NFL Notebook: Anderson an anchor on sinking Browns
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If the Cleveland Browns are bad, then quarterback Derek Anderson is the face of bad. A Pro Bowler just two seasons ago, Anderson is flirting with rewriting the dark pages of the NFL record book as the Browns prepare to face Chicago today.
Anderson carries a quarterback rating of 40.6 into Week 8. According to STATS LLC, it is the third-worst rating through seven weeks of a season this decade. Only Ryan Leaf (34.5 in 2000) and Kerry Collins (37.5 in 2006) have started a season as poorly.
What is amazing is that his numbers over the past three games have been worse than his season marks. He has completed only 32.9 percent of his passes (23 of 70) in those three games, the smallest percentage of any quarterback with at least 70 attempts since the Los Angeles Raiders' Steve Beuerlein (31.9) in 1988.
Also, his 244 passing yards in the span are the fewest for a quarterback with 70 attempts since Chicago's Vince Evans (212) in 1981.
The 0-7 St. Louis Rams visit the 1-5 Detroit Lions this afternoon at Ford Field. Sadly, those numbers do not begin to tell the story. The Rams have lost 17 games in a row and are 5-34 since the start of 2007. The Lions are less than a month removed from ending a 19-game losing streak and are 8-30 since the beginning of 2007. Sadder still: There are fantasy geeks and gamblers who actually care about this one.
With a victory today against the San Francisco 49ers, Indianapolis would become the eighth team in league history to win 16 consecutive regular-season games. New England set the NFL record for consecutive wins (21) between 2006 and 2008. The Patriots also won 18 in a row in 2003-04, and Chicago won 17 in a row from 1933-34. Only four other teams have won 16 -- Chicago in 1941-42, Miami from 1971-73 and again in 1983-84 and the Steelers in 2004-05.
The Denver Broncos this week signed Mitch Berger to handle their punting chores. Name sound familiar? He punted for the Steelers last season after Daniel Sepulveda's knee was injured in training camp. For the record, Denver is Berger's 12th NFL team. But who's counting? He should hope for as much when they start measuring his punts.
Don't be told otherwise. Minnesota's visit to Green Bay (with Brett Favre in tow) is of biblical proportions. Joel Fleischman started the Web site, "JudasFavre.com" several weeks ago in response to the Packers legend signing with the Vikings. In addition to a place to rant, visitors can also buy shirts bearing Favre's No. 4 and the name Judas. Fleischman said he's sold 2,100 shirts to customers in places as far away as Denmark and Iraq.
"I was the biggest Favre fan -- emphasis on 'was,'" Fleischman told Bloomberg News. But "the first time I saw him in a Vikings jersey, I had a little puke in my mouth and had to swallow it back down."
Gene Deckerhoff had two games on two continents, 65 1/2 hours apart, requiring 9,000 miles of air travel last weekend. The longtime play-by-play radio announcer for Florida State athletics, Deckerhoff's epic road trip started Oct. 22 when the Seminoles played at North Carolina. Then, it was off to London for his other football job -- calling the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' game against the New England Patriots in London's Wembley Stadium.
After going 39 games without allowing a 100-yard rusher, Baltimore has allowed two in the past two games: Cincinnati's Cedric Benson and Minnesota's Adrian Peterson. Today: Denver's Knowshon Moreno. ... There currently are seven 40-something players in the NFL. The lucky seven: Saints kicker John Carney (45), Giants punter Jeff Feagles (43), Texans punter Matt Turk (41), Colts kicker Matt Stover (41), Patriots linebacker Junior Seau (40), Vikings quarterback Brett Favre (40) and Panthers kicker John Kasay (40). ... The Saints, who welcome Atlanta to the Superdome tomorrow (8:30 p.m., ESPN), have never started a season 7-0.
First Published November 1, 2009 12:00 am