Baltimore's old Colts will finally lose one of their dubious NFL defensive records - fewest sacks in a season - unless the Chiefs generate a frenetic pass rush in the final three games.
Kansas City has just six sacks this season, none in its past four games. That's well behind the current record of 11 set by the 1982 Baltimore Colts in a strike-shortened season of nine games. The NFL record for fewest sacks in a 16-game season is 13, by the 1981 Colts.
Those Baltimore teams were terrible. The 1982 Colts, coached by Frank Kush, went 0-8-1 a year after Mike McCormack's 1981 outfit went 2-14. The 1981 Colts still own some of the worst defensive records in the book for a single season: most points allowed (533), most touchdowns allowed (68) and most yards allowed (6,793).
The Chiefs are bad, but not that bad. They just can't get to the quarterback. They traded their leading pass rusher, Jared Allen, who had 15 1/2 sacks, in the offseason. The player they asked to replace Allen, Tamba Hali, a first-round pick in 2006, has one sack. That's a bad trade-off.
Around the league
Did Patriots coach Bill Belichick get the jump on protege Eric Mangini of the Jets again in the offseason? Speculation in New England suggests that the Patriots, faced with playing four games on the West Coast this season, asked the NFL to schedule those games in two back-to-back trips so they could reduce travel and spend the week. The Patriots haven't acknowledged it, but the results look good. They are 2-1 on the West Coast going into today's game at Oakland. The Jets are 0-3 on the coast, having lost at San Diego, Oakland and San Francisco, with a trip to Seattle left.
Vikings QB Tarvaris Jackson, banished as starter after two losses, replaces injured Gus Frerotte today in Arizona. Frerotte hurt his back making a tackle after the second of his two interceptions against the Lions last week. (Side note: The Lions have four interceptions this season, three against Frerotte.) Jackson brought Minnesota from a 6-3 halftime deficit to win and had a career-best passer rating of 143.8. The Vikings' playoff hopes are back in Jackson's hands after all.
Jerry Richardson, one-time receiver for John Unitas with the Colts and now owner of the Panthers, has been placed on a national organ donor list for a heart transplant, the team announced. Richardson had a pacemaker/defibrillator implanted this season but returned to the hospital last week for more tests. Said QB Jake Delhomme: "He's a lot closer to his players than anybody would ever know. ... That's why you care so much."
The Dolphins have lost an NFL-low 10 turnovers this season, on pace for 12, which would break the record of 14 (for a 16-game season), held by the 1990 Giants. Those Giants were coached by Bill Parcells, who is executive vice president with these Dolphins.
Eagles kicker David Akers had just one field-goal attempt blocked before this season. Last Sunday, two of his kicks were blocked in the Meadowlands by the Giants, one returned for a touchdown. He had attempts of 32 yards (Justin Tuck) and 34 yards (Terrell Thomas) rejected. Akers is 9-for-18 in his career at Giants Stadium (swirling winds) and just 4-for-12 from 35 or more yards. Tomorrow night, the Eagles play the Browns, whose Shaun Rogers leads active players with 12 blocked field goals.