This is an article from the Nov. 20, 2006 issue
It's not just daBears (8--1), who with the help of Hester the Returner (above) mauled theGiants on Sunday. The Cubs inked slugger Aramis Ramirez and will bring back fanfavorite Kerry Wood. The Bulls rallied to beat division-rival Indiana and eventhe lowly Blackhawks won two in a row.
Two wins in threegames under new offensive coordinator Jeff Davidson have Cleveland (3--6, withthree straight home games ahead) alive and feeling chesty. Says receiverBraylon Edwards (right) of Sunday's game against the Steelers, "We'recoming after their a----!"
East Coast Holmy:The Flyers named Paul their G.M., removing his "interim" tag. ("Wecan move forward now," he said.) West Coast Holmy: The Seahawks' coach Mike(no relation) guided his first-place team over the Rams, and his job may geteasier: Injured stars Shaun Alexander and Matt Hasselbeck should soon beback.
Hey there, bigman! Yao went for 34 points and 14 rebounds against Shaq--"Every time Iscore on him I was happy like a kid," he said--and has the Rockets at5--2.
It's not just theTitans, who blew a 19-point lead--"Tough pill to swallow," said safetyLamont Thompson to Nashville's City Paper--and saw Vince Young (above) leavewith a head injury. The once-mighty Vols have lost two straight and had threeplayers arrested for drunk and disorderly conduct.
They've lost 8 of11--in a vacuum. After St. Louis raised prices off a 21-46-15 season,attendance has dropped 20%. Fewer than 5,000 showed up for Sunday's game withEdmonton. Said Oiler Marc-Andre Bergeron, "We get more people than this fortraining camp."
Raiders' Jerry(right), in coach Art Shell's doghouse all year, failed to catch a pass for thesecond straight game. Steelers' Joey (no relation) was fined $15,000 forremarks he allegedly made to an official. Says Joey, "It's really the ref'sword against mine, which is not a good situation."
Careful there,big man. Vikings 6'5", 225-pound QB has been sacked seven times in twoweeks, has 13 turnovers on the year--"The thing that's killed us ... isnegative plays," he observed--and his Vikes have lost three straight.
SI PLAYERS NFL POLL
Who is the fastest player in the NFL?
Michael Vick, Falcons QB 18%
DeAngelo Hall, Falcons CB 13%
Steve Smith, Panthers WR 12%
Santana Moss, Redskins WR 11%
Ted Washington, Browns DT 19%
Sam Adams, Bengals DT 5%
Byron Leftwich, Jaguars QB 4%
Larry Allen, 49ers G 4%
Raiders WR Randy Moss was voted the fifth fastest player (7.0%); Cowboys QBDrew Bledsoe was the fifth slowest (3.2%).... Both Leftwich and Bledsoe wererecently benched for more mobile replacements.... The 6'5", 365-poundWashington, 38, is the oldest nonkicker or nonpunter in the NFL and was namedas slowest by more than 43% of offensive lineman.... Hall won the Fastest Mancompetition at last February's Pro Bowl.... Colts DE Dwight Freeney (0.9%) wasthe only lineman to earn multiple "fastest" votes.... Falcons returnman Allen Rossum (3.4%) joined teammates Vick and Hall among the top 10fastest.
[ Based on a survey of 361 NFL players ]
• For an expanded version of the poll, go to SI.com/players.