Game vs. Packers might be last on `MNF' for Sanders

RAVENS NOTEBOOK

Ravens notebook

December 17, 2005|By BRENT JONES | BRENT JONES,SUN REPORTER

As speculation continues that this will be Green Bay Packers quarterback Brett Favre's final appearance on Monday Night Football, another all-but-certain Hall of Fame player is expected to take his farewell bow, too.

Ravens nickel back Deion Sanders will likely play for the last time on the regular-season's biggest stage when the Ravens host Green Bay. It will be the first time Sanders has played on Monday night since coming out of retirement before last season.

Sanders says he has nothing special planned, having passed the point in his 14-year career where he feels the need for theatrics with the NFL community watching.

"It means the opportunity to get a win," Sanders said. "I'm far past the place where I'm looking for stages. I'm not looking for another stage. I've been past that for years. We need a win, we need to finish strong and certain guys need to be evaluated for next season."

Sanders is not one of those guys. Although he declined to say what he has decided, Sanders did not deny that this will be his final season.

"Of course I have [made a decision], but I won't tell you," Sanders said.

Sanders had five interceptions in 12 games on Monday nights during his heyday with the Dallas Cowboys (1995-1999). Sanders returned an interception and punt return for touchdowns in the same game in 1998.

"I'm not one on history," Sanders said. "I'm one on making plays. If the opportunity presents itself, hopefully, I will be able to do it. With a guy like Brett Favre, hopefully, it should present itself."

It has before. Sanders intercepted Favre in Green Bay and returned it 50 yards for a touchdown in November 1997. Such game-changing plays have been absent from him this year - Sanders has just one interception - but Ravens coach Brian Billick says Sanders' effect on other players has been immeasurable.

"It's been a joy for me to be around a professional like that, to see a guy at this stage in his career prepare the way he does and pass that onto people around him," Billick said. "It is special, and our guys are better for it."

J. Lewis now probable

Running back Jamal Lewis (hand) and guard Jason Brown (ankle) were upgraded from questionable to probable. End Tony Weaver (back) did not practice yesterday and remains questionable.

Weaver has missed the past two games, though the Ravens are optimistic he will return against the Packers.

Center Mike Flynn (ankle) was added to the injury report as probable.

A snap for Katula

A number of Packers' fans are expected to show up at M&T Bank Stadium on Monday night, including a contingent of Ravens long snapper Matt Katula's family and friends.

Katula grew up in nearby Brookfield, Wis., and may have 25 people in the stands watching him play.

"I think they will be wearing purple shirts and then cheese heads," said Katula, a rookie out of Wisconsin. "Maybe they will have a sign, too. But really, I think they just want to get out there and see a great game on Monday Night Football."

Katula beat out Joe Maese in the preseason and has nine special teams tackles, sixth on the team. More importantly, he has yet to mess up a snap.

"I don't want [announcer] John Madden to say anything about me other than No. 70. I just snap the ball back there, so he doesn't even need to know my name," Katula said.

brent.jones@baltsun.com

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