Wednesday Afternoon Report

<p>LATROBE -- The final two-a-day practice day was taken with much delight, particularly by wide receivers Plaxico Burress and Hines Ward, who are looking forward to facing New England cornerbacks Otis Smith and Ty Law. </p>

Burress called them "two average corners" and Ward said all the team needs to do is take advantage of the inside routes they gave the Steelers' receivers in the AFC Championship Game. Ward also told of Law flashing his Super Bowl ring at an off-season party and that Ward must expunge the vision with a win.

Kordell Stewart missed the second practice today because of lingering effects from the concussion LaVar Arrington gave him Sunday night. Tommy Maddox will probably start against the Detroit Lions, and Maddox looked very smooth running the first team today. On the first play of the red zone session, he feathered a perfect alley-oop to Burress for a touchdown over Dewayne Washington.

Charlie Batch then threw to Verron Haynes for another touchdown. Against the first-team defense, Batch threw another perfect pass to Antwaan Randle El for a touchdown. In a 95-second drill to end practice, Maddox threw completions of 25 yards to Ward, 20 yards to Burress and 20 yards to Randle El, who came back for the pass like a wiley veteran. The drive stalled on downs at the 15.

-- Jim Wexell


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