Report: Dolphins Chambers not on trading block
The Miami Herald claiming a highly placed Dolphins source reports that receiver Chris Chambers is NOT on the trading block as the NFL Network reported late Tuesday. When asked for confirmation on the story which was reported by usually reliable reporter Adam Schefter, the source refuted the story and asked a simple question: "Who would we play?" -- Miami Herald
Strahan tells Giants he'll make decision soon
Michael Strahan's decision is coming soon. At least that's what he's told the Giants. The future Hall of Fame defensive end, who has kept everyone waiting (and waiting and waiting) for more than a month, told the team yesterday he will make his decision on whether to retire or return either today or tomorrow. Strahan did so in phone calls to general manager Jerry Reese on Monday night and yesterday morning. "Both conversations were constructive and positive," Giants VP of communications Pat Hanlon said in an e-mail to reporters. "(Yesterday) morning's conversation ended with Strahan telling Jerry that he expects to arrive at a decision about whether or not to continue his playing career within the next day or two." Neither Hanlon nor Reese would comment further on the conversations. Strahan's agent, Tony Agnone, did not return several calls and text messages to his cell phone yesterday. Someone who spoke to Strahan yesterday said there's no guarantee a decision will come in the next two days. The person, who requested anonymity because Strahan wanted their conversation to remain private, said Strahan wasn't happy with the Giants' releasing a time frame he felt shouldn't have been divulged to the public. Yesterday was the 33rd day of Strahan's holdout, bringing his total in fines owed because of his absence to $471,504. It's likely the Giants will waive at least a portion of those fines if Strahan arrives in good physical condition.-- Star-Ledger
Portis last season with Skins?
RB Clinton Portis admits this season may be his last with the Redskins. "The world forgot about me this year," he said. "I have to make it work this year or I'll be out of here and probably be doing these same interviews somewhere else." The longer Portis is bugged by injuries, the more chances Ladell Betts will receive to show his five consecutive 100-yard games last season was just the beginning. The longer Betts produces like a No. 1 back, the more likely Portis and the Redskins would part ways.-- Washington Times
Broncos WR Smith sidelined first five games
The Broncos placed Rod Smith on the physically unable to perform list Tuesday, a move that will sideline the team's all-time leading receiver for at least the first five games of the regular season. Smith, 37, needs more time than initially hoped in his recovery from offseason hip surgery. The Broncos aren't ready to give up on Smith, mostly because he has earned the benefit of the doubt through past production, but also because No. 3 receiver Brandon Stokley is dealing with his own health issues and Nos. 4 and 5 receivers Brian Clark and Domenik Hixon have yet to make their first NFL catch. -- Denver Post
Raiders QB Walter could land with Falcons?
The team's lack of urgency to add depth behind starter Joey Harrington signals confidence in Harrington to run the Falcons' offense and faith in Chris Redman -- both players are trying to restart their careers -- to serve as his main backup. Another player, most likely with some game experience -- such as Anthony Wright or Andrew Walter, if either becomes available -- is expected to be acquired for the No. 3 job. -- Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Quinn disagrees with Browns decision?
Browns QB Brady Quinn was asked if he agrees with General Manager Phil Savage's statement that it's unrealistic for him to be ready for the opener. "No, I don't," Quinn said. "I feel that I'd love to be under center and play, or start, in the opener. But it's not my decision. I feel that way because I'm a competitor. Any one of us would feel the same way." -- Cleveland Plain Dealer
Dolphins could grab Pats Caldwell or Washington?
Don't assume the No. 5 receiver is on the Dolphins' roster, considering better options will be available. The Patriots, for example, reportedly will choose between Reche Caldwell and Kelley Washington for one roster spot. -- Miami Herald
Bucs shopping Clayton, Dolphins Chambers?
As teams tweak rosters and debate deals, three wide receivers' names are popping up in potential trades that are more intriguing than they are likely. Included in the list are primarily former first-round picks, primarily from the Sunshine State: Jacksonville's Reggie Williams, Tampa Bay's Michael Clayton and Miami's Chris Chambers. -- NFL Network
Vikes dealing RB Moore?
At times this summer, the Vikings have appeared to be showcasing running back Mewelde Moore for a possible trade. In last Saturday's game at Seattle, Moore was covering punts -- even making a tackle to stop Nate Burleson's 53-yard return. But offensively, Moore was the fourth tailback off the bench, after Taylor, Peterson and Artose Pinner. Would the Vikings release Moore if they cannot trade him? If a decision has been made, coach Brad Childress wasn't saying Tuesday. -- Star Tribune
Rams Brown, NFL aren't on same page on suspension appeal
The days are dwindling, and Fakhir Brown's frustration level is rising. On July 13, the NFL announced that Brown, the Rams' starting right cornerback, had been suspended for the first four games of the regular season for violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy. Later, Brown said he had appealed the ruling. But league spokesman Greg Aiello said Tuesday that "we never announce a suspension until the appeal process has been completed. So, I don't understand what he's talking about." Either an appeal was heard and denied, or none was filed, Aiello explained. Aiello said he didn't know whether Brown had appealed. Still, Brown told reporters earlier Tuesday that with the opener only 12 days off, he still was awaiting word from the league. "I'm kind of worried about it," Brown said. "I haven't heard anything." -- St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Cowboys not impressed with RB Jones
There's one reason and only one reason I think Julius Jones will be gone at the end of the season: The Cowboys don't think he's special. Think back over the last couple of years. The Cowboys worked out deals with Jason Witten, Bradie James and Roy Williams before or during the final year of their contracts. They're doing the same thing with Tony Romo. There has not been a peep about giving Jones a new deal. The Cowboys think Jones is a good player, but not worth the millions of upfront cash it will take to keep him. -- Dallas Morning News
Ginn Jr. holding onto Dolphins No.3 WR slot?
Ted Ginn Jr., who said he expects to sit out Thursday's exhibition because of a minor quadriceps injury, continues to lead Derek Hagan for the No. 3 receiver job, and Trent Green predicted Tuesday ''we're going to expand his role more and more.'' Said Cam Cameron: ``He's years beyond a lot of guys at the same age.'' -- Miami Herald
Browns give LeCharles six more weeks
Browns center LeCharles Bentley was placed Tuesday on the reserve/physically unable to perform list, meaning he will have at least the first six weeks of the season to continue rehabbing his surgically repaired left knee before testing it in practice. "I felt like LeCharles needed more time," said Crennel. "With this extra time to rehab, we can get him on the field during that [three-week] window in October and see where he's at." Crennel said the PUP list was the perfect place for Bentley with final cuts coming Saturday. -- Cleveland Plain Dealer
Injured Gramatica not automatic choice for Cowboys roster
Cowboys kicker Martin Gramatica's future with the team appears in jeopardy. Gramatica is not expected to play at Minnesota on Thursday because of a slightly pulled hamstring suffered Saturday against Houston. The timing couldn't be worse for Gramatica, who is trying to beat out rookie sixth-round draft pick Nick Folk. Final cuts are Saturday. Folk has made all three of his field-goal attempts in the preseason and all four extra points. Cowboys coach Wade Phillips seems confident in Folk and will get to see how he handles all kicking duties against the Vikings. -- Star-Telegram
Is Manuel finished with Packers?
Marquand Manuel may have played his final down as a Green Bay Packer. The other Packers safeties learned before Tuesday's practice that Manuel, a sixth-year pro demoted to a reserve role last week, will sit out Thursday's preseason finale at Tennessee. Coach Mike McCarthy confirmed he is considering holding out Manuel and said he'd do so to evaluate younger players. -- Green Bay Press-Gazette
Jets eye former Ravens lineman?
The Ravens waived guard Keydrick Vincent, a seven-year veteran, on Tuesday. Vincent, who started 12 games last year, underwent successful surgery for a sports hernia in the off-season. But he lost his job because of a youth movement. Vincent's agent, Ken Zuckerman, said Tuesday a "couple of teams" already were interested, but the Jets weren't one of them. Zuckerman indicated the Jets could be a possibility, although there has been no contact with them thus far. -- Bergen Record
Drummond gives KC a vet return threat
A more straightforward runner, Eddie Drummond said it'd be a mistake to compare him to the shifty, elusive Dante Hall, who is now with St. Louis. "Just the opposite," Drummond said. "I've got more of a running-back type of mentality. I'm going to make two moves, break a couple of tackles, and I'm gone. I'm not a guy that loses a lot of ground and then tries to gain it back, so you're not going to see runs that last long. You're going to see a lot of quick runs that break out." Another one of Drummond's strengths is that he plays on all the special-teams units. When he's not returning kicks and punts, Drummond said he'll be contributing on the Chiefs' coverage units. -- KC Star
Sauerbrun gets Broncos roster spot
When Paul Ernster was included among the Broncos' roster cuts Tuesday, it officially made Todd Sauerbrun the team's punter and kickoff specialist. Ernster handled both roles last year, but his inconsistency as a punter led the Broncos to re- sign Sauerbrun. -- Denver Post
Decision is near on Jones' status for Lions
Lions running back Kevin Jones remains hopeful he can play in the season opener Sept. 9 in Oakland. Jones, who is on the physically unable to perform list, has an appointment Thursday with Bob Anderson, the doctor who performed surgery on his injured left foot. Jones suffered a Lisfranc injury, a tearing of the tissues that connect the bones in the middle of the foot, and had surgery in December. Rehabilitation typically takes a year or more because of the tissues involved. Jones is attempting to return in nine months. "Right now I don't know where I'm at," Jones said. Lions coach Rod Marinelli said Anderson will meet with team doctors after the examination Thursday. A decision will then be made. "We can't make a mistake," he said. "We've got to be smart on it." -- Detroit News
Giants Burress backache a mystery
The Plaxico Burress situation continues to get more and more mysterious by the day. One day after missing practice because of back trouble and going instead to Manhattan to see a specialist, Burress again sat out yesterday, spending the entire practice session getting treatment inside the Giants' locker room. With so many injured players already to deal with, coach Tom Coughlin admitted that it's troubling not to have his No. 1 wide receiver on the field for the final practice before tomorrow's preseason finale against New England. ... Quarterback Eli Manning, who figures to play no more than one or two series tomorrow, brushed off questions about how much time he will need to get in sync with Burress before the season opener against the Dallas Cowboys on Sept. 9.-- Star-Ledger
Cowboys Ellis back from second opinion on Achillies
Cowboys LB Greg Ellis is expected to return today from getting a second opinion on his Achilles' tendon. Ellis visited famed orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews in Birmingham, Ala., on Monday and dealt with personal matters Tuesday in North Carolina. There has been no report yet on his visit with Andrews. Ellis remains day-to-day and is suffering from bursitis in his heel. It's still unknown whether he will be able to play in the Sept. 9 opener against the New York Giants. He has not practiced since the opening day of training camp. -- Star-Telegram
McNabb: Westbrook a 2,000-yard rusher
Donovan McNabb has grandiose visions of what the future might hold for Brian Westbrook. "I could see him as a 2,000-yard rusher," he said. "I also see him as a guy who could probably have about 2,500 to 2,700 yards of total offense." That means McNabb also can see a league MVP award for Westbrook. -- Philadelphia Inquirer
Steelers Ward undergoes surgery
Hines Ward has a broken nose and was scheduled for minor surgery yesterday afternoon to repair it. Ward's nose was broken in the Steelers' 27-13 victory against the Philadelphia Eagles Sunday night at Heinz Field. He did not practice yesterday, watching with a bag of ice on a sore thigh muscle. Coach Mike Tomlin downplayed the injury during his press conference to the extent that he said Ward could play tomorrow against the Carolina Panthers in the final preseason game. "Hines is Hines," Tomlin said. "I wouldn't count Hines out." -- Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Chiefs LJ is Centaur
Chiefs play-by-play announcer Mitch Holthus is determined to make his "centaur" nickname for Larry Johnson stick. At the luncheon, Holthus introduced LJ as "the Centaur." -- KC Star
Jacksonville's Maurice Jones-Drew averaged 7.2 yards a carry in the first half of games last year, 4.3 in the second half. -- Cold Hard Football Facts
Jets deciding between QB's Smith and Tuiasosopo?
The Jets have an interesting decision to make at quarterback. Do they make Brad Smith their third quarterback or keep ex-Raider Marques Tuiasosopo as their third guy? Tuiasosopo has had a solid camp despite getting limited reps. He and Smith are expected to see significant action against the Eagles. -- Star-Ledger
How About That?
About the only area where LaDainian Tomlinson struggled in 2006 came after he'd hit the 20-carry mark in a game. After 20 carries, LT averaged a mortal 3.2 yards per tote (48 carries for 153 yards). -- Cold Hard Football Facts
Chiefs special patch for Lamar Hunt
Clark Hunt also discussed the commemorative patch that will be worn on the Chiefs uniforms this season, a patch that will honor the late owner of the Chiefs, Lamar Hunt. The patch consists mostly of the old American Football League logo of which Lamar was so proud. Lamar Hunt's initials are stitched below the logo. "We kept the initials smaller," Clark said, "because he always believed the league came first. This is how he would have wanted it." -- KC Star
Did You Know?
Departed RB Corey Dillon was the best third-and-short man in the NFL in 2006, picking up nine first downs in 10 tries. He also scored seven times on nine runs inside the 3, No. 2 in the league (Larry Johnson No. 1). -- Cold Hard Football Facts
Jets honor Curtis Martin with locker
Recently retired Jets RB Curtis Martin's full locker stall, complete with jerseys, pants and shoes, remains in the team's locker room at the Hofstra University training complex. "Because he's Curtis," said Eric Mangini, smiling, when asked why. "Curtis still has a presence in the building. And I love having Curtis around. He'll always have a locker in Jets fans' hearts." -- Star-Ledger
The Colts were the best in the league in 2006 on third-and-short runs, converting 61.8 percent of attempts (Giants No. 2, 59.2 percent). -- Cold Hard Football Facts