Duce Staley ran into the end zone, went straight to the stands and handed the football to young boy wearing a Donovan McNabb jersey.

Just one problem: Staley plays for the Pittsburgh Steelers now.

Staley ran for 37 yards and one touchdown in limited action against his former team, leading the Steelers to a 27-21 victory over the host Philadelphia Eagles in a preseason game last night.

Reserve Willie Parker ran for 106 yards and one touchdown and Dante Brown also had a TD run for the Steelers.

Reno Mahe ran for a score, and L.J. Smith and Greg Lewis had touchdown catches for the Eagles, who lost two more starters -- linebacker Nate Wayne and left guard Jermane Mayberry -- to injuries.

A three-time 1,000-yard rusher in seven seasons in Philadelphia, Staley showed the Eagles what they're missing. He ran six times for 33 yards on the opening drive, capping it with a nifty 14-yard touchdown run.

Philadelphia didn't make a strong push to retain Staley, a fan favorite who again heard the familiar chants of "Duuuuce!" each time he touched the ball. But the Eagles could use him now after losing Correll Buckhalter to a season-ending knee injury last week.

Terrell Owens, the Eagles' biggest offseason acquisition, didn't have a catch. His 41-yard touchdown reception in the first quarter was negated by a holding penalty on Tra Thomas. He later dropped a pass that hit him in the chest.

McNabb was 8 of 19 for 105 yards and one touchdown.

Wayne and Mayberry left with hamstring injuries in the first quarter. It wasn't immediately known how long they'd be out.

* JETS: The team and agent Tom Condon are working on a contract extension for quarterback Chad Pennington, hoping to complete a deal by Wednesday's deadline established by Pennington's camp to cut off the negotiations until after the season if an agreement isn't in place.

Pennington, 28, is entering the final season of a contract that pays him a salary of $4.574 million this year. He is eligible for unrestricted free agency next spring.

Condon apparently is seeking more than $20 million in bonus money as part of a long-term contract extension for Pennington. A source familiar with deliberations, speaking on condition of anonymity because the talks are at a sensitive stage with the deadline looming, said yesterday there was optimism on both sides but that some hurdles remained.

Pennington has established himself as one of the league's top quarterbacks and the Jets' most indispensable player since the club used the third of its four first-round draft picks in 2000 to select him out of Marshall. He became the Jets' starter in the fifth game of the 2002 season and led the NFL with a 68.9 completion percentage and a passer rating of 104.2 that year, when he threw for 3,120 yards and 22 touchdowns, with only six interceptions.

The Jets' 2003 season was undone when Pennington broke his left wrist during the preseason and missed the first six regular season games. The team lost its first four games and was 2-5 by the time Pennington made his first start of the season. Pennington started the final nine games and led the Jets to a 4-5 record but showed the effects of his late beginning, throwing 12 interceptions to offset his 13 touchdowns. He completed 63.6 percent of his passes and compiled a passer rating of 82.9.

Over the past two seasons, the Jets are 12-9 when Pennington starts and 3-8 when he doesn't.

* DOLPHINS: Reports that tailback Ricky Williams contacted the team this week and discussed a possible return at some point from his sudden retirement undoubtedly set off alarm bells in south Florida and around the league. But there was little to get excited about in the short term, even before Williams told the Miami Herald that he had no immediate plans to come back and merely was talking to the Dolphins at the behest of agent Leigh Steinberg after the club informed him of its intention to seek reimbursement of $8.6 million.

Williams has filed retirement papers with the league and, although they're not binding, they virtually ensure that Williams can't play this season. He reportedly has had three violations of the league's substance abuse policy, mandating a four-game suspension when and if he comes back. League rules say that if he returns from his retirement within a year, that would count as a fourth violation of the policy, bringing a likely one-year suspension.

* COWBOYS: The Dallas Cowboys Channel, a 24-hour cable network devoted to America's Team, will launch Sept. 8 and be available to more than 1.3 Comcast subscribers in Texas and adjoining states.

The network will offer original programming, including broadcasts of Coach Bill Parcells's news conferences, a nightly news show from practice and interviews. There will also be call-in shows and "Owners Desk," a weekly report from team owner Jerry Jones.

About 500,000 subscribers in the Dallas-Fort Worth area will have access to the channel.

* TEXANS: Houston placed inside linebacker Marcus Bell on injured reserve because of a shoulder injury he suffered last weekend against Pittsburgh.

Bell, 27, had been in the running for a backup job after sitting out the 2003 season.

* JAGUARS: Jacksonville signed free agent kicker Steve Christie, a 14-year veteran who ranks 15th in NFL history in scoring. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Former Eagle Duce Staley (22) carries early load for Pittsburgh and takes cornerback Sheldon Brown with him.