Fourth and long for Rattay

ROB LONGLEY -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 10:04 AM ET

These are not your big brother's San Francisco 49ers.

Those 49ers, the ones who were winning Super Bowls in the 1980s and '90s, won games in the fourth quarter rather than threw them away.

Which punctuates the point that current quarterback Tim Rattay is not Steve Young or Joe Montana.

Rather than late-game rallies, Rattay is getting a rep for late-game collapses. The struggling quarterback, expected just to be a fill-in until first-overall pick Alex Smith is ready to start, has been picked off 11 times in the final quarter.

Two of those came this past week in the 34-31 loss to the Dallas Cowboys which allowed quarterback Drew Bledsoe to pull out a dramatic late victory.

"Obviously, I'm not trying to have turnovers in the fourth quarter," Rattay said. "We're obviously trying to win games when we're behind."

ROOKIE LESSONS

Chicago Bears quarterback Kyle Orton is an equal-opportunity gift-giver. But the struggling quarterback refuses to look at his five-interception performance this past week to the Cincinnati Bengals as a lesson learned.

Instead, it's something he would rather forget.

"Just because I played poorly doesn't mean I'm going to have an epiphany or anything and become a great quarterback all of a sudden," Orton said.

"I went back, watched film, broke it down, evaluated myself just like every game. I think you learn from every game."

SHOCK TREATMENT

You would think New York Giants tight end Jeremy Shockey would know better than to mess with coach Tom Coughlin.

But Shockey blasted the boss for benching receiver Plaxico Burress because he had shown up late for a couple of team meetings.

"There was a lot of frustration on my part," Shockey said. "This team has been losing the past couple of years and to stop that we have to have our best players on the field."

QUICK KICKS

The Philadelphia Eagles have more than a banged-up Donovan McNabb to be concerned about this week when they travel to Kansas City. Since 1995, the Chiefs are 17-3 at Arrowhead Stadium when facing NFC opponents ... Nepean native Jesse Palmer was one of six quarterbacks the N.Y. Jets had in for a tryout before signing ancient Vinny Testaverde.


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