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McNabb gets start Saturday

Posted: Wednesday, January 08, 2003

PHILADELPHIA -- Donovan McNabb won't be afraid to scramble in his first game back from a broken ankle.

McNabb will start the Philadelphia Eagles' playoff game against the Atlanta Falcons on Saturday night, his first action in nearly two months. The two-time Pro Bowl quarterback hasn't played since hurting his right ankle against the Arizona Cardinals on Nov. 17.

''According to everyone else, I'm not mobile, I'm not able to move anymore,'' McNabb said Tuesday. ''I'll just let people continue to think that and when the time comes, make sure to showcase that a little. You run a lot faster when you don't want to get hit.''

The Eagles were 7-3 with McNabb, who was having the best season of his four-year career. McNabb completed 211 of 361 passes (58 percent) for 2,289 yards, 17 touchdowns and six interceptions in 10 games. He ran for 460 yards and six TDs.

McNabb was injured on the third play of the Eagles' win over Arizona, but stayed in and tied a career-best with four TD passes. And, he didn't scramble once the entire game.

Despite his success staying in the pocket, coach Andy Reid doesn't want McNabb to hesitate to run.

''I want him to execute the offense just like he's been doing over the years, and probably be a little more mobile than he was in the Arizona game and just be Donovan. That's all I need,'' Reid said.

Portis edges ex-teammate Shockey for rookie honor

The Denver Broncos just keep finding dominant young running backs. The latest, Clinton Portis, beat college teammate Jeremy Shockey for The Associated Press NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award Tuesday.

Denver's run on star runners began in 1995 with Terrell Davis. It continued with Olandis Gary, Mike Anderson -- the top offensive rookie in 2000 -- and now Portis.

''I'm just glad to finally win something,'' said Portis, who ran for 1,508 yards, by far the most among rookies and fourth overall in the NFL. ''I think the last time I won anything individually was in high school. I think I was named county player of year or something like that.''

Like University of Miami teammate Shockey, Portis isn't exactly shy. Unlike Shockey, he wasn't selected until the second round of April's draft, 51st overall. Of course, the Broncos didn't take Davis and Anderson until the sixth round, and Gary was picked in the fourth.

But Davis' wrecked knee forced him out of football, and Anderson was switched to fullback. So Portis quickly became a factor, and he scored 17 touchdowns, tied for third most by a rookie in NFL history, and tied for third in the NFL in 2002.

He also had the second-best average per carry ever for a rookie, 5.52, behind Franco Harris's 5.61 in 1972.

Steelers' Logan to miss rest of season

PITTSBURGH -- Pittsburgh Steelers safety Mike Logan will miss the rest of the season after major knee surgery.

He was hurt while making an interception in the third quarter of Sunday's 36-33 playoff victory over Cleveland. The Steelers advanced to play Tennessee in the second round.

''He's disappointed to have come this far and not be there with the guys this week,'' coach Bill Cowher said Tuesday.

Logan's operation Monday repaired cartilage, the lateral collateral ligament, a tendon and a muscle in his right knee. He is expected to be ready for training camp in July.

Brent Alexander will take Logan's spot in the Steelers' dime defense, with rookie Chris Hope sliding into Alexander's spot. Hope filled that role Sunday after Logan was hurt.



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