard touchdown.

There is a correlation between running the ball and winning, as Week 4 showed again. Teams that ran the ball at least 30 times on Sunday went 8-3, chewing up clock and yardage.

Issues

The early problems of at least two teams -- the Broncos and Cardinals -- may be in part traceable to the loss of veteran leadership in the off-season. Obviously, Denver misses John Elway's presence and talent on offense, but it's also missing the aggressive attitude that safety Steve Atwater brought to the defense -- coach Mike Shanahan has complained of complacency this season. Atwater left Denver after 10 years because of salary-cap considerations and the opinion he was slowing down.

The Cardinals had a tumultuous off-season where, because of the cap, they let OT Lomas Brown, FB Larry Centers and LB Jamir Miller leave in free agency. They were three key leaders. The first two may have something to do with Plummer's malaise.

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