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American Football: Duce lets lose on Eagles

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Ben

posted on Aug, 27 2004 @ 08:53 AM
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Duce Staley showed the Philadelphia Eagles what they're missing. Willie Parker showed the Pittsburgh Steelers what he can do.
The Steelers' Duce Staley shows the Eagles he's got plenty of juice left.

Staley ran for 37 yards and one touchdown in limited action against his former team, and Parker had 106 yards rushing and one TD, leading the Steelers to a 27-21 victory over the Eagles in a preseason game Thursday night.

"It felt great," Staley said. "I have a lot of good memories from when I played here."

Dante Brown also had a TD run for the Steelers.

An undrafted rookie from North Carolina, Parker perhaps earned himself a roster spot with his performance.

"Looking at the other running backs out there who were drafted, I have a chip on my shoulder," Parker said.

Reno Mahe ran for a score and L.J. Smith and Greg Lewis had TD catches for the Eagles.

A three-time 1,000-yard rusher in seven seasons in Philadelphia, Staley ran six times for 33 yards on the opening drive, capping it with a nifty 14-yard TD run.

After running into the end zone, Staley went straight to the stands and handed the football to young boy wearing a Donovan McNabb jersey.

"It was just spur of the moment," Staley said.

Philadelphia didn't make a strong push to retain Staley, a fan favorite who again heard the familiar chants of "Duuuuce!" each time he touched the ball. But the Eagles could use him now after losing Correll Buckhalter to a season-ending knee injury last week.

After Jeff Blake connected with Lewis on a 14-yard TD pass to give the Eagles a 21-17 lead, the Steelers went ahead on Parker's 3-yard TD run early in the fourth quarter.

Ben Roethlisberger, the No. 11 pick in this year's NFL draft, was sacked on his first play and finished 7-of-11 for 74 yards and one interception. Starter Tommy Maddox was 4-of-6 for 53 yards.

Terrell Owens, the Eagles' biggest offseason acquisition, didn't have a catch. His 41-yard TD reception in the first quarter was negated by a holding penalty on Tra Thomas. He later dropped a pass that hit him in the chest.

McNabb was 8-of-19 for 105 yards and one TD. Blake was 6-of-7 for 63 yards and one TD.

"We're not where we want to be right now," McNabb said. "The exciting part is we're putting points up on the board. When we're doing that, you've got some positive things to look at."

The Steelers took a 17-7 lead in the second quarter on Brown's 1-yard TD run. McNabb connected with Smith on an 11-yard TD pass to cut the deficit to 17-14.

Mahe, getting an extended look, ran in from the 2 to tie it at 7. Mahe finished with 49 yards, including a 33-yard run, on 10 carries.

"I dropped two passes and I made a couple mental errors," Mahe said. "I have to do a better job and help the team."




 
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