NFC Notes

<b><u>Philadelphia Eagles</u></b><br><br> Lewis Important to Team<br><br> When the club signed backup receiver Greg Lewis to a five-year contract extension Thursday, some around the league may raised an eyebrow. However, Lewis is an important part of their offense.

The second-year pro was signed as an undrafted free agent. He made his mark early during training camp in 2003 and was able to make the team.

Lewis, for the second straight camp, beat out fellow second-year receiver Billy McMullen for the no.4 job. McMullen was a third-round pick.

Lewis gives the Eagles' offense a deep threat which head coach Andy Reid can matchup up with against the opponents' backup defensive backs. The pro game is based on matchups and Lewis gives the Eagles an advantage whenever they use him.

St. Louis Rams

Shaun McDonald the New Hakim?

The Rams have been looking for a speedy receiver to take over Az-Zahir Hakim's role since he signed with Detroit after the 201 season.

Dane Looker has done a nice job in the third receiver role but he lacks the speed needed to get down field like Hakim.

This season, second-year receiver Shaun McDonald looks to have finally given the team the down field speed and the ability to take a short pass and make it a long one.

McDonald already has more catches this season (13) than last season (10). He has tallied three scores and five of his 13 grabs have been for 20 yards or more.

Minnesota Vikings

Moore The Starter but What to do About Smith?

Head coach Mike Tice said earlier this week that rookie Mewelde Moore will continue to be the club's starting running back.

"You know the old adage, "If it ain't broke don't fix it?" Well I think that comes into play in this situation. The young man (Moore) is playing very good football for us. We are winning, and we are very productive right now."

Tice added running back Michael Bennett will have to earn his playing time after coming back from knee problems.

The big issue here is what they do with second-year back Onterrio Smith who will be sitting out the final game of his four-team suspension.

Smith played very well before the suspension and is more powerful than Moore. Smith also showed that he could catch the ball well earlier this season.

If Smith returns to the team in good shape, look for him to get worked in behind Moore in their game in Week Nine at Indianapolis.

It will be interesting to see how they split the workload up the rest of the season.

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