Seahawks receiver Jerry Rice is the most famous 42-year-old in the NFL, but he's not the only one. Washington right tackle Ray Brown turned 42 today and will mark the event by...
Seahawks receiver Jerry Rice is the most famous 42-year-old in the NFL, but he’s not the only one.
Washington right tackle Ray Brown turned 42 today and will mark the event by playing in his 200th game when the Redskins host the Philadelphia Eagles tonight.
“It’s crazy that Ray’s playing tackle at 42,” 27-year-old teammate Chris Samuels told Washington reporters. “People talk about Jerry Rice and Darrell Green at 42, but Ray’s in the trenches. I know how my body feels after a game, and Ray’s doing it at 42.”
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Just how old is Brown?
He began his career in 1986, with the St. Louis Cardinals.
He’ll be the 17th man to play in the NFL at age 42.
Six NFL coaches were still players when Brown started. He is older than Tampa Bay coach Jon Gruden and Jacksonville coach Jack Del Rio, who are both 41.
Just 11 of the 27 NFL stadiums that existed when Brown began his career are still being used.
Brown was in the middle of a seven-year stint with Washington when coach Joe Gibbs retired in 1992. And after six years with the San Francisco 49ers and two with the Detroit Lions, Brown was signed by Gibbs again in August after starting right tackle Jon Jansen was lost for the season with a torn Achilles tendon.
“I never thought I would have played this long,” said the 6-foot-5, 318-pound Brown. “After a while, character becomes a commodity in this league. That’s the tradeoff, because I’m definitely not as quick as I used to be. I’m smart in how I take care of my body, and I put in plenty of time in the film room, which really helps.”
Raiders of the lost receivers
The Oakland Raiders sure could use Rice.
With Ronald Curry out for the season with a torn Achilles, the Raiders are down to three receivers. The team had seven to start the season and thus chose to trade Rice to the Seahawks in October. That was after Oakland had cut longtime standout Tim Brown during training camp.
Now the Raiders are down to Jerry Porter, who has said he wants out after the season; Doug Gabriel; and practice-squad call-up John Stone.
The Raiders also would probably like to revisit the chance they had to trade a second-round draft pick to the Cincinnati Bengals for running back Corey Dillon last spring.
The New England Patriots paid the price and have gotten a good return. Dillon is the league’s fourth-leading rusher. And his 1,221 yards are 361 more than the Raiders have.
In addition to being the league’s worst rushing team (71.7 yards per game), the Raiders are on pace to run the ball 311 times, which would be the fewest in NFL history.
Barlow done in San Francisco?
While the Raiders are last in the league in rushing, the San Francisco 49ers are just one spot ahead, averaging 82.8. And much blame has been placed on Kevan Barlow.
Barlow is averaging 52.4 yards per game not the number the 49ers expected when they gave him a five-year, $20 million contract last offseason.
Coach Dennis Erickson told Bay Area media that Barlow has not broken as many tackles as he should at times.
“We’re not able to run the ball like we have been in the past. A lot of that, I put on me,” Barlow said. “They made an investment in me to go out there and be productive. They expect a lot out of me, and obviously I haven’t delivered.”
Barlow is due a $6.5 million bonus on March 15, and the 49ers are expected to try to trade him before that.
Barlow, by the way, will not play in Arizona today because of a concussion.
Favre’s hair trigger
Brett Favre is a team player, even off the field.
The quarterback of the Green Bay Packers got a crewcut last week to show support for his wife, Deanna, who has begun to lose her hair as she undergoes chemotherapy treatments for breast cancer.
“She’ll look a hell of a lot better than me without hair, but maybe it will make her feel better,” Favre told reporters in Green Bay. “Whatever support I can give her.”
Favre did not get his head shaved entirely because, he said, “I had to ease into it.”
The future Hall of Famer also is easing his way toward retirement. The only question is whether he will play one more season or quit after this one.
Favre, 35, told the Green Bay Press-Gazette that he’s not sure what he will do.
If the Packers were to win the Super Bowl, he said he probably would retire. He also said that if the team doesn’t make the playoffs and he feels he is the reason, he probably would retire.
But he hinted that one more season is the limit.
His 15-year-old daughter lives in Mississippi, Favre’s offseason home, year-round so she can remain in the same school.
“With Brittany being a junior in high school next year, if I do play, then I’ll only basically see one of her high-school years,” Favre told the Press-Gazette in an apparent indicator that he would be in Mississippi not Green Bay for her senior year in 2006.
Asked if that means he would play only one more season, Favre said: “I don’t even know if I’m playing next year.”