PRO FOOTBALL / DAILY REPORT : AROUND THE NFL : Bears Hold Off Giants, Tie 36-Year Mark
Steve Walsh, starting for the injured Erik Kramer, passed for two first-half touchdowns and the Bears held off the New York Giants, 27-21, in Chicago to complete their first unbeaten exhibition season since 1958.
Kevin Butler kicked two fourth-quarter field goals, including a 53-yarder with 4:16 left, for the Bears, who had a 24-7 lead in the final quarter before the Giants rallied behind backup quarterback Kent Graham.
Keith Elias scored on a one-yard run for New York with 10:24 remaining and, seconds later, Thomas Randolph recovered a fumble by Bear receiver Tyrone Williams. That set up a 20-yard touchdown pass from Graham to Chris Calloway with 9:16 left, cutting the lead to three, before Butler connected again to make it 27-21.
The Giants finished exhibition play with a 1-4 record, the first time since 1982 they have won only one preseason game.
Atlanta Falcon Coach June Jones said free-agent All-Pro cornerback Deion Sanders has told him he will give his former club the opportunity to match any offer he receives from another NFL club.
“Basically, Deion has promised us that he’ll bring us any offer he gets and see if we can match the thing,” said Jones. “We’re kind of operating under that assumption.”
Sanders, a two-sport star who played the outfield for the Atlanta Braves before being traded to Cincinnati earlier this year, was Atlanta’s No. 1 draft pick in 1989 and played with the Falcons for five seasons.
He is believed to have received at least two contract offers, but neither team was identified. Sanders recently visited San Francisco, Kansas City, New Orleans, Miami and Atlanta.