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Simms Makes Strong Showing

August 03, 2003|From Staff and Wire Reports

The Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers got a strong game from rookie quarterback Chris Simms and defeated the New York Jets, 30-14, Saturday in the American Bowl in front of 43,601 at Tokyo.

Simms started the second half and led a drive that culminated with a four-yard touchdown pass to Reggie Barlow early in the fourth quarter to give the Buccaneers a 20-7 lead in the NFL's exhibition opener.

Tampa Bay Coach Jon Gruden was impressed with Simms, a third-round draft choice from Texas who completed seven of 10 passes for 70 yards.

"He definitely has ability and he proved it tonight," Gruden said. "We had solid execution and I like the attitude of our team."

Tampa Bay made it 27-7 with 12:07 left when Tim Wansley knocked the ball loose from Jet quarterback Brooks Bollinger, a rookie from Wisconsin. Wansley scooped up the fumble and ran for a 47-yard touchdown.

Ralf Kleinmann kicked two field goals, including a 36-yarder with nine minutes left that made it 30-7. Bollinger threw an 11-yard touchdown pass to Gabe Reid just before the two-minute warning to complete the scoring.

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Running back Fred Taylor of the Jacksonville Jaguars probably will be sidelined next week because of a leg injury and most likely will sit out the team's first exhibition game.

Taylor was hurt Wednesday during practice and has been sidelined since. Coach Jack Del Rio said the club would hold Taylor out "and let him settle down rather than let it become a problem."

After Saturday's scrimmage, Del Rio indicated he wasn't in a hurry to bring back Taylor too quickly.

"I would say that it's unlikely that we'll work him next week," Del Rio said. The Jaguars open exhibition play Saturday at Minnesota.

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The longer Terrell Davis stays away from football, the more the 1998 NFL MVP realizes his career probably is over.

Davis, who rushed for more than 2,000 yards in 1998 and helped the Denver Broncos win two Super Bowls, is doing rehabilitation work four hours a day in hopes of making a comeback. But he knows his hobbled knees might never be strong enough to play again.

"Sometimes, I look at it as [like being] a senior in college. You have to graduate. Sometimes you have to move on," he said at the Broncos' training camp.

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Offensive tackle Leonard Davis of the Arizona Cardinals broke his thumb trading punches with defensive tackle Kyle Vanden Bosch during practice Friday at Flagstaff, Ariz.

Davis can take part in conditioning and drills but must avoid contact for seven to 10 days -- making him doubtful for the Cardinals' exhibition opener Saturday against Dallas.

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Children 14 and under are invited to participate in the Chargers' FanFest today, starting at 2 p.m. at the Home Depot Center.

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