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King's Corner

Oct. 18, 2004
Oct. 18, 2004

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Oct. 18, 2004

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King's Corner

HOT TOPIC

This is an article from the Oct. 18, 2004 issue Original Layout

Because their anger is so deep, the Dolphins will probably trade--rather than take back--Ricky Williams (right), who retired unexpectedly in July but now says he wants to return to football. "I talk to Ricky almost every day," says his agent, Leigh Steinberg, "and he tells me, 'I really wish I was playing.'" Here are the rushing-poor teams most likely to take a risk on the enigmatic, 27-year-old Williams, who if he does return could face up to a one-year suspension for repeated violations of the NFL's substance-abuse policy.

Raiders They badly need a productive back, and this organization never met an outlaw it didn't like.

Bucs Coach Jon Gruden is desperate for playmakers on offense, but Miami's asking price might be too much for a team that gave up four high draft picks to get Gruden from Oakland.

Cardinals New coach Dennis Green, who handled Randy Moss for four years in Minnesota, is used to stars who cause headaches.

BY THE NUMBERS

Randy Moss played in his 100th NFL game on Sunday, catching five passes for 90 yards and two touchdowns in Minnesota's 34--28 overtime win against the Texans. Here's how Moss's numbers stack up against those of Jerry Rice through their first 100 games.

View this article in the original magazine

 

PLAYER

REC.

YARDS

AVG.

TDS

Moss

549

8,680

15.8

84

Rice

492

8,556

17.4

87

 

MATCHUP OF THE WEEK

Chargers running back LaDainian Tomlinson versus Falcons quarterback Michael Vick. This is the first meeting between San Diego and Atlanta since they pulled off the 2001 predraft trade involving these two players. After three-plus seasons, here's the verdict as to which club came out ahead in the deal: a slim edge to San Diego because we don't know if Vick can stay healthy. Tomlinson has started all 53 games in his career; Vick has played in 33 of 53. Tomlinson has scored 46 touchdowns; Vick has run for 10 and thrown for 24. Tomlinson (above), already the Chargers' career rushing leader, is destined to be a back for the ages if he avoids a serious injury. Vick will have to produce as a top five passer to make the trade an even swap.

THREE POINTS

1. Unless rookie quarterback Ben Roethlisberger starts to struggle, the Steelers would be crazy to go back to Tommy Maddox when he returns from an injury to his throwing elbow later this month.

2. I'll be stunned if the 4--0 Jets don't make the playoffs. No other team in memory has had an easier opening stretch, and New York's opponent this week is 1--4 San Francisco. Included on the November slate are four games against teams that are below .500: the Dolphins, Bills, Browns and Cardinals.

3. The two-game suspension the NFL gave the Ravens' Jamal Lewis for his role in an attempted drug transaction four years ago (before he ever suited up for Baltimore) was fair, when you consider he will also forfeit four game checks, or some $761,000. --Peter King

Peter King's Monday Morning Quarterback, every week at si.com/football.

COLOR PHOTOMICHAEL FRANCIS MCELROY/SOUTH FLORIDA SUN SENTINEL (WILLIAMS)COLOR PHOTOMIKE BLAKE/REUTERS