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It Looks Like Same Old Young

September 15, 1997|From Associated Press

SAN FRANCISCO — Steve Young was at it again, running, throwing and even getting knocked around.

Young, plagued by repeated concussions, shook off hits and hurries to throw three touchdown passes, and the San Francisco 49ers took what the New Orleans Saints gave them--eight turnovers--in a 33-7 victory Sunday.

"It's just nice to get back on the horse and ride a little bit," said Young, sidelined last week by his third concussion in his last 10 regular-season games. "I think we were smooth and we're going to get better."

Rod Woodson, a standout cornerback in Pittsburgh for 10 years who came to San Francisco this season as a free agent, had a career-high three interceptions and recovered a fumble as San Francisco (2-1) scored 30 points off turnovers. Woodson left the game midway through the third quarter because of a pulled right calf.

The Saints, 0-3 under new Coach Mike Ditka, have a NFL-high 19 giveaways.

"It's embarrassing," Ditka said. "I think we're a better football team than that but what's the use of saying it if you can't back it up."

The return of Young, a two-time league most valuable player and five-time passing leader, was watched closely because he could be one hit away from retirement.

But Young, 35, completed 18 of 21 passes for 220 yards and weathered five sacks to quiet, for now, the talk that he should quit. He even scrambled for eight yards on his first play.

Meanwhile, New Orleans quarterback Heath Shuler--a disappointment in Washington before joining the Saints before this season--threw three interceptions and has eight in three games, with no touchdowns.

He was benched at the start of the second half in favor of rookie Danny Wuerffel, who also had three interceptions.

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