Atlanta wide receiver Andre Rison irritated the Rams by guaranteeing, then delivering, a victory over them three weeks ago. But heading into Sunday's rematch at Anaheim Stadium, it's Ram free safety Anthony Newman firing the first shot.
"Yeah, he had a big game on us but he didn't come over the middle," Newman said in a TV interview Monday night. "I challenge Andre to come over the middle."
Rison ran short sideline patterns in the first meeting, a 31-13 Falcon victory, catching 12 passes for 123 yards and two touchdowns.
Afterward, Rison hinted that the Rams had put a bounty on him and accused cornerback Steve Israel of taking a cheap shot at him, an accusation Israel denied.
Rison has a news conference scheduled with L.A. reporters this morning.
"The best thing that could happen to our team was the Rams beating Kansas City," Jones said. "This will force use to focus for Sunday. This got our attention."
Wide receiver Flipper Anderson leads the league in yards per reception with a 35.1 average. . . . The Falcons are tied with Kansas City for the league lead in take-aways with 14. They have 10 interceptions, including four by D.J. Johnson, who intercepted two of Ram quarterback Chris Miller's passes in the teams' first meeting.