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“They have really taken it in stride very well,” Mara said of the players. “They have been laughing and joking about it. They have taken it about as well as possibly can be expected and that includes the head coach by the way.”

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AP Sports Writers Dave Campbell in Minneapolis, Tom Canavan in East Rutherford, N.J., Larry Lage in Detroit and Michael Marot in Indianapolis and AP Pro Football Writer Barry Wilner in New York contributed to this report.