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Thursday, August 7, 2008
Updated: August 8, 1:06 PM ET
Around NFL training camps: Aug. 7

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BRACKETT RETURNS TO COLTS (10:43 p.m. ET)
Starting middle linebacker Gary Brackett surprised the Colts on Thursday night, returning to practice four days earlier than expected.

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Brackett had been limited to one practice per day because of an offseason hip injury until last Thursday, when he went down with what was initially called a hip injury and then changed to a groin injury on the team's weekend injury report.

It was a welcome addition for a linebacking corps that has been short-handed since Indianapolis first practiced July 25. Another starter, Tyjuan Hagler, is expected to be out until October after tearing a pectoral muscle while lifting weights in the offseason. His replacement, Clint Session, went down with a calf injury and third-round pick Philip Wheeler is expected to miss a couple weeks after having knee surgery last week.

Coach Tony Dungy did not say whether Brackett would play Saturday at Carolina.
-- The Associated Press

BEARS' WILLIAMS HAS SURGERY (8:43 p.m. ET)
First-round draft pick Chris Williams had surgery to repair a herniated disk in his lower back either Wednesday or Thursday, team spokesman Scott Hagel said.

The 14th overall pick, Williams was expected to start at left tackle, but those plans went awry when he left the Bears' second practice because of stiffness. He's been sidelined ever since but remains on the 53-man roster.

Hagel said there is no connection between that injury and a minor back problem Williams experienced at Vanderbilt.

With Williams out, John St. Clair started at left tackle in the preseason opener against the Chiefs on Thursday night.
-- The Associated Press

BRONCOS' TORAIN COULD MISS THREE MONTHS (8:27 p.m. ET)
Rookie running back Ryan Torain is expected to miss about three months after breaking a bone in his left elbow.

Broncos coach Mike Shanahan announced Thursday that Torain would need surgery. Asked if the injury was a blow to the organization, he did not respond.

Andre Hall, one of the Broncos' three remaining healthy running backs, said the loss of Torain "messes things up."

"Ryan had the big body and the team had a short-yardage package in for him," he said. "The rest of us are going to have to step it up."
-- The Associated Press

RAMS, TITANS TRY YOGA AFTER SKIRMISH (8:10 p.m. ET)
The Rams and Titans wrapped up their second day of joint practices with a special-teams session in the morning. Most players not involved did some yoga on the Titans' indoor field. Then they concluded with a 90-minute session in the afternoon.

The Titans usually do some yoga once every week or two to stretch out muscles, especially during training camp. The Titans even incorporated yoga into an offseason program a few years ago and have included a couple poses into their daily pre-practice stretches. Linebacker Keith Bulluck said it is a nice change of pace during training camp.

"Anything not outside being physical, we're all cool with. Those guys were into it," he said of the Rams. "They got something out of it. We got something out of it."

Rams center Brett Romberg welcomed the yoga, having tried the stretching technique while with Jacksonville. He called yoga great for lengthening out muscles, especially after a few days of hard work.

"Any time you can take off some banging, it definitely makes the body feel a lot better," Romberg said. "The yoga's great. I hope they start implementing it in St. Louis. It definitely works."
-- The Associated Press

BROWNS ROOKIE LB BELL HAS SURGERY (7:30 p.m. ET)
Browns rookie linebacker Beau Bell had arthroscopic surgery Thursday to remove loose cartilage from behind his right kneecap.

The Browns expect Bell, hurt in workouts earlier this week, to be sidelined four to six weeks.

Bell, a fourth-round pick out of UNLV, was the Browns' first overall selection. Cleveland traded away its first three picks.

Bell finished second on UNLV's career tackles list with 320 in 41 games. He also had 10 sacks and four interceptions.
-- The Associated Press

PANTHERS WAIVE TACKLE SPENCER (5:39 p.m. ET)
The Carolina Panthers waived tackle Charles Spencer on Thursday for what coach John Fox calls a "conditioning issue."

The Panthers claimed Spencer off waivers from Houston two days before players reported to training camp. The former third-round pick hasn't played in the NFL since breaking his leg during his rookie season in 2006.

Spencer had missed several practices for what the team called a sore knee, but Fox said Thursday he was let go because of "conditioning and weight."

The Panthers did not immediately replace Spencer on the 80-man roster. Fox said he wasn't sure if they'd sign a player before Saturday's preseason opener against Indianapolis.
-- The Associated Press