- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 25, 2008

From combined dispatches

The Detroit Lions fired president Matt Millen more than seven years after the former linebacker and TV analyst took over one of the NFL’s most mediocre franchises and made it the worst.

“I have relieved Matt Millen of his duties effective immediately,” Lions owner William Clay Ford said Wednesday afternoon.

Millen’s teams won a league-low 31 games since he took over in 2001, but his boss refused to get rid of him until now.

Bill Ford, son of the team owner, said Monday he would fire Millen if he had the authority.

Detroit was routed in each of its first three games this season, falling behind 21-0 twice and 21-3 once en route to lopsided losses going into its off week.

The 0-3 start dropped Millen to 31-84 overall, giving the Lions at least 10 more losses than any other NFL team over the past seven-plus seasons during one of the worst stretches in league history.

The front office will be led by executive vice president Tom Lewand, who will report to the owner on business issues, and promoted general manager Martin Mayhew, who will report to the owner on football matters.

GIANTS: Super Bowl star Plaxico Burress was suspended for two weeks by New York for missing a workout earlier in the week. His agent insisted the receiver had an undisclosed family emergency and will appeal the ban to the NFL Players Association.

Because the unbeaten Giants don’t play this weekend, Burress will miss just the Oct. 5 game against Seattle if the suspension is upheld.

The Giants refused to say why Burress was suspended, but agent Drew Rosenhaus said the nine-year veteran did not attend Monday’s workout because of a family emergency that has been resolved.

The suspension took effect immediately, meaning Burress will not be allowed to return to team activities until the day after the Seahawks game. He will miss two paychecks, totaling $235,294.12 of his $2 million annual base salary.

JETS: Brett Favre was uncertain how limited he will be by a sore ankle during practices this week.

The 38-year-old Favre, who has started an NFL record for quarterbacks 256 straight regular-season games, rolled the ankle in the third quarter of the Jets’ loss at San Diego on Monday night.

Favre gingerly stretched at the start of practice and limped slightly as he warmed up with the other quarterbacks and later while tossing passes to receivers. He was listed as limited at practice on the team’s injury report.

BILLS: Receiver Roscoe Parrish will miss four to six weeks after having surgery to repair ligament damage in his right thumb, leaving Buffalo without one of its most elusive threats.

Coach Dick Jauron made the surprise announcement a day after Parrish had what was described as a brief but intricate operation. Jauron said Parrish told him he was hurt in the fourth quarter of a 24-23 win over Oakland last weekend.

PACKERS: Cornerback Al Harris has a “serious” spleen injury that requires a cautious approach, but he hasn’t been ruled out for the rest of the season, coach Mike McCarthy said.

Harris was injured in the first quarter of Green Bay’s loss to Dallas on Sunday night. The injury is believed to be a ruptured spleen, which sidelined then-Tampa Bay quarterback Chris Simms for the rest of the 2006 season.

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