It took the Wolfpack an unprecedented 7 weeks to do it, but they finally can rejoice as they entered the winners' circle for the first time ever. They defeated the Dirty Dozen(1-6) by a score of 50-37. "Finally! We thought we had a good team coming into the season. But unfortunately we haven't been able to do what I had hoped," said Wolfpack owner and spokesman Joe Semro. "You never know what can happen in the next 6 weeks, but we are also realistic about our chances. We've pretty much been relegated to spoiler. But we'll go out there and compete every week. As we have been all season." The Wolfpack(1-6) didn't escape without a concern, however. QB Brett Favre rolled his ankle on a sack. His status is day to day. "We'll evaluate him tomorrow. We are not certain enough as to the extent of his injury to make a statement right now. The only thing I'll tell you is that we don't think, after seeing the play and talking to Brett, that he'll be able to play next week," Semro added. The good news is that RB Ahman Green had a big game as he almost doubled his production from the first 6 weeks with 22 points on 88 yards and 3 TDs. "It's been a while. But good things are coming for us in the future," said Green. "We can't quit. Until we are eliminated, we'll be chasing the wild card." A bit far-fetched, but you gotta love Green's winners mentality. WR Quincy Morgan also scored in double digits as he caught a 25-yard TD pass for 14 points for the Wolfpack. The Dirty Dozen were unable to win two in a row for the first time in franchise history. RB Clinton Portis continued to make his push for rookie of the year as he scored 5 points but only K Ryan Longwell scored more than 10 with a 15-spot. "I thought we should have won that game. Makes you think twice about how good we are," said frustrated QB Drew Brees who was benched in favor of Marc Bulger. Adding insult to injury was the fact that if Brees had started, the Dozen would be enjoying a 51-50 victory. Next week the Wolfpack go after THEIR first two game winning streak ever as they travel to the Bowl and meet up with the top scoring team in the UFFA, the Rynos, while the Dirty Dozen are also on the road and play the Fightin' Antz.
On a historic night, T.N.T.(6-1) set a record for the best start ever with one loss as they are now the only 6-1 team in the league. And in doing so, they defeated bitter rivals, the Fightin' Antz(3-4) in overtime, 75-72. QB Aaron Brooks continued to lead the league's best team as he threw 4 TD passes and ended the day with 24. "I'm feeling it right now. And I think my confidence is rubbing off on the rest of the team," the normally understated QB said. "With me going out there every week and doing what I have to do, and Freddie and Edge keeping the ground game going, this could be a special year." When asked what he meant, Brooks just smiled and said "I don't wanna jinx the thing, man." But Brooks did have a point. On a week where T.N.T. didn't get a single point out of their receiving corps, RB Edgerrin James scored 6 on Monday night to pull T.N.T. even and RB Fred Taylor ran for 151 yards and a TD to score 14 points. "I told y'all I didn't need no practice," quipped James. T.N.T. has been as consistent as any team as they have scored over 60 points 5 of the 7 weeks. They could open up a HUGE 3-game lead next week as they finish their 3-game road trip with a trip to Jorsemen stadium for a date with the team behind them in the standings. The Antz, on the other hand, are reeling. They have lost 2 in a row and wasted a great effort from RB Marshall Faulk, who ran for 3 TDs and caught another one on his way to a league high 36-point effort. QB Rich Gannon also had a big day with 15 points. But the player of the game ended up being WR Kevin Lockett. He caught just one pass for 9 yards. But he fumbled that one to end the day with -1 point. Had he not fumbled, the Antz would have won. They now trail the Night Hawks in the Landry division by two games and may be facing a MUST WIN situation with a home game against the Dirty Dozen next week.
As one losing streak came to an end, another just begins. The Roscoes(4-3) gained a game on the Rynos in the Halas division and put an end to their 3-game losing streak. While the Jorsemen(4-3), for the first time in franchise history lost their second game in a row in a 73-48 Roscoes win. WR Joe Horn, who was just traded to the Roscoes mid week by the Dirty Dozen, led the team with 24 points as he caught 8 passes for 109 yards. Second on the team in scoring was TE Marcus Pollard, who was IN THE SAME DEAL as Horn (SHEESH!) with 14 points after catching a 41 yard TD pass. "Well I guess we aren't that bad after all, huh?" said Horn. "I honestly wanted to stay over there. Because there is a good young nucleus. But I went from last in the league, to the playoff hunt in a week. I'll definitely enjoy my time over here. I'm sure Marcus agrees." Combined, the two players outscored their old team 38-37. But Pollard wasn't dwelling on that. "Hey, it's business. Losch thought he could get better by dealing us," he said. But he did manage to take a late jab at his former owner: "He was wrong, though." Jorsemen QB Jeff Garcia did what he could, but managed just 3 points as the Jorsemen running game was ground to a halt with just 43 total yards on 15 carries. "I don't know what happened or why we abandoned the running game. But sometimes the team you are playing takes a facet of your game away. And I think that is what happened out there," said Garcia. K Paul Edinger led the team with 16 points as he hit a 53-yarder. But the Jorsemen lost their second in a row regardless. A rebound is necessary in week eight. They face T.N.T., who lead their division. A loss would put them 3 games out with just 5 to play as they may have to start looking at the wild card berth if they do lose. The Roscoes will host the Warriors in week 8. A game that they need to keep up with the Rynos, who are now just a game ahead in the Halas.
In a big Halas division matchup, the Tattoo Crew(4-3) showed the Warriors(3-4) why they are a team of the future. Unfortunately for the Warriors, it showed up this week. Second year RBs LaDainian Tomlinson and Deuce McAllister combined for close to 300 yards rushing, 10 catches, and 3 TDs to lead them to a 65-48 win. The Crew moved into a tie with the Roscoes at just a game behind the Rynos in the Halas division. The Warriors, on the other hand, lost their fourth game in a row as they are trying to recapture the magic that saw them finish second in the league in 2001, including a league best 10-3 record. "We know we can win. But we have to go out and prove it," said QB Donovan McNabb. "But the worst thing is that we have to go out and prove it to ourselves. You would think heading into week 8, we would have found an identity. But we haven't and it seems like some of the guys are starting to doubt themselves. And we can't have it if we want to go to the postseason." McNabb had a good day with 15 points and RB Garrison Hearst scored 16. But that was the extent of the offense. The Tattoo Crew had 40 points combined from their 2 backs as Tomlinson became the first player of the week in team history with 25 points and McAllister had 15. QB Tommy Maddox, a late addition, chipped in with 10 points. But the story was clearly Tomlinson. "This was a big win for us. A 3-4 record looks a lot worse than a 4-3 record. And not only that, but we are in the thick of things now. And that's what counts. Six weeks left, but we can only focus on the Outlaws next week." The Crew hope to improve on their 2-1 home record next week as the Outlaws come to town. For the Warriors, it is gut-check time as they play a tough road game against a team that is just a game up on them, the Roscoes, in a game that could make or break their season.
A week after K Jason Elam's heroics pulled the Night Hawks out of the loss column, RB Jerome Bettis did the same. Trailing by 7 points heading into Monday night, the Hawks'(5-2) back scored on two short TDs to give them a 70-65 win over the Rynos(5-2). But Bettis was later injured to temper celebrations. His status is as of yet unknown. But they didn't want to talk about that afterwards, instead focusing on the big win that they had just managed. "That team is easily a top 2 or 3 team in the league," said QB Drew Bledsoe. "To pull out that game does a lot for our confidence. We know we have a good team. But for some reason, we wanted to make this a statement game. Not everybody else in the league thinks we are that good. The thing that people can't see is that we have somebody new step up each and every week. Jason last week, Jerome this week. That is also what they had here last year. And they did pretty well. We are trying to build on that and do even better this year. Tomorrow, however, is another day. We have to start preparing for week 8. As good as this feels, it still is just one game." Bledsoe had 9 points as he connected with WR Eric Moulds for a 70 yard scoring strike. "Drew threw the ball in there perfectly. Then it was a race to the end zone," said Moulds. Elam followed up last week's player of the week performance with 15 points, and the Hawks' D/ST scored yet another TD. Four of their last 6 games will be with teams in the Landry division, starting next week with the Stallions. The Rynos took this game with a grain of salt, for their part. RB Priest Holmes continued to prove his naysayers wrong as he scored three times and ended up with 24 points and QB Brian Griese threw 2 TD scores for a total of 21 points. "It was a good game," said Griese. "We certainly have nothing to be ashamed about. We are still atop the division, we have 5 wins, and we feel we are the best team in the league. This is nothing but a bump in the road." But it wasn't to be for the Rynos this week. But they get to take out their frustrations on the Wolfpack in week 8.
The Stallions(3-4) got owner Chris Porsch his first two game winning streak and in the process tied the Outlaws(3-4) and Fightin' Antz for second in the Landry division. The Outlaws offense was nowhere to be found as they scored a UFFA season low in going down in defeat 63-18. QB Daunte Culpepper led that paltry showing as he also scored a UFFA season low with -4 points. "This is definitely a low point in my two years here. I don't even want to begin to explain it," said Culpepper before leaving the locker room without fielding any questions. The problems were up and down the Outlaws' lineup as they scored just one TD (WR Laveranues Coles) and K Sebastian Janikowski, usually a sure thing, missed two FGs, including a 27-yard chip shot. The Stallions will take it, however, as they scored over 60 points for the third straight week. WR Hines Ward, who came over from the Night Hawks a couple of weeks ago, led the way with 20 points on two TD catches on Monday night. RB James Stewart also got in on the action as he ran for 172 yards and two TDs for 17 points. "This could be our turning point," said Stewart. "With the leader up next, we could be headed to a good place. And that is the postseason. We have to win this week." The Stallions take on the Night Hawks and could trim the division lead to one game while the Outlaws take to the road to play the Tattoo Crew.