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Pro Football Week 9 | ARIZONA 17, DETROIT 15

Plummer, Cardinals Rebound

November 02, 1998|From Associated Press

PONTIAC, Mich. — Jake Plummer never doubted he would bounce back. He just happened to do it on the day when Detroit rookie Charlie Batch finally had a disastrous day.

"I've been doing that since I started playing," Plummer said after leading the Arizona Cardinals to a 17-15 victory over the Detroit Lions on Sunday. "It's a part of sports. If I didn't, I shouldn't be here."

Plummer threw two touchdown passes and Joe Nedney kicked a career-best 53-yard field goal for the Cardinals (4-4) in a mistake-filled game.

"We're in control of our own destiny," said Plummer, who threw touchdown passes of 16 yards to Frank Sanders and 36 yards to Rob Moore. "We're at .500 and we have five left at home."

Batch, who was intercepted three times and lost one fumble in the first half, was benched for veteran Frank Reich to begin the second half for the Lions (2-6).

Plummer, benched in the fourth quarter when Arizona lost to the New York Giants in the Cardinals' game before the open date, was 15 for 25 for 198 yards with one interception.

Reich helped Detroit take a 15-14 lead when he hooked up with Johnnie Morton for a 41-yard completion to the one, setting up Tommy Vardell's one-yard touchdown run with 9:29 left in the game. The Lions went for two, but Barry Sanders--who carried 27 times for 107 yards--fumbled the handoff from Reich.

That mistake was important because Plummer was four for five in an eight-play, 39-yard drive that set up Nedney's winning field goal with 2:46 left.

Reich ended the Lions' last hope for a comeback by losing a fumble in Detroit territory.

But that was just the ugly ending to an ugly game in which the teams combined for eight turnovers--six by Detroit.

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