With two losses in the last three weeks, the Miami Dolphins are sinking in the AFC East with a 4-4 record. That leaves them two games behind the co-leading Jets and Patriots, so Dolphins coach Tony Sparano decided to give his team a jolt. He's changing quarterbacks, abandoning the promise of Chad Henne for the past production of Chad Pennington.
Henne has struggled with more interceptions (nine) than touchdowns (eight). So it's on to Pennington, who historically has been a low-turnover quarterback.
The NFL's last winless team takes its 0-8 record against the Detroit Lions today.
The last time the Buffalo Bills went this deeply into a season without a victory was in 1984 when they started 0-11. In the last three weeks, the Bills lost twice in overtime and blew a five-point fourth-quarter lead in losing to the Bears, 22-19.
"We've played three close games, and I don't feel any better," Bills coach Chan Gailey said.
The schedule doesn't get any easier, so this may be Buffalo's best shot at a win.
Today's San Francisco-St. Louis matchup pits two former Heisman Trophy-winning quarterbacks against each other — Troy Smith of the 49ers and Sam Bradford of the Rams.
Smith won the Heisman in 2006 and Bradford in 2008. It's the first time two Heisman Trophy winners have squared off since 2004, when Vinny Testaverde (1986 Heisman) and the Cowboys faced Carson Palmer (2002 Heisman) and the Bengals in Cincinnati. Palmer won, 26-3.
Smith is making his second start of the season, in relief of the injured Alex Smith.
Steve Smith, one of the NFL's top possession receivers, will miss the Giants' game against Dallas today with what coach Tom Coughlin described as a partial tear of the pectoral muscle. Smith suffered the injury during Thursday's practice.
The Giants (6-2) will replace Smith with Mario Manningham, while Hakeem Nicks remains in the second wide receiver spot. Second-year player Ramses Barden and rookie Duke Calhoun may also see time in multiple-wide receiver sets.
Coughlin characterized Smith's status as "week-to-week."
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