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MIKE PENNER

With Everett at Superdome, History Won't Repeat Itself

October 23, 1994|MIKE PENNER

This week in the NFL . . .

NEW ORLEANS--The much-trumpeted resurgence of Jim Everett continues as the Saints' quarterback throws for 355 yards--315 coming in the fourth quarter, with the Saints trailing, 24-3. Those tiresome critics who used to carp about the Rams never being able to win at the Superdome with Everett on the field are silenced at last.

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LOS ANGELES--Art Shell names Harvey Williams his starting tailback and calls for 23 consecutive belly-dive handoffs to Williams, just to see Jeff Hostetler's reaction. Hostetler keeps his mouth shut and refuses to audibilize, but the rest of the Raider offense revolts, and Shell benches them all. Hostetler returns to the field, snaps the ball to himself, is sacked 31 times in a row and Raiders lose to Falcons, 42-0.

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SAN DIEGO--Anthony Miller slinks back to Jack Murphy Stadium averaging 2.4 catches per game and one victory every six games. Denver Broncos Coach Wade Phillips explains away the sluggish start by calling Miller "too fast" for quarterback John Elway's precision timing throws. In related news, Phillips calls the Bronco defense, which has been allowing nearly 30 points per game, "too strong," "too tall," "too aggressive," "too manly" and "really, much too evolved for this primitive species we call Homo sapiens. "

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DETROIT--Scott Mitchell, winless in his last three starts, gets the call at quarterback for the Detroit Lions. Steve Walsh, undefeated in his last three starts, gets replaced by Erik Kramer at quarterback for the Chicago Bears. Future headline: "Minnesota, Green Bay to Represent NFC Central in 1994 Playoffs."

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SAN FRANCISCO--Deion Sanders returns a Craig Erickson interception 99 yards, tears a groin muscle while high-stepping the final 69 yards, is wheeled into the Candlestick Park interview room and declares, "This is my house. I built this house. I remodeled this house. I wood-paneled this house. I aluminum-sided this house. I shag-carpeted this house. I'm going to sublet this house. My house. MY HOUSE." Just then, another wide receiver swats Sanders in the head, and Jerry Rice heads for the showers, feeling a whole lot better.

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CLEVELAND--David Klingler, 4-23 as an NFL starter and currently the 28th-ranked passer in the league, claims to have the solution for embattled Cincinnati Bengals Coach David Shula. "I want to throw 50 times a game," Klingler is quoted in the local newspapers. "Shut up and hand the ball to Faulk ," Shula tells his quarterback. "But, Coach, we didn't draft Faulk," Klingler replies. "Damn," Shula says. "You're right. Why didn't we?" Klingler shrugs and hands the ball to Steve Broussard. Cleveland beats Cincinnati, 56-6, in front of 60,000 fans pressing transistor radios to their ears, hoping to hear how the Indians are doing in Game 2 of the World Series but getting nothing but white noise.

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TEMPE, Ariz.--Arizona hosts Dallas two weeks after the Cowboys trounced the Cardinals, 38-3, at Texas Stadium. Arizona Coach Buddy Ryan was reported to have called that defeat "a lesson in humility," but a source close to Ryan disputes this: "Buddy doesn't know the meaning of the word 'humility.' If you want to know the truth, it was a lesson in not starting Jay Schroeder at quarterback when Steve Beuerlein is available; in not handing the ball to Larry Centers when Ron Moore is in the same backfield; in not relegating your top 1993 draft pick, Garrison Hearst, to the scout team when your ground game is last in the league; and not saying anything that might possibly annoy Emmitt Smith. This includes 'Hi, Emmitt,' 'Goodby, Emmitt,' and 'Could you please sign this football, Emmitt, once you've finished spiking it, of course?' "

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KANSAS CITY--Having taken advantage of the bye week to mail-order a new right arm, Joe Montana leads the Kansas City Chiefs against the surprising Seattle Seahawks, who are 3-3 and haven't been coached by Chuck Knox for 2 1/2 years.

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EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J.--Bill Cowher and Dan Reeves bring their struggling teams to Giants Stadium for an interconference clash between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the New York Giants. After watching his team defeat Cincinnati, 14-10, last week, Cowher commented, "It wasn't a Mozart." And Reeves, after watching young quarterback Dave Brown mangle four quarters against the Rams in Anaheim, was heard to say, "It wasn't a Simms."

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INDIANAPOLIS--First, T.J. Rubley for the Rams and now Gus Frerotte starts for the Washington Redskins against Indianapolis, making the University of Tulsa the new world leader in emergency quarterbacks for rotten NFL teams.

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PHILADELPHIA--No World Series, no hockey and it's Houston versus Philadelphia on "Monday Night Football." A nation turns its lonely eyes to Billy Joe Tolliver dropping back into the pocket and turns the channel.

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