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  • Saturday, November 29, 2014
    Raiola reaches 200 in career starts
    By The Sports Xchange

    ALLEN PARK, Mich. -- Center Dominic Raiola made his 200th career start for the Detroit Lions Thursday, the most in franchise history. He became emotional in the fourth quarter when the Ford Field announcer noted the achievement and it was shown on screen.

    • A second-round pick in 2001, Raiola has missed just four starts -- all in 2008 -- since earning the starting center job in 2002. He's started 92 straight games.

      "I group myself with this city, and we've been through a lot in 14 years," he said. "We've been bankrupt; we've been 0-16. You keep kicking us down, but we keep getting up."

      Earlier this season, Raiola broke linebacker Wayne Walker's record of 197 starts, which he made from 1958-72.

      Raiola becomes the fifth active player with 200 career starts, joining quarterbacks Peyton Manning and Tom Brady, safety Charles Woodson and defensive tackle Justin Smith. Brady is the only active player with more starts for one team with 202 in New England.

  • Saturday, November 29, 2014
    Bad performance against Eagles raises questions for Cowboys
    By The Sports Xchange

    IRVING, Texas -- This was the big question following the Dallas Cowboys' 33-10 blowout loss to the Philadelphia Eagles on Thursday: Was it just a bad game for the Cowboys, or were they exposed?

    • The Cowboys are 1-3 against teams with a winning record. It was their third consecutive home loss, while scoring a season-low 10 points. It was supposed to be a showdown for first place in the NFC East, and the Cowboys were overrun from the outset.

      Philadelphia moved to 9-3 on the season and took over sole possession of first place in the division. The Cowboys (8-4) are one game back with four games to play, including a matchup on the road against the Chicago Bears on Dec. 4 to complete a stretch of three games in 12 days before a return engagement against the Eagles in Philadelphia on Dec. 14.

      Owner Jerry Jones said the only bright side in the loss is that the Cowboys still have time to recover, unlike last year's season finale when a loss to the Eagles cemented a third consecutive 8-8 campaign and fourth consecutive year out of the postseason.

      The Cowboys have little room for error in the division. Jones said the Cowboys must beat Chicago next week and then must win at Philadelphia on Dec. 14.

      "Just be thankful, thankful, here on Thanksgiving Day that it wasn't like it was this time last year when Philadelphia beat us because it was over and we went home," Jones said. "Now then, we've got it still right there for us and we've played at a level that will let us get it done and this team has a lot of confidence. It clearly understands what happened to us. The key thing is, when we looked at it early, when teams are moving on us, we've got to respond. That's this team. We've got to come back and do it. If we don't, we'll take a step back."

      The bottom line is that if the playoffs started today the Cowboys would be the odd team out. The Cowboys need to take care of business and hope for help with things falling their way.

      Jones said the poor play of quarterback Tony Romo and the Cowboys offense was the biggest setback on Thursday. NFL-leading rusher DeMarco Murray was held under 100 yards for just the second time this season, finishing with 73 yards on 20 carries.

      Romo and the passing game looked out of sync. He completed just 18 of 29 passes for 199 yards and had two interceptions. He was sacked four times. It was Romo's worst performance since a three-interception meltdown in the season-opening loss to the San Francisco 49ers. Jones said the Cowboys were dominated up front on both sides of the ball.

      "There is no question about it, Tony didn't have the kind of game we got to have to beat a team like Philadelphia," Jones said. "We do know our team has to be able to compensate offensively for what we are trying to do defensively. And we didn't do that."

      NOTES, QUOTES

      --Defensive end Jeremey Mincey said the Cowboys fans need to do more to help the team at AT&T Stadium. The Cowboys are 3-4 at home, including three straight losses, the last being Thursday's 33-10 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.

      "It's tough. We need a little bit more support from the fans when the defense is on the field," Mincey said. "We need them controlling the quarterback. They help the snap count, and they help everything. If our fans could just raise the bar, they want us to raise the bar, they have to raise the bar, too. We're counting on the fans, just as much as they count on us. We need ya, baby. Come on."

      "I really think the noise could have slowed down that up-tempo offense," Mincey said. "But we just have to continue to get better and do our part."

      --Cowboys owner Jerry Jones didn't think his team played with enough passion and fire in the loss to the Eagles.

      "We may not have played with the passion you would expect in a game like that," Jones said Friday. "Don't ask me why. And I guess if you can't ask me, who can you ask?"

      Cowboys coach Jason Garrett was asked the same question and he disagreed.

      "I think it was there," Garrett said. "I think the biggest issue with us was the execution. We didn't set the edge quite as well (Thursday). Trying to defend the run, it was almost too aggressive. We had a number of missed tackles where guys were flying around and they were a little bit out of control. Too much of that instead of playing with the poise necessary that we've played with for a lot of this year."

      --LB Rolando McClain was slowed by a sprained knee against the Eagles. He struggled running and nursed his right knee throughout the 33-10 loss to the Eagles. Added owner Jerry Jones: "He was sensitive with it, but ... he was able to finish. And that's a good thing. But it did look like he was favoring his knee a little bit out there." McClain hopes to get through next Thursday's game against the Bears and then have 10 days off before a rematch against the Eagles.

      --PR Dwayne Harris was called for an unnecessary roughness penalty after laying a hard block on a punt-return play, trying to keep an Eagles defender from downing the ball before it reached the end zone. It's a legal play when you don't call for a fair catch. The Cowboys were perplexed by the flag and the explanation. Said coach Jason Garrett, "They told us that he hit him too hard unnecessarily. But the league does a great job. We'll send that play in and hopefully learn from it."

      --DE George Selvie suffered a sprained thumb against the Eagles but he should be fine and play against the Bears.

      --DT Tyrone Crawford had a good game against the Eagles if his teammates didn't. He recorded his first sack of the season and had two forced fumbles.

      REPORT CARD VS. EAGLES

      PASSING OFFENSE: F -- Tony Romo completed 18 of 29 passes for 199 yards. He was intercepted twice and had a season-low passer rating of 53.7. Romo saw his streak of 38 games with a touchdown pass come to an end. He was out of sync and off target and was sacked four times.

      RUSHING OFFENSE: C -- DeMarco Murray rushed for 73 yards on 20 carries. It was the second time this season he was held to fewer than 100 yards. Lance Dunbar had two carries for 15 yards but his poor decision to cut inside rather than stay outside on a third-and-3 run killed a potential scoring drive.

      PASS DEFENSE: D -- Mark Sanchez completed 20 of 29 passes for 217 yards with a touchdown. He was sacked just once. The Cowboys gave up a 48-yard completion on a second-and-19. The inability to rush the quarterback remains a huge problem for the Cowboys defense.

      RUSH DEFENSE: F -- The Cowboys gave up a season-high 256 yards on the ground, including 25 carries for 159 yards by LeSean McCoy. But Carlos Polk had 11 carries for 49 yards and quarterback Mark Sanchez had seven scrambles for 28 yards.

      SPECIAL TEAMS: C -- Dwayne Harris averaged 30.3 yards on four kickoff returns, including a long of 42. Chris Jones netted 39.2 yards on five punts, but the Cowboys gave up 32 yards in returns to Darren Sproles on three punts.

      COACHING: F -- For the first time this season, the Cowboys didn't come to play and they didn't respond when challenged on offense or defense. That's inexcusable for a game of such importance.

  • Saturday, November 29, 2014
    Ray Rice's suspension lifted by judge
    By The Sports Xchange

    Former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice is eligible to sign with any team after his indefinite suspension was lifted Friday, according to reports.

    • Judge Barbara Jones, the arbitrator chosen by the NFL and the NFL Players Association, sided with Rice in his appeal of the suspension levied after the release of a video showing him punching his fiancée in an elevator in February.

      NFL commissioner Roger Goodell initially suspended Rice for two games after a video showed Rice dragging his fiancée, Janay, out of the elevator in an Atlantic City casino. But Goodell made the suspension indefinite after the emergence of a second video showing Rice knocking out Janay with a punch.

      Jones heard Rice's appeal earlier this month, with Rice, Janay (now his wife), Goodell and Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome among those testifying.

      The NFLPA argued that Rice was a victim of double jeopardy, being suspended a second time for the same transgression. The league argued that Rice had not revealed the truth prior to the second video emerging.

      In her 17-page ruling Friday, Jones reportedly wrote that Rice "did not mislead the commissioner" when they met about the incident June 16.

      Jones called the second suspension "arbitrary" and wrote that she was vacating it.

      In a statement issued Friday, Rice thanked those who helped him during his appeal, including his wife.

      He also said, "I made an inexcusable mistake and accept full responsibility for my actions. I am thankful that there was a proper appeals process in place to address this issue.

      "I will continue working hard to improve myself and be the best husband, father and friend, while giving back to my community and helping others to learn from my mistakes."

      The NFLPA used the decision to argue for neutral arbitration in all cases.

      "This decision is a victory for a disciplinary process that is fair and transparent," the NFLPA's statement said. "This union will always stand up and fight for the due process rights of our players. While we take no pleasure in seeing a decision that confirms what we have been saying about the Commissioner's office acting arbitrarily, we hope that this will bring the NFL owners to the collective bargaining table to fix a broken process. It is clear that this decision should force the NFL to embrace neutral arbitration as part of a necessary due process in all cases. The players thank Judge Barbara Jones for her time and thoroughness in this matter."

      Rice was indicted by a grand jury for third-degree assault in March, but in May -- after he and Janay had married -- he accepted a plea deal that is generally offered to first-time domestic assault offenders. He entered a pre-trial intervention program that includes mandated counseling.

      "It feels unbelievable," Janay Rice told ESPN. "It's a relief. We've been telling the same story for months and we always had faith that we'd done the right thing. Everyone deserves a second chance. We're excited about what the future will bring."

      In July, Goodell announced a two-game suspension for the coming season. The commissioner later lamented his punishment as too light, and the league made changes to its punishment parameters for domestic abuse cases.

      On Sept. 8, just before the season was about to kick off, the video of the knockout punch was posted by TMZ. The Ravens immediately released Rice, and Goodell extended his suspension indefinitely.

      "We respect Judge Jones' decision to reinstate Ray Rice from his indefinite suspension for violating the league's Personal Conduct Policy in an incident of domestic violence," the NFL said in a statement. "Ray Rice is a free agent and has been eligible to be signed by an NFL team since he was released by the Ravens. Based on Judge Jones' decision, he will be eligible to play upon signing a new contract.

      " ... Judge Jones' ruling underscores the urgency of our work to develop and implement a clear, fair and comprehensive new personal conduct policy. We expect this policy to be completed and announced in the weeks ahead. Our focus is on consistently enforcing an improved policy going forward."

      Rice, 27, played for the Ravens for six seasons, rushing for 6,180 yards and 37 touchdowns.

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Week 13 Preview: Patriots at Pckers
    By The Sports Xchange

    New England Patriots (9-2) at Green Bay Packers (9-2)

    • Sunday, 4:25 p.m. ET, at Lambeau Field, Green Bay, Wisc. - TV: CBS

      *TV announcers: Jim Nantz, Phil Simms, Tracy Wolfson

      *Keys to the game: How badly do the Patriots need a fast start in Green Bay? In the first half of their past four home games, the Packers outscored opponents 115-9. To slow down QB Aaron Rodgers, coach Bill Belichick and the Patriots will side with following the recent lead of Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer and do everything to try to stifle the explosiveness of Rodgers and the passing game. The Patriots figure to focus on coverage more than pressuring Rodgers. The counter? A hefty dose of Packers RB Eddie Lacy, who is also rounding into a better receiver on short dump-off passes.

      The Patriots all but abandoned the run last week, but rarely does New England follow a trend for consecutive weeks. Tom Brady averages 7.2 yards per pass because of his biggest targets, TE Rob Gronkowski and WR Brandon LaFell. Bringing in power back LeGarrette Blount to go with speed backs Shane Vereen and recent overnight sensation Jonas Gray may cause Green Bay's hit-and-miss run defense fits, particularly if the Packers are consumed with trying to get after Brady.

      FRIDAY INJURY REPORT

      NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

      --Questionable: LS Danny Aiken (concussion), G Dan Connolly (ankle), DE Dominique Easley (knee), T Cameron Fleming (ankle, finger), DE Chandler Jones (hip), WR Brandon LaFell (shoulder), RB Shane Vereen (ankle), LB Chris White (ankle)

      --Probable: QB Tom Brady (ankle), T Marcus Cannon (hip), WR Julian Edelman (thigh)

      GREEN BAY PACKERS

      --Questionable: CB Jarrett Bush (groin), LB Nick Perry (shoulder)

      --Probable: WR Davante Adams (heel), TE Brandon Bostick (hip), G T.J. Lang (ankle), G Josh Sitton (toe)

      *Matchup to watch – Packers WR Jordy Nelson vs. Patriots CB Darrelle Revis: Matt Stafford's nightmare day last week was a credit to a great collective effort by the Patriots' secondary, and Revis was all over the field. CB Brandon Browner is a closer body type to Nelson but with limited long speed, would be done if Nelson beats the jam.

      *Player spotlight – Packers OLB Julius Peppers: Speculation within the locker room was that Peppers, at 6-7, 280, might get his chances to shadow the indefensible Gronkowski. While Peppers is moving off the line more often, his primary niche is to disrupt Brady.

      *Fast facts: The Patriots are one of six NFL teams in NFL history with 14-plus consecutive winning seasons, and the first since the 49ers from 1983-98. ... The Packers leads the NFL at plus-15 turnover margin. New England is second at minus-11.

      WHO WILL WIN AND WHY

      Possibly the best game on the 2014 NFL schedule is too close to call, but a great performance from one or both quarterbacks could tip the scales.

      *Our pick: Packers 28-26

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Week 13 Preview: Giants at Jaguars
    By The Sports Xchange

    New York Giants (3-8) at Jacksonville Jaguars (1-10)

    • Sunday, 1:00 p.m. ET, at EverBank Field, Jacksonville - TV: FOX

      *TV announcers: Justin Kutcher, David Diehl, Laura Okmin

      *Keys to the game: After a tough post-bye stretch of four losses against winning teams, the Giants travel to Jacksonville simply looking to put together four solid quarters of football. It begins up front in the running game on both sides of the ball.

      The Giants' shuffled offensive line has an opportunity to gain some traction against the league's 28th-ranked run defense and keep QB Eli Manning from forcing the issue against one of the Jaguars' few team strengths -- its pass rush. If RBs Rashad Jennings and Andre Williams are even moderately productive, it will set up play-action shots down to emerging star WR Odell Beckham and others against a Jacksonville defense ill equipped to hold up in man coverage.

      The Jaguars are hopeful of establishing manageable passing situations for QB Blake Bortles with the Giants bringing the league's second-worst run defense to town allowing an average of 142.6 yards per game. Bortles has regressed in recent games and admitted he might be overthinking things.

      FRIDAY INJURY REPORT

      NEW YORK GIANTS

      --Out: DT Cullen Jenkins (calf), G Adam Snyder (knee), LB Jacquian Williams (concussion, shoulder)

      --Questionable: DE Mathias Kiwanuka (knee), T Justin Pugh (quadriceps)

      --Probable: WR Odell Beckham (back), LB Jameel McClain (knee), CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (back, hamstring), S Antrel Rolle (not injury related), G Geoff Schwartz (toe)

      JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS

      --Questionable: LB Jeremiah George (ankle), LB LaRoy Reynolds (neck)

      --Probable: QB Blake Bortles (left wrist), DE Andre Branch (groin), DE Chris Clemons (knee), S Josh Evans (elbow), CB Demetrius McCray (ankle), WR Cecil Shorts (illness)

      *Matchup to watch – Giants linebackers vs. Jaguars RBs Denard Robinson & Toby Gerhart: Who will be healthy enough to line up for the Giants is the first question, with LBs Jameel McClain and Jacquian Williams both uncertain. The Jaguars attempted to run early last week, but the Colts stuffed the box and Bortles struggles when forced to move the ball through the air. The Giants may make a similar challenge, but it will only be effective if they can play sound assignment football -- which has not been the defense's strong suit of late.

      *Player spotlight – Giants DE Damontre Moore: Coach Tom Coughlin wants to get increased snaps for Moore, who is third on the team with 3.0 sacks. However, Moore has been limited to primarily pass-rushing situations until the second-year player shows during practice he can handle various assignments on earlier downs.

      *Fast facts: The Giants are winless this season against teams that currently have a record of .500 or better, and undefeated against losing teams. ... Coughlin, who began his NFL career in Jacksonville, will coach his 300th career game Sunday.

      WHO WILL WIN AND WHY

      Jacksonville's defense has allowed just six first possession points all season. If Bortles can avoid turnovers, the Giants' defense provides his best opportunity to play free and rebuild some confidence.

      *Our pick: Jaguars 23-21

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Week 13 Preview: Chargers at Ravens
    By The Sports Xchange

    San Diego Chargers (7-4) at Baltimore Ravens (7-4)

    • Sunday, 1:00 p.m. ET, at M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore - TV: CBS

      *TV announcers: Ian Eagle, Dan Fouts, Jenny Dell

      *Keys to the game: Chargers RB Ryan Mathews returned to the lineup last week with 102 rushing yards and gives QB Philip Rivers a reliable receiver in the flat when edge rushers Elvis Dumervil (12.5 sacks) and Terrell Suggs (5.5 sacks in his past six games) push Rivers up in the pocket. Inside pressure can be San Diego's biggest bother – understandably with the Chargers working with their fourth-string center – and a weakness the Ravens will test early and often. With time, Rivers has the targets to peck his way down the field with mostly possession-type receivers.

      LB Donald Butler gets sidekick Manti Te'o back near full strength just in time as the Ravens are running with a vengeance recently. RB Justin Forsett had 182 yards at New Orleans on Monday and the approach taxes the entire front seven because of the zone-based blocking system. Teams are still more concerned with QB Joe Flacco, who has the arm strength to tear up a secondary locked into stopping the run.

      FRIDAY INJURY REPORT

      SAN DIEGO CHARGERS at BALTIMORE RAVENS

      SAN DIEGO CHARGERS

      --Out: DT Ryan Carrethers (elbow)

      --Doubtful: LB Andrew Gachkar (knee)

      --Questionable: G Ryan Miller (groin), DT Tenny Palepoi (not injury related)

      --Probable: S Jahleel Addae (concussion), RB Ryan Mathews (shoulder), WR Eddie Royal (toe)

      BALTIMORE RAVENS

      --Questionable: WR Michael Campanaro (thigh)

      --Probable: LB Pernell McPhee (shoulder), T Jah Reid (hand), LB Terrell Suggs (foot)

      *Matchup to watch – Chargers C Chris Watt vs. Ravens NT Haloti Ngata: The Ravens credit Ngata's improved play with his improved conditioning and his comfort playing more inside. Grasping Ngata's quickness on film is one thing – seeing the 335-pounder zip through the line up close is another. Watt, a rookie, held up fine against the Rams but knows he's in for a new challenge. "There's not many guys like (Ngata) in the NFL," he said.

      *Player spotlight – Ravens S Will Hill: With physical play and more than enough speed, Hill drew raves for his showing against Saints TE Jimmy Graham in Week 12. A similar test awaits Sunday in Gates, who has nine touchdowns among 40 catches this season.

      *Fast facts: Gates' next touchdown reception would make him the first tight end with four 10-TD seasons. ... Suggs is the first 100-sack player in Ravens history.

      WHO WILL WIN AND WHY

      The Chargers can make the game interesting by slowing down Forsett, but San Diego's margin for error is thinning by the week.

      *Our pick: Ravens 29-23

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Week 13 Preview: Bengals at Bucs
    By The Sports Xchange

    Cincinnati Bengals (7-3-1) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2-9)

    • Sunday, 1:00 p.m. ET, at Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Fla. - TV: CBS

      *TV announcers: Spero Dedes, Solomon Wilcots, Chris Fischer

      *Keys to the game: All of a sudden the Bengals are loaded for bear offensively and back to their brass-knuckle ways on defense. Rookie RB Jeremy Hill ignited the offense during Giovani Bernard's month-long recovery from a hip injury and has surprised even his own coaches' expectations with his combination of burst and power. Bernard eased back into the lineup last week but is a big-play threat the Bucs must key on when he's on the field.

      Coach Lovie Smith's teams strive to take care of the running game first, but the Bucs are likely to play it safe with Cover 2 to contain WR A.J. Green, who had a career-high 12 receptions in Week 12.

      Tampa's defensive numbers are improved since the bye – 19.2 points allowed per game – five weeks ago. The offense is still shaky, unable to set the running game as the foundation Smith envisioned. Charles Sims, a rookie the team views as a three-down back, has impressed in flashes but the Bucs will stay with a rotation. Rookie WR Mike Evans gets a major test this week. Bengals defensive coordinator Paul Guenther flips his corners and makes receivers work to get off the line. Evans is making major strides in all areas of the game.

      A season-long issue for the Bucs, blocking up front is a central focus with the Bengals growing more active in the trenches. QB Josh McCown lost the ball last week due to limited awareness and must get the ball out on time.

      FRIDAY INJURY REPORT

      CINCINNATI BENGALS

      --Out: LB Vontaze Burfict (knee), DE Margus Hunt (ankle)

      --Questionable: LB Nico Johnson (illness)

      --Probable: DE Robert Geathers (toe), S George Iloka (groin), WR Greg Little (illness), G Mike Pollak (knee)

      TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS

      --Questionable: LB Lavonte David (hamstring), C Evan Dietrich-Smith (illness), DT Clinton McDonald (hamstring), TE Brandon Myers (calf), TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins (back), TE Luke Stocker (concussion), S Major Wright (shoulder)

      --Probable: DT Da'Quan Bowers (knee), S Dashon Goldson (illness), RB Charles Sims (ankle)

      *Matchup to watch – Bucs OG Logan Mankins vs. Bengals DT Geno Atkins: Line stunts and twists from the Bears led to four sacks of McCown in Week 12. Atkins is relentless and Mankins had an awful time with Bears DT Stephen Paea last week.

      *Player spotlight – Bucs DE Jacquies Smith: The left end is emerging as a potential difference-maker with three sacks and a forced fumble in the past two weeks. His timing might be perfect as the Bengals adjust to the loss of RT Andre Smith to a season-ending injury last week.

      *Fast facts: The Bucs have won the past six meetings. ... Evans is averaging 17.2 yards per receptions with eight touchdowns.

      WHO WILL WIN AND WHY

      Cincinnati's personnel brings a certain chameleon capability that is serving QB Andy Dalton well.

      *Our pick: Bengals 28-14

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Week 13 Preview: Redskins at Colts
    By The Sports Xchange

    Washington Redskins (3-8) at Indianapolis Colts (7-4)

    • Sunday, 1:00 p.m. ET, at Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis - TV: FOX

      *TV announcers: Kenny Albert, Daryl Johnston, Tony Siragusa

      *Keys to the game: The anticipated matchup between 2012 No. 1 and No. 2 overall picks Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III went in the can when Redskins coach Jay Gruden turned to Colt McCoy at quarterback on Wednesday.

      McCoy will not match physical skills with Luck, but gets high marks from Gruden for his preparation. McCoy gets the game manager label because he knows not to force what isn't there, but he attacked downfield with WR DeSean Jackson in his only other start (20-17 win at Dallas) this season.

      Critical for the Redskins is slowing the game down with RB Alfred Morris. He could get 25-30 carries if the Redskins execute their plan to throw the first punch with Morris, who is averaging 4.3 yards per carry.

      While Luck distances himself from any draft debate, he's third in the NFL with 29 touchdown passes because of an underperforming rushing attack that misses the physical inside running of RB Ahmad Bradshaw.

      Tackling is a recurring shortfall for the Redskins, and their injury-thinned secondary matches up poorly with a productive fleet of Colts receivers.

      FRIDAY INJURY REPORT

      WASHINGTON REDSKINS

      --Questionable: DE Chris Baker (chest), CB E.J. Biggers (concussion), S Ryan Clark (shoulder, stinger), DE Jason Hatcher (knee), RB Silas Redd (rib), TE Jordan Reed (hamstring), T Trent Williams (knee)

      --Probable: CB Bashaud Breeland (back), DE Kedric Golston (back)

      INDIANAPOLIS COLTS

      --Out: TE Dwayne Allen (ankle), T Xavier Nixon (foot), LB Andy Studebaker (hamstring), G Hugh Thornton (knee)

      --Questionable: S Colt Anderson (knee), CB Darius Butler (knee)

      --Probable: T Gosder Cherilus (shoulder), CB Vontae Davis (foot), CB Josh Gordy (back), LB D'Qwell Jackson (not injury related), DE Cory Redding (knee), CB Gregory Toler (concussion), WR Reggie Wayne (not injury related)

      *Matchup to watch - Colts LB D'Qwell Jackson vs. Redskins C Kory Lichtensteiger: Jackson leads the Colts with 94 tackles and has a career-best four sacks. With S LaRon Landry back on the field, Jackson is blitzing more -- and getting home -- and Lichtensteiger and McCoy must be on the same page with pre-snap calls. Washington has allowed 16 sacks in the past three games.

      *Player spotlight - Redskins WR DeSean Jackson: Sudden off the snap and quick with his first move, Jackson averages 20.4 yards per catch and had six receptions for 136 yards in McCoy's previous start.

      *Fast facts: Morris leads the NFL with 3,714 rushing yards since he entered the NFL in 2012. ... McCoy is completing 85.7 percent of his passes in two games this season (36 of 42).

      WHO WILL WIN AND WHY

      Change might be good for the Redskins, but with hurting cornerbacks and slingshot offense, Washington is no match for Luck and the Colts.

      *Our pick: Colts 38-22

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Week 13 Preview: Cardinals at Falcons
    By The Sports Xchange

    Arizona Cardinals (9-2) at Atlanta Falcons (4-7)

    • Sunday, 4:05 p.m. ET, at Georgia Dome, Atlanta - TV: FOX

      *TV announcers: Kevin Burkhardt, John Lynch, Pam Oliver

      *Keys to the game: This is not going to be an old-school ground-and-pound slugfest. The Cardinals enter with the league's 31st-ranked ground game at 78.4 yards per carry, while the Falcons are only a notch better at No. 26 (93.1), while faced with the daunting task of dealing with Arizona's third-ranked run defense.

      The Cardinals face a bit of a dilemma with RB Andre Ellington averaging a mere 3.3 yards per carry and little in the way of other options until recently signed Michael Bush gets up to speed. Forced to move the ball through the air, QB Drew Stanton has thrown three interceptions against no touchdowns in his past seven quarters. But the opportunity for a breakthrough game is there against the Falcons' last-ranked pass defense – although much hinges on the availability of WR Larry Fitzgerald (knee).

      Establishing the ground game is far more critical for the Falcons. QB Matt Ryan already struggles to stretch the field behind a makeshift offensive line, and the Cardinals bring an aggressive and creative blitzing team that racked up seven sacks last week – against a Seattle offense that knows Arizona's scheme as well as any team in the league.

      FRIDAY INJURY REPORT

      ARIZONA CARDINALS

      --Out: LB Kenny Demens (hamstring), DT Ed Stinson (toe)

      --Questionable: WR Larry Fitzgerald (knee)

      --Probable: LB Lorenzo Alexander (knee), LB Marcus Benard (shoulder), WR John Brown (teeth), RB Andre Ellington (hip, foot), QB Drew Stanton (ankle)

      ATLANTA FALCONS

      --Out: CB Robert Alford (wrist)

      --Questionable: DT Paul Soliai (not injury related), WR Roddy White (ankle)

      --Probable: WR Harry Douglas (foot), T Jonathan Scott (hamstring)

      *Matchup to watch – Cardinals FS Rashad Johnson vs. Falcons QB Matt Ryan: Ryan has thrown nine interceptions in the past two meetings, with Johnson on the receiving end of three of those picks.

      *Player spotlight – Falcons S William Moore: Moore is set to return after missing seven games due to a shoulder injury. He would replace second-year safety Kemal Ishmael, and Atlanta's last-ranked defense would receive a big boost with Moore's experience back in the lineup.

      *Fast facts: Cardinals DE Calais Campbell has five sacks in his past three games, and is the first lineman in team history to have six-plus sacks in six different seasons. ... The Falcons have allowed 100-plus rushing yards seven times this season, and 120-plus in four games.

      WHO WILL WIN AND WHY

      The Falcons won't get much going against the Cardinals' strong run defense, and Arizona's exotic blitz packages magnify Atlanta's issues up front – making for a welcomed post-game ice bath for Ryan.

      *Our pick: Cardinals 26-16

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Week 13 Preview: Saints at Steelers
    By The Sports Xchange

    New Orleans Saints (4-7) at Pittsburgh Steelers (7-4)

    • Sunday, 1:00 p.m. ET, at Heinz Field, Pittsburgh - TV: FOX

      *TV announcers: Thom Brennaman, Donovan McNabb, Charissa Thompson

      *Keys to the game: Rob Ryan figures to join his brother, Rex, in the unemployment line in five weeks barring an unlikely turnaround from his woeful Saints defense.

      New Orleans ranks 23rd against both the pass and run, and 27th in overall defense. The Saints don't tackle well and suffer far too many assignment breakdowns – a lethal combination with the Steelers at home, fresh off their bye and featuring an offense that can be alternately explosive with RB Le'Veon Bell or QB Ben Roethlisberger leading the charge. The biggest problem for Pittsburgh is they rarely click at the same time, leaving the offense too skewed toward one side or the other.

      The Saints are known for their vertical shots in the passing game, but the table must first be set by the league's sixth-ranked ground game. Pittsburgh allows 4.3 yards per carry, but does get SS Troy Polamalu back in the lineup. Saints QB Drew Brees has not received strong protection in passing situations and will be vulnerable even against the Steelers' modest pass rush if New Orleans falls in an early hole.

      FRIDAY INJURY REPORT

      NEW ORLEANS SAINTS

      --Out: LB Kyle Knox (hand), RB Khiry Robinson (forearm)

      --Probable: C Jonathan Goodwin (toe), G Ben Grubbs (neck), CB Keenan Lewis (knee), LB Curtis Lofton (ankle), WR Robert Meachem (ankle), RB Pierre Thomas (ribs, shoulder)

      PITTSBURGH STEELERS

      --Out: CB Cortez Allen (thumb), DT Steve McLendon (shoulder)

      --Questionable: T Marcus Gilbert (ankle), LB Ryan Shazier (ankle)

      --Probable: WR Martavis Bryant (illness), DE Brett Keisel (not injury related), TE Heath Miller (not injury related), S Troy Polamalu (not injury related), CB Ivan Taylor (forearm), S Shamarko Thomas (hamstring)

      *Matchup to watch – Saints WR Marques Colston vs. Steelers CB Ike Taylor: The pair of wily veterans will see plenty of snaps against each other on the left side of the Saints' offense. Taylor returns for the first time since suffering a fractured forearm in Week 3.

      *Player spotlight – Saints NT John Jenkins: With Broderick Bunkley suffering a quad injury, Jenkins was a nonfactor who too often lost leverage and was push backward against Baltimore on Monday night. Look for the physical Bell to do plenty of damage against the interior of the Saints' defensive line.

      *Fast facts: Saints RB Mark Ingram leads the NFL with 486 rushing yards since Week 8. ... Bell needs four receiving yards to pass Merril Hoge (487 in 1988) for the most by a Steelers' running back in the Super Bowl era.

      WHO WILL WIN AND WHY

      The NFL schedule makers did the Saints no favors sending them on the road following a Monday night game to play an opponent coming off its bye week. More important, New Orleans has one road win all season and a defense powerless to contain a Steelers offense that can be explosive running or passing.

      *Our pick: Steelers 31-24

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Week 13 Preview: Browns at Bills
    By The Sports Xchange

    Cleveland Browns (7-4) at Buffalo Bills (6-5)

    • Sunday, 1:00 p.m. ET, at Ralph Wilson Stadium, Orchard Park, N.Y. - TV: CBS

      *TV announcers: Greg Gumbel, Trent Green, Evan Washburn

      *Keys to the game: Browns head coach Mike Pettine is familiar with much of the personnel he will face Sunday, having served as the Bills' defensive coordinator last season. While that may not have a direct impact on Sunday's gameplan, Pettine knows the Browns must contend with the league's No. 4-rated defense.

      Buffalo's defensive strength begins with the line, and it will be critical for RBs Terrance West and Isaiah Crowell to have early success. QB Brian Hoyer threw three interceptions last week and while the Bills' secondary lacks dynamic playmakers, Hoyer will face a very good pass rush that will pressure him to make quick decisions. He'll also have another week of practice with WR Josh Gordon, who poses a difficult matchup for Buffalo downfield if Hoyer has the time to stretch the field.

      The Bills are certainly familiar with Pettine's defensive philosophy, but Cleveland doesn't enjoy the same personnel up front. The Browns are allowing 134.9 rushing yards per game and Buffalo will pound away with RBs Boobie Dixon, Fred Jackson and Bryce Brown in an attempt to control the field and the clock. QB Kyle Orton rarely pushes the ball further than 10 yards downfield, so it's critical for the Browns to take him out of his comfort zone.

      FRIDAY INJURY REPORT

      CLEVELAND BROWNS

      --Out: LB Karlos Dansby (knee), S Tashaun Gipson (knee), WR Marlon Moore (hamstring)

      --Questionable: TE Jordan Cameron (concussion), DT Ahtyba Rubin (back), LB Jabaal Sheard (foot)

      --Probable: LB Barkevious Mingo (shoulder)

      BUFFALO BILLS

      --Out: TE Chris Gragg (knee), S Bacarri Rambo (hamstring), DE Jarius Wynn (knee)

      *Matchup to watch – Browns CB Buster Skrine vs. Bills WR Robert Woods: With teams beginning to shadow electric rookie Sammy Watkins, who will likely duel Joe Haden most of the day, the Bills need Woods to step up. He was targeted 11 times last week, coming up with nine catches for 118 yards and a touchdown.

      *Player spotlight – Browns S Donte Whitner: Buffalo's first-round pick in 2006 drew the ire of some current Bills this week with some comments he made over Twitter, including “Can you say Toronto Bills?!?!?!?!” in reference to the team's unsettled ownership and long-term stadium situations.

      *Fast facts: Crowell, who went undrafted, leads all NFL rookies with seven rushing TDs. ... Dixon is the first Bill to block two punts in the same season since Steve Tasker in 1990.

      WHO WILL WIN AND WHY

      The quiet intensity in the Rust Belt rivalry has taken on an extra edge this week, and Buffalo returns home after its Monday night detour in Detroit to make yet another statement with a defense that can stop the run and create more QB unrest in Cleveland.

      *Our pick: Bills 19-16

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Week 13 Preview: Raiders at Rams
    By The Sports Xchange

    Oakland Raiders (1-10) at St. Louis Rams (4-7)

    • Sunday, 1:00 p.m. ET, at Edward Jones Dome, St. Louis - TV: CBS

      *TV announcers: Andrew Catalon, Steve Beuerlein

      *Keys to the game: The Raiders' first victory of the season displayed the blueprint interim coach Tony Sparano wants to replicate – a strong running game to support rookie QB Derek Carr and a consistent defensive effort.

      Oakland's defense has shown spurts of being a strong unit for much of the season, but too often wears down with the offense failing to control the ball. The Raiders will again miss RB Latavius Murray, who showed a combination of power and speed in ripping off a pair of touchdown runs -- including a 90 yarder -- against the Chiefs, only to suffer a concussion and is still out.. Regardless, he has only 14 carries and Darren McFadden (3.4 yards per carry) must receive the bulk of the work against a Rams defense with one vulnerability -- St. Louis allows an average of 115.8 rushing yards per game.

      If the Rams stop the run, look out. Carr has been beat up in long passing situations all season and St. Louis' pass rush is on a tear.

      St. Louis' offense received some stability with QB Shaun Hill back behind center in Week 11, only to watch the veteran throw an ill-advised crippling interception in San Diego. The Rams want to feed RB Tre' Mason and keep Hill out of the teeth of an underrated secondary that will mix pressure and coverage packages.

      FRIDAY INJURY REPORT

      OAKLAND RAIDERS

      --Out: S Jonathan Dowling (back), RB Latavius Murray (concussion), CB Carlos Rogers (knee), CB Neiko Thorpe (hand)

      --Questionable: G Gabe Jackson (knee)

      --Probable: S Larry Asante (shoulder), CB T.J. Carrie (ankle), TE Brian Leonhardt (concussion)

      ST. LOUIS RAMS

      --Doubtful: CB Marcus Roberson (ankle)

      --Questionable: DT Alex Carrington (thigh), S Lamarcus Joyner (groin)

      --Probable: WR Kenny Britt (back), TE Jared Cook (back), CB E.J. Gaines (knee), TE Cory Harkey (thigh), LB Will Herring (foot), G Davin Joseph (not injury related), LB James Laurinaitis (ankle), LB Alec Ogletree (illness), DE Robert Quinn (not injury related), DE Eugene Sims (not injury related), C Scott Wells (not injury related)

      *Matchup to watch – Raiders OLB Khalil Mack vs. Rams LT Greg Robinson: Mack, the No. 5 overall pick in the 2014 draft, moves around the defense but generally lines up over the left tackle in nickel situations. He has only one sack, but continues to generate consistent pressure. Robinson, the No. 2 overall pick, slid from guard to tackle to replace injured Jake Long, and this will be a matchup of two of the premier young talents at their respective positions.

      *Player spotlight – Raiders CB TJ Carrie: Not only is he the slot corner, Carrie is the Raiders' punt returner. Minus Carrie last week, the Raiders had to send S Charles Woodson to return punts after Denarius Moore muffed one. Carrie (ankle) is expected back this week.

      *Fast facts: Woodson is the first player since sacks became an official statistic in 1982 to have 20 sacks and 50 career interceptions.

      WHO WILL WIN AND WHY

      Credit both teams for continuing to play hard in the face of lost seasons. The Raiders got in the win column, but they face an uphill battle with Carr trying to throw in the face of the league's most potent pass rush.

      *Our pick: Rams 20-9

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Week 13 Preview: Panthers at Vikings
    By The Sports Xchange

    Carolina Panthers (3-7-1) at Minnesota Vikings (4-7)

    • Sunday, 1:00 p.m. ET, at TCF Bank Stadium, Minneapolis - TV: FOX

      *TV announcers: Chris Myers, Ronde Barber, Jennifer Hale

      *Keys to the game: The Panthers haven't won a game since Oct. 5, yet come off their bye week a half game out of first place in the NFC South and technically in control of their own playoff destiny. Whether the time away allowed the Panthers to refocus and address issues on both sides of the ball remains to be seen.

      What is known is Carolina will have a seventh different offensive line combination with RT Nate Chandler going on IR. The fluxuation has certainly contributed to the Panthers averaging just 3.7 yards per carry and QB Cam Newton getting sacked 32 times. The Vikings' defensive front is the strength of the team, and Minnesota will likely control field position in a low-scoring game unless Newton is recharged coming off the bye and shows more explosion in his mobility. The return of FB Mike Tolbert (knee) could also prove significant in short-yardage situations.

      Vikings rookie QB Teddy Bridgewater has also been hampered by poor offensive line play. RB Ben Tate has a full week in the offense and could be added to the mix. It's important for Bridgewater to get help from the ground game because his protection doesn't often hold up long enough for his pedestrian receiving corps to gain separation.

      FRIDAY INJURY REPORT

      CAROLINA PANTHERS

      --Doubtful: DT Star Lotulelei (ankle), G Amini Silatolu (knee)

      --Questionable: DE Charles Johnson (illness)

      --Probable: CB Bene' Benwikere (ankle), WR Corey Brown (illness), G Andrew Norwell (thigh), RB Mike Tolbert (knee)

      MINNESOTA VIKINGS

      --Doubtful: RB Jerick McKinnon (back)

      --Questionable: DT Sharrif Floyd (knee), TE Chase Ford (hamstring, foot)

      --Probable: RB Matt Asiata (concussion), LB Anthony Barr (knee), T Mike Harris (ankle), WR Greg Jennings (rib), T Matt Kalil (knee), WR Cordarrelle Patterson (knee), TE Kyle Rudolph (abdomen, groin), S Harrison Smith (shoulder, ankle), WR Jarius Wright (hamstring)

      *Matchup to watch - Panthers DE Charles Johnson vs. Vikings RT Mike Harris: Harris has made 12 career NFL starts, all with the Chargers during his first two NFL seasons, and steps in for the injured Phil Loadholt. Johnson is tied for the team lead with 5.0 sacks, all coming in the past seven games, as he has adjusted to additional attention with Greg Hardy still out due to his off-field issue.

      *Player spotlight - Panthers OL Amini Silatolu: He has started 25 games at left guard over the past three seasons, but the former left tackle out of Midwestern State is a candidate to slide to right tackle. However, the team is concerned about Silatolu's tendency to be too aggressive, which can be exposed by the Vikings' defensive end, and Chris Scott, David Foucault and Mike Remmers are also in the mix.

      *Fast facts: Panthers WR Kelvin Benjamin is tied for the NFL lead among rookies with eight TD catches. ... Vikings LT Matt Kalil has allowed 11 sacks this season, according to Pro Football Focus. He is also the brother of Panthers C Ryan Kalil.

      WHO WILL WIN AND WHY

      Panthers coach Ron Rivera spent the bye week reviewing reports from each of his coaches. What he likely concluded is Carolina has flaws across the board and Minnesota will be able to capitalize on shorter fields.

      *Our pick: Vikings 23-20

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Week 13 Preview: Broncos at Chiefs
    By The Sports Xchange

    Denver Broncos (8-3) at Kansas City Chiefs (7-4)

    • Sunday, 8:30 p.m. ET, at Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City, Mo. - TV: NBC

      *TV announcers: Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth, Michele Tafoya

      *Keys to the game: The Broncos’ schizophrenic ground game pounded out 201 yards on 35 carries against a strong Dolphins defense last week, while the Chiefs were gashed for several big plays on the ground in their shocking loss to the Raiders. Denver can’t count on matching that production, but every yard on the ground helps as protection around QB Peyton Manning has been sketchy on long passing downs. Manning threw for 242 yards and three touchdowns in the first meeting, a 24-17 victory at Kansas City on Sept. 14, and he’ll have plenty of opportunities against the Chiefs’ shuffled secondary if given the time.

      Kansas City lost running back Jamaal Charles to a first-half injury in the Week 2 meeting, but still pounded out 133 yards on 31 carries in keeping the game tight down to the wire. That was back when the Broncos’ defense was considered vastly improved. Denver is still second in the league allowing 75.5 rushing yards per game, but has allowed 58 combined points the past two weeks against the Rams’ and Dolphins’ middling offenses. QB Alex Smith will stick to the underneath passing game, content to move the chains while avoiding turnovers and keeping Manning looking for the bench heaters. That places a premium on red-zone production.

      FRIDAY INJURY REPORT

      DENVER BRONCOS

      --Out: RB Montee Ball (groin), RB Ronnie Hillman (foot), CB Kayvon Webster (shoulder)

      --Questionable: S Quinton Carter (knee), CB Aqib Talib (hamstring), TE Julius Thomas (ankle)

      --Probable: S David Bruton (finger), TE Virgil Green (calf), LB Brandon Marshall (concussion), DE Quanterus Smith (ankle), RB Juwan Thompson (knee)

      KANSAS CITY CHIEFS

      --Out: WR Junior Hemingway (concussion)

      --Questionable: CB Christopher Owens (knee, abdomen), DT Kevin Vickerson (calf)

      --Probable: WR Donnie Avery (groin), P Dustin Colquitt (right calf), TE Anthony Fasano (knee), CB Jamell Fleming (hamstring), LB Tamba Hali (knee), CB Sean Smith (groin), T Donald Stephenson (shoulder)

      *Matchup to watch – Broncos receivers vs. Chiefs SS Ron Parker: Parker moves back from corner to replace SS Eric Berry, who was diagnosed with possible lymphoma. The domino effect puts Phillip Gaines into the starting lineup at left corner, although Chris Owens may return from his knee injury.

      *Player spotlight – Chiefs WR Jason Avant: Signed last weekend and reunited with Andy Reid, his former head coach in Philadelphia, Avant doesn’t need much time to get up to speed on the playbook. He could play an immediate role, particularly in the slot, and the Chiefs also get Donnie Avery back into the receiver mix.

      *Fast facts: Broncos RB C.J. Anderson is averaging 157.7 yards from scrimmage over his past three games. ... Smith has not thrown an interception in his past 169 pass attempts, but has also yet to throw a touchdown to a wide receiver this season.

      WHO WILL WIN AND WHY

      The Chiefs have played the Broncos extremely tough in each of the past three meetings before losing late. K.C. can control the clock to keep the score within reach, but ultimately lacks the firepower in the passing game to keep pace with Manning for four quarters.

      *Our pick: Broncos 27-23

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    49ers Crabtree opts out of controversy vs. Sherman
    By The Sports Xchange

    SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- The long-awaited matchup between 49ers wideout Michael Crabtree and Seattle Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman never materialized in San Francisco's 19-3 loss Thursday night.

    • At least that's how Crabtree saw it.

      Even though he barely caught more Colin Kaepernick passes than Sherman (three to two), Crabtree refused to praise his rival afterward.

      "I'm not worried about that dude," Crabtree said. "It's more scheme; it's not one-on-one (coverage). They did a good job of scheming,"

      Sherman had labeled Crabtree "mediocre" after the two went head-to-head in last year's NFC Championship Game. Sherman deflected a potential game-winning pass away from Crabtree in the final minute of that game, leading to an interception that preserved Seattle's win and sent it to the Super Bowl.

      Sherman intercepted two passes Thursday, but Crabtree was quick to point out he was not the intended receiver on either.

      Among many celebratory comments after the win, Sherman saved his harshest words for Kaepernick, not Crabtree.

      "There was an opponent who said he's throwing to the open man, he doesn't care who's out there," Sherman said of a Kaepernick statement leading into the game. "I was the open man."

      Although the 49ers were issuing apologies, not excuses, after their most deflating loss of the season, they could have offered up 10 reasons, as in 10 injured players, for their problems.

      The 49ers went up against the defending Super Bowl champions without arguably two of the best inside linebackers in the league (Patrick Willis and NaVorro Bowman), two starting offensive linemen (center Daniel Kilgore and tackle Anthony Davis), their top two nose tackles (Glenn Dorsey and Ian Williams), their best cover corner (Tramaine Brock), two other key members of their pass-coverage packages (Chris Cook and Jimmie Ward) and their punt and kickoff returner (Bruce Ellington).

      The 49ers (7-5) fell to third place in the NFC West with Thursday's loss and now find themselves fourth in the battle for two wild-card berths to the NFC playoffs.

      Almost assuredly, San Francisco will reach the postseason by sweeping its final four games -- at Oakland and Seattle, then home against San Diego and Arizona.

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    NFL injuries for Sunday games
    By The Sports Xchange

    ARIZONA CARDINALS at ATLANTA FALCONS

    • ARIZONA CARDINALS

      --Out: LB Kenny Demens (hamstring), DT Ed Stinson (toe)

      --Questionable: WR Larry Fitzgerald (knee)

      --Probable: LB Lorenzo Alexander (knee), LB Marcus Benard (shoulder), WR John Brown (teeth), RB Andre Ellington (hip, foot), QB Drew Stanton (ankle)

      ATLANTA FALCONS

      --Out: CB Robert Alford (wrist)

      --Questionable: DT Paul Soliai (not injury related), WR Roddy White (ankle)

      --Probable: WR Harry Douglas (foot), T Jonathan Scott (hamstring)

      CAROLINA PANTHERS at MINNESOTA VIKINGS

      CAROLINA PANTHERS

      --Doubtful: DT Star Lotulelei (ankle), G Amini Silatolu (knee)

      --Questionable: DE Charles Johnson (illness)

      --Probable: CB Bene' Benwikere (ankle), WR Corey Brown (illness), G Andrew Norwell (thigh), RB Mike Tolbert (knee)

      MINNESOTA VIKINGS

      --Doubtful: RB Jerick McKinnon (back)

      --Questionable: DT Sharrif Floyd (knee), TE Chase Ford (hamstring, foot)

      --Probable: RB Matt Asiata (concussion), LB Anthony Barr (knee), T Mike Harris (ankle), WR Greg Jennings (rib), T Matt Kalil (knee), WR Cordarrelle Patterson (knee), TE Kyle Rudolph (abdomen, groin), S Harrison Smith (shoulder, ankle), WR Jarius Wright (hamstring)

      CINCINNATI BENGALS at TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS

      CINCINNATI BENGALS

      --Out: LB Vontaze Burfict (knee), DE Margus Hunt (ankle)

      --Questionable: LB Nico Johnson (illness)

      --Probable: DE Robert Geathers (toe), S George Iloka (groin), WR Greg Little (illness), G Mike Pollak (knee)

      TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS

      --Questionable: LB Lavonte David (hamstring), C Evan Dietrich-Smith (illness), DT Clinton McDonald (hamstring), TE Brandon Myers (calf), TE Austin Seferian-Jenkins (back), TE Luke Stocker (concussion), S Major Wright (shoulder)

      --Probable: DT Da'Quan Bowers (knee), S Dashon Goldson (illness), RB Charles Sims (ankle)

      CLEVELAND BROWNS at BUFFALO BILLS

      CLEVELAND BROWNS

      --Out: LB Karlos Dansby (knee), S Tashaun Gipson (knee), WR Marlon Moore (hamstring)

      --Questionable: TE Jordan Cameron (concussion), DT Ahtyba Rubin (back), LB Jabaal Sheard (foot)

      --Probable: LB Barkevious Mingo (shoulder)

      BUFFALO BILLS

      --Out: TE Chris Gragg (knee), S Bacarri Rambo (hamstring), DE Jarius Wynn (knee)

      --Probable: K Dan Carpenter (right groin), WR Robert Woods (ankle)

      NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS at GREEN BAY PACKERS

      NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

      --Questionable: LS Danny Aiken (concussion), G Dan Connolly (ankle), DE Dominique Easley (knee), T Cameron Fleming (ankle, finger), DE Chandler Jones (hip), WR Brandon LaFell (shoulder), RB Shane Vereen (ankle), LB Chris White (ankle)

      --Probable: QB Tom Brady (ankle), T Marcus Cannon (hip), WR Julian Edelman (thigh)

      GREEN BAY PACKERS

      --Questionable: CB Jarrett Bush (groin), LB Nick Perry (shoulder)

      --Probable: WR Davante Adams (heel), TE Brandon Bostick (hip), G T.J. Lang (ankle), G Josh Sitton (toe)

      NEW ORLEANS SAINTS at PITTSBURGH STEELERS

      NEW ORLEANS SAINTS

      --Out: LB Kyle Knox (hand), RB Khiry Robinson (forearm)

      --Probable: C Jonathan Goodwin (toe), G Ben Grubbs (neck), CB Keenan Lewis (knee), LB Curtis Lofton (ankle), WR Robert Meachem (ankle), RB Pierre Thomas (ribs, shoulder)

      PITTSBURGH STEELERS

      --Out: CB Cortez Allen (thumb), DT Steve McLendon (shoulder)

      --Questionable: T Marcus Gilbert (ankle), LB Ryan Shazier (ankle)

      --Probable: WR Martavis Bryant (illness), DE Brett Keisel (not injury related), TE Heath Miller (not injury related), S Troy Polamalu (not injury related), CB Ivan Taylor (forearm), S Shamarko Thomas (hamstring)

      NEW YORK GIANTS at JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS

      NEW YORK GIANTS

      --Out: DT Cullen Jenkins (calf), G Adam Snyder (knee), LB Jacquian Williams (concussion, shoulder)

      --Questionable: DE Mathias Kiwanuka (knee), T Justin Pugh (quadriceps)

      --Probable: WR Odell Beckham (back), LB Jameel McClain (knee), CB Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie (back, hamstring), S Antrel Rolle (not injury related), G Geoff Schwartz (toe)

      JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS

      --Questionable: LB Jeremiah George (ankle), LB LaRoy Reynolds (neck)

      --Probable: QB Blake Bortles (left wrist), DE Andre Branch (groin), DE Chris Clemons (knee), S Josh Evans (elbow), CB Demetrius McCray (ankle), WR Cecil Shorts (illness)

      OAKLAND RAIDERS at ST. LOUIS RAMS

      OAKLAND RAIDERS

      --Out: S Jonathan Dowling (back), RB Latavius Murray (concussion), CB Carlos Rogers (knee), CB Neiko Thorpe (hand)

      --Questionable: G Gabe Jackson (knee)

      --Probable: S Larry Asante (shoulder), CB T.J. Carrie (ankle), TE Brian Leonhardt (concussion)

      ST. LOUIS RAMS

      --Doubtful: CB Marcus Roberson (ankle)

      --Questionable: DT Alex Carrington (thigh), S Lamarcus Joyner (groin)

      --Probable: WR Kenny Britt (back), TE Jared Cook (back), CB E.J. Gaines (knee), TE Cory Harkey (thigh), LB Will Herring (foot), G Davin Joseph (not injury related), LB James Laurinaitis (ankle), LB Alec Ogletree (illness), DE Robert Quinn (not injury related), DE Eugene Sims (not injury related), C Scott Wells (not injury related)

      SAN DIEGO CHARGERS at BALTIMORE RAVENS

      SAN DIEGO CHARGERS

      --Out: DT Ryan Carrethers (elbow)

      --Doubtful: LB Andrew Gachkar (knee)

      --Questionable: G Ryan Miller (groin), DT Tenny Palepoi (not injury related)

      --Probable: S Jahleel Addae (concussion), RB Ryan Mathews (shoulder), WR Eddie Royal (toe)

      BALTIMORE RAVENS

      --Questionable: WR Michael Campanaro (thigh)

      --Probable: LB Pernell McPhee (shoulder), T Jah Reid (hand), LB Terrell Suggs (foot)

      TENNESSEE TITANS at HOUSTON TEXANS

      TENNESSEE TITANS

      --Out: LB Kamerion Wimbley (hamstring)

      --Questionable: S Michael Griffin (shoulder), CB Marqueston Huff (hamstring), T Taylor Lewan (ankle), T Michael Oher (toe)

      --Probable: RB Dexter McCluster (concussion), RB Leon Washington (hamstring), CB Blidi Wreh-Wilson (back)

      HOUSTON TEXANS

      --Out: LB Jadeveon Clowney (knee), CB Kareem Jackson (knee)

      --Questionable: LB Akeem Dent (neck)

      --Probable: LB Max Bullough (hamstring), T Tyson Clabo (foot), LB Brian Cushing (knee), RB Arian Foster (groin), WR Andre Johnson (not injury related), CB Johnathan Joseph (knee), S Kendrick Lewis (knee), LB Mike Mohamed (hip), CB Darryl Morris (thigh), DT Ryan Pickett (back), S D.J. Swearinger (ankle), LB Jeff Tarpinian (knee)

      WASHINGTON REDSKINS at INDIANAPOLIS COLTS

      WASHINGTON REDSKINS

      --Questionable: DE Chris Baker (chest), CB E.J. Biggers (concussion), S Ryan Clark (shoulder, stinger), DE Jason Hatcher (knee), RB Silas Redd (rib), TE Jordan Reed (hamstring), T Trent Williams (knee)

      --Probable: CB Bashaud Breeland (back), DE Kedric Golston (back)

      INDIANAPOLIS COLTS

      --Out: TE Dwayne Allen (ankle), T Xavier Nixon (foot), LB Andy Studebaker (hamstring), G Hugh Thornton (knee)

      --Questionable: S Colt Anderson (knee), CB Darius Butler (knee)

      --Probable: T Gosder Cherilus (shoulder), CB Vontae Davis (foot), CB Josh Gordy (back), LB D'Qwell Jackson (not injury related), DE Cory Redding (knee), CB Gregory Toler (concussion), WR Reggie Wayne (not injury related)

      DENVER BRONCOS at KANSAS CITY CHIEFS on Sunday night

      DENVER BRONCOS

      --Out: RB Montee Ball (groin), RB Ronnie Hillman (foot), CB Kayvon Webster (shoulder)

      --Questionable: S Quinton Carter (knee), CB Aqib Talib (hamstring), TE Julius Thomas (ankle)

      --Probable: S David Bruton (finger), TE Virgil Green (calf), LB Brandon Marshall (concussion), DE Quanterus Smith (ankle), RB Juwan Thompson (knee)

      KANSAS CITY CHIEFS

      --Out: WR Junior Hemingway (concussion)

      --Questionable: CB Christopher Owens (knee, abdomen), DT Kevin Vickerson (calf)

      --Probable: WR Donnie Avery (groin), P Dustin Colquitt (right calf), TE Anthony Fasano (knee), CB Jamell Fleming (hamstring), LB Tamba Hali (knee), CB Sean Smith (groin), T Donald Stephenson (shoulder)

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    49ers take hits from Seahawks and friendly fire
    By The Sports Xchange

    SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- On a night when the San Francisco 49ers didn't figuratively show up for a 19-3 loss to the rival Seattle Seahawks, two non-playing members of the team's family made the biggest splashes Thursday.

    • If you consider anything that happens in the world of social media news, that is.

      While the 49ers were looking for answers for their lopsided home loss immediately following their Thanksgiving night debacle, team owner Jed York felt it necessary to provide holiday cheer to his paying customers on their way home from the disappointing defeat.

      York tweeted out an apology for the performance, writing: "Thank you #49ersfaithful for coming out tonight. This performance wasn't acceptable. I apologize for that."

      Interestingly, no 49ers player or coach seemed bothered by the post.

      "If he said that, then I guess it was," tight end Vernon Davis, one of the night's biggest underachievers (two catches, 13 yards) said. "We hold ourselves accountable around here. We're all in this together. The owners, the coaches, the players, we're all in this together."

      Not surprisingly, 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh had no comment, blurting, "I don't know anything about the tweet."

      While York was apologizing to the fans, general manager Trent Baalke's college-aged daughter was delivering a message about offensive coordinator Greg Roman no doubt many were happy to receive.

      Cassie Baalke tweeted, "Greg Roman can take a hike ... the 49ers don't want you no more."

      Roman's offense did more good than bad in the one-sided loss, totaling just 185 yards to go with two costly turnovers.

      The poor offensive showing wasn't the first this month for the 49ers, who were held to 16 and 17 points, respectively, in lackluster wins over NFC East lightweights New York and Washington the previous two weeks.

      Apparently Cassie Baalke, a sophomore basketball player at Bemidji State in Minnesota, has seen enough, something for which her dad apologized in a statement issued by the 49ers on Friday.

      "My daughter and I both regret that her feelings got the best of her after last night's game and that she chose social media as an avenue to express her feeling," the statement read. "We have apologized to Greg for this unfortunate matter. While disappointed, as a father I will use this as a teachable moment to help my daughter grow."

      Cassie Baalke deleted her Twitter account Friday, but not before firing one last salvo: "Everybody's entitled to an opinion..sorry mine doesn't favor you or agree with yours."

      --The rematch with the Seahawks on Dec. 14. already is being labeled a "must-win," but that's not necessarily the case.

      The 49ers can still catch (and perhaps surpass) at least two teams by finishing 10-6. Here are the most likely suspects:

      --Dallas (8-4). The 49ers have a win over the Cowboys this season, so they'd win a tie-breaker. The only way Dallas will finish better than 10-6 would be by winning at least three of its last four games in a tough schedule: at Chicago, at Philadelphia, home against Indianapolis, at Washington.

      --Arizona (9-2). The 49ers have a rooting interest Sunday in the Arizona-Atlanta game. A Falcons home win would give the Cardinals just a two-game cushion over the 49ers, with still games remaining against Seattle and San Francisco. A sixth Cardinals loss is possible with Kansas City still on the slate.

      NOTES: TE Derek Carrier (foot) was placed on season-ending injured reserve before Thursday's game and then TE Grant Celek was activated from the Physically Unable to Perform list for the game and TE Asante Cleveland was promoted from the practice squad to serve as the third tight end. ... G Mike Lupati suffered a right shoulder stinger during the 19-3 loss to Seattle on Thursday night, but missed only three snaps.

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    NFL roundup: Ray Rice's suspension ends
    By The Sports Xchange

    Former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice is eligible to sign with any team after his indefinite suspension was lifted Friday.

    • Judge Barbara Jones, the arbitrator chosen by the NFL and the NFL Players Association, sided with Rice in his appeal of the suspension levied after the release of a video showing him punching his fiancée in an elevator in February.

      NFL commissioner Roger Goodell initially suspended Rice for two games after a video showed Rice dragging his fiancée, Janay, out of the elevator in an Atlantic City casino. But Goodell made the suspension indefinite after the emergence of a second video showing Rice knocking out Janay with a punch.

      Jones heard Rice's appeal earlier this month, with Rice, Janay (now his wife), Goodell and Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome among those testifying.

      The NFLPA argued that Rice was a victim of double jeopardy, being suspended a second time for the same transgression. The league argued that Rice had not revealed the truth prior to the second video emerging.

      In her 17-page ruling Friday, Jones reportedly wrote that Rice "did not mislead the commissioner" when they met about the incident June 16.

      In a statement issued Friday, Rice thanked those who helped him during his appeal, including his wife.

      He also said, "I made an inexcusable mistake and accept full responsibility for my actions. ... I will continue working hard to improve myself and be the best husband, father and friend, while giving back to my community and helping others to learn from my mistakes."

      ---Johnny Manziel on Friday explained an altercation that occurred last Saturday, saying "a very intoxicated, very aggressive person" approached Manziel and "kept attempting to come at me."

      The man, 33-year-old Ohio native Chris Gonos, said he approached Manziel to shake his hand and was punched by Manziel's associated, identified by police as Manziel's roommate, Dana Kirk. Gonos also said Manziel punched Gonos' brother.

      Manziel, the Cleveland Browns' first-round pick this year, said he was returning home to his apartment with Kirk after dinner with Manziel's mother, and they were approached by a man in the lobby.

      "As I was waiting for an elevator, I was approached by what has been made out to be a fan," Manziel said, according to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, "and at this point in the night this was a very intoxicated, very aggressive person that approached me in the lobby, putting his hands on me, kind of toying with me as I got back, just kind of trying to kind my own business and get upstairs to my room."

      Manziel said the man "kept attempting to come at me, just being extremely aggressive, and as we tried to coax him into getting into his elevator and going on about the night, the guy got very aggressive. Luckily for us ... security was able to get things under wraps."

      ---San Francisco 49ers general manager Trent Baalke said he and his daughter have apologized to offensive coordinator Greg Roman for her tweet calling for Roman to be fired in the wake of the 49ers' offensive failures in a 19-3 loss to the Seattle Seahawks on Thursday.

      "My daughter and I both regret that her feelings got the best of her after last night's game and that she chose social media as an avenue to express her feelings," Baalke said in a statement on Friday. "We have apologized to Greg for this unfortunate matter. While disappointed, as a father I will use this as a teachable moment to help my daughter grow."

      After the game, Cassie Baalke, a college freshman, tweeted, "Greg Roman can take a hike. The 49ers don't want you no more."

      49ers CEO Jed York also took to Twitter and apologized to his fans after the home loss.

      "Thank you #49ersfaithful for coming out strong tonight," York wrote. "This performance wasn't acceptable. I apologize for that."

      ---Chicago Bears linebacker Lance Briggs was placed on season-ending injured reserve.

      Briggs suffered a groin injury last Sunday in the Bears' win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and did not play in Chicago's loss Thursday in Detroit.

      The seven-time Pro Bowler had 63 tackles, 2 1/2 tackles for loss and one interception this season. He also missed three games earlier in the season with a rib injury.

      ---Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald will be a game-time decision again Sunday when the Cardinals play in Atlanta.

      Fitzgerald, who suffered a sprained knee in Week 11 against the Detroit Lions, did not play in Arizona's 19-3 loss to the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday. It was the first game he had missed since 2007.

      ---Houston Texans linebacker Jadeveon Clowney will not play Sunday against the Tennessee Titans due to ongoing complications with his surgically repaired knee.

      "He's still trying to work that knee out and get it right," defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel said. "He won't be with us on Sunday."

      On Thursday, he said he likely would not play this week.

      "My knee swelled up on me a little bit, and I'm trying to get it back to the way it was before," Clowney told the Houston Chronicle. "It's bothering me a lot right now. I'm in a lot of pain. It's been bothering me off and on the whole season. It's the kind of thing if I can go, I'll go. If I can't, I won't."

      --- Oakland Raiders running back Latavius Murray will not play Sunday against the St. Louis Rams because he did not pass the league's concussion protocol, coach Tony Sparano said.

      Murray was the catalyst for the Raiders' first victory of the season, rushing for two touchdowns in a 24-20 win over the Kansas City Chiefs last Thursday.

      Murray ran for a career-high 112 yards on four attempts, scoring from 11 and 90 yards, but he suffered a concussion.

      ---The Atlanta Falcons activated safety William Moore from injured reserve.

      Moore had been on injured reserve with designation to return since Week 4 with a right shoulder separation. He practiced this week and could be cleared to play Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals.

      The Falcons also waived tackle Cameron Bradfield.

      ---The Seattle Seahawks placed rookie linebacker Kevin Pierre-Louis on injured reserve and claimed rookie cornerback Loucheiz Purifoy off waivers from the Indianapolis Colts.

      Pierre-Louis, a fourth-round pick, suffered a shoulder injury in Week 11 against the Kansas City Chiefs and had missed the Seahawks' past two games.

      Purifoy, who was not drafted largely because of a history of off-field issues while at Florida, was waived by the Colts Thursday, reportedly for more off-field problems.

      ---The New England Patriots released safety and special teams player Don Jones.

      Jones, 24, was claimed off waivers from the Miami Dolphins on Sept. 1. He played in nine of the first 11 games for the Patriots and registered one defensive tackle and seven special teams tackles.

      The Patriots also released tight end Xavier Grimble and long snapper Charley Hughlett from the practice squad. Both players were signed to the practice squad on Wednesday.

      ---The Jaguars Jacksonville signed wide receiver Tommy Streeter off the practice squad on Friday and waived wide receiver Mike Brown.

      Streeter, a sixth-round draft pick of the Baltimore Ravens in 2012, has been on Jacksonville's practice unit since Sept. 29. He also has spent time with Tampa Bay and Miami but has not played in a game.

      Brown, who was an undrafted free agent in 2012, caught seven passes for 88 yards in five games with the Jaguars.

      ---The Buffalo Bills signed defensive end Bryan Johnson to the practice squad Friday, two days after releasing him from the 53-man roster.

      Johnson was active for two games, but did not play a down. The 6-foot-4, 250 pound West Texas A&M product originally joined the Bills as an undrafted free agent this offseason.

      The Bills also released cornerback Brandon Smith from the practice squad.

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Seahawks put LB Pierre-Louis on IR, claim CB
    By The Sports Xchange

    The Seattle Seahawks placed rookie linebacker Kevin Pierre-Louis on injured reserve Friday and claimed rookie cornerback Loucheiz Purifoy off waivers from the Indianapolis Colts.

    • Pierre-Louis, a fourth-round pick, suffered a shoulder injury in Week 11 against the Kansas City Chiefs and had missed the Seahawks' past two games.

      Pierre-Louis filled in well amid injuries to Bobby Wagner and Malcolm Smith at midseason. He finished his first season with 13 tackles.

      Purifoy is the second Colts cornerback the Seahawks have acquired this season; they traded for Marcus Burley in late August.

      The Colts had been comfortable trading Burley largely because they liked the undrafted Purifoy so much, so it surprised some when they waived him Thursday.

      Purifoy, who was not drafted largely because of a history of off-field issues while at Florida, reportedly was waived by the Colts for more off-field problems.

      The Seahawks likely are taking a flyer on Purifoy because he can replace Pierre-Louis on special teams. Purifoy was one of the Colts' best kick coverage players.

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Bears put LB Briggs on IR
    By The Sports Xchange

    Chicago Bears linebacker Lance Briggs was placed on season-ending injured reserve Friday.

    • Briggs suffered a groin injury last Sunday in the Bears' win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and did not play in Chicago's loss to the Detroit Lions on Thursday in Detroit.

      The seven-time Pro Bowler had 63 tackles, 2 1/2 tackles for loss and one interception this season. He also missed three games earlier in the season with a rib injury.

      The 34-year-old Briggs' 170 starts for the Bears are the fifth highest total in franchise history, trailing Walter Payton (184), Olin Kreutz (183), Brian Urlacher (180) and Mike Singletary (172). In 173 career games, Briggs has 1,564 tackles, 95.5 TFLs, 16 interceptions, 15 sacks, 19 forced fumbles, seven fumble recoveries and six defensive touchdowns.

      Briggs led the team in tackles in 2004, 2008, 2009, 2011 and 2012. He is scheduled to become a free agent during the offseason.

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    49ers GM, daughter apologize for tweet
    By The Sports Xchange

    San Francisco 49ers general manager Trent Baalke said he and his daughter have apologized to offensive coordinator Greg Roman for her tweet calling for Roman to be fired in the wake of the 49ers' offensive failures in a 19-3 loss to the Seattle Seahawks on Thursday.

    • "My daughter and I both regret that her feelings got the best of her after last night's game and that she chose social media as an avenue to express her feelings," Baalke said in a statement on Friday. "We have apologized to Greg for this unfortunate matter. While disappointed, as a father I will use this as a teachable moment to help my daughter grow."

      After the game, Cassie Baalke, a college freshman, tweeted, "Greg Roman can take a hike. The 49ers don't want you no more."

      Cassie later deleted the tweet and her Twitter account.

      The 49ers have the league's 23rd-ranked yardage offense and 24th scoring offense (19.3 points per game).

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Raiders RB Murray out with concussion
    By The Sports Xchange

    Oakland Raiders running back Latavius Murray will not play Sunday against the St. Louis Rams because he did not pass the league's concussion protocol, coach Tony Sparano said.

    • Murray was the catalyst for the Raiders' first victory of the season, rushing for two touchdowns in a 24-20 win over the Kansas City Chiefs last Thursday.

      Murray ran for a career-high 112 yards on four attempts, scoring from 11 and 90 yards, but he suffered a concussion.

      He took part in individual drills Wednesday but was ruled out Friday, for now scuttling Sparano's stated plans to get Murray more work in the backfield in the final month.

      The second-year running back had played mostly on special teams until last week as veterans Darren McFadden and Maurice-Jones Drew received most of the carries out of the backfield.

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Texans LB Clowney out again
    By The Sports Xchange

    Houston Texans linebacker Jadeveon Clowney will not play Sunday against the Tennessee Titans due to ongoing complications with his surgically repaired knee.

    • "He's still trying to work that knee out and get it right," defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel said. "He won't be with us on Sunday."

      Clowney, the No. 1 pick in the draft in May, suffered a torn meniscus in the season opener and had surgery immediately. He returned against Tennessee on Oct. 26 then missed the game vs. Philadelphia the next week before the Texans' bye. He returned to play the past two games, but the knee is still a hindrance.

      On Thursday, he said he likely would not play this week.

      "My knee swelled up on me a little bit, and I'm trying to get it back to the way it was before," Clowney told the Houston Chronicle. "It's bothering me a lot right now. I'm in a lot of pain. It's been bothering me off and on the whole season. It's the kind of thing if I can go, I'll go. If I can't, I won't."

      On Friday, coach Bill O'Brien said the team has not considered shutting down Clowney for the season.

      "Like I said two weeks ago: Part of it is just being unlucky," O'Brien said. "He's had a year here that's been tough for him as far as injuries go. He's had the hernia at the beginning of the year, he had the concussion in the Denver game, he's had the knee he's dealing with for all of the year.

      "He's played some. Sometimes he hasn't been able to play. So I think we've got to continue to manage it and communicate with him as to how he feels and just stay on that road right now."

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Cardinals WR Fitzgerald a game-time call
    By The Sports Xchange

    Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald will be a game-time decision again Sunday when the Cardinals play in Atlanta.

    • Fitzgerald, who suffered a sprained knee in Week 11 against the Detroit Lions, did not play in Arizona's 19-3 loss to the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday. It was the first game he had missed since 2007.

      He practiced on a limited basis Friday.

      "He did some work today and is progressing nicely," coach Bruce Arians said. "So, we'll see how he is on Sunday."

      On Thursday, Fitzgerald told reporters he hoped to play Sunday but that the decision ultimately was up to team trainers. Arians said Friday that Fitzgerald would play only if he could do so without limitations.

  • Friday, November 28, 2014
    Falcons activate S Moore
    By The Sports Xchange

    The Atlanta Falcons activated safety William Moore from the injured reserve list on Friday.

    • Moore had been on injured reserve with designation to return since Week 4 with a right shoulder separation. He practiced this week and could be cleared to play Sunday against the Arizona Cardinals.

      The 6-foot, 221-pound Moore was selected by the Falcons in the second round (55th overall) of the 2009 draft. In four-plus seasons as a starter, Moore has amassed 421 tackles with 3.5 sacks, 14 interceptions and nine forced fumbles.

      The Falcons also waived tackle Cameron Bradfield.

      Bradfield (6-4, 308 pounds) was originally signed by the Jacksonville Jaguars as a college free agent out of Grand Valley State following the 2011 draft. He was signed by the Falcons on Sept. 30.