The Houston Texans made a few procedural moves this afternoon.

They made official the signing of offensive tackle Tyson Clabo, with whom they agreed to a deal earlier this week.

They've placed starting right guard Brandon Brooks, linebacker Ricky Sapp and running back Jonathan Grimes on the active/non-football injury list. David Quessenberry, the Texans' offensive tackle who was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins T Lymphoblastic Lymphoma last month, was placed on the active/non-football illness list.

All four players will still count against the team's 90-man roster. All this does is identify that they did not suffer injuries practicing or working out with the Texans.

Vick Ballard has torn Achilles tendon

July, 25, 2014
Jul 25

ANDERSON, Ind. -- Indianapolis Colts running back Vick Ballard has suffered a torn left Achilles tendon, a source told ESPN Senior NFL Analyst Chris Mortensen.

Ballard was scheduled to undergo an MRI after suffering a left leg injury in practice Friday. He left the practice field on a golf cart.

"When you see someone like Vick Ballard go down who's worked so hard to get back, it's tough, but it happens," Colts owner Jim Irsay said. "As soon as you get to camp, those things happen. He's still young and he's got a full career ahead of him, so we have to do an MRI and see exactly what it is and then go from there. But you really hope to not hear any of that kind of news."

Ballard missed all but one game last season after tearing the ACL in his right knee during practice. He rushed for a team-high 814 yards as a rookie in 2012 and went into this training camp expecting to compete with Trent Richardson and Ahmad Bradshaw for the starting position.

Information from Colts reporter Mike Wells was used in this report.

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RICHMOND, VA. -- Washington Redskins defensive end Jason Hatcher, who opened on the physically unable to perform list, said he's not sure yet when he'll return to full workouts.

Hatcher, one of the Redskins' big free-agent signings this offseason, underwent arthroscopic surgery on his knee in the middle of June. His recovery was said to be four to six weeks. If that's the case, Hatcher might still miss another week.

"I feel great," Hatcher said. "I have to go with the flow. We're on schedule -- I think I'm ahead of schedule. We'll play it slowly when I get back on the field. I want to feel myself."

Of course, if he were indeed ahead of schedule Hatcher might have already returned. But considering the position he plays and the fact he turned 32 earlier this month, there's no need to rush his return. The Redskins need him to be a pivotal player in the pass rush, providing the interior push they have not had much of in recent years.

But Hatcher said his age isn't an issue when it comes to his return.

"It's based on how you take care of your body when you're younger," he said, "and I did a great job taking care of my body. It's one of those things whenever I feel ready and the training staff says I'm ready, then I'll be ready to go. I feel great today. We just have to keep progressing."

Ravens Camp Report: Day 2

July, 25, 2014
Jul 25
OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- A daily look at what happened at Baltimore Ravens training camp:
  • It was an extremely sloppy day, especially on offense. There were drops, false starts and even a fumbled exchange between quarterback Joe Flacco and center Jeremy Zuttah. Flacco and coach John Harbaugh each vented their frustration during practice. It's rare to see Flacco voice his displeasure.
  • The best players on Friday were running back Bernard Pierce and defensive tackle Timmy Jernigan. Pierce, who was limited all offseason after having offseason shoulder surgery, eluded defenders between the tackles. This is a good sign for the Ravens, who will likely turn to Pierce to fill in for Ray Rice during the running back's two-game suspension. Jernigan, the rookie second-round pick, spent a lot of the workout in the Ravens' backfield. He repeatedly beat guard Ryan Jensen and pressured Flacco.
  • It's never a good thing when the best part of the offense was the cadence. Flacco drew the defense offside three times. He got defensive tackle Haloti Ngata to jump on consecutive plays.
  • Justin Tucker missed a kick that was inside 40 yards. This usually doesn't merit a note, except for the fact that this is the first time he's failed to convert a kick this offseason (or at least during the practices that the media is allowed to watch).
  • Schedule: The Ravens have their first full-contract practice on Saturday. The three-hour workout begins at 1 p.m. All three coordinators -- offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak, defensive coordinator Dean Pees and special-teams coordinator Jerry Rosburg -- are scheduled to speak to the media following practice.
  • Injury wire: CB Lardarius Webb walked off the field with a minor back injury and didn't return. ... CB Aaron Ross was officially placed on injured reserve. The Ravens signed FS Will Hill, the former Giants free safety who is currently suspended for six games this season. ... CB Dominique Franks (failed conditioning test) remains on the non-football injury list. ... NT Terrence Cody (hip) is on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list. ... G Will Rackley (undisclosed) didn't practice.
OXNARD, Calif. -- Despite proclaiming earlier in the week Tony Romo will be full go once the Dallas Cowboys begin training camp, coach Jason Garrett said the quarterback will not take part in Friday’s afternoon workout.

Romo, who had back surgery in December and did not take part in competitive drills in the spring, was limited in Thursday's practice, which did not include any 11-on-11 sessions. Romo was in the Friday walk-through, taking all of his normal snaps. Garrett initially said Romo would do less in the afternoon practice before saying he "will not do anything this afternoon."

“Our approach with him throughout training camp is to be very mindful of being out there twice a day, and particularly twice a day on consecutive days,” Garrett said.

After Thursday's workout Romo said he does not have back pain but he has to go through a prolonged daily program to keep his back strong and loose. Romo said he could have done more Thursday but he backed off when the offense did not have competitive drills against the defense. He said the amount of work will pick up once the players practice in pads starting Saturday.

After Friday's walk-through Romo had a long discussion with executive vice president Stephen Jones and head athletic trainer Jim Maurer.

With Saturday morning's walk-through focusing on special teams, Garrett said he anticipates Romo taking first-team snaps. The Cowboys hold an hour walk-through in the mornings and a two-hour practice in the afternoon on most days. Their first scheduled off-day is Monday.

“The two-a-days can be an issue, and then the back-to-back two-a-days,” Garrett said. "I know we're only out here for a walk-through format, but when you're coming off a back issue like Tony has sometimes just being out on your feet like that can be taxing. So we just want to be mindful as we start training camp, continue to communicate with him and others to make sure we're all on the same page. He's making progress.”

After Thursday’s practice, Stephen Jones said the Cowboys feel good about Romo's health.

"We're not trying to win the East tomorrow,” Jones said on Thursday. “It’s a long training camp and the last thing we want to do is act like we're playing Sunday with him. We want to be conservative but at the same time give him the work he needs.”
WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W.Va. -- Jairus Byrd wasn't quite ready to begin practicing yet on Friday as the New Orleans Saints opened training camp. So they officially placed their prized new safety on the physically unable to perform list.

However, coach Sean Payton continued to insist that he expects Byrd back sooner than later. And Byrd certainly looked like he was close to returning from offseason back surgery while performing a series of drills off to the side with trainers throughout practice.

In fact, Byrd was one of the last players to leave the field as he was catching balls one-handed from the JUGS machine following practice.

"We will work day-to-day with him, and the good news is it is going to be sooner rather than later," Payton said. "I don't want to put a time on it, but his progress is ahead of schedule. … We are still just getting it to where we feel he is 100 percent. And then clearly before we leave here (The Greenbrier, where the Saints will practice for the first three weeks of training camp) he will be back on the roster.

"It is just a matter of us making sure we feel that he is ready to go at 100 percent and there is no risk of any injury."

Byrd was one of three players held out of practice Friday, along with defensive tackle John Jenkins (pectoral) and offensive tackle Tavon Rooks (back). All three are expected to return soon.

Receiver Kenny Stills also joined the injury list during practice when he pulled up lame with a right quadriceps injury while running a deep passing route. He left the field with trainers and did not return.

Payton said he doesn't expect the injury to be serious, though.

"He had a tight quad two weeks ago when he was training out in San Diego," Payton said. "It is the same right quad. I don't think it is real serious. I will get some more information here with [trainer Scottie Patton]."
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Jacksonville Jaguars' streak of having a full complement of healthy receivers didn't even last two hours.

Cecil Shorts left the team's first training camp practice with a tight hamstring. The injury isn't expected to be serious and coach Gus Bradley said the Jaguars pulled Shorts as a precautionary measure.

Shorts said he expects to be back on the field this weekend.

"Things are going to pop up," he said. "It's football. Things happen. I'll continue to take care of my body. If I'm able to practice [on Saturday], I'm practicing."

Shorts missed most of OTAs and minicamp with tightness in his calf. He was one of seven receivers who were sidelined in the spring with injuries. All but Ace Sanders, who took a leave of absence in the wake of a four-game suspension for violating the league's substance-abuse policy, reported to camp completely healthy.

This is a critical season for Shorts, who is entering the final year of his rookie contract. His agent has had preliminary talks with Jaguars GM David Caldwell but there's no timetable to get a deal done.

Caldwell said Shorts is in the team's long-term plans and that his injury history won't play a role in the negotiations, but it's something that the team has noted. Shorts has missed 11 games in his three seasons for various injuries and finished last season on IR with a sports hernia.

"Cecil plays so hard that maybe sometimes he gets hurt because he plays so hard and tries so hard and works so hard," Caldwell said. "We don't want him to lose that. That's not a thing that we're concerned about."
MANKATO, Minn. -- The Minnesota Vikings will put cornerback Captain Munnerlyn and safety Andrew Sendejo on the physically-unable-to-perform list at the beginning of training camp, but coach Mike Zimmer said he doesn't expect either player will be out long. Tight end Chase Ford, who has a broken left foot could miss significant time.

Munnerlyn, Zimmer said, has a hamstring injury, while Sendejo is still dealing with the lower back ailment that kept him out for most of the Vikings' spring program. Ford showed up to camp in a walking boot on Thursday, and Zimmer said the tight end had surgery on his foot. He didn't have a timetable on Ford's return, but it's worth noting that tight end Kyle Rudolph missed the last two months of the season with a broken foot last year.

Zimmer made it clear he wasn't happy with Ford tweeting about his injury, adding he'd stressed the importance of discretion on social media in his opening remarks to the team on Thursday evening. "We actually had that meeting last night and then it gets tweeted last night or today," Zimmer said. "They must not have been paying attention in the meeting. So I will fix those things."

The Vikings also had one player not pass their conditioning test on Thursday, Zimmer said. That player won't be participating in the Vikings' first practice on Friday afternoon, though the coach wouldn't say who it was on Friday morning.

The Vikings also released receiver Josh Cooper and tackle Matt Hall on Friday morning, signing receivers Ty Walker and Andy Cruse to take the two open spots on the roster.
Atlanta Falcons coach Mike Smith made the radio rounds Friday morning with the team set to begin training camp in the afternoon.

In discussing the health of his team, Smith talked about the practice plan for wide receiver Julio Jones coming off foot surgery and outside linebacker Kroy Biermann coming off an Achilles tear.

"You're going to see Kroy Biermann and Julio Jones participating in practice today," Smith told 92.9 the Game. "Those guys have worked extremely hard getting back. We're going to limit their snaps. They will be as close to full participants as they can.

"Kroy will work two days and take a day off to start with. And we'll evaluate after Week 1. And Julio, we're going to give him a day off every other day to start with. We should have those guys by the beginning of the season at 100 percent and ready to go, and that's the No. 1 goal. We want to be as healthy as we possibly can."

The Falcons have three players starting training camp on the physically unable to perform list: receiver Drew Davis (foot), defensive tackle Corey Peters (Achilles), and safety Zeke Motta (neck surgery). Motta is not expected to play this season.

Smith sounded optimistic about Peters.

"We anticipate Corey Peters to hopefully get off of (PUP) very quickly," Smith said. "He's been working extremely hard off of his Achilles."
WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W.Va. -- It's still unclear whether or not safety Jairus Byrd will be back on the field for the New Orleans Saints' first training camp practice on Friday. But coach Sean Payton said he expects the three-time Pro Bowler back "sooner than later."

"Much like we expected," Payton said of Byrd, who underwent a minor back surgery this summer to alleviate a nagging disc issue.

The Saints' original projection was for Byrd to be healthy enough to participate in training camp -- and back to full speed in plenty of time for the regular season. And a league source confirmed earlier this week that Byrd's recovery has been going as expected this summer.

Payton and general manager Mickey Loomis declined to make any official announcements about whether any veterans will be placed on the physically unable to perform list after they underwent their physicals and conditioning tests on Thursday.

But Payton compared Byrd's situation to that of second-year defensive tackle John Jenkins, who was placed on the PUP list earlier this week when the younger players reported to camp early for their conditioning tests in Metairie. Jenkins underwent minor pectoral surgery this summer and is also expected back soon.

Payton did, however, specify that receiver Joe Morgan is "a go" after Morgan missed all of organized team activities and minicamp this summer while still recovering from last year's knee surgery. Payton said Morgan has healed enough now to do everything, but it will just be a matter of the Saints deciding how quickly to bring him back up to speed.

Payton also addressed the injury that landed rookie offensive tackle Tavon Rooks on the non-football-injury list earlier this week. Payton said it was a minor back issue that he doesn't believe is significant and shouldn't keep Rooks off the field for long.

"Fortunately for us, that's not a big list right now," Payton said of the injuries. "And hopefully it can remain small."
NAPA, Calif. – Oakland Raiders cornerback D.J. Hayden, who missed most of the team's offseason training programs after rolling his right ankle and foot on the third day of organized team activities in May, will be placed on the Physically Unable to Perform list and miss the start of training camp, coach Dennis Allen said Thursday.

Allen, speaking to five media outlets and the team's Web Site over lunch at the Napa Valley Marriott Hotel & Spa, said an initial MRI of Hayden's ankle in the immediate aftermath of the injury showed no damage. But when the injury did not heal in a timely fashion, a second MRI revealed a stress fracture in the foot and Hayden underwent surgery just after the team's mandatory minicamp June 17-19.

There is no timetable for Hayden's return, though Allen said some players have returned in as few as four weeks time after a similar procedure.

"It's disappointing, both for him and for me," Allen said, "because he's a guy that we're counting on being able to step up and help us this year and he's a young player and he needs the reps."

With the Raiders having only 13 practices in Napa before they break camp and head to Oxnard for a pair of practices on Aug. 12 and 13, it is likely Hayden will miss camp.

Hayden, the Raiders' top draft pick in 2013 at No. 12 overall despite suffering a near-fatal heart injury as a college senior at Houston, had an injury-filled rookie NFL season. He missed a significant portion of his training camp recovering from surgery to remove resultant scar tissue in his abdomen and then played in eight games before going on season-ending Injured Reserve after undergoing sports hernia surgery.

He had one interception, which clinched the Raiders' home victory over the San Diego Chargers on Oct. 6, 2013, a forced fumble and 29 tackles, 23 solo, last season.

Hayden had been penciled in as the first-team right cornerback and, after that first OTA practice on May 27, he said he was "light years" ahead of where he had been a year earlier.

With Hayden's situation, Carlos Rogers and Tarell Brown are Oakland's top two corners a day before the Raiders' first practice. Plus, Allen mentioned the progress of seventh-round draft pick TJ Carrie and fourth-year defensive back Chimdi Chekwa as potential corners in a nickel package. Allen did not say if Hayden's situation put the Raiders in the market for another cornerback.

"Is it a setback? Yeah, it's a setback," Allen said of Hayden. "Is it something that's going to keep him from being able to contribute this year? I certainly hope not. But that will be determined by how fast he's able to recover, how fast he's able to get out on the field. And once he's out on the field, what's he able to do? How's he able to perform?

"It's really about, how does the foot respond and when's he able to be pain free or we can begin to get him out there and start him running and start getting him into football activity."

And Hayden's mindset?

"I think he's frustrated but I don't think he's in any state of despair or anything like that," Allen said. "I think he understands he's got another challenge he's got to overcome … the kid wants to be out there, he wants to play. It's just been unfortunate that he's had some injuries that have kept him from being able to do that."
CORTLAND, N.Y. -- After the first practice of training camp, coach Rex Ryan said Thursday the New York Jets are a "zillion miles" ahead of last year at this time. He went so far as to say this team is further along than any of his previous teams. He wasn't comparing talent, he was just referring to scheme familiarity and overall chemistry.

[+] EnlargeGeno Smith
Rich Barnes/USA TODAY SportsGeno Smith completed 70 percent of his passes during team drills on Thursday.
Typical Ryan bravado? Time will tell, but it was a relatively crisp practice, considering it was Day 1. Geno Smith, in particular, was on his game.

As expected, Smith received about 76 percent of the first-team reps -- 13 reps to Michael Vick's four. Smith completed 7 of 10 passes in team drills, with one sack. Afterward, Ryan praised Smith for his command of the offense. He was particularly sharp in a 7-on-7 drills, completing 5 of 6. It was the kind of start the Jets wanted to see from Smith, the leading candidate in the so-called quarterback competition. Of course, he also got off to a terrific start in last year's camp before fading.

Vick, working mostly with the second team, completed 2 of 5 passes, including an interception (Jaiquawn Jarrett).

Safety dance: They used a three-safety rotation throughout practice, with Dawan Landry, Antonio Allen and No. 1 pick Calvin Pryor taking turns. This will be interesting to watch. Ryan said he wants to give Allen as many first-team reps as possible, but he also doesn't want to take away too much from Landry's workload. At the same time, he wants to give Pryor -- a likely starter -- plenty of quality work. It'll be a juggling act.

Here's CJ: Running back Chris Johnson, six months removed from knee surgery, made his long-anticipated debut. He got a full workload and moved pretty well for a guy who didn't do much of anything in the spring. The biggest takeaway is that, on occasion, he was flexed out as a receiver, displaying his underrated receiving skills. The coaches want to get him in space, which should put a lot of stress on the defense. On the downside, Johnson had one fumble.

New-look receiving corps: Eric Decker, their big free-agent splurge, looked fantastic. He caught two balls in team drills, as did Stephen Hill. No official stats, but it's safe to say Decker was targeted more than any receiver. Early prediction: Decker will be among the league leaders in targets. None of the young receivers stood out. In fact, Shaq Evans had a few drops in positional drills, although he rebounded with a long reception in a one-on-one drill, beating cornerback Jeremy Reeves. The unit had an early case of the yips, as Hill, Clyde Gates and Jacoby Ford dropped balls. At one point, offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg expressed a bit of frustration.

Medical report: This could be a minor thing, or it could be considered an ominous sign. Running back Chris Ivory, who missed most of last training camp with a pulled hamstring, sat out team drills with "a little bit of a hamstring," according to Ryan. The coach didn't seem concerned, noting that Ivory was kept out as a precaution. ... Rookie wide receiver Quincy Enunwa (hip) didn't practice. Presumably, it happened early in practice. No word on the severity. ... Linebacker Nick Bellore tweaked a thigh, but finished practice. ... Guard Willie Colon (knee), on the physically unable to perform list, should be ready in a few days. It'll be longer for linebacker Antwan Barnes (knee).

This and that: Newly-signed defensive end Jason Babin didn't make it to Cortland in time for practice. ... Tight end Jeff Cumberland, excused for a personal reasons, also didn't arrive in time. He should be here Friday. ... With Colon out, Oday Aboushi worked at right guard, with Brian Winters at left guard. It was the other way around in minicamp. ... Rookie quarterback Tajh Boyd made a great escape on a strong rush by Muhammad Wilkerson. Boyd showed his inexperience, throwing two interceptions in 7-on-7. ... Rookie cornerback Dexter McDougle got some work with the first-team nickel. ... Cool temperatures prompted Geno Smith to tell quarterbacks coach David Lee that it felt like an air-conditioned setting.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The surgically repaired left ankle that kept Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton to limited participation during offseason workouts will not hold him back in training camp.

Coach Ron Rivera said on Thursday that Newton will have no restrictions when the Panthers practice for the first time on Friday night at Bank of America Stadium.

"Cam is going to participate full-go," Rivera said as players reported to the team facility in Charlotte. "Obviously, we'll monitor to make sure. He'll go through his treatments just like he's supposed to in terms of maintenance, but he's starting Day 1 on the field."

The injury report wasn't all good for Carolina, which will move training camp headquarters to Wofford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina, on Saturday. Guard Edmund Kugbila, a fourth-round pick in 2013, will undergo back surgery on Aug. 8 and miss the season.

Kugbila was expected to compete for the starting right guard spot. He missed last season after being placed on injured reserve in training camp with a hamstring injury.

The back injury is believed to be related to workouts during his rehabilitation.

"I feel awful for the kid," general manager Dave Gettleman said. "This kid has done absolutely everything we've asked him to do and he can't catch a break."

Running back Jonathan Stewart, who began last season on the physically unable to perform list after undergoing ankle surgery, suffered a hamstring injury a week and a half ago. Gettleman said Stewart will remain on the active roster so he can participate in team meetings and walk-throughs.

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[+] EnlargeJason Pierre-Paul
Noah K. Murray/USA TODAY SportsAfter an injury-plagued couple of seasons, Jason Pierre-Paul is ready to regain his old form.

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Jason Pierre-Paul says he's fully healthy and ready to once again be the player who collected 16 sacks in the New York Giants' Super Bowl season of 2011. And he's well aware that, with free agency looming at the end of this coming season, he has plenty of incentive to do so.

"I'm not going to lie. Seeing [Justin] Tuck go, it's on my mind a little bit," Pierre-Paul said about his contract situation Thursday morning. "But honestly, I think I'm going to be here next year, because I know how I play and what kind of game I bring when I'm on the field. And I'm pretty sure everybody around here knows it, too."

Pierre-Paul started having back trouble midway through the 2012 season, had back surgery in the spring of 2013, rushed to return for Week 1 last year and struggled all year with back and shoulder injuries.

The physical issues sapped his effectiveness as a pass-rusher, and he has collected only two sacks in the Giants' past 23 games dating back to November 2012. He has more than once called 2013 "a lost season" for himself because once he started to finally feel better from the back surgery, he hurt his shoulder in the Week 10 victory over the Raiders and played only two more games after that.

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Bengals' Leon Hall cleared to practice

July, 24, 2014
Jul 24
[+] EnlargeLeon Hall
Andrew Weber/USA TODAY SportsBengals cornerback Leon Hall, coming back from a second torn Achilles, has been cleared to practice.

CINCINNATI -- Cornerback Leon Hall was cleared to join the Bengals' first practice of training camp on Thursday, an encouraging sign for one of the NFL's top defenses.

Hall tore his right Achilles tendon midway through last season, the second time he's sustained such an injury. He tore his left Achilles in 2011, but was back as the starter the following year.

The 29-year-old cornerback says he'll be rusty in pass coverage, so that's the main thing he's working on early in camp.

He participated in Thursday's walk-through and said he would also take part in Thursday afternoon's practice.

"I guess you could say I reached my goal but that was just part of it," Hall said. "I'm still not all the way back yet. I'd still like to get out on the field, get the kinks out, if you will, get the rust off. It'll be nice."

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