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Sports Weekend | NFL DAILY REPORT / AROUND THE LEAGUE

Atwater, Wolford Fined $5,000

September 25, 1998| Associated Press

The NFL fined Denver Bronco free safety Steve Atwater $5,000 for a helmet-first hit on Raider tight end Rickey Dudley in Sunday's game at Oakland.

After quarterback Jeff George overthrew a pass to Dudley over the middle, Atwater arrived well after the ball and popped Dudley with his helmet late in the first quarter. He was penalized 15 yards on the play for unnecessary roughness.

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Pittsburgh Steeler tackle Will Wolford was fined $5,000 for fighting with Miami Dolphin defensive lineman Jason Taylor.

Wolford said he punched Taylor in Sunday's game because the lineman stuck his hands under his facemask and tried to scratch his eyes.

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One day after saying he was giving serious consideration to skipping Sunday's game in Washington because of a strained right hamstring, Denver quarterback John Elway participated in about half of the Broncos' practice.

"He looked good," Coach Mike Shanahan said.

No decision was made on Elway's availability.

Meanwhile, outside linebacker John Mobley left practice early because of a similar injury.

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Four-time rushing champion Emmitt Smith of the Dallas Cowboys is questionable for Sunday's game against the Raiders because of a strained right groin.

Smith suffered the injury in the second quarter of Monday night's victory over the New York Giants.

Chris Warren, who hasn't played with the Cowboys yet because of a groin injury, is expected to play.

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The Indianapolis Colts, the only NFL team without a sack, might face the New Orleans Saints without their top two pass-rushers.

Right defensive end Dan Footman has a knee injury that might require arthroscopic surgery. And left end Al Fontenot is hobbled because a calf problem suffered in Indianapolis' loss at the New York Jets.

The Colts will likely start converted linebacker Bertrand Berry to replace Footman.

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Philadelphia Eagle defensive tackle Rhett Hall will be out at least six weeks because of a patella stress fracture in his left knee that could require surgery. Hall came back from a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in the 15th game against Atlanta last season. He said he might have sustained the stress fracture while trying to rehab too quickly. . . . San Diego Charger free safety Michael Dumas tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in practice and will miss the rest of the season.

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