NFL Roundup: Sanchez could be out several weeks

The SportsXchange

Mark Sanchez might be limited to riding a stationary bike at New York Jets' practice for the forseeable future with a shoulder injury that is more severe than the team has said.

ESPN reported Tuesday that Sanchez, who is due $8.25 million in 2013, could miss "several weeks."

Sanchez hasn't thrown a football since being injured during late in the fourth quarter of the Jets' third preseason game. Members of the organization were immediately concerned he could be out beyond the opener Sunday against Tampa Bay with rookie Geno Smith expected to start.

Coach Rex Ryan didn't budge on his wait-and-see stance regarding Sanchez.

"On Wednesday, that's when the injury report, the official injury report, will come out and I think we'll just wait and we'll make all announcements then," Ryan said.

---Linebacker Brian Cushing agreed to a long-term contract extension with the Houston Texans on Tuesday, according to reports.

The extension runs for for six years and is worth $55.643 million, including $21 million guaranteed, NFL.com reported. Cushing was entering the final season of the five-year contract he signed after the Texans drafted him in the first round in 2009.

The 26-year-old is coming off a 2012 season that was ended in the fifth game with a torn ACL.

---Rams coach Jeff Fisher wasn't pleased when linebacker Jo-Lonn Dunbar was suspended for the first four games of the season for violating the NFL's policy on performance enhancing drugs. On Tuesday, we learned just how disappointed when the Rams terminated Dunbar's contract just as he is beginning his suspension.

Dunbar was set to be the team's starting strong-side linebacker when the suspension came down. He played on the weak side last season, and stayed on the field in passing situations where he struggled at times.

The selection of Alec Ogletree in the first round of the draft resulted in Dunbar switching sides, and Ogletree is expected to stay on the field in the nickel defense.

With Dunbar's suspension looming, the Rams signed Will Witherspoon on July 22, and he quickly became the starter on the strong side. The development of rookie free agents Ray Ray Armstrong, Daren Bates and Jonathan Stewart also likely contributed to the decision to part ways with Dunbar.

Bates is the backup to Witherspoon, Stewart is the backup in the middle behind James Laurinaitis and Armstrong is Ogletree's backup.

With Dunbar released, his $1.3 million salary is wiped off the books, although he was already losing more than $300,000 during the suspension. The remaining $994,000 won't count against the Rams' salary cap, although they will be charged $500,000 for the proration from the $1 million signing bonus he received in 2012. The Rams are also subject to a fine of about $102,000 because Dunbar was the team's third player suspended during this calendar year.

---Running back Isaac Redman will start Sunday's regular-season opener for the Pittsburgh Steelers against the Tennessee Titans.

The Steelers are expected to use a running-back-by-committee approach that will include recently acquired Felix Jones. Rookie Le'Veon Bell remains sidelined indefinitely with a foot injury.

---Lamar Miller won the Miami Dolphins' running back competition with Daniel Thomas and will start the season opener, according to the team's Week 1 depth chart.

A fourth-round pick in 2012, Miller entered the preseason battling with Thomas to replace Reggie Bush in the backfield and said getting the start Sunday against the Browns would be a "dream come true." Miller rushed for 250 yards and a touchdown in 52 carries as a rookie, and averaged 4.2 yards per carry this preseason.

---New York Giants running back Andre Brown was placed on short-term injured reserve and miss the first eight games after breaking his left leg in the final preseason game.

Brown tweeted out Tuesday: "See y'all week 8." The 26-year-old Brown was expected to split carries at running back this season with David Wilson.

---The Dallas Cowboys agreed to terms with guard Brian Waters, NFL.com reported Tuesday.

Terms of the deal were not available. Waters, a six-time Pro Bowl selection, has started 165 NFL games, including all 16 regular-season games and two playoff games for the New England Patriots in 2011. He sat out last season, and has been discussing a possible contract with the Cowboys since July.

---Houston Texans first-round pick DeAndre Hopkins passed his concussion test and was back at practice Tuesday, putting the wide receiver in line to start Monday night at San Diego.

Hopkins, who suffered the concussion during the Houston's second preseason game against Miami, did not play in the team's final two preseason games. He still is expected to be in the lineup alongside Andre Johnson at wide receiver in Week 1 against the Chargers.

---The Atlanta Falcons signed offensive tackle Jeremy Trueblood in a series of roster moves announced Tuesday. The Falcons also waived tackle Terren Jones and reached an injury settlement with guard Phillipkeith Manley.

The 6-foot-8, 320-pound Trueblood has started 84 games in seven NFL seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

---The New Orleans Saints announced Tuesday that they placed linebacker Jonathan Vilma on injured reserve, but it includes a designation for him to return this season.

Vilma was a starter for the Saints last year, but his status for this season had been uncertain since he underwent knee surgery in August.

David Hawthorne is likely to start in Vilma's place in the opener against Atlanta.

---The Indianapolis Colts traded defensive end Caesar Rayford to the Dallas Cowboys in exchange for a conditional draft pick on Tuesday, as the Cowboys continue to shore up an area of weakness heading into Week 1.

Rayford was one of the stars of August for the Colts, with five sacks and two forced fumbles in four preseason games. Before signing with the Colts as a free agent this May, he spent three seasons with the Arena Football League's Utah Blaze, totaling 22.5 sacks. The University of Washington grad had previously played with the CFL's B.C. Lions

---Former first-round pick Danny Watkins signed with the Miami Dolphins hoping a change of scenery benefits him after being released Saturday by the Philadelphia Eagles.

Watkins, the 23rd pick in the 2011 draft out of Baylor, started 18 games in Philadelphia but went unclaimed via waivers when he was released over the weekend. The Dolphins waived guard Josh Samuda to create a spot on the 53-man roster for the offensive lineman.

---Billy Cundiff signed with the Cleveland Browns, filling the team's need for a kicker just six days before the regular-season opener against the Miami Dolphins.

The Browns cut veteran Shayne Graham and rookie Brandon Bogotay over the weekend. Cundiff, an eight-year veteran, appeared in five games for the Browns in 2009 as an injury replacement for Phil Dawson. Cundiff was released by the Jets over the offseason.

---Veteran kicker Dan Carpenter signed with the Buffalo Bills, who lost rookie kicker Dustin Hopkins to a groin injury during practice on Monday.

Carpenter, who had been released by the Miami Dolphins, Arizona Cardinals and New York Jets since Aug. 16, was supposed to be in Cleveland for a tryout on Tuesday. He has been on four rosters in the past three weeks.

---Defensive end Eugene Sims signed a two-year contract extension through the 2015 season with the St. Louis Rams.

Sims was drafted in the sixth round of the 2010 draft and has started two games while playing a regular role in the team's deep defensive line rotation.
View Comments