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McNabb set to start Sunday

By wire services
Published September 17, 2005

PHILADELPHIA - Donovan McNabb will start in the Eagles' home opener Sunday against San Francisco despite a bruised chest.

The quarterback practiced Friday for the second straight day and did not seem bothered by the injury he sustained in the first quarter of Philadelphia's 14-10 opening loss at Atlanta on Monday night. Coach Andy Reid said McNabb will start "unless something crazy happens."

McNabb looked fine during running drills, dropping back and making little-defended passes with ease.

He said Thursday there was "no doubt" he'd start.

"I was being a little bit cautious with him (Wednesday), and he didn't want any part of that," Reid said. "He felt good and went out and made all his throws.

"I was not sure how he was going to do with the deep ball (Wednesday), but I think he answered that. He threw the ball well."

Reid said the injury will not prevent McNabb from running.

"I don't necessarily want him to get hit there again, but if needed, he will run," Reid said.

McNabb didn't miss any plays after a crushing hit from Chad Lavalais sent him wincing to the sideline, but he struggled the rest of the game.

He threw one interception, lost two fumbles and often missed his target with erratic passes. He finished 24-of-45 for 257 yards and one touchdown.

Lavalais was fined $7,500 for using his helmet on McNabb.

BEARS: Rookie running back Cedric Benson on Sunday will see more than the handful of plays he got against the Redskins, but coach Lovie Smith didn't give details and said Thomas Jones also will get carries.

BRONCOS: Running back Mike Anderson ran without pain, showing little indication he had sore ribs, and is expected to play Sunday against San Diego. He had four carries for 5 yards before sustaining the injury against Miami. Anderson wore a flak jacket-type protector during practice but would not say if he would use it Sunday.

CHARGERS: Guard Tonui Fonoti practiced and is expected play Sunday against Denver despite breaking his right hand during the week. Also, defensive end Igor Olshansky, who has an injured leg, didn't practice and isn't expected to play. If he doesn't, first-round pick Luis Castillo would make his first start. Rookie receiver Vincent Jackson also is expected to sit out because of a a calf injury. Receiver Reche Caldwell left practice early with a sore right knee, but coach Marty Schottenheimer said he was okay.

GIANTS: New Jersey officials gave the Giants and Jets 10 more days to work out a land development plan for an $800-million stadium at the Meadowlands.

The state had the right to cancel a preliminary agreement for a new stadium if the teams hadn't agreed by Monday. Now they have until the end of business on Sept. 29.

The Giants want to build a training complex and team offices next to the stadium. The Jets want to build practice facilities elsewhere so the land near the stadium can be developed for other purposes. It added while it negotiates with the Giants, it would also pursue its own stadium in the New York borough of Queens.

The 80,000-seat stadium and adjacent practice facility proposed by the Giants, to open in the fall of 2009, would cost $800-million and be paid for by the teams. It could accommodate a retractable roof for about $200-million more, which the Giants hope the state and NFL help pay for.

PATRIOTS: Former Bucs quarterback Shaun King worked out Thursday but was not offered a contract. New England worked out former Giants and Gator quarterback Jesse Palmer earlier this week.

SEAHAWKS: Quarterback Matt Hasselbeck has a sore throwing arm, but coach Mike Holmgren said he will play Sunday against Atlanta. Hasselbeck appeared to sustain the injury on the final offensive play of last week's loss to Jacksonville but did not confirm it.

STEELERS: Ben Roethlisberger practiced but is still questionable for Sunday's game against Houston. He missed practice Wednesday and Thursday with a bone bruise on his left knee. If he can't play, Tommy Maddox will start.

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