Lyle Alzado's dream of returning to the NFL at age 41 ended yesterday. So did the career of Hanford Dixon, a decade younger.
Alzado, one of the NFL's top defensive ends during 1971-85, tried a comeback this year after working in movies and television. He even made an interception (called back) in a preseason game. But a pulled calf muscle and a knee injury hampered him and the Los Angeles Raiders announced he is retiring.
So is Dixon, a longtime top cornerback with Cleveland. He signed with San Francisco as a Plan B free agent in March, but the 49ers now have written him off.
The Raiders' cuts also included Marcus Wilson, the Virginia running back who entered the NFL draft a year early and was taken in the sixth round.
Lions: Now that Detroit has opened the vault for No. 1 draft pick Andre Ware, second-year quarterback Rodney Peete wants a pile of cash as well.
Peete, probable season-opening starter, said he wants to renegotiate the remaining season on his two-year contract as one of the NFL's lowest-paid quarterbacks -- backups included.
Peete reportedly will make a base salary of $90,000 this year. Ware received a $2 million signing bonus after agreeing Monday to a four-year contract worth $4.6 million.
Giants: Joe Morris, the team's all-time leading ground gainer in rushing, survived for at least another week -- yesterday's cutdown was to 60 players but teams must get down to 47 on Monday.
Morris, who missed all of last season with a foot injury, still seems in trouble because of the Giants' overload of running backs. But Coach Bill Parcells brushed aside speculation that Morris was the odd man out, for the moment. Instead he cut Chad Thorson, a rookie linebacker, to get down to 60.
Cardinals: Coach Joe Bugel announced that second-year pro Timm Rosenbach will make his fourth consecutive start in Friday night's preseason finale at Denver and will be the regular season starter Sept. 9 at Washington.
Bugel added that he and his staff are thinking of keeping only two quarterbacks, so either Gary Hogeboom or Tom Tupa could be cut next week.
Eagles: The team waived 15 players, including nine-year safety-linebacker Todd Bell. He started four games last season before a knee injury put him out. He had surgery in October and has been unable to practice.
Holdout Keith Jackson was placed on the reserve-did not report list. Coach Buddy Ryan said he is sure the Pro Bowl tight end won't be on hand for the opener.
Packers: The attorney for holdout Don Majkowski said the quarterback would be willing to play for the NFL minimum of $80,000 this season if he can become an unrestricted free agent in 1991.
A Green Bay executive quickly rejected the idea.
A day after Coach Lindy Infante said Anthony Dilweg would start the season in Majkowski's place, talks stayed at an impasse.
Green Bay waived veteran defensive end Blaise Winter and linebacker John Dorsey, the latter with an injury settlement.
All-pro wide receiver Sterling Sharpe was hospitalized for a night because of dizziness, and some numbness, but was expected back at practice today.
Colts: Eric Dickerson's agent said the star running back, who reported late to training camp and then failed a physical examination, would return to Indianapolis for another examination of his injured left hamstring today.
Also, Coach Ron Meyer affirmed that Jeff George will be Indianapolis's starting quarterback this season. That is, assuming George, the first player taken in the 1990 NFL draft, doesn't disgrace himself in Friday's preseason start against New Orleans.
Bills: Guard Will Wolford, one of the mainstays of Buffalo's offensive line, finally agreed to terms and reported. Wolford, a starter since he coming in as a first-round draft pick in 1986, took a three-year deal said to average $700,000 a year.
Browns: Cleveland's thin offensive line got a lift when tackle Paul Farren, who started 13 games last season, finally agreed to a contract. It is estimated at nearly $1 million over two years.
Linebackers Clay Matthews and Mike Johnson and defensive backs Frank Minnifield and Felix Wright remain holdouts. Starting guard Dan Fike was put on the physically unable to perform list.
Seahawks: Quarterback Rusty Hilger, who has played for the Raiders, Bills and Lions, was among 13 players waived by Seattle, which acquired offensive lineman Ronnie Lee from the Atlanta Falcons for a draft choice. Lee, a 12-year veteran, started 15 games for the Miami Dolphins last season. Still unsigned is top draftee (No. 3) Cortez Kennedy, defensive tackle from Miami whom Coach Chuck Knox projected as an immediate starter.
BRONCOS: OL Monte Smith and CB Le-Lo Lang were placed on the non-football injury reserve list. Smith, a key backup, will be sidelined for the season after accidentally shooting himself in the foot cleaning a gun last week.
CHARGERS: Traded P Keith English (41.7-yard preseason avg.) to Rams for a draft choice. Three other players, including K John Carney (beaten out by Fuad Reveiz), were waived and three, including ex-Redskin RB Joe Mickles, agreed to injury settlements.
CHIEFS: All-pro S Deron Cherry (knee) went on non-football injury list. Cuts included ex-Giants K Bjorn Nittmo (Plan B), unable to depose Nick Lowery, and LB Angelo Snipes, a 1986 Redskin trying to come back from Knee surgery.
DOLPHINS: Claimed DE Jackie Cline off Falcons' waivers.
FALCONS: Waived three players and placed WR Titus Dixon on IR; he hurt a knee in Saturday's win over Green Bay.
JETS: Put LB Troy Benson (pinched neck nerve) and FB Carl Byrum (hamstring) on season-ending IR. Cuts included Plan B pickups Grantis Bell, a WR previously on Redskins' developmental squad, and G Tom Rehder.
LIONS: Waived WR Sylvester Stamps (ex-Buccaneers), WR Byron Williams (ex-Giants); put DE Sherman Cocroft on physically unable to perform list.
PATRIOTS: Gary Jeter, a DE in his 13th NFL year, and SS Jim Bowman, entering his sixth New England season, were among cuts. Also, free-agent CB Erroll Tucker, ninth-year LB Bruce Scholtz.
RAMS: Waived 19 players, with DL Sean Smith, DL Bill Goldberg given injury settlements. Cuts included both L.A. punters (Plan B acquisition Hank Ilesic, draftee Kent Elmore), as P Keith English came in trade from Chargers.
SAINTS: Released ninth-year QB Dave Wilson, rookie WR Gary Cooper. Waived eight-year starting G Brad Edelman, with an injury settlement; he ruptured his right biceps three weeks ago.
VIKINGS: Cuts included WR Cornell Burbage, DL Ken Clarke, rookie RB J.J. Flannigan. Veteran WR Jim Gustafson went on all-season IR, pinched neck nerve.