Offensive linemen need chance to attack off ball, Hannah says


John Hannah, who will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame this weekend, is as direct and bruising in speech as he was when he played for the New England Patriots. He loves the game of football, but he hates the way it's being played.

"It's the greatest game that's ever been and ever will be, as long as people who are trying to sell it as a business don't destroy it," Hannah said. "It's getting close.

"I enjoyed offense because my definition of offense is attack," he said. "Unfortunately, that's been taken out of offensive line play in the NFL as of late. It's kind of appease the crowds and be a media event rather than a football game.

"They've got [offensive linemen] sitting on their heels and dancing and doing all of this other stuff instead of attacking."

* COWBOYS: Starting defensive tackle Danny Noonan ended a 10-day holdout last night, agreeing to a three-year contract. Terms were not disclosed but he was seeking to double his last year's salary of $325,000.

Noonan became the first of six veteran holdouts to agree to terms. Starting offensive guard John Gesek remains out of camp, as does reserve defensive linemen Dean Hamel and Danny Stubbs, middle linebacker Jack Del Rio and fullback Alonzo Highsmith.

* CHARGERS: San Diego has been in contact with five teams concerning the possibility of trading holdout defensive lineman Lee Williams, general manager Bobby Beathard said.

Williams, a two-time Pro Bowl starter, is unhappy the Chargers switched him from end to tackle for part of last season and has asked to be traded.

Meanwhile offensive lineman Mark May, who was obtained as a Plan B free agent from the Redskins, missed practice with fluid on his right knee.

* AMERICAN BOWL: The Buffalo Bills and Philadelphia Eagles arrived last night in London, where they will play each other Sunday in an exhibition game at Wembley Stadium.

It is the first overseas game for the Bills, who lost to the New York Giants, 20-19, in the Super Bowl. It's the second for the Eagles, who beat the Cleveland Browns, 17-13, in 1989.

* CARDINALS: Phoenix officials say they believe rookie wide receiver Jon Horton, missing for more than a week, is safe and they hope to meet with him soon.

Horton disappeared after a team dinner in Tempe, Ariz., on July 15. Officials want to know if he still plans to play for Phoenix, which signed him a two-year, $270,000 contract June 23 that included a $10,000 bonus.

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