Cardinals wait for games that count to showcase James

It's funny. The one thing the Cardinals could be reasonably sure of going into the season was they could throw the ball. And we haven't seen any reason to dispute that belief. In fact, I'm starting to think they will be able to throw the ball with either Kurt Warner or Matt Leinart.

But their offseason emphasis was on improving a running game that was utterly incompetent one year ago. They made
Edgerrin James a rich, or rather, richer, man.

So the one thing you'd think the Cardinals would want to prove to themselves in the preseason was that they could run the ball. They haven't done that up to this point.

Backup QB race is on tap - Browns-Bills game to decide key roles

The third preseason game is a dress rehearsal for the season, but tonight's game in Buffalo is also a chance for the Browns to settle their remaining personnel decisions.

"We have a quarterback battle, a linebacker battle and a safety battle we have to make a deci sion on," said coach Romeo Crennel. "Those are some that are at the fore front. But it's a competition ev erywhere, and competition makes everyone better."

Here is a look at where some of those battles stand heading into the game:

Backup quarterback: Quarterback Charlie Frye and the rest of the starters will play into the third quarter, so the backups won't get much playing time. Derek Anderson will most likely come off the bench after Frye.

Crennel needs to determine if he can go into the season with Ken Dorsey and Anderson backing up Frye, or if he needs to call on his friend Vinny Testaverde - or another veteran.

Harrises watch younger son suit up for Steelers (Orien Harris)

PHILADELPHIA -- Donovan and Cordel Harris have been through this routine before: Son becomes football star at Newark High School. Son becomes football star in college. Son gets drafted into the NFL.

The Harrises went through this when Kwame went from Newark High School to Stanford University to the San Francisco 49ers. Now they're going through it again with their other son, Orien, who went from Newark to the University of Miami to the Pittsburgh Steelers.

The Harrises were at Lincoln Financial Field on Friday to watch Orien play for the Steelers in their 16-7 loss to the Eagles. Last year, they were at the Linc to watch Kwame play for the 49ers against the Eagles.

Harris, a fourth-round draft choice last April, played in the fourth quarter on the defensive line, trying to gain a little more experience, and trying to get a little more of a stronghold in his NFL career.

"It's been harder than I thought," Harris said. "The demands of practice everyday and being a rookie haven't been easy. But I'm trying to learn as much as I can, and I'm enjoying myself."

Rashad Butler Update

The big surprise might be third-round pick Rashad Butler, an offensive tackle from Miami who is anything but a sure thing.

Butler is a project, and he needs to get into the weight room and add lower body strength before the team thinks of putting him on the field to protect Jake Delhomme.

If the Panthers cut Butler it will mark the second straight season a first-day draft pick has failed to make the opening day roster. A year ago, defensive tackle Atiyyah Ellison was the highest drafted NFL player (89th overall) to get cut.

Interestingly enough, Butler was drafted 89th overall this year.

In an ideal world the Panthers would probably like to cut Butler and sign him to the practice squad, but if they do they’ll run the risk of losing him to another team. So you never know, Butler could come down with one of those not-so-serious season-ending injuries — like struggling second-round draft pick Eric Shelton did a year ago — and be stashed away on injured reserve where nobody else in the league can touch him.

An Opportunity Maximized (Kenard Lang)

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- Sometimes, a problem can lead to an unexpected solution.
Within the span of a week earlier this month, the Broncos lost Courtney Brown and Gerard Warren for the balance of the preseason due to knee and toe injuries, respectively. But all that did was give Kenard Lang and Demetrin Veal the opportunity to start at end and tackle, and provide extra repetitions for players behind them like end Elvis Dumervil and tackle Antwon Burton.


Phillip Buchanon Update

Cornerback Phillip Buchanon is no longer the starting cornerback for the Texans, but coach Gary Kubiak still has high hopes for Buchanon as far as special teams is concerned. Buchanon returns as the Texans' top punt returner this season. "Phillip's very explosive," Kubiak said. "There's no reason he shouldn't be one of the top guys in this league.

Ray Lewis Exudes Passion, Confidence

Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis talks passionately about his desire to win and trying to create a better team atmosphere this year. Vikings fans will get a chance to see if his leadership is effective Friday night.

Playing his first game in 10 months, linebacker Ray Lewis appeared stronger and faster than last season despite having a torn hamstring repaired in December.

“When you go through surgery, everyone looks at the pain,” said Lewis, who missed the final 10 games because of that injury and was inactive for the preseason opener. “They don’t look at the recovery and how much your body rests.”

Endurance has become an issue with Lewis, who has failed to finish two of the past four seasons.

Bills Camp Notes (Kevin Everett)

The tight end has been re-discovered: This position really does exist on the Bills' roster. Free agent pickup Robert Royal is known for his run-blocking ability but is a better receiver than the Bills anticipated. Kevin Everett, whose rookie year was ruined by a knee injury, bounced back from a quiet offseason to have a very good camp as a receiver and blocker. Second-year pro Brad Cieslak and versatile veteran Ryan Neufeld have shown the ability to do both as well.

Cora’s hustle draws rave reviews

ANAHEIM, Calif. - Red Sox manager Terry Francona praised his team for doing the little things in last night’s 2-1 win over the Angels. Given the topic, it should surprise no one that Alex Cora was involved in much of it.

Playing at shortstop in place of the injured
Alex Gonzalez, Cora went a modest 1-for-4 with a single. But after seeing 18 pitches in his only two at-bats (both outs) against Angels starter Jered Weaver, Cora was instrumental in producing what proved to be the game’s decisive run.

    With one out, the bases loaded and the Red Sox still holding a 1-0 lead, Cora was at first when Doug Mirabelli hit what should have been a rally-killing double-play ball. Cora, however, beat a hesitant Orlando Cabrera to second base, allowing Mike Lowell to score a run that proved critical.

    “That’s all Cora,” said Mirabelli. “That’s a double-play ball. When I hit it, I was (ticked) off because I knew it was a double-play ball.

Heald kng ng ngn ngw novskl

It's been a question whispered and mur mured around Cleveland since the Browns' preseason games began, yet one people simply won't ask the man drawing the whispers and murmurs -- Bernie Kosar, the former team star quarterback.
Is Kosar battling a serious health issue?
That concern has been raised by numerous Browns fans, TV viewers and others, who suggest Kosar's voice and posture appear unsteady during his work as an analyst on WKYC Channel 3's preseason telecasts. But Kosar says his health is absolutely fine.

Coach says Davenport needs to get back to practice

GREEN BAY, Wis. - Green Bay Packers coach Mike McCarthy sent a not-so-subtle message to oft-injured No. 2 running back Najeh Davenport on Thursday: Get back to practice or you might not be here.
Davenport missed his second straight day of practice Thursday after dropping out of Tuesday night's workout with a strained hip flexor. The fifth-year running back also missed six practices earlier in camp with a calf injury.
When asked whether Davenport will play in Monday night's exhibition game at Cincinnati, McCarthy replied, "Player injuries I really can't control. Obviously, you want to see him out there. He's competing for a roster spot.
"Am I concerned? I'm concerned about what's best for our football team. We like the things Najeh has done, but he needs to get out there and play and make our football team just like everybody else."

Sapp Update

• Defensive tackle Warren Sapp has completely changed his MO this year, making himself constantly available to any reporter with a notebook or microphone. In the past, Sapp often growled at reporters and even refused to shake hands with them.
Why the change? It's pretty obvious that Sapp, whose footwork has obviously slowed, is looking ahead to a career in media. Parrying favor with reporters at this point appears to be part of his plan.


The Panthers like the potential of former University of Miami offensive tackle Rashad Butler, a rookie third-round pick, but he probably won't play this season unless there's an emergency.
The Panthers want Butler to add size and strength, making this essentially a redshirt year for him.

Shockey and Awe

Last weekend New York Giants star Jeremy Shockey paid the highest cover charge in this town's history when he was fined $25,000 by the team for heading to Saratoga Springs and partying in high fashion with Lance Vetter and the rest of the players of the SaraBoca polo team at the Venue nightclub on Caroline Street.

It seems the star player was supposed to curtail his nights out while nursing his injuries (he did not travel with the team last weekend), but instead appeared in the Spa City with no less than six (count 'em, six!) A-1 quality girls (which is the per player limit for SaraBoca.)

Earlier in the day the tight end visited the flat track and hit a late race for a $12,000 payoff. When the receipts are tallied, I still bet he thinks it was worth every penny. Easy come, easy go. And from what I understand, more than one of those six girls fit that very description.


He now knows nose - Wilfork took time to get sense of job

FOXBOROUGH -- In the Patriots' defense, coach Bill Belichick admits, nose tackle is especially difficult. To the man who plays that position, it's more than that.

``To be honest with you," Vince Wilfork said before practice Wednesday, ``it all surrounds the nose tackle."

Humility, it seems, is not part of Wilfork's demeanor, but if his job is as tough as he says it is, perhaps there is just no room for it.

``The defense doesn't work without a nose," he said. ``So you have to be on your toes. You have to know what you're doing out there. You have to be smart. You have to be tough. Because sometimes you're taking on two or three blockers. Sometimes you've got one hand on the ground, a knee on the ground, and two people pushing you.

Chris Myers

Rookie Chris Kuper and second-year pro Chris Myers are sure to be backups, but both may be starters of the future.

Pressure’s on Burrell to step up

Despite a cracked ankle center fielder Aaron Rowand did not suffer as bad a break as the Philadelphia Phillies did.
The Phils
now at the front end of a crucial 10-game road trip entered the second installment Tuesday night in Chicago where Rowand was lost the previous night when he stumbled on the irregular outfield turf. The net result was that Rowand broke his ankle and will be out of the lineup for 4-6 weeks meaning hes gone for whats left of the regular season.

Wilfork has found home in trenches

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. – All eyes are always on the man in the middle. Well, at least the trained eye. New England Patriots nose tackle Vince Wilfork can tell you all about that. He knows the coaches saw he was having a tough time in the first half of last season (along with the rest of the defense). After careful examination, everyone came to the same conclusion. “I was too aggressive,” Wilfork said on Wednesday. “I went into the season saying, ‘I want to be dominant. I want to just push people over.’ Definitely I have the capability of doing that, but (opponents) didn’t allow me too. A lot of centers would snatch me down, a lot would jump out of the way, so they used my strategy against me.”

Bills Training Camp Award (Willis McGahee)

Best quote: "I don't smell." Comment by Willis McGahee when asked if he may have to soon part with his University of Miami shoulder pads for the sake of hygiene.

Bills Training Camps Awards (Roscoe Parrish)

Best moves: Roscoe Parrish. The wiry receiver juked at least half a dozen linebackers and defensive backs as well as Moorman on a punt return during camp with his lightning quick maneuvers.

Anderson, Dorsey still competing to be No. 2

BEREA - You look around among the NFL’s arms of August and wonder what it means.
Former Round 7 pick Matt Cassel leads the league with 421 preseason passing yards. Have the Patriots found another Tom Brady?
Jay Cutler has passed for 291 yards and has a 111.3 rating. Would he have been a good pick had he dropped to the Browns at No. 12 overall, rather than getting plucked by Denver at No. 11?
Anthony Wright, 30, has given the Bengals 200 yards with no interceptions. Is he the kind of veteran who might have fit in Cleveland, instead of signing with Cincinnati on April 20?
You wonder what it means that the Browns don’t have a quarterback with more than Ken Dorsey’s 123 preseason yards ... what it means that Charlie Frye’s two-game totals include 64 yards and a 67.8 rating ... what it means that young Derek Anderson has a through-the-roof passer rating of 125.2.

Kelly Jennings Update

Word is the Seahawks have been satisfied with the steady progress of first-round CB Kelly Jennings, who got picked apart pretty good by the Cowboys in the preseason opener. But while Jennings is expected to see plenty of action this season -- we're told one thing he needs to do is finish his plays a bit better -- it could be a while before he earns a starting role over Kelly Herndon, who we hear might have had a better training camp than any Seahawks player this season.

Frank Gore News

Frank Gore -- the good and the good: No wonder Barlow's wearing the Jets' green. Gore played the equivalent of a full game in two exhibitions, gaining 91 yards in 17 rushes and another 32 yards on five receptions. If Gore stays true to that line throughout the season, his production could keep the 49ers in games.
And Gore hopes his throwback conditioning this offseason in Florida with his former high school coach, which included sprints while dragging a truck tire, will keep him out of the training room.
In fact the running game and the offensive-line play were the best developments of camp. The lack of a pass rush in the two exhibitions was the biggest disappointment.
The young and single will also be disappointed as they are turned out of their free hotel rooms and walk into the wilds of the Silicon Valley rental market.
"When I first got here (in 2004) you could rent a two-bedroom for $1,500'' a month, running back Maurice Hicks said. "Last year it went to $1,800, and now I hear it's higher."

Shockey poised for breakout season

When the New York Giants drafted Jeremy Shockey five years ago, they took him knowing they were getting a rare talent and a very enthusiastic player. Now, as he enters the prime of his career, Shockey is set to make an even bigger impact than he already has. Hampered by injuries in his first five seasons (he hasn't played a full one yet), it appears that Shockey is ready to have a career year.
However, he did have a mild concussion early in preseason. That's an injury to keep an eye on, considering that concussions can often have lasting impressions.

Adjustments have helped Wilfork

FOXBORO, Mass. -- Vince Wilfork describes himself as a "hands-on guy," which is a much more beneficial approach for a chiropractor than a nose tackle.

Wilfork’s aggressiveness actually limited his production during the first half of the 2005 season. He lined up too close to the ball at the line of scrimmage, therefore he couldn’t properly read plays before the snap.

An intervention by Patriots head coach Bill Belichick in October helped Wilfork correct his mistakes. After the 6-foot-2 nose tackle modified his technique, the Patriots rose from 25th in run defense to seventh by the end of the season and won six of their final eight games to clinch their third consecutive division title.

Patriot Way breaks Hurricane habit: Wilfork adjusting his play at nosetackle, learning better technique

FOXBORO -- He wears the brand proudly, as most former Miami Hurricanes do, and he wouldn't give back those college days for anything.

    But if you need an indication of how much a New England Patriot Vince Wilfork really is, the third-year nose tackle's membership in the brotherhood of 'The U' will lead you there.

    See, most of those old 'Canes congregate back on the Coral Gables campus in the offseason to work out. The tradition is cemented to the point where players like Jeremy Shockey and Edgerrin James have directly disregarded the desires of their pro teams to attend.

Davenport on Bubble

Despite starting two preseason games, Najeh Davenport is on the roster bubble in Green Bay. Multiple reports suggest Ahman Green and Samkon Gado are safe, and Davenport (hip) has now missed back-to-back practices. Green Bay is going with a youth movement, which suggests a younger option like Arliss Beach or Noah Herron will get their third running back spot

(Milwaukeee Journal-Sentinel)

Bears Sign Quadtrine Hill

The Bears filled their spots on the roster by signing fullback Quadtrine Hill of University of Miami and defensive end Mike Mendenhall from Temple.
Hill had gone undrafted and signed with the Houston Texans before being cut. Mendenhall was one of a handful of players who received tryouts with the Bears during rookie camp but wasn't signed to a contract at the time.
Hill was cut one day later on August 24th.

Gore Is the Real Deal

Frank Gore is the real deal. It's only been two exhibition games, but the 49ers' starting running back is improved, healthy, and looks like a legitimate ball carrier. The Miami Hurricanes product is running hard--north and south-- and has an offensive line opening up holes that a truck could drive through. Kevan Barlow is gone, so it's Gore's backfield to lead. The 23-year-old should get plenty of touches and will produce, unlike his predecessor.

Sensational Sophmores (Frank Gore)

If not for his history of serious knee injuries, he might have been a No. 1 overall pick coming out of Miami. Nevertheless, he led the 49ers in rushing last year with 608 yards and was impressive enough in the preseason to allow the team to trade last year's starter, Kevan Barlow, to the Jets. San Francisco added Larry Allen to the offensive line, which means Gore could see some huge holes. Frank_Gore

Frank Gore Update

Maybe it was a positional thing, but fellow back Frank Gore was one of the few other 49ers singled out for his individual performance against Oakland. His 42 yards on seven carries had to be especially encouraging since San Francisco traded veteran Kevan Barlow to the Jets for a likely fourth-round pick before the game.
"I didn't need reassurance, but Frank does a good job all the time," Nolan said. "I've got a lot of confidence in Frank, as I do the other guys – as I do in Kevan."
Gore, who was limited to less than 10 carries or no action in 11 of the first 13 games last season, still led the franchise with 608 rushing yards, averaging an impressive 4.8 yards per carry. With his workload certainly expected to increase, and with Robinson and veteran
Maurice Hicks also competing for carries, someone figured to be expendable. But Barlow questioned whether depth was the determining factor, telling Bay Area newspapers that "other reasons" got him traded.

Ready for an encore (Santana Moss)

When Santana Moss was traded before last season, his destination was Washington. But the former New York Jets complementary receiver felt like he had landed on the other side of the rainbow.
Moss caught a 52-yard pass in his Redskins debut before earning a spot among the league's elite receivers the next week by hauling in two late touchdown bombs from Mark Brunell to stun the host Dallas Cowboys on "Monday Night Football."
 Moss finished the season with a career-high 84 catches, a franchise-record 1,483 receiving yards and a team-high nine touchdowns, helping the Redskins make the playoffs for the first time in six years and earning his first Pro Bowl appearance.     "Last year was as close to perfect you can get without winning the Super Bowl," Moss said. "The Redskins went and got me, so I couldn't do anything in return except be the player I was. The trade allowed me to go somewhere where they really appreciate my gifts."

Backup Dorsey may have bought himself some time

BEREA -- Just when it seemed Ken Dorsey had no chance of making the final roster, he goes out and does what a backup quarterback is supposed to do.

What Dorsey did in relief of Charlie Frye Friday night wasn't enough for coach Romeo Crennel to say, ''I told you so.'' It might not even have been enough for Dorsey to get another chance when the Browns play the Bills in their third exhibition game next Saturday, but there is no denying Dorsey was at his best when he had to be.

Homesick Punter Rejoins Giants (Jeff Feagles)

ALBANY, Aug. 22 — Roughly an hour after the Giants’ playoff loss to the Carolina Panthers last season, punter Jeff Feagles was sizing up his next career move. He was two months from his 40th birthday. He had recently set N.F.L. records for most punts (1,437) and most consecutive games played (288). In the rolling-stone existence of a punter, he had played for five teams in 18 seasons.

Piazza Snaps Slump As Padres Beat L.A.

Mike Piazza snapped a 0-for-26 slump with an RBI single and Jake Peavy threw seven dominating innings as the San Diego Padres beat Los Angeles 1-0 on Tuesday night to pull within two-games of the NL West-leading Dodgers.

The defending division champion Padres have won 10 of their last 11 against their biggest rival. By winning the first two of the three-game series, the Padres ended the Dodgers' string of seven straight series victories. That Dodgers' run began after they were swept by the Padres at Dodger Stadium July 24-26.

Nate Webster Hopes To Avoid Injury, Make Team

(CBS4) DENVER When Al Wilson was suspended for last Saturday night's Denver Broncos game, Nate Webster became the starting linebacker. Webster had a very impressive Broncos training camp, and looks like a good bet to make the team. "I had a lot of fun," Webster told CBS4 of Saturday night. "It was good to be back out there with live bullets ... and to get dirty a little bit."

China's favorite NFL player: Sinorice Moss

Sinorice Moss.
If anyone can make American football popular in China, it's a guy with a name like that -- even better, the rookie is only 5-foot-8. (We realize we are likely pronouncing "Sinorice" wrong, but forgive us, we don't see many college football broadcasts over here.)

Piazza caught on to hockey as a kid

While looking through an old Los Angeles Dodgers media guide, it described Mike Piazza as a person who "enjoys hockey." Enjoy is not a strong enough word.
Over a decade has now passed since that press guide information was printed. Piazza is no longer a Dodger and has played for three other teams -- the Florida Marlins, New York Mets and San Diego Padres.
After talking to the future Hall of Fame catcher, one finds that he has a strong passion for hockey. They are feelings that go back to Piazza's days as a youngster growing up in Norristown, Pa.


Despite playing last season with injuries that required postseason surgery on both shoulders, Frank Gore still led the 49ers in rushing. And now that San Francisco has dealt running back Kevan Barlow to the New York Jets for a fourth-round pick, Gore is going to lead the 49ers in rushing this season if he just stays healthy.
Gore has made a habit of popping out of a pileup at the line of scrimmage to gain extra yards. He also has demonstrated superb strength and balance.
But the Barlow trade is expected to provide him with an additional boost of confidence that the 49ers have conveyed the message to him that he is the back. The 49ers now will get the Jets' fourth-round pick and a more confident Gore.

Early returns all positive for Bears special teams

LAKE FOREST, Ill. - If the first two preseason games are any indication, the Bears could have one of the most productive special teams units in the NFL this season.
Kick returner Rashied Davis, punt returner Devin Hester and punters Brad Maynard and Joel Stelly all rank near the top of the league in their respective categories.

Despite Injury, Portis Gets In A Little Bit Of a Workout

After two preseason losses, the Washington Redskins took an all-business approach to their first practice since Saturday's 27-14 home loss to the New York Jets. But the sight of running back Clinton Portis walking around without his left shoulder in a sling was a welcome one.
"I was trying to get a little conditioning in, nothing spectacular," Portis said. "It was just following procedure, trying to get everything to heal. I still have to put the sling back on. It's probably going to be sore. I still feel pain there, but as far as movement is concerned, I feel good."

Javon Nanton Notes From Saints vs. Cowboys

DE Javon Nanton did a good job coming off a stunt, racing through the line and getting pressure on Romo to help force his fumble, one of the few big Cowboys errors of the night. Harper looked good running with the ball after picking it up off the turn. Hopefully we'll see more of that this year. The second and third stringers did a decent job of pressuring Romo in the third quarter...

Rush, rush (Kenard Lang)

Two backups, Demetrin Veal and Kenard Lang, both who were starters Saturday night due to injures, took last weekend’s criticisms personal and did something about it right away. One glaring weakness from last weekend’s performance, and the one thing that was emphasized through most of this week in practice, was Denver’s pass rush.

The work paid off for Denver starting at the first snap. Defensive linemen Veal and Lang, along with the Broncos’ entire defensive line, put enormous pressure on Titans’ quarterbacks all game long.

Both linemen had sacks in the game, setting up what could be a formidable defensive line once the line gets healthy.

“I just take my hat off to the guys — they were ready to play and made some good effort,” Shanahan said after Saturday’s game. “We had a chance to evaluate a lot of players. We had some guys that that are competing very hard, and are very close in a lot different positions, and that’s what you want. You want some depth and I think we saw some today. It was nice to see [DT] Demetrin Veal get a couple sacks in there. I thought [DE] Kennard [Lang] put a little pressure on the quarterback as well, and that’s always nice to see with a few of your guys out.”


James' presence gives Cards' passing game sharper Edge

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — Single coverage.
The mere mention of the concept had Anquan Boldin twisting with an incredulous expression, much like someone would upon stumbling on an intriguing fact in a history book.
"I haven't seen single coverage since my rookie year," said Boldin, in his fourth season with the Arizona Cardinals, as he sat on a bench after a recent practice. "None."
Boldin and
Larry Fitzgerald each caught more than 100 passes for 1,400-plus yards last season, just the second time in the NFL's 86-year history that two teammates had that combination. The Detroit Lions' Herman Moore and Brett Perriman did it in 1995.2006-08-21-james-large

Cards not concerned about lack of running game

Edgerrin James, who often spouts his philosophy that life is too short to stress, applied that to his football team.

The Cardinals’ running back was mellow after Saturday night’s 30-3 preseason loss in New England, emphasizing that no one should worry about the team’s still stagnant running game.

“As long as you don’t get tackled in the backfield, and I didn’t get tackled in the backfield, it’s sweet,” James said. “Trust me. There is a reason why you lose, but I’m not worried about it. When the regular season starts, we’ll be fine. We’re just working out all the kinks right now.”

Bedroom of Redskins' Portis a little fishy

Don't call Clinton Portis a fish out of water - not when you consider the decor of his home.
The Washington Redskins running back has an aquarium in every room of his Virginia house. And according to an article in the current issue of Esquire, the most impressive tank is in his bedroom.

Backup QB battle is on (Ken Dorsey)

The Browns’ search for their No. 2 quarterback will get a second look.
Browns head coach Romeo Crennel had said before training camp started that he wanted to make a decision on that job by the second preseason game.
But the second preseason contest came and went Friday night, and Crennel said he still hasn’t made up his mind between Ken Dorsey and Derek Anderson.

Crennel likes talent he has backing up Frye

Ken Dorsey and Derek Anderson have prevented a Browns quarterback search for at least another week.
"I think they both did enough to warrant another look," coach Romeo Crennel said. "They're still in the competition right now."
Crennel said he'd feel comfortable going into the season with Dorsey and Anderson as backups "if they can make progress this week like they made last week."

Orien Harris Update

Rookie DE Orien Harris, a fifth-round pick, has shown flashes in training camp, but he is still learning to adapt to playing defensive end in the 3-4 defense. Harris was a one-gap player in college, and he still wants to play up the field. But the Steelers ask their ends to play like tackles and use more two-gap technique. Harris is quick and strong, but he needs to learn to use his hands better inside.

Cora knows about length: Played in longest games

Even though he has played in the two longest, nine-inning games in major league history, Alex Cora joked that he is not to blame.

Cora, who was the shortstop in the Red Sox’ record-setting 4-hour, 45-minute loss to the New York Yankees on Friday night, also appeared in the previous longest game on Oct. 5, 2001, for the Los Angeles Dodgers in a victory over the San Francisco Giants at Pac Bell Park.

A Glimmer of Hope in a Hot Desert Sun

In the parity-driven N.F.L., it is difficult to make the playoffs only one time in 23 seasons
The Cardinals franchise has managed that. So why should anyone foresee an end to the playoff drought in the Arizona desert, despite the signing of Edgerrin James, the drafting of Matt Leinart and the sparkling new Cardinals Stadium that looks like something out of “Star Trek”?

Solid play vs. Lions helps Dorsey's case

Just when it seemed Ken Dorsey had no chance of making the final roster, he goes out and does what a backup quarterback is supposed to do.
What Dorsey did in relief of Charlie Frye on Friday night against the Lions wasn't enough for Coach Romeo Crennel to say, "I told you so."
It might not even have been enough for Dorsey to get another chance when the Browns play the Bills in their third exhibition game next Saturday, but there is no denying Dorsey was at his best when he had to be.

Dorsey Getting More Comfortable

CLEVELAND — For one night there was no need for Browns general manager Phil Savage to have Kerry Collins or Vinny Testaverde on speed dial. The competition for the backup quarterback spot to Charlie Frye resulted in enough positive signs to stick with the plan for another week. Ken Dorsey and Derek Anderson showed more poise and accuracy than they have throughout most of training camp and in the first preseason game. Dorsey, who’s listed second on the depth chart, completed 11-of-16 passes for 75 yards and one interception. He was 7-of-10 for 52 yards on a two-minute drive late in the second quarter that produced a 32-yard field goal by Phil Dawson.

Frustrated Moss waiting on his leg to heal

Sinorice Moss returned Saturday to the University at Albany. But he did not return to the practice field.

Earlier this week, the rookie receiver traveled to New York City to undergo tests on his strained left quad, which has kept him out of every practice since the second day of training camp. (In case you're scoring at home, that's 19 consecutive missed workouts.) Moss said the tests found nothing more serious, but he remains unsure when he can return.

Texans Beat Rams, Buchanon has big day

Phillip Buchanon also had a big game for the Texans (2-0), with punt returns of 32 and 33 yards and a fumble recovery on the first play of the second half that gave Houston the ball at the St. Louis 17, leading to Kris Brown field goal for a 13-3 lead.