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Cold, Hard Football Facts for Sep 04, 2007



We have some pet facts that we like to trot out in front of you from time to time. Think of it as a Westminster Kennel Club show for football fans.

Here are 32 of our favorite Cold, Hard Football Facts, one for each NFL team. Some are old, some are new. None of them are borrowed, and none of them blew. Some relate to the season at hand. Some we've kicked around in the past and you might have seen them here in our pages before, but we really dig 'em, like leg of Shetland sheepdog roasted over an open fire.
 
Enjoy the show.
 
ARIZONA
The worst franchise in North American sports has won just two playoff games in 87 NFL seasons.
 
ATLANTA
Dogfight impresario and former Falcons quarterback Michael Vick averaged 7.3 yards per rush attempt, best in NFL history. Randall Cunningham (6.4 YPA) is No. 2 all time. Jim Brown (5.2 YPA) is No. 3.
 
BALTIMORE
Vinny Testaverde played for the Ravens in 1996 and 1997, the team's first two years in Baltimore. He remains the offensively challenged franchise's all-time passing leader (7,148 yards).  
 
BUFFALO
That 'll teach 'em: The Bills have not reached the playoffs since Wade Phillips benched Doug Flutie before the 1999 postseason, after the QB led the club to a 10-5 record in their first 15 games.
 
CAROLINA
Jake Delhomme's postseason passer rating (95.0) is third all time behind Bart Starr (104.8) and Joe Montana (95.6). His postseason 8.55 yards-per-attempt average is No. 1 all time.
 
CHICAGO
Sid Luckman remains Chicago's all-time passing yardage leader (14,686 yards), 57 years after he last took a NFL snap.
 
CINCINNATI
The Bengals have ranked 28th, 22nd, 21st and 17th in total defense since alleged defensive guru Marvin Lewis became head coach in 2003.
 
CLEVELAND
The Browns have fielded just three Pro Bowl quarterbacks since 1966: Bill Nelsen (1969), Brian Sipe (1980) and Bernie Kosar (1987).
 
DALLAS
America's Team appeared in the NFL/NFC championship game 12 times in 17 seasons (1966 to 1982).
 
DENVER
Mike Shanahan has fielded just one losing team during his 12 years with Denver (6-10 in 1999).
 
DETROIT
The Lions have a record of 24-72 (.250) in the Matt Millen Era. They were 9-7 in 2000, the year before he took over.
 
GREEN BAY
With 273 career INTs, Brett Favre is four picks shy of the all-time record held by George Blanda (277).
 
HOUSTON
The Texans lost to Quality Opponents (teams above .500) last year by an average of 17.6 PPG, worst in the NFL.
 
INDIANAPOLIS
The 2006 Colts are the only team in NFL history to beat the league's top three scoring defenses in the same postseason (Baltimore, New England, Chicago).
 
JACKSONVILLE
Maurice Jones-Drew averaged 9.2 yards every time he touched the ball in 2006 (244 for 2,250).
 
KANSAS CITY
Thirty-four-year-old QB Damon Huard owns two Super Bowl rings and a nifty career passer rating of 85.2.
 
MIAMI
The 2006 Dolphins won three games against Quality Opponents. Only Jacksonville, San Diego and Super Bowl champ Indy won more (four each).
 
MINNESOTA
The 2006 Vikings defense held opponents to 2.83 yards per rush attempt, third best mark in the Super Bowl Era.
 
NEW ENGLAND
Bill Belichick's Patriots own every consecutive win streak in NFL history: regular-season wins (18), postseason wins (10) and overall wins (21).
 
NEW ORLEANS
Coach Jim Mora (1986-96) led the Saints to five of the franchise's eight winning seasons and four of its six appearances in the playoffs – playoffs?!
 
N.Y. GIANTS
Lightly regarded passers David Garrard (78.9), Michael Vick (75.5) and David Carr (75.5) all have a better career passer rating than Eli Manning (73.2).
 
N.Y. JETS
Chad Pennington has the seventh-best passer rating in NFL history (89.3), one spot ahead of Tom Brady (88.4) on the all-time list.
 
OAKLAND
The Raiders scored 16 total TDs during the 2006 season, the same number recorded by Dallas back-up RB Marion Barber.
 
PHILADELPHIA
Before being injured last year, Donovan McNabb was on pace for 29 TD passes and 9 INTs, plus 300 yards and four more TDs on the ground.
 
PITTSBURGH
The Steelers have been .500 or better in 28 of the past 35 seasons.
 
ST. LOUIS
The amazing Torry Holt owns three NFL receiving records: most consecutive 1,300-yard seasons (six, 2000-05), best career per-game receiving average (84.7 yards) and single-game receiving average (63.0, Sept. 24, 2000 vs. Atlanta).
 
SAN DIEGO
Famous coaching flop Rich Kotite (40-56; .417) has a better career winning percentage than Norv Turner (58-82-1; .415).
 
SAN FRANCISCO
The 49ers defense has surrendered more than 400 points in each of the past three seasons. In their glory days of 1981 to 1997, the 49ers never surrendered more than 300 points in a season.
 
SEATTLE
Seattle ballcarriers were dropped for losses 56 times in 2006, most in the league.
 
TAMPA BAY
The Buccaneers have averaged just 6.8 wins per year since their Super Bowl championship 2002 season.
 
TENNESSEE
Vince Young has a career record of 52-9 (.852) as a starting quarterback since his senior year at Houston's Madison High.
 
WASHINGTON
The Redskins face NFL's easiest schedule. Their 2007 opponents were just 24-67 (.264) last year against Quality Teams.

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