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Super Bowl XXXVII | AFC / OAKLAND REPORT

Pins and Needles for Brown, Wife

January 26, 2003|Lance Pugmire | Times Staff Writer

SAN DIEGO — Tim Brown's potential conflict is of epic proportions. Play in the Super Bowl or be with his wife, Sherice, for the birth of their twins.

"The plan right now is for her not to have the babies," Brown said. "Regarding [today], she has told me, 'Don't even think about it,' to just come home after the game Sunday night. If it happens [today], the plan would be for me to stay and play the game."

Raider owner Al Davis has kept a Lear jet on hold at San Diego's Lindbergh Field all week for Brown should Sherice go into labor at the Browns' Northern California home.

Sherice, 36 weeks pregnant and at full term, will undergo a C-section Thursday if she does not give birth before then. On doctor's orders, she did not travel to San Diego. Brown, 36, has played 15 seasons without reaching the Super Bowl. Now the Hall of Fame-bound receiver is overwhelmed by life-defining events.

"[Sherice] understands that it's been a long fight for me to get here, and winning a championship is obviously why I've dedicated myself to this game and driven her crazy the last five or six years since we've been together," Brown said. "It's a beautiful thing -- that's the way I'm looking at it. Win a championship, have a couple of babies. I don't know too many people who can say they've done that."

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Playing in L.A. wasn't that enjoyable for Brown, who said Oakland feels more like home.

"When we were in L.A. [through the 1994 season], it was a situation where we were being outshined by the Lakers and the Kings, and even the Dodgers won a championship in 1988," Brown said. "It was a tough situation as a player. When you're competing with Magic [Johnson], and [Wayne] Gretzky and [Kirk] Gibson, it's really a no-win situation. It was pretty tough to feel like you had a home."

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The man with the opportunity to become the subject of the Super Bowl's best game story is Raider backup tight end Jeremy Brigham, a five-year veteran who hasn't played a game this season.

Brigham suffered a deep sprain of his left knee in an Aug. 24 exhibition game against San Francisco and was put on injured reserve, with the Raiders providing him a settlement near $100,000 because the sprain was not of season-ending caliber. Steve Baker, Brigham's agent, said Tampa Bay contacted him before it won the NFC championship and offered to sign Brigham for next year and arrange for his knee surgery next week.

With his team depleted at tight end by injuries to Roland Williams, Marcus Williams and Brandon Christensen, Raider special assistant Bruce Allen called Baker on Monday and wound up re-signing Brigham. He will be Doug Jolley's backup in the Super Bowl. "The Raiders and Al Davis legitimately think Jeremy can make a difference in the game," Baker said.

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Bill Callahan said he is grateful to Davis for the opportunity to coach the Raiders.

"To be asked by a Hall of Fame owner to coach his team, to be singled out by a man with his reputation ... I was honored, flattered and challenged by it," Callahan said.

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(BEGIN TEXT OF INFOBOX)

HOW OAKLAND WAS BUILT

DRAFT

1988--Tim Brown, WR, 1st.

1995--Barret Robbins, C, 2nd.

1997--Adam Treu, C, 3rd.

1998--Mo Collins, T, 1st; Jon Ritchie, RB, 3rd; Travian Smith, LB, 5th.

1999--Matt Stinchcomb, T, 1st; Eric Barton, LB, 5th-A; Rod Coleman, LB, 5th-B.

2000--Sebastian Janikowski, K, 1st; Jerry Porter, WR, 2nd; Junior Ioane, DT, 4th; Shane Lechler, P, 5th.

2001--Derrick Gibson, S, 1st; Marques Tuiasosopo, QB, 2nd; DeLawrence Grant, DE, 3rd; Chris Cooper, DT, 6th.

2002--Napoleon Harris, LB, 1st; Langston Walker, T, 2nd-A; Doug Jolley, TE, 2nd-B; Kenyon Coleman, DE, 5th.

FREE AGENTS

1993--James Jett, WR.

1998--Randy Jordan, RB.

1999--Barry Sims, G; Tyrone Wheatley, RB.

2000--Marcus Knight, WR; Eric Johnson, S.

2001-- Jerry Rice, WR.

2002--Rick Mirer, QB; Terrance Shaw, CB; Darrien Gordon, CB; Charles Woodson, CB; Madre Hill, RB; Clarence Love, CB; Brandon Christenson, TE; Tim Johnson, LB; Bill Romanowski, LB; Brad Badger, T; Trace Armstrong, DE; Sam Adams, DT; John Parrella, DT; Marcus Williams, TE; Chad Slaughter, T; Rod Woodson, S; Alvis Whitted, WR.

UNRESTRICTED FREE AGENTS

1999--Rich Gannon, QB (previous team: Kansas City); Zack Crockett, RB (Jacksonville).

2000--Tory James, DB (Denver); Anthony Dorsett, DB (Tennessee); Regan Upshaw, DE (Jacksonville).

2001--Charlie Garner, RB (San Francisco); Frank Middleton, G (Tampa Bay).

TRADE

Lincoln Kennedy, T, from Atlanta, April, 1996.

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