Eagles

NFL Notes: Dolphins QB Ryan Tannehill out at least 6 weeks, surgery an option

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NFL Notes: Dolphins QB Ryan Tannehill out at least 6 weeks, surgery an option

DAVIE, Fla. -- Ryan Tannehill sat in the team cafeteria Friday, his left leg in a brace and propped on a chair as he watched practice from afar with a sullen stare.

He has again been demoted to the role of spectator, perhaps for the entire season.

Knee surgery is an option for the Miami Dolphins quarterback, although it's possible an operation can be avoided, coach Adam Gase said. But even then Tannehill is expected to be sidelined at least six weeks.

Tannehill, who missed the final four games of last season with two sprained ligaments in his knee, reinjured it in practice Thursday. An MRI was inconclusive, and the Dolphins are consulting with a multitude of specialists.

"I wouldn't say second and third opinions -- we're probably going deeper than that, talking to a lot of people, making sure we get the right information," Gase said. "Everything is on the table right now" (see full story).

Steelers: Coach Tomlin's contract extended through 2020
PITTSBURGH -- Mike Tomlin's strong first decade with the Pittsburgh Steelers has earned the coach the chance to work well into a second decade with the organization.

Tomlin and the team have agreed to an extension that will keep the 45-year-old in Pittsburgh through the 2020 season.

Tomlin is 103-57 in 10 years with the Steelers, who have captured one Super Bowl, been to another and earned five AFC North titles during his tenure. He is one of eight coaches to win 100 games in their first 10 seasons.

Steelers President Art Rooney said Tomlin "continues to prove he is one of the top head coaches in the National Football League." Pittsburgh went 11-5 in 2016 before falling to New England in the AFC championship game.

Tomlin called his 10 seasons an "amazing experience," adding his focus is on helping the franchise win a seventh Super Bowl.

Patriots: Brady wants to keep past medical issues private
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. -- Tom Brady says he prefers to keep any medical issues in his past private, including whether he had a concussion last season.

In his first comments since the Patriots opened training camp, the quarterback said Friday he "isn't blind" to issues such as CTE, but remains confident in how he tries to avoid injury.

Brady's wife, supermodel Gisele Bundchen, told "CBS This Morning" in May that Brady played through a concussion on his way to a fifth Super Bowl title.

The NFL said it reviewed all reports from independent neurotrauma consultants and trainers who worked at Brady's games during the 2016 season and found no records that indicated he had a head injury or showed concussion symptoms (see full story).

Bills: LT Glenn to see specialist for foot injury
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. -- Buffalo Bills starting left tackle Cordy Glenn missed his second straight practice because of a left foot injury. Coach Sean McDermott says it's too early to determine whether the player will require surgery.

McDermott provided the update before practice Friday, a day after Glenn traveled to have his injury evaluated by foot specialist Robert Anderson in Charlotte, North Carolina. McDermott declined to go into detail on the nature of the injury by simply referring to it as "general foot soreness."

Glenn was held out of spring practices before being cleared for the start of training camp last week. He was practicing on a limited basis before missing his first session on Thursday.

McDermott didn't provide a timetable in saying he expects Glenn to return to practice sooner than later.

Glenn has been a starter since his rookie season in 2012, and last year became one of the league's top-paid tackles after signing a five-year, $65 million contract extension.

Raiders: It’s Marshawn Mania during training camp
NAPA, Calif. -- Marshawn Lynch plowed through the line, dreadlocks swaying on a rare cool summer morning in Napa then juggled the football to the delight of hundreds cheering from nearby bleachers.

They raised phone cameras to capture the self-proclaimed MoneyLynch's every move. A film crew followed, too.

It's Marshawn Mania in wine country. And Lynch sure seems to be loving the attention of his un-retirement, back in that familiar No. 24 jersey, just different colors now that he's with his hometown team.

Lynch joined the Oakland Raiders on a restructured two-year deal following an April trade from Seattle, where he had retired following the 2015 season. Now he has a chance to keep Derek Carr and Co. contending for an AFC West title and a shot at the Super Bowl.

"He's going to run through some people's faces, I think that's what he's going to do," Carr said. "He's going to protect the quarterback. ... He's good at that. Very physical. That part of the game is fun to him. I tend to like to slide or go over people, and he likes to go through them, so I don't have to do it."

Cowboys: Christie to see Jones inducted into HOF
TRENTON, N.J. -- New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is heading to Ohio to celebrate Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones' entry into the NFL Hall of Fame.

Christie is scheduled to be in Canton on Friday and Saturday to see Jones' induction.

Christie is a lifelong Cowboys fan despite most New Jersey football fans favoring two of the Cowboys' biggest rivals: the New York Giants and Philadelphia Eagles.

He has sat with Jones in his box at many Cowboys games. Once, the two had an awkward embrace caught on camera when the Cowboys won a rare playoff game in 2015.

The Republican governor left New Jersey on Friday afternoon as President Donald Trump arrived in the state for the start of a 17-day vacation.

Derrick Gunn's NFL Week 7 Picks: Will Falcons avenge Super Bowl loss to Patriots?

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Derrick Gunn's NFL Week 7 Picks: Will Falcons avenge Super Bowl loss to Patriots?

Derrick Gunn makes his picks for Week 7 of the NFL season.

Redskins at Eagles (8:30 p.m. on ESPN)
Because they have the best record in the NFC, the Eagles have a huge target on their backs and everybody is gunning for them. On Monday night, the Washington Redskins are hoping to take them down a notch. The ‘Skins come limping to the Linc. Their star rookie defensive lineman Jonathan Allen is done for the year with a Lisfranc injury. Their starting cornerbacks Josh Norman (rib) and Bashaud Breeland (knee) both might miss this key divisional showdown.

Carson Wentz has the Eagles offense rolling, and the defense has been rock solid against the run. Kirk Cousins will go after a Birds secondary ranked 29th against the pass (273.5 yards per game). One of the key matchups to watch closely is how the Eagles will try to defend against ‘Skins running back Chris Thompson, who is Washington’s leading rusher. More importantly, he’s their leading receiver, averaging 18.9 yards per catch.

In Week One the Eagles sacked Kirk Cousins 4 times, but since then he’s only been sacked 4 times. The Birds broke the ‘Skins jinx in the season opener. I look for the home team to make it a season sweep.

Pick: Eagles 28, Redskins 24

Buccaneers at Bills (1 p.m. on FOX)
The good news for the Bucs is Jameis Winston is expected to play despite dealing with an AC joint sprain in his shoulder. The bad news for the Bucs is they’re playing against a Bills team coming off a bye and a Bills' defense that is No. 1 in the league in points allowed at 14.8 points per game. Tampa Bay is also winless on the road. That won’t change this week.

Pick: Buffalo

Panthers at Bears (1 p.m. on CBS)
The Panthers have had a long time to lick their wounds after their encounter with the Eagles. The Bears are riding high after a stunning road win at Baltimore. Until the Panthers learn how to run the ball effectively, better teams will make them one-dimensional. Chicago has a potent run game, averaging 136 yards, but has difficulty scoring, putting up just 17.5 points per game. The Panthers go into the Bears' den and claw out a win.

Pick: Carolina

Titans at Browns (1 p.m. on CBS)
Desperate men take desperate measures and Hue Jackson is desperate to change the misfortunes of his 0-6 Browns. Jackson is going back to rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer who has 3 touchdowns and 9 interceptions this year. Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota is still dealing with a nagging hamstring injury, but he fought through it last week and threw for 306 yards against the Colts. The combination of running backs Derrick Henry and DeMarco Murray takes a lot of pressure off Mariota. Look for the Titans to ground and pound the Browns.

Pick: Tennessee

Saints at Packers (1 p.m. on FOX)
These are dark days for Packers fans with Aaron Rodgers on the shelf with a broken collarbone. Meanwhile, the Saints have been marching, winning three straight. New Orleans has averaged 35 points in its last three and Drew Brees hasn’t thrown an interception since Week 1. The Saints will be doing more Lambeau Leaps than the Packers will this Sunday.

Pick: New Orleans

Jaguars at Colts (1 p.m. on CBS)
At 3-3, the Jaguars are tied for first place in the AFC South with Houston and Tennessee. Indy is just one game off the lead at 2-4. Jags rookie running back Leonard Fournette, who is second in the league in rushing, is questionable with an ankle injury. These Jaguars are an odd bunch to figure out and their wins have come in Weeks 1, 3, and 5. Since this is an odd week, I guess you know who I’m picking here.

Pick: Jacksonville

Cardinals at Rams (1 p.m. on FOX)
Looks like all the Cards needed was to find a running back to cure their offensive problems. In his Arizona debut last Sunday, Adrian Peterson had 26 carries for 134 yards and two touchdowns, along with a Cards win. The Rams have the league’s fourth-leading rusher in Todd Gurley. Both teams' offenses have the capability to light it up through the air, but if it comes down to the run game the Rams could be in trouble, as they allow 139.5 yards per game. With that said, I like the Rams at home in a close game.

Pick: Los Angeles

Jets at Dolphins (1 p.m. on FOX)
After falling behind 17-0 in Atlanta last week, the Dolphins mounted an impressive rally to pull off an upset win. The Jets have surprised many with limited offensive talent and have found a way to win three games. Division matches are usually difficult to pinpoint. The Jets are not the Falcons and since the Dolphins beat Atlanta on the road, they should handle New York at home.

Pick: Miami

Ravens at Vikings (1 p.m. on CBS)
Who are these Ravens? They look like contenders one week, then unravel against a team like Chicago the next week and look like pretenders. Minnesota’s defense is fast and rugged. Vikings quarterback Case Keenum has a firm grip on the offense. The Vikings will win their third in a row.

Pick: Minnesota

Cowboys at 49ers (4:05 p.m. on FOX)
These Niners are an interesting bunch. They haven’t won a game, but they’re in most of them. The Niners have set an NFL record by losing five consecutive games by three points or less. The 'Boys are coming off a bye and look to regroup. Their defense has been hot or cold. In this case, their D can be lukewarm because the 'Boys have just enough offensive firepower to hold off the Niners.

Pick: Dallas

Seahawks at Giants (4:25 p.m. on CBS)
This should be one of those good old rock’em sock’em type matchups. The Seahawks' and Giants' defenses can both bring it. Big Blue shocked the world last week by manhandling the Broncos in Denver. Russell Wilson is one of the best in the game at extending plays with his feet. Eli Manning is a stationary target with very few weapons to work with. Yes, I remember they found a run game against the Broncos but the legion of boom and company will be ready for it.

Pick: Seattle

Bengals at Steelers (4:25 p.m. on CBS)
The Steelers put it all together last week to hand the Chiefs their first loss. Do you want defense? This game is about defense. The Bengals are ranked second and the Steelers are third best in the NFL. The Bengals are well-rested coming off a bye and will be waiting for Le’Veon Bell. The wide receivers in this AFC North showdown are exciting … Antonio Brown, A.J. Green, John Ross. The Bengals two-game win streak stops in Da Burgh.

Pick: Pittsburgh

Broncos at Chargers (4:25 p.m on CBS)
Remember how we were all snickering at the Chargers for inventing new ways to lose close games? Well, laugh no more. The Chargers have won their last two by a grand total of six points. Meanwhile, the Broncos have lost two of their last three. This game features premier pass rushers on both sides —Von Miller, Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram. The Chargers are 0-3 at home. This is a pick’em game. After closing my eyes and throwing at a dart board, I’m picking the Chargers. Don’t ask me why.

Pick: Los Angeles

Falcons at Patriots (8:30 p.m. Sunday on NBC)
A rematch of last season’s Super Bowl. It would be a small measure of revenge for the Falcons, but Atlanta is having problems finding the end zone. In each of their last two games, the Falcons have been held to just 17 points and lost both. Brady and company know how to score, but the Pats' defense has been inconsistent stopping the opposition from scoring. However, maybe that’s changing. In its last two games, New England held Tampa Bay to 14 points and the Jets to 17 points. Atlanta presents a much bigger test, but never bet against Bill Belichick at home.

Pick: Patriots

Zach Ertz making significant strides after offseason work with Carson Wentz

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Zach Ertz making significant strides after offseason work with Carson Wentz

The same Zach Ertz who's never had more than four touchdowns in a season now leads all NFL tight ends in touchdown catches. With four.

It's all part of the natural evolution between Ertz and Carson Wentz.

Ertz shares the NFL TD catch lead among tight ends with the Buccaneers' Cameron Brate and the Patriots' Rob Gronkowski.

And going back to last year, Ertz has six touchdown catches in his last seven games and eight in his last 13 games.

In his previous 40 games? He had five touchdown catches.

“I think it's just all the offseason work with Carson," Ertz said. "I think the coaches have a lot of confidence in me down there, and I think that stems from all the red-zone emphasis that we had all spring and summer.

"And then I’ve just made plays, the offensive line has held up, I think Carson is putting the ball in amazing spots, and I just go up and get the ball. I have the easy part."

Ertz had TD catches to give the Eagles' 14-0 leads against the Giants and Cards and then caught two last Thursday that turned a 10-3 deficit into an 18-10 lead as the Eagles beat the Panthers in Charlotte, North Carolina.

He's the first Eagles tight end with four TD catches through six games since Pete Pihos in 1955.

“The biggest thing is A) He puts in the work and B) He’s a really intelligent football player," Wentz said. "He knows coverages, recognizes things, knows when he’s hot (on a blitz).

"He’s really kind of in my head. He knows when I’m about to change his route, those types of things. With a guy like that, that knows how to create separation and play on time and be on the same page as me, that makes it tough to stop."

The touchdowns are most notable, but Ertz is off to the best start of his career in every category. His 34 catches and 405 yards are both second-most among all NFL tight ends to Travis Kelce's 37 and 423 (in seven games).

The Eagles, 5-1, face the 3-2 Redskins Monday night at the Linc. Ertz already has 54 career receptions against the Redskins — third-most ever by a tight end.

“It’s just Year 2 in this system," he said. "I’m a lot more comfortable in my role this year as opposed to last year. I was hurt, missed two games, and I was slowly integrated back into the game plan.

"I think this year I’m extremely confident in my role, I think they have the confidence in me to go out there and make plays when my number’s called, and it’s not going to be 10 targets every game. Last week it was two targets, 20 yards. It’s going to vary each and every week but I’m very happy with how they’re using me right now."

Ertz and Nelson Agholor are the first Eagles tandem with four touchdowns each through six games since Fred Barnett and Calvin Williams each had four back in 1992.

The red zone was a point of emphasis this offseason, and Wentz's numbers in the red zone are off the charts — 62 percent completion percentage, nine touchdowns, no interceptions and a 112.8 passer rating, fourth-highest in the NFL.

Ertz is third in the NFL with five red-zone first-down catches and fourth in the NFL with both six red-zone receptions and 49 yards.

“It’s timing," Wentz said. "It’s a timing thing and being on the same page.

"Red zone’s all about making plays. Playmakers making plays and playing on time down there is so crucial and that’s something we’ve really focused on. I think we’ve gotten better at all our spots on playing on time but he’s a guy that we feel creates mismatches and we take advantage of them."