Titans, Panthers enjoy early spoils

Published: Sunday, January 4, 2004 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, January 4, 2004 at 12:18 a.m.

The NFL playoffs kicked off with vindication for a veteran kicker and a sour exit for one of the league's best coaches.

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Tennessee's Chris Brown runs for a touchdown in the Titans' 20-17 win over Baltimore on Saturday.

The Associated Press

Gary Anderson sent a 46-yard field goal through the uprights with 29 seconds remaining Saturday, giving Tennessee a 20-17 playoff victory over host Baltimore.

In January 1999, his lone miss of the season - a 38-yarder late in regulation against Atlanta - cost Minnesota the chance to go to the Super Bowl.

Now Anderson has a chance to get back to the Super Bowl, which is pretty remarkable considering he was fly fishing in Colorado in September when the Titans gave him a call.

Bill Parcells had worked magic in leading Dallas to a 10-6 record in his first year at the helm. But unable to mask their known problems (lack of a running game, poor punting) and let down by their strengths (a top-ranked defense), the Cowboys were overmatched in a 29-10 loss to the Carolina Panthers, a team they never trailed in beating six weeks ago.

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