Last year, outside linebacker Joey Porter sustained several gunshot wounds during a Labor Day weekend trip to Denver and missed two games. This time, it's right inside linebacker Kendrell Bell, who remains troubled by a persistently sore shoulder that kept him out of the last three exhibition games.
The Steelers were confident Bell would be ready by now, but they may not know until later in the week if he can play Sunday against Oakland. Even if Bell can play, he will have had almost no game experience since the end of last season.
All four starters missed practice Monday afternoon, but each
expects to be ready when Atlanta opens the season Sunday at San
Crumpler, a Pro Bowl tight end, has a tight hamstring. Price,
who will start his first game at flanker since the Falcons acquired
him from Buffalo 1½ years ago, skipped the workout because of a
sore groin that's bothered him since last week.
Price added he had negative results from an X-ray on his neck
two weeks ago. He had an X-ray last week that gave negative results
on his left pinky.
Dunn, who played just one series last week at Washington, is
still suffering stiffness from an upper right leg strain that made
him leave the preseason game against Cincinnati on Aug. 27.
A sore hamstring caused Brooking, a Pro Bowl linebacker, to miss
consecutive tackles in the first quarter of the blowout loss to the
Redskins. Rookie Demorrio Williams replaced him in practice.
Starting right cornerback Jason Webster was back on the field
for the first time after missing the last two weeks with a strained
groin. Jamie Duncan, the No. 2 middle linebacker behind Chris
Draft, returned to practice for the first time since tearing a
pectoral muscle in Aug. 20 exhibition against Minnesota. Mora said
Duncan still seems at least two weeks away from practicing in pads.
The team wore just helmets Monday.
The Falcons made six roster moves, claiming defensive
tackle Cleveland Pinkney and tight ends Dwayne Blakely and
Darnell Sanders off waivers, and releasing running back James Fenderson,
tight end Justin Swift and defensive end Joe Tafoya.
It would be a huge lift for the Chiefs' injury-depleted receiver
corps if Morton can over come his sore Achilles tendon and
Wide receiver Marc Boerigter, who had an impressive camp, went
on injured reserve last week after knee surgery. Rookie tight end
Kris Wilson is expected to be out at least half the season with a
broken leg, and Eddie Kennison, the other starting wide receiver,
missed two preseason games with a wrist injury.
Also: Going onto the practice squad were wide receivers John Booth,
Chris Horn and Jeris McIntyre, guard Darnell Alford, tight end
Aaron Golliday, linebacker Rich Scanlon and defensive tackle
Losman attended his first practice since breaking his left leg
in practice last month, watching on crutches from the sideline
Monday. It was the first step for a player who hadn't been able to
go anywhere before getting his hard cast removed earlier in the
Losman, the second of Buffalo's two first-round picks, is
projected to miss at least the first half of the season after
breaking his fibula during a collision with teammate Troy Vincent
at training camp.
Appearing as the third-stringer in Buffalo's first two preseason
games, Losman went a combined 9-of-11 for 78 yards passing, and had
80 yards rushing on seven carries. He also engineered three scoring
drives, all ending in field goals, in five series.
League sources said that Madise, a fifth-round choice in the 2003 draft who appeared in 11 games as a rookie, tested positive for a banned substance. The suspension is expected to be for the first four games of the season.
Madise, 24, will lose $71,764 of his scheduled base salary of $305,000. As a rookie last season, he signed a five-year, $2.105 million contract with a $190,000 signing bonus.
In addition to the suspension, the former TCU standout broke his right hand in Thursday night's preseason finale, and he could eventually wind up on the injured reserve list, which would mean he would be sidelined for the entire season.
One of the fastest players in the 2003 draft, and also blessed with good size, Madise had only two receptions for 10 yards last season. He returned five kickoffs for an average of 27.4 yards, including an 83-yard runback.
Also: Denver signed seven players, including
former Colorado State quarterback Bradlee Van Pelt, to their
The Broncos also signed former CSU running back Cecil Sapp, wide
receiver Romar Crenshaw, defensive tackle Nick Eason, linebacker
Louis Green, defensive end Bryant McNeal and center/guard Josh
All seven spent training camp with the Broncos but were cut from
the final roster.
Bryant will not be able to participate in any of the
club's activities until October 5.
Selected 12th overall in 2002 out of Wisconsin, Bryant
registered 19 tackles in 12 games last season. He collected 1½ sacks in 14 games during his rookie campaign.
Also: The team's top picks from this year -- Larry Fitzgerald (ankle injury) -- and last year -- Bryant Johnson (fractured foot) -- practiced Sunday, but coach Dennis Green hinted that chances are iffy that the receivers will play in the opener at St. Louis, according to an Arizona Republic report.
"They looked rusty," Green said, adding that because of both players' big size he isn't certain they'll have to time to get the rhythm and timing down. "Will they get there within one week? I don't know about that."
Suggs, who sat out Saturday's preseason finale against the
Chicago Bears with a neck stinger, had little to say in the
locker room following practice.
"It feels good," Suggs whispered.
Asked whether he would play in Sunday's opener, Suggs said, "It's
not up to me."
Coach Butch Davis steered clear of talking about Suggs, who
rushed for a team-high 118 yards on 15 carries and scored three
touchdowns during the exhibition season.
"He's day-to-day," Davis said.
Also: Third-string rusher James Jackson, who last week said he
wanted out of Cleveland, has changed his tone.
"I'm happy," Jackson said. "I'm straight."
Jackson said he and Davis spoke to clear up any
"I'm doing what's best for my teammates," said Jackson, who
led the Browns in rushing as a rookie in 2001. "Those guys have
been behind me."
Jackson said he expects to spend the rest of the season with the
Browns, who entertained some trade offers for the 28-year-old, but
weren't willing to give him up for a late-round pick.
Jacksonville Jaguars: Jacksonville canceled
practice because of Hurricane Frances.
NFL teams typically take Tuesdays off, but the Jags will
practice after Monday's washout. Jacksonville opens the season
Sunday at Buffalo.
"It's something we have to deal with," coach Jack Del Rio
said. "People are dealing with their homes, their lives. It really
puts things in perspective for us. This is a vicious storm that's
ripped through. There have been two others before that have hit
Florida and there's another one on the way bearing down on us. So
it's a very serious time.
"We have to adjust and deal with it. There is not going to be
anybody feeling sorry for us. We have work to do."
Cincinnati Bengals: The Bengals were awarded third-year cornerback Rashad Bauman on waivers, adding some speed and experience to their secondary. Bauman was released by the Washington Redskins, in a mild surprise, on Saturday.
A third-round pick in the 2002 draft, Bauman played his rookie season under Marvin Lewis, when the Bengals' head coach was the Redskins' defensive coordinator, so he arrives in Cincinnati with a basic knowledge of the scheme. In two NFL seasons, the former University of Oregon standout has played in 27 games, including three starts, and has 40 tackles and one interception.
To make room for Bauman on the 53-player roster, the Bengals released rookie wideout Maurice Mann, a fifth-round draft pick who likely will be signed to the team's practice squad if he clears waivers.
Cincinnati signed another former Redskins' third-round pick, wide receiver Clifford Russell, to the practice squad. Russell missed his entire '02 rookie season with a knee injury, then appeared in just three games in 2003, catching two passes for 10 yards. Even after 2002 knee surgery, the former Utah star has great deep speed, but he will have to learn to play hurt.
The Bengals signed six other players to the practice squad: linebackers Larry Stevens and Allen Augustin, offensive tackle Peter Lougheed, wide receiver Jamall Broussard, defensive end Elton Patterson and defensive end Greg Scott.
But Lowe, released by the Jets on Sunday, isn't the seasoned
veteran Minnesota hoped to acquire after placing Tyrone Carter on
injured reserve with a sprained knee.
Lowe, a 6-foot-1, 195-pound defensive back, has bounced among
three teams in two NFL seasons, appearing in only three games. He
has one career tackle.
The Vikings released sixth-round draft pick Deandre' Eiland to
make room for Lowe on the 53-man roster. Eiland, the first Vikings
draft choice since 2002 to be released before the regular season,
will be signed to the practice squad if he clears waivers.
Terms were not disclosed.
Cloud, 29, led the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots with
five rushing touchdowns while playing in just five games last
season. He was released Friday.
Cloud carried 27 times for 118 yards last season. He spent his
previous four seasons with the Kansas City Chiefs and has rushed
for 499 yards and nine touchdowns in 61 career games.
Also: The club waived former
starting offensive tackle Ian Allen and two other players and were awarded three players on waivers.
Defensive tackle Kenderick Allen, offensive tackle
Marques Sullivan and receiver Mark Jones were picked up on waivers. To make
room, receiver Avion Black and defensive tackle Mario Monds were
waived in addition to Ian Allen.
Kenderick Allen was waived by the Saints over the weekend. The
former LSU product appeared in 10 games for New Orleans last
season, finishing with 10 tackles.
Sullivan started 22 of 32 games for the Buffalo Bills over the
last three seasons. The former Illinois player started 16 games at
right guard in 2002 and the final four last year at left tackle.
McHugh had been waived by Tennessee and Rogers by NFC North
McHugh was a seventh-round draft choice out of Penn State last
April. He rushed 82 times for 322 yards and six touchdowns and
caught 44 passes for 297 yards and a touchdown in 41 games for the
Rogers was the Vikings' 2002 sixth-round draft choice. In two
years with the Vikings, who converted him to defensive end this
offseason, Rogers had 30 special teams tackles, including 24 last
year. He played in all 32 games, starting half of them.
The fourth-year pro spent the last two seasons with San Diego, getting one sack and 23 tackles last year as a reserve
lineman. He was drafted by the Washington Redskins in 2001.
Leverette didn't fit into the new 3-4 defensive front of the
Chargers, but the 49ers can use his versatility. San Francisco is
thin and inexperienced on the defensive line.
"He's a guy that's been around, and we think he can help us,"
coach Dennis Erickson said.
To make room for Leverette, the 49ers cut lineman Chris Demaree.
Houston Texans: The Houston Texans signed eight players to their
practice squad, including seven they cut the day before.
The Texans re-acquired linebackers D.D. Acholonu, Anthony Dunn
and Shantee Orr, defensive lineman Jason Davis, safety Jammal Lord,
tight end Matt Murphy and receiver Sloan Thomas. Houston also added
tailback Ronaldo Works.
The Dolphins got defensive back-kick returner Brightful from the
Baltimore Ravens and fullback Martin from the Dallas Cowboys. To
make room for them, the Dolphins waived defensive tackle Tony Brown
and terminated the contract of cornerback Jimmy Wyrick.
Information from ESPN.com senior writer Len Pasquarelli and The Associated Press was used in this report.