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NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (15-4)
Fantasy Tip: As always, Rob Gronkowski is on his own level in terms of tight ends and is expected to put up huge numbers of yards and touchdowns. Four-game suspension or not (it was lifted pending appeal), Brady remains an elite level quarterback. No. 2 QB Jimmy Garoppolo is also a player to consider if you end up drafting Brady.
What's New: Tom Brady's cellphone. Otherwise, the Patriots don't have to make many changes after winning their fourth Super Bowl and their 11th AFC East title in 12 seasons.
Strengths: Coach, QB, TE, K.
Expectations: With Brady now available for all 16 games,Wholesale NFL China Jerseys, the Patriots are expected to romp through the division again. And they have enough of a chip on their shoulder over the deflated footballs allegations to run up the score: In 2007 after being caught videotaping opponents' signals,Wholesale Jerseys China, they went 16-0 in the regular season.
Weaknesses: DB, RB, depth at QB.
New faces: QB Ryan Lindley,Air Max 97 Gold, CB Chimdi Chekwa,Cheap NFL Jerseys, DE Jabaal Sheard,Air Max 97, WR Brandon Gibson, TE Scott Chandler.
Key losses: CBs Darrelle Revis and Brandon Browner, DT Vince Wilfork, RBs Shane Vereen and RB Stevan Ridley,Cheap AIr Max 95 Trainers, OL Dan Connolly.
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The nominees for best coach or manager are: Geno Auriemma of UConn women's basketball, Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots, Steve Kerr of Golden State, Mike Krzyzewski of Duke, and Urban Meyer of Ohio State football.
The awards, hosted by Joel McHale, will air July 15 from Los Angeles on ABC.
Curry and James will compete for another trophy in the best NBA player category,Jordan Shoes For Sale, along with Anthony Davis of New Orleans,Cheap NFL Jerseys China, James Harden of Houston,Nike NFL Jerseys China, and Russell Westbrook of Oklahoma City.
Triple Crown winner American Pharoah is nominated for best championship performance, along with three humans: San Francisco Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner, Florida softball pitcher Lauren Haeger and James. Victor Espinoza, who rode American Pharoah, is nominated for best jockey.
The Golden State Warriors champ and Cleveland Cavaliers superstar are among the nominees for best male athlete at the ESPY Awards,Wholesale Jerseys Online. Serena Williams leads the list of nominees for best female athlete.
LOS ANGELES (AP) â€” Stephen Curry and LeBron James are going head-to-head again not long after battling for the NBA title,Cheap Adidas NHL Jerseys.
Online fan voting opened Wednesday and runs through July 15 at ESPN.com.
Masters and newly crowned U.S. Open winner Jordan Spieth and Little League World Series star Mo'ne Davis are among the nominees for best breakthrough athlete.
Joining Curry and James in the best male athlete category are Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers and Houston Texans defensive end JJ Watt.
Besides Williams, UFC fighter Ronda Rousey, Connecticut basketball player Breanna Stewart and Olympic skier Lindsey Vonn are nominees for female athlete. Rousey earned another nod for best fighter, along with Floyd Mayweather Jr. Vonn was nominated for best comeback athlete.
Patriots quarterback Tom Brady earned a nod for best NFL player, along with Pittsburgh wide receiver Antonio Brown,Cheap Jerseys, Philadelphia Eagles running back DeMarco Murray, Rodgers and Watt.
Williams earned a second nomination as best female tennis player.
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This isn't over. Not by a long shot.
Here are some things the Patriots must ponder as this drama reaches the next stage:
Cynics will point out that Brady and the Patriots got to a Super Bowl, which they won, after doctoring the footballs in the AFC championship game. So any such dark scenario for them when winter hits is a payback.
Brady appears headed to court seeking to overturn the suspension, and at the same time would place his New England Patriots in a damaging quarterback limbo.
Roger Goodell's decision to uphold Tom Brady's four-game suspension is not likely the end of the deflated footballs saga.
GETTING JIMMY READY: Brady's QB heir might not be Jimmy Garoppolo, especially if Brady carries through on his plan to play a few more seasons. For now, with the two-time league MVP's availability uncertain, the Patriots have no choice but to turn to the second-year quarterback with 27 pro passes on his resume. Journeyman Matt Flynn would be a desperate option.
The team's strongly worded condemnation of Goodell's decision on Tuesday in which the Patriots used such words as "folly" and "incomprehensible." The Patriots said they "continue to unequivocally believe in and support Tom Brady," but in a court of law,Air Max 97 Undefeated Uk, how much assistance can Kraft really provide?
Brady wants his name cleared, particularly after the damaging information released Tuesday in Goodell's decision on Brady's appeal,Wholesale Jerseys From China, so he and the players' union will seek an injunction stopping the suspension until the case is heard and ruled upon,Cheap Jerseys Free Shipping, whenever that might be.
Suppose Brady loses in court, too. In late November or early December. New England could be without its four-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback for the stretch drive, when it is trying to make the playoffs â€” usually a foregone conclusion for the Patriots.
GAME-PLANNING: Not knowing when Brady will be taking snaps in a real game can hinder the entire makeup of the Patriots, who like to game-plan for specific opponents â€” and do that better than anyone. They appear weaker for 2015 with the losses of standout cornerbacks Darrelle Revis and Brandon Browner; DT Vince Wilfork, a leader of the defense; and running backs Shane Vereen and Stevan Ridley. The rest of the AFC East looks improved.
SUPPORTING BRADY: While building an offensive line to protect their crown jewel is a gimme,Wholesale Jerseys Online, aiding Brady's court case is anything but for the Patriots. Owner Robert Kraft is not fighting the team's $1 million fine and loss of two draft picks,Cheap Adidas Superstar Shoes, and though he doesn't want Brady sidelined at all,NHL Ice Hockey Jerseys, losing him for the first four matches is easier to swallow than for, say, the final four games. One of the league's most influential men and a longtime adviser to Goodell, Kraft would, in essence, be confronting his fellow owners by backing Brady's legal case.
It will take some coaching brilliance to keep the Patriots' offense rolling under such uncertain circumstances.
So who gets how many snaps in training camp practices and preseason games? Brady likes to take nearly all of them in practice, but if Garoppolo is likely to start against Pittsburgh when the season kicks off on Sept. 10, he'll need to be as sharp and tested as any quarterback can get during the summer.
Brady supporters will argue that the evidence is circumstantial, at best, and that his destroying his cellphone displays little more than bad judgment and timing.
Brady is allowed to partake in all preseason activities. Just how many of those activities should involve getting Garoppolo ready instead of having Brady take the reps?
Regardless, the biggest dilemma in "Deflategate" now faces the franchise Brady has led to the top.
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The Packers rank second in scoring this year and have outscored their last five home opponents by a combined 128 points in the first half. They have a six-game winning streak at Lambeau Field.
That doesn't mean he expects anything to come easily,Wholesale Jerseys Online.
"If you let him sit there in the pocket, he'll take his time and do his thing,Soccer Jerseys From China, but if he gets out and gets flushed, he goes," Nolan said. "He's a very hard one to figure in that regard."
Notes: Moore says the NFL fined him $22,050 for a crown-of-helmet hit on Arizona WR Jaron Brown last week. The fine was Moore's first of 2014, but he drew almost $75,000 in fines last season. There was no penalty on the fourth-quarter play. ... WRs Roddy White (ankle) and Harry Douglas (foot) were held out of practice on Thursday. White missed last week's game with the same injury.
FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. (AP) â€” At 5-7 and sporting the NFL's most leaky defense, the Atlanta Falcons look like a mismatch against Green Bay star quarterback Aaron Rodgers.
"Without question he's an exciting player to watch,Wholesale Jerseys."
Rodgers, the 2011 MVP, has physical playmakers who run hard and fast. His receiving corps,NFL Jerseys Wholesale, led by Randall Cobb and Jordy Nelson, creates problems for small cornerbacks. Running backs Eddie Lacy and James Starks are tough to tackle.
They'll need it against Rodgers, who has thrown no picks at Lambeau Field since Dec. 2, 2012 and 31 touchdown passes in that span.
Despite his defense's statistical shortcomings, Nolan likes how his young players have responded to a rough start to the season.
Conditions hardly seem to favor the Falcons on Monday night at chilly Green Bay (9-3).
"We'll make the effort to disrupt him in any way we can, but he's a difficult guy to disrupt because you might be asking for something that you don't want," Nolan said. "I don't think we really want Aaron to get out of the pocket, but at the same time you don't want him just sitting there and picking you apart. He can do that."
The Falcons never had their best defender, Sean Weatherspoon, after the standout linebacker suffered a season-ending injury last summer.
Atlanta's defense is last in total yards,NFL Jerseys From China, last against the pass, second-worst in sacks, fifth-worst in third-down percentage and 22nd in scoring.
But they got safety William Moore, a 2012 Pro Bowl alternate, back from a seven-game shoulder injury absence last week.
Moore says the defense must create takeaways, as tough as that assignment seems against a stingy quarterback such as Rodgers.
Falcons defensive coordinator Mike Nolan doesn't exactly agree.
And Nolan hopes that the defense builds some momentum with 12 interceptions in the last six games.
For Atlanta, this week marks the first of three straight weeks against some of the NFL's best QBs. They host Pittsburgh's Ben Roethlisberger next week and visit Drew Brees in New Orleans on Dec. 21.
"It's proven when you win the turnover battle you come out with the win, probably," Moore said. "As long as we cause turnovers, it gets us off the field and puts the ball in the offense's hands."
"He keeps plays alive all the time," Nolan said. "He's got a tremendous ability just to flick the ball and be accurate. When he scrambles, a lot of guys will bring their eyes down and try to find the open lane, (but) he's got a great feel for what's around him so he can keep his eyes downfield and still maneuver and stay alive.
It looks grim on paper.
If Atlanta can keep the score close early,Cheap Adidas NHL Jerseys, Nolan believes his team has a chance to pull a big upset.
Nolan considers Rodgers, though, to be among the best quarterbacks ever to play in a West Coast-style offense â€” an elite player who makes everyone around him better.
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Indy decided to give him a chance after he performed well at the NFL's veterans scouting combine in Arizona,Wholesale NHL Jerseys.
The 5-foot-11,Cheap Jerseys China, 190-pound Arizona State alum played nine games with Tampa Bay in 2013. He was primarily a special teams player before he was waived in August.
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) â€” Indianapolis has added cornerback Deveron Carr,Wholesale NFL Jerseys China, signing the NFL veteran who is trying to restart his career.
The Colts have been trying to reinforce their secondary during the offseason after releasing safety LaRon Landry and losing another safety,Jordan Shoes For Sale, Sergio Brown,Wholesale Jerseys China, in free agency. Indy has already re-signed its other starting safety,Wholesale Jerseys, Mike Adams.
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Signed by the Packers as a free agent last year after playing for the NFC North rival Minnesota Vikings,Nike Air Max Shoes For Women, Guion started every game for the first time in his career. He had career highs of 62 tackles and 3 Â½ sacks.
Guion will be eligible to return to the Packers' active roster Sept,NFL Jerseys Supply. 29. He can play and practice in the preseason.
GREEN BAY,Cheap Sports Jerseys, Wis. (AP) â€” The NFL suspended Packers defensive tackle Letroy Guion without pay for the first three games of the regular season on Thursday,Cheap Jerseys From China, saying the eighth-year pro violated the league's policy on substance abuse.
The 28-year-old Guion was arrested near his home in Florida in early February on felony charges of drug and firearm possession. A traffic stop turned up three-quarters of a pound of marijuana,NFL Jerseys Cheap, a handgun and a bag containing more than $190,Cheap Jerseys Wholesale,000 in cash.
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"I'm very versatile," he said. "I'm a hard-working guy. I potentially can be the next J.J. Watt."
Nelson is part of UAB's final football class. The school disbanded the program after last season.
The 6-foot-5, 305-pound player was the 17th selection in the fourth round on Saturday, the 116th overall.
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) â€” The Arizona Cardinals traded away three picks to move up seven spots in the fourth round on the final day of the NFL draft.
He said he looked forward to playing as an edge rusher rather than playing in a three-point stance.
Arians said he was watching his granddaughter compete in the Alabama state track championships several years ago when he first saw Nelson, whom he called the fastest player he's ever coached, even faster than Brown.
To move up, the Cardinals gave Cleveland the 24th pick in the fourth round (123rd overall), the 22nd pick in the sixth round (198th overall) and the 24th pick in the seventh round (241st overall).
Others may have doubted him,Wholesale Cheap Jerseys, but Gunter aimed high when comparing himself to another player.
Nelson had the fastest 40-yard time at the NFL combine at 4.28 seconds and could be a leading candidate to return kicks for Arizona. He stands 5-foot-10 and weighs just 156 pounds, the lightest player to participate in the combine in 13 years. He said he wants to get up to 165 to 175 pounds.
"I just feel like at outside linebacker I'll be more of a bully compared to where I was with my hand in the ground,Supply NFL Jerseys Factory," he said. "...I'm going to be able to manhandle whoever I want to manhandle out there."
"In this business enough people talk that occasionally you get some intel that tells you where a guy is going to potentially go," he said, "and I had a little birdie tell me where he was going to go if we didn't take him. I got a call from the GM that confirmed that afterward."
Thanks to a second-round trade with Baltimore, Arizona had consecutive picks in the fifth round. The Cardinals used the first to select defensive end/outside linebacker Shaq Riddick of West Virginia and the other to choose wide receiver J.J. Nelson of UAB.
While Gunter was forecast to go much lower, Keim said the Cardinals had information that they had better make a move when they did.
Then they used the selection to pick Delaware State defensive tackle Rodney Gunter, a player many had forecast to go much later, if at all.
"I'm just very surprised," he said in a conference call. "I was projected to go in later rounds, around five,NFL Jerseys Cheap Authentic, six, seven, but God blessed me with the positions to go fourth round. It's a dream come true."
The Cardinals wanted him so bad they weren't taking any chances, apparently suspecting someone else was about to take him.
"I feel like if I do gain weight that it's not going to hurt my speed at all,Cheap NFL Jerseys China," he said.
Riddick, 6-foot-6 and 260 pounds, played one season at West Virginia after transferring from Gardner-Webb, where he was a dominant FCS (Football Championship Subdivision) player and had earned his degree in business administration in three years.
With the very last pick of the draft, the so-called "Mr. Irrelevant,NFL Jerseys China," Arizona selected Louisville tight end Gerald Christian, the 256thh player chosen overall.
As a senior, Gunter had seven sacks and 13 tackles for loss.
"A lot of fans are probably going to say 'Who is Rodney Gunter?'" Cardinals general manager Steve Keim said. "I have a pretty strong conviction,Air Max 97 Silver, coach (Bruce Arians) has a pretty strong conviction, that in the next couple of years our fans are going to know real well who Rodney Gunter is. It's no different from the way we felt about John (Brown) last year coming out of Pittsburg State and Justin Bethel coming out of Presbyterian (in 2012)."
Gunter, a cousin of former Cardinals tight end D.C. Jefferson, acknowledged that he was drafted sooner than he had expected to be.
Gunter played only one year of high school football, saying he worked as a waiter and dishwasher to help ends meet at home, where he was one of three sons to a single mother.
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Since Manning's arrival in Denver in 2012, Thomas has caught 297 passes for 4,Wholesale Nike NFL Jerseys,483 yards and 35 TDs. In that three-year span,NFL Jerseys From China, Thomas has ranked first in the league in yards receiving, second to Antonio Brown in receptions and second to Dez Bryant in touchdowns.
Manning is due $19 million in 2015 with a $21.2 million salary cap hit. He has to pass a physical by Thursday, something both he and Elway have said they consider a mere formality.
Last year Thomas said he'd be willing to give the Broncos a "hometown discount" in a long-term contract but he hasn't specified exactly how much less he'd take to stay with the team that drafted him a few spots ahead of Tim Tebow.
"This is another step in our efforts to extend Demaryius' contract and ensure he remains a Denver Bronco,Discount NFL Jerseys," Elway said in a statement. "We will continue working toward a long-term agreement with Demaryius,NFL Jerseys Wholesale From China, who is a very important part of our team."
This move also makes it more unlikely that Pro Bowl tight end Julius Thomas will be back in Denver next season.
Thomas could always signal his displeasure with the move by waiting to sign the tender and skipping offseason workouts that begin the first week of April. If Thomas doesn't sign a long-term contract, the Broncos could use the franchise tag on him again next year.
Thomas ranks first in franchise history with 28 100-yard games, including a franchise-best 10 in 2014. He had seven straight 100-yard games, one shy of the NFL record and he set a franchise record with a 226-yard performance against Arizona on Oct. 5, when he also had a 74-yard touchdown that was negated by penalty.
The Thomases are among Denver's dozen unrestricted free agents, a group that also includes Wes Welker, Terrance Knighton, Rahim Moore, Orlando Franklin and Jacob Tamme.
ENGLEWOOD,Wholesale NFL Jerseys Online, Colo. (AP) â€” The Denver Broncos have placed their franchise tag on star receiver Demaryius Thomas,Cheap NFL Jerseys, guaranteeing him roughly $12.8 million next season and buying them more time to work out a long-term deal.
General manager John Elway used that same tactic before re-signing kicker Matt Prater and left tackle Ryan Clady before training camp in recent years.
Thomas set career highs with 111 catches for 1,619 yards in 2014, when he scored 11 times, when he joined Marvin n Harrison and Jerry Rice as the only players in NFL history to post three consecutive seasons with 1,400 or more yards receiving and at least 10 touchdown catches.
Selected 22nd overall in 2010 out of Georgia Tech, Thomas has made the Pro Bowl in each of his three seasons with Peyton Manning at quarterback.
By placing the non-exclusive designation on Thomas, the Broncos also bought more time to see how the Manning era plays out in Denver. Manning is expected to announce soon that he'll be back for an 18th season and fourth in Denver but with a restructured contract that gives the team more financial flexibility heading into free agency.
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With Ellington out, Johnson moved into the primary ball carrier role. In Arizona's 47-7 rout of San Francisco on Sunday, Johnson carried it 22 times for 110 yards and two touchdowns. He also had a 40-yard reception, a play that featured one of his trademark "cut-on-a-dime" moves on the sideline. It also left him exhausted.
"He just fell into our lap," Larry Fitzgerald said.
He said that just before the 40-yard pass play, Palmer said to him, "make sure you get out for me on this one 'cause I might need you."
"Anytime C.J. gets the ball, there's a chance that he goes the distance,Wholesale China NFL Jerseys, so I was really impressed,Cheap Jerseys Free Shipping," Fisher said. "They're utilizing him like they should, trying to get the ball to him in the passing game and run game. He's really quick through the hole. For his size, he's got power, so on the goal line, run for a touchdown."
"There were a lot of things going on with me. A lot of teams thought I had character issues," he said,NFL Jerseys Cheap, "just a lot of stuff going on around me as far as the shooting. Stuff like that, I'm pretty sure it scared a lot of teams off. Now when I look at it, I think everything happened for a reason and that helped me land here."
Fitzgerald called him "a great teammate."
The Arizona Cardinals needed to add a running back, and they found Chris Johnson, whose style fit coach Bruce Arians' system so well. On Aug. 17, Johnson signed a one-year contract with Arizona.
TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) â€” It was late in training camp. Andre Ellington was having his usual injury troubles. Rookie David Johnson was sidelined with a sore hamstring.
Johnson said he's never been surrounded with this much offensive talent before.
There have been no apparent character problems since Johnson arrived.
Prospective NFL employers stayed away.
On Sunday, Johnson will go against a familiar foe in Rams coach Jeff Fisher. Johnson had his best seasons when Fisher was at Tennessee, rushing for 2,006 yards in 2009.
"It's a situation where, when they give you the opportunity," he said, "you've got to actually step in and make plays."
"It's a situation where we've so many different guys we can go to," Johnson said. "Carson (Palmer),China Jerseys, he knows how to do it all, as far as checking in and out of the right plays. He knows when to go to the right receiver and when to check it down."
Ellington could be back Sunday against St. Louis but coach Bruce Arians has made it clear Johnson will still have a significant role. The Cardinals' vastly improved running game is a big reason for the team's overall success, especially in the red zone, where they have scored touchdowns in 11 of 12 tries.
Johnson,Wholesale Jerseys Free Shipping, a three-time Pro Bowl selection in his first three NFL seasons at Tennessee,Cheap Jerseys, was released by the New York Jets after one season last year. Then early on a Sunday morning, March 7, in Orlando, Florida, Johnson was wounded when someone opened fire on the van in which he was riding. A friend was killed. Johnson still has a bullet in his shoulder.
Johnson is just grateful to have a good team that needs him.
He is not yet in football shape.
Johnson turned 30 on Sept. 23 but rejects the idea that that's too old for today's running backs. He notes Adrian Peterson and Marshawn Lynch are older than he is.
Fisher sees a lot of familiar moves on display.
"I was pretty tired after that," Johnson said. "Larry caught a touchdown pass right after that. It felt pretty good, but that's another reason I need to get all the way in shape because if I had to stay in and run it (on the next play), I need to be in shape to do those things."
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Longtime defensive lineman Fred Evans was also among the final cuts as the Vikings chose to go younger at defensive tackle behind starters Linval Joseph and Sharrif Floyd. They also cut guard Jeff Baca,Air Max Zero Sale, defensive tackles Chase Baker and Isame Faciane, receivers Kain Colter and Donte Foster, running backs Joe Banyard and Dominique Williams, tight ends Chase Ford and Allen Reisner,Cheap Jerseys China, linebackers Justin Jackson and Mike Zimmer, cornerback Kendall James, center Zac Kerin, tackle Mike Remmers and defensive end Justin Trattou.
They also placed rookie tackle Antonio Richardson on injured reserve with an undisclosed injury.
Sanford was drafted in the seventh round in 2009 and has spent the last three seasons as one of the team's starting safeties. His best season came in 2011 when he had 118 tackles and his only two career interceptions.
Crocker played for new coach Mike Zimmer while he was a defensive coordinator in Atlanta and Cincinnati. Given the instability at safety, Zimmer brought Crocker in during training camp to try to solidify the spot and help the younger players learn the system.
As it stands, Robert Blanton, who has three starts in his first three years in the league and was bothered by injuries for much of the preseason himself,Wholesale Jerseys, is atop the depth chart at strong safety. They also have Andrew Sendejo and sixth-round draft pick Antone Exum as safeties behind Smith, a budding star at the position.
One month, four preseason games and two roster cutdowns later, the question remains.
But Sanford missed much of the offseason workouts with injury. Then he injured his quad two weeks ago against Kansas City and had to miss the preseason finale against Tennessee on Thursday night.
The Vikings released veterans Chris Crocker and Kurt Coleman and placed Jamarca Sanford,Teemu Selanne Ducks Throwback Jersey, who started 41 games for them over the previous three seasons, on injured reserve on Saturday night, leaving them light on experience at safety as the season opener against St. Louis approaches.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) â€” One of the Minnesota Vikings' biggest question marks entering training camp was who was going to step in to start at the safety position opposite standout Harrison Smith,Cheap Jerseys For Sale.
Evans broke into the league with the Dolphins in 2006, but after some problems off the field led to his exit from Miami, the Vikings brought him in to add depth to the defensive line. He wound up staying for seven seasons, becoming a valuable and versatile backup. But he will be 31 in November and the Vikings have been impressed with some of the younger players on the defensive line, including seventh-round draft pick Shamar Stephen.
But the 34-year-old didn't get on the field enough in the preseason and now may look to retire after contemplating walking away each of the last two seasons.
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"He's played plenty of football in his career and he knows what to do," McCoy said. "And he's been in the system for the two years we've been here together."
If the Broncos prevail, Denver clinches its fourth straight AFC West title.
There's a chance Mathews could go Sunday despite his lack of practice.
Mathews, who injured his ankle in Sunday's loss to the New England Patriots, hasn't practiced this week.
With a win,Wholesale Jerseys From China, the Chargers retain at least the AFC's No. 6 seed for the playoffs.
Denver is the only NFL team with two players with 10 sacks: linebacker Von Miller (13) and DeMarcus Ware (10),wholesale nfl jerseys.
Last season, Mathews was productive down the stretch. He rushed for an NFL-high 534 yards in December as the Chargers won four straight to snap their three-year streak of missing the playoffs.
But without Mathews,Nike Air Vapor Max Flyknit Men, the Chargers' running game is diminished. Minus a ground attack, the pressure falls on quarterback Philip Rivers against Denver's challenging pass rush.
Mathews,Cheap NFL Jerseys From China, who is in a contract season, has had an uneven year while rushing for 330 yards and three touchdowns.
He missed seven games after hurting his knee on Sept,Wholesale Jerseys From China. 14 against the Seahawks. He's eclipsed 100 yards rushing once in his four games back,Cheap China Jerseys.
"He's working as hard as he can to get out there and get ready to go on Sunday," Chargers coach Mike McCoy said of Mathews. "He's like every other player. Everyone's working hard. We'll play the healthiest 46 to help us win the game."
Mathews' availability is among the keys for San Diego (8-5) as it tries to avoid a season sweep by the visiting Broncos (10-3).
SAN DIEGO (AP) â€” Chargers running back Ryan Mathews missed practice Friday and is questionable for Sunday's game with the Denver Broncos.
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Jets safety Calvin Pryor said Enemkpali being a captain was "disrespectful." Ryan insisted he was just continuing his tradition of choosing players who go up against former teams or play in their hometowns.
Here are some other things to know as the Bills square off against the Jets:
So, surely, the Bills coach has been thinking about that moment when he walks onto the field at MetLife Stadium on Thursday night for the first time as the enemy, right?
THAT'S ALL, FOLK: Jets kicker Nick Folk strained his right quadriceps last Sunday against Jacksonville and was placed on season-ending injured reserve. New York signed former Houston kicker Randy Bullock to replace him, and this is an area to keep an eye on,Cheap Anaheim Ducks Hoodies, especially if it's a close game.
Bullock missed two of his three extra-point attempts from the new 33-yard distance earlier this season before being cut,Jerseys NFL Cheap.
It's a game just about anyone rooting for either the Buffalo Bills or New York Jets has had their eye on for months.
THUMBS UP: Jets quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick is playing through a torn ligament in his left thumb, but could opt for surgery Friday to repair it. He has had no issues with it taking snaps or handing off the ball, but needs surgery at some point. Fitzpatrick wants to be sure he won't miss any games, and would have nine days to heal before the Jets' next game if he has surgery Friday. Otherwise, he'll wait until after the season.
The Bills (4-4) and Jets (5-3) are in a midseason tug-of-war for second place in the AFC East, with the winner of this prime-time showdown getting the upper hand in the division â€” behind the undefeated New England Patriots.
BILLS D: Buffalo has been struggling on defense, a surprising weakness under the defensive-minded Ryan.
Sure, Rex. This is only the team that fired him after a six-year stretch that started with consecutive trips to the AFC title game and ended with a 4-12 season that had the franchise in disarray.
The Jets know what's coming, too.
He can join Doug Flutie (1999) as the only QBs in franchise history with five or more games of 40 yards rushing or more in a season.
"Obviously both teams are trying to get to the playoffs," Ryan said. "It's been a long time for both franchises and we're a game behind the Jets. So this is absolutely huge. It would be a gigantic win."
"It's not a slap in anybody's face," Ryan said.
TAYLOR MADE: Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor has sparked the offense with poise and playmaking ability. After spending the previous four seasons as Joe Flacco's backup in Baltimore, he has shown off a strong arm and also plenty of mobility. He missed two games with a sprained left knee, but returned last week to lead the Bills over the Dolphins.
"I promise I will give an honest answer after the game because right now,Cheap NFL Jerseys China, I haven't thought about it,NFL Jerseys Outlet," Ryan insisted.
"I mean, when I tell you what I'm telling you, it's the truth. We're just trying to prepare for the game in a short week. Would it have been different if it was a longer thing? Maybe. But at no point was I like, "I love it. I had this one circled."
"I think our guys understand that it's a division rival," Bowles said. "We know it's a Thursday night game. We're the only game playing. We're trying to become 6-3; they're trying to be 5-4. We understand the importance of the game."
It's Rex Ryan's return to the place where he became one of the NFL's biggest headline-makers with his showman style and brash and bold approach.
"Everybody knows me,Jerseys NFL Wholesale. I circle the Patriots. That's what I do."
OK WITH IK: Ryan stirred things up a bit early in the week when he selected linebacker Ikemefuna Enemkpali as one of the Bills' game day captains. Enemkpali, of course, broke Jets quarterback Geno Smith's jaw with a punch during training camp â€” and was immediately cut by the team. Ryan,Authentic NFL Jerseys Wholesale, who drafted Enemkpali, claimed him off waivers the next day.
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) â€” Here comes Rex.
Anyone who knows Ryan also knows he's a ferocious competitor. So, if there was no circle around the Jets on the schedule, there might be a big target drawn in there now.
Injuries have been an issue with defensive tackle Kyle Williams (left knee) set to miss his third game and safety Aaron Williams sidelined until at least December with a neck injury. But the Bills have been giving up some eye-popping numbers, including allowing 390 or more yards three times this season â€” after only doing that twice under Jim Schwartz last season.
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Harrison played for the Bengals last season before returning home to the Steelers. He had been listed as doubtful. Pittsburgh also is missing defensive end Brett Keisel,China Jerseys, who tore his triceps during a loss to New Orleans last Sunday and is out for the season.
CINCINNATI (AP) â€” Steelers linebacker James Harrison is inactive for a game against the Bengals because of a knee injury,Jerseys NFL Wholesale.
Ben Roethlisberger is starting. He hit his throwing hand on a helmet against New Orleans and didn't practice on Wednesday,Wholesale NFL Jerseys China. He was back the following day,NFL Jerseys Cheap.
Defensive tackle Domata Peko is active for the Bengals despite an elbow injury that limited him during a win at Tampa Bay last week,Cheap Air Max Shoes For Sale. Clint Boling starts at right tackle for the first time,Cheap Womens Jordan Sneakers.
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Robinson broke his right leg when Giants defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins landed on top of him,Cheap Jerseys China. He had surgery Sunday night and is done for the season.
"When coming upon an athlete with a suspected head/neck or spine injury our first concerns are to evaluate the situation, establish basic vital signs ... and establish stabilization. Once vitals are stable, maintaining spinal stabilization is the most critical component in order to minimize movement until the appropriate testing can be done to establish a stable spine and rule out risk of further injury."
"We are highly trained, even though this type of injury does not happen very often, we drill these scenarios so that we are prepared for everything that might happen,Cheap NFL Jerseys Free Shipping," said Donald Rich, the Seahawks' head athletic trainer. "Each and every person knows his or her role in the rescue, which allows us to be as efficient and coordinated as possible.
Lockette remained in the Dallas area â€” as did teammates Russell Okung and Marshawn Lynch â€” and had neck surgery on Monday afternoon. He is expected to remain in the hospital for a few days, but the team said he will be up and moving around as early as Tuesday and his neurological signs are positive.
The hard-hitting violence of the NFL certainly was on display Sunday. So was the quick work of medical responders, particularly in Dallas and New Orleans.
Robinson's gruesome injury had several players on both sides looking away, nauseated. Teammates huddled around him and prayed as athletic trainers fitted his leg with an air cast before Robinson was driven off the field.
Not really. The first thought is to get him treated immediately and properly. Thankfully, in Big D and the Big Easy,NFL Jerseys China, that happened on Sunday.
"I don't think I've ever been part of something that scary," Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson said after the game.
After his face mask was removed from his helmet, Lockette was placed on a stretcher and loaded onto a motorized cart. He was talking while moving both hands, pointed his right hand toward his Seattle teammates on the sideline, and then thrust his index finger high into the air.
In total, nearly three dozen people attended to Lockette. Two Seahawks medical staff members,NFL Jerseys Wholesale, Michael Tankovich and CJ Neumann, stayed in Dallas, as well.
"We have a genuine care for each other and he's our brother," Saints rookie linebacker Stephone Anthony said. "Everybody had their hands reached out praying for him and praying he gets back."
The intensive care doesn't end at the stadium, of course.
All of which was handled spot-on by Seahawks medical personnel,Air Max 90 Essential White And Black Mens, with help from their counterparts with the Cowboys.
Both injuries could have developed into something more dire had the trainers and doctors on hand not acted so expertly. In Lockette's case, he was running downfield on punt coverage and when he turned, he was hit by Dallas safety Jeff Heath. Lockette immediately collapsed, unconscious, as medics reached him.
Frightening incidents involving Seahawks receiver Ricardo Lockette on special teams against Dallas, and Saints running back Khiry Robinson against the Giants,Andrew Franks Dolphins Jersey, brought a hush to the two stadiums. They also brought into focus just how effective medical personnel can be in a critical time.
"Once he gets to the hospital, Ricardo has to go through a series of imaging including X-rays, CT scan and MRI to establish the severity of his injuries," Rich added. "Once a diagnosis is made, a management plan can be put into place. The other members of the Dallas medical staff were instrumental in helping control the scene on the field and making sure that we had everything we needed to provide the best possible care to Ricardo."
He was out for several moments and the attending personnel wisely didn't rush things. At that point, the game becomes secondary.
"When there's an injury that takes place and they're able to see the type of injury ... the first thought is just the amount of work that a guy like Khiry's put in, and all of a sudden knowing that his season's come to an end," Saints coach Sean Payton said.
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Housler spent the past four seasons with the Arizona Cardinals, who selected him in the third round of the 2011 draft. While not much of a downfield threat, the 27-year-old Housler caught 105 passes for 1,Jerseys NBA Cheap China,133 yards and a touchdown in those four years. Last season,cheap jerseys, the 6-foot-5,China Jerseys Cheap, 250-pounder had nine receptions for 129 yards.
The team hosted Housler at their facility on Wednesday and the sides were quickly able to reach an agreement. Housler also drew interest from AFC North rivals Cincinnati and Baltimore as well as Atlanta.
Cameron's departure was a major blow to a Cleveland offense lacking quality playmakers. The team will be without wide receiver Josh Gordon in 2015 after he was suspended by the NFL at least one year for multiple drug infractions.
Housler gives Cleveland depth at tight end along with Gary Barnidge and Jim Dray, solid blockers who combined for just 30 receptions and one TD last season.
After losing former Pro Bowl tight end Jordan Cameron during free agency to Miami,http://www.soccerpro.us.com/Arsenal-FC/, the Browns were in need of quality depth at the position. They faced the possibility of needing to use one of their top picks â€” they have two in the first round and six of the first 115 â€” in the NFL draft on a tight end. However,NFL Jerseys China, Housler lessens that urgency, at least temporarily.
CLEVELAND (AP) â€” The Browns tackled one of their offensive needs,Wholesale Nike Air Max 97, signing free agent tight end Rob Housler to a one-year contract.
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"Think about it and stay with it and move on and start getting ready for the offseason program,Chris Chelios Jersey," Rodgers said on Sunday. "This one's going to hurt for a while because of the close proximity of feeling that feeling when the clock hits zero and you're ahead. We gave it away."
But there were plenty of other plays that contributed to the meltdown,Brett Favre Falcons Jersey.
LINEBACKER: A move giving Clay Matthews more snaps at inside linebacker at midseason helped improve what had been a league-worst run defense and sparked the unit's second-half resurgence. It is unclear if coach Mike McCarthy views Matthews as a permanent fix at inside linebacker,Air Max 97 2018, or if he wants to return the long-haired veteran to his more customary role rushing from the outside.
CORNERBACK: The secondary could see some changes if the Packers don't re-sign veteran cornerback Tramon Williams. The contracts of Davon House, who played well against taller receivers,Chile Jersey, and special teams ace Jarrett Bush are also expiring. Sam Shields and Casey Hayward are veteran cornerbacks under contract through next year or beyond.
An onside kick slipped through the hands of Green Bay's Brandon Bostick and Seattle regained possession.
OFFENSIVE LINE: The play of the front five was one of the biggest success stories in Green Bay. The group, which included rookie center Corey Linsley, improved as the season went on in spite of lingering injuries to guards Sitton and T.J. Lang.
GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) â€” Safety Micah Hyde stayed away from watching TV.
This loss will sting for a while after coming agonizingly close to advancing to the Super Bowl.
"What's the point of getting this far,NFL Jerseys China?" the Pro Bowl guard added. "I'd have rather not even made the playoffs."
In the end, the Packers (13-5) just couldn't finish in a 28-22 loss to the Seahawks.
Here are some takeaways as the Packers head into the offseason:
"It's going to be tough," Sitton said Monday as players cleared out lockers at Lambeau Field. "And when it's the last one it's very difficult to get over, you feel like it's a waste of seven, eight months.
The offense went three-and-out on two straight drives with less than 7 minutes left in the game.
Receiver Randall Cobb felt as if he was having nightmares.
Before the Green Bay Packers can move on to their offseason routines, they must first get over a stunning collapse to the Seattle Seahawks in the NFC title game.
Cobb wants to stay. Besides Jordy Nelson, the Packers don't have any other veterans at receiver for Rodgers going into 2015.
The 5-foot-10 Cobb turned into an elusive threat in the red zone and consistently made tough catches over the middle. He finished with 15 receptions for 178 yards and a score in the postseason.
RODGERS: The quarterback, who turned 31 in December, is in his prime. He has talked often about how legacies are shaped in the postseason.
Slowed by a left calf injury late in the season, Rodgers seems as if he'll go into the offseason as motivated as ever.
Green Bay led 16-0 at halftime, and 19-7 with 10:53 left in the game. They still led by five with 2:09 left even after quarterback Russell Wilson's 1-yard touchdown run.
The Packers twice had to settle for short field goals after getting stopped in the first quarter near the goal line following Seattle turnovers. Special teams allowed a touchdown pass on a fake field goal in the third quarter,Cheap NFL Jerseys China.
"Literally one of 10 plays you can pick that if we get it, we win the game," Sitton said. "It's frustrating when you should have won the game and you're the better team and I thought we were the better team all day except for 3 minutes."
COBB: Among potential free agents, Cobb by far had the biggest season. The fourth-year receiver finished with career bests of 91 catches in the regular season for 1,287 yards and 12 touchdowns.
"I didn't really get much sleep last night. It felt like a nightmare whenever I did fall asleep. ... For us to be done with the season," Cobb said Monday before pausing a couple of seconds to collect his thoughts, "it's kind of blindsiding."
The 2014 season was highlighted by an MVP-caliber year for quarterback Aaron Rodgers and a fourth straight NFC North title. Strong starts on offense led to blowout wins in October and November; tweaks at midseason made the defense stronger against the run.
Linsley and left tackle David Bakhtiari are emerging anchors to go with the veteran guards. Right tackle Bryan Bulaga is due to become a free agent.
Offensive lineman Josh Sitton wished his team hadn't even made the playoffs.
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For Buffalo,Cheap NFL Jerseys China, running back Bryce Brown is inactive because he's the odd man out behind backups Boobie Dixon and rookie Karlos Williams.
Though Mathis has resumed practicing,China NFL Jerseys, the six-time Pro Bowl selection and the NFL's 2013 leader in sacks is still not fully recovered from a torn Achilles tendon that forced him to miss last season. Reserve running back Vick Ballard (hamstring),Wholesale NFL Jerseys, who did not travel to Buffalo,Wholesale Jerseys China, and cornerback Greg Toler (neck) are also among the Colts inactive players.
Darius Butler will start in place of Toler,Wholesale Jerseys.
ORCHARD PARK,Cheap Stitched Jerseys, N.Y. (AP) â€” Colts linebacker Robert Mathis is inactive for Indianapolis' season opener against the Buffalo Bills on Sunday.
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GREEN BAY,Wholesale NFL Jerseys, Wis. (AP) â€” Running back Eddie Lacy and receiver Davante Adams are active for the Green Bay Packers for their game Monday night against the Kansas City Chiefs.
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Lacy and Adams were listed as probable coming into Monday, as was cornerback Sam Shields (calf). He is also active.
The Packers will also be without backup safety Sean Richardson (ankle).
Other Packers inactives include QB Brett Hundley, CB Demetri Goodson, G Lane Taylor,Cheap Nike NFL Jerseys, T Bryan Bulaga and TE Kennard Backman.
Lacy and Adams were recovering from ankle injuries suffered in the Packers' win last week over the Seattle Seahawks.
Micah Hyde is starting at safety for Morgan Burnett, who is missing his second game in three weeks with a calf injury. Burnett's strength is run support, and his absence could be a factor with Green Bay facing Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles.
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"All the running backs in this league, they're not bad running backs," said Browns running backs coach Wilbert Montgomery, who starred for the Eagles in the 1970s and '80s. "All of the guys in the league were stars at some point in their college career."
Davis ran for 132 yards against the Dolphins. McKnight had two touchdowns.
When he got winded, Jerick McKinnon trotted in and ripped off a 55-yard run.
All of which seems to signal the end of the workhorse running back, that dying breed of Jim Brown, Franco Harris and John Riggins that preceded the pass-happy offenses of the modern era.
The pronounced change in the way NFL teams view running backs is thrown into stark contrast when you compare this year's draft to 2008, when five players were plucked in the first round. That draft also may have represented the last clutch of truly identifiable stars: Rice, Darren McFadden, Felix Jones,Cheap Sports Jerseys, Rashard Mendenhall,Authentic China Jerseys, Chris Johnson and Matt Forte.
Even teams that still have a clear-cut star, such as the Chiefs, have plenty of other options. So when Charles went down with a high ankle sprain that caused their star to miss a start in Miami,Jerseys From China, coach Andy Reid felt comfortable in Davis, Joe McKnight and Cyrus Gray to pick up the slack.
Whether it's Justin Forsett taking over for Ray Rice in Baltimore, or Knile Davis poaching carries from All-Pro running back Jamaal Charles in Kansas City, illustrations abound these days.
More and more, they're finding their way into the NFL, too.
"You have to tip your hat to guys who can do the job," Reid said. "Any time you're a relief pitcher and whatever position it is in this league, that's a tough assignment."
Even when Charles returned this past week, he merely became part of the committee.
All despite the fact that no running backs have been drafted in the first round the past two years. Bishop Sankey was the highest selected in May, going 54th overall to Tennessee.
Asiata went undrafted out of Utah. McKinnon was picked out of Georgia Southern. Yet Asiata had three touchdowns and McKinnon ran for 135 yards against the Falcons on Sunday, leading him to say he "definitely didn't imagine" that he would have that kind of production.
Even in an ever-evolving version in which, it seems, anybody can play running back.
Their combined performance in place of the Vikings' suspended star was only the latest example of a seismic shift in the running back position, once one of the NFL's glamour jobs.
Not exactly the star-studded list of names that fans are accustomed to seeing.
The Dolphins' Lamar Miller was the NFL's sixth-leading rusher, even though he was supposed to back up the injured Knowshown Moreno. Terrance West was a breakout star for Cleveland when Ben Tate was sidelined, and Bobby Rainey has been a rare bright spot for Tampa Bay.
"Every team is different. And some of the guys you're talking about are No. 1 guys who've played or they're pretty darn talented guys," Vikings offensive coordinator Norv Turner said. "That's what we're hoping, that we come out of this over the next period and say,Authentic Jerseys From China, 'Hey, these backs are really good and they really contribute and are doing a good job.' We need to find that out."
It's not just that hard-luck teams have been forced to use other options because of injuries and suspensions, either. Many teams are using multiple running backs to keep them fresh or provide a change of pace. Some are using wide receivers such as the Seahawks' Percy Harvin on sweeps and other creative running plays. Often, running backs are used extensively in the passing game.
"Coach Reid is a great offensive mind," Charles explained,China Jerseys Wholesale, "and he knows how to put us in the best situation to help our team win. He's been doing this for a long time â€” since I was probably a little kid. He knows how to control the game."
Through the first four weeks of the season, 166 different players have logged at least one carry in the NFL,Wholesale Stitched NFL Jerseys, not including quarterbacks, according to STATS. That's 20 more players than at the same point a year ago, and a total that has only been eclipsed once since 1989.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) â€” Matt Asiata had been splendidly impersonating Adrian Peterson when the Minnesota Vikings played the Atlanta Falcons last weekend, the relatively unknown running back bludgeoning their backpedaling defense on the first two drives of the game.
Teams have found that they no longer need a big-money star to carry the load. Overlooked and underappreciated options can often do the job at a fraction of the price.
"Well," Vikings coach Mike Zimmer replied, "he needs to raise his expectation levels."
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"Seeing what they did to new England there just makes you realize that we did that to a pretty good football team," Whisenhunt said. "We didn't shoot ourselves in the foot for lack of a better term in that game. Part of it is reinforcement of the fact if we do it right, we can be a good football team."
Kendall Wright set the tone on the Titans' opening drive in Indianapolis, fumbling the ball as he dove forward for more yards and a first down. The ball popped out when he hit the ground, and the Colts recovered. He caught 94 balls for 1,079 yards last season and now has only 19 catches for 176.
Justin Hunter, a second-year wide receiver, had a long pass go through his hands against Dallas. Against the Colts, a pass went through his hands to Indianapolis safety Mike Adams. The Colts safety wound up with as many interceptions (two) in the game as Washington and Hunter combined for catches (two) despite the Titans wide receivers being targeted a total of nine times.
"We haven't done enough of what we needed to do," Whisenhunt said. "That's Captain Obvious here,NFL Jerseys China, stating that. I think we have to just continue to keep our heads down and work. I know we're working productively on the practice field. We've got to do a better job of it on game day."
Outscored 100-34 in this skid, the Titans (1-3) hope to clean up their issues Sunday against the Cleveland Browns (1-2).
Wide receiver Nate Washington has a little advice for his teammates: Relax. Have some fun.
Something good happening early Sunday might help the Titans snap out of this funk that has them near the bottom of several statistical categories.
Washington said pressing to make a play can lead to mistakes by making things too tough.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) â€” Self-inflicted wounds or simple mistakes. Whatever the label,Clark Griswold Jersey, the Tennessee Titans have been hurting themselves far too often, and it's why they have been embarrassed in three straight losses.
The Titans are doing exactly what the coaches want in practice during the week. Carrying that into Sunday has been the issue. Tennessee has been outscored at the start of games 16-0 by Dallas, 19-0 in Cincinnati and 17-0 at Indianapolis.
"I know a lot of people might hear that and think,Nike Air Max 98 Gundam For Sale, 'It's not time to have fun' ...," Washington said. "That's when the plays come. That's when the wins come when we're out there having fun, flying around and everybody's doing their job and making sure we take advantage of the opportunity we have."
There's been plenty of blame to go around as well with passes going through receivers hands, six of seven turnovers off interceptions, offensive linemen failing to protect the quarterback enough, too many penalties and even being surprised by an early onside kick last week in a 41-17 loss at Indianapolis.
"Me personally, I don't really know how to relax,Cheap Jerseys," Wright said. "Everything I do is full speed. If I mess up, I'm guaranteed to mess up at 100 mph or giving a lot of effort on making plays or making a specific play. That's my mindset, and it gets me sometimes because my mindset is to try to score every time I touch the ball."
Titans coach Ken Whisenhunt said his team makes good plays at times and look smart only to miss things at other times,Air Max 97 Silver Bullet Mens.
Notes: Jake Locker practiced fully Thursday, and Whisenshunt said he sees no reason why the quarterback won't play Sunday. ... DL Jurrell Casey (foot) and DE Ropati Pitoitua (knee) also practiced. TE Delanie Walker (shoulder) was limited,Marshon Lattimore Jersey, and TE Taylor Thompson (knee) and CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson (concussion did not practice.
"You don't want to be a team that says you have to have something positive happen in order to play well, but that may be where we are right now," Whisenhunt said. "We've just got to work on playing fast and making a play."
The confounding part of these struggles for Tennessee has been how the season started. The Titans went into Kansas City and won 26-10 in a game where they didn't turn the ball over, came up with four sacks and intercepted three passes. That's the same team that routed the New England Patriots 41-14 on Monday night.