NFL Notes: Jets WR Quincy Enunwa out for season with bulging disc

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NFL Notes: Jets WR Quincy Enunwa out for season with bulging disc

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. -- The New York Jets will be without their top wide receiver for the season.

Quincy Enunwa will be placed on injured reserve with a bulging disk in his neck that will likely require surgery, with a recovery time of 6 to 9 months. Coach Todd Bowles said Monday that Enunwa will seek a second opinion, and the injury is not considered career-threatening.

"They said it wasn't, but going forward, we'll see," Bowles said. "They said he should come out OK."

Enunwa, projected as the Jets' No. 1 receiver, was hurt Saturday night during practice at MetLife Stadium. Bowles said the injury initially appeared similar to the one that held Enunwa out during spring workouts.

With Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker cut during the offseason, it appeared Enunwa would be given the opportunity to lead an inexperienced receiving corps. He has 80 career catches for 1,172 yards and four touchdowns over two seasons.

"He was a big part of it," Bowles said of Enunwa's role on offense. "Our young guys are just going to have to grow up fast" (see full story).

Dolphins: Landry investigated for possible battery
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- Miami Dolphins wide receiver Jarvis Landry is being investigated for possible domestic battery, officials said Monday, an allegation the player's girlfriend called a fabrication.

A spokesman for the Broward County State Attorney's office said Monday in an email the allegations were under review and no decision has been made on whether Landry will be charged.

The case was recently referred to prosecutors by the Fort Lauderdale Police Department. A heavily-redacted police report is dated April 1, but Landry's girlfriend said in a statement released by his sports management firm the incident occurred in March.

Estrella Cerqueira, who is the mother of Landry's daughter, said in the statement that the couple had a "vocal disagreement" but that she never felt physical threatened and that nothing violent took place. She said someone else she did not identify called police.

"I would like to make it very clear that Jarvis would never, ever do anything to harm me or anyone else," Cerqueira said.

"Jarvis and I are happily raising our beautiful daughter and I would like to make a plea to the media that they refrain from spreading this completely false story," she added (see full story).

Jaguars: Albert reportedly reverses course on retirement
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- A person familiar with the situation says Jacksonville Jaguars left tackle Branden Albert has changed his mind about retiring and asked to return to the team.

The person spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity Monday night because neither side has publicly discussed details about Albert's potential return.

The 32-year-old Albert surprised coach Doug Marrone last week by walking into his office and saying he planned to retire. Albert abruptly quit after three training camp practices in which he looked out of shape and past his prime.

It was never clear why Albert chose to walk away after nine NFL seasons. It's equally unclear why Albert wants to return. Under the collective bargaining agreement, the Jaguars had the option to seek a prorated portion of Albert's $8.5 million signing bonus even though Miami paid it in 2014.

Browns: Osweiler to start preseason opener
BEREA, Ohio -- Brock Osweiler has risen from trade throw-in to preseason starter.

The Browns' never-ending quarterback saga has produced yet another surprise.

Cleveland coach Hue Jackson picked Osweiler over Cody Kessler, rookie DeShone Kizer and Kevin Hogan to start Thursday's exhibition opener against the New Orleans Saints in what will be an important stage in a QB competition that's midway through its second week, with no end in sight.

Jackson said he chose Osweiler primarily because he's got NFL experience and he wants to give both Kessler and Kizer more playing time.

"It's best for me to trot Brock out there, see if he can go lead this offense and lead the team and in the process keep getting these young guys more reps," Jackson said following Monday's practice. "They just need to play. DeShone needs to play more. Cody needs to play more and Kevin needs to play more, and I thought this is the way to do it" (see full story).

NFL: DT Wilfork retires with BBQ advertisement
Former New England and Houston defensive tackle Vince Wilfork announced his retirement from the NFL in a barbecue commercial on Monday, a fitting farewell for a big guy who loved to eat.

Wilfork tweeted a video showing him un-taping his ankles, hanging up his cleats and grabbing grilling tongs. The video then shows the 35-year-old defender dancing, cooking ribs and smoking a cigar while wearing his trademark overalls.

"No more cleats," he says. "I'm moving on to smoke meats, fellas. Peace out. I'm outta here. Later."

The video ends by noting that "Vince's Farewell Tailgate" will take place Sept. 7 in New England. The defending Super Bowl champions open the season that Thursday night against Kansas City.

Wilfork played 13 NFL seasons, including the last two in Houston. He said earlier this summer he was contemplating retirement after the Texans declined to offer him a new contract.

Wilfork was drafted by New England in 2004 and anchored the Pats' defense line for 11 seasons. He was named to five Pro Bowls and helped the Patriots win two Super Bowls.

Eagles' season opener will be a juicy rematch

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Eagles' season opener will be a juicy rematch

These poor Minnesotans can't seem to get rid of Philly.

First, the Eagles spanked their Vikings in the NFC Championship Game, then the Eagles won a Super Bowl two weeks later in their stadium. And now the Vikings have to open up the 2018 NFL season back at the Linc.

The Eagles are going to host the Vikings on Thursday, Sept. 6 at Lincoln Financial Field to open the NFL calendar, according to Howard Eskin.

Of course, the last time the Vikings came to the Linc they scored the first touchdown of the game before the Eagles scored the next 38 points to crush the No. 2 seed in the NFC, 38-7.

After Kyle Rudolph caught a 25-yard touchdown pass from Case Keenum early in the first quarter, the Eagles' defense clamped down and the offense, led by Nick Foles, exploded. The biggest play of the game (one of the biggest of the season) was Patrick Robinson's 50-yard pick-6 later in the first quarter. The Eagles took a 24-7 lead into the locker room and halftime and much of the second half became a party on the sideline and in the stands, where a "Foles-Skol" chant broke out several times.

Of course, the Vikings are going to look different this time. Case Keenum has moved on to Denver, and the Vikings brought in Kirk Cousins from Washington. In his career against the Eagles, Cousins is 4-3 with a passer rating of 99.7.

The full NFL schedule probably won't be released until mid-April. We also know the Eagles will face the Jaguars in London on either Oct. 21 or 28.

Here are the teams the Eagles will face in 2018:



Roob's 10 mid-March Eagles observations

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Roob's 10 mid-March Eagles observations

We're deep into free agency, the draft is rapidly approaching and the 2017 Super Bowl champion Eagles are being reshaped into a new team.

Which means it's a perfect time for a Roob's 10 Observations.

1. As the Eagles move on from LeGarrette Blount and reshape the running back position, it’s intriguing to ponder just how good Corey Clement can be. From what I saw last year? I think the kid can be a stud. His touches were limited until late in the season, but how many rookies have had 300 rushing yards, 200 receiving yards and averaged at least 4.4 yards per carry and 13 yards per catch? Would you believe three in the last 40 years? A guy named Jesse Clark with the Packers in 1983, a guy named Adrian Peterson with the Vikings in 2007 and a guy named Corey Clement. It’s tough to project, but he can run, he can block, he can catch, he’s got a real flair for making big plays and a terrific knack in the red zone. Can’t wait to see him in an expanded role.

2. As for Blount, you can’t overstate his value to the Eagles last year, both as a running back and a leader. For a guy with his resume to come into that locker room and not once complain about his workload — even when he had no carries against the Chiefs — was remarkable. His selfless attitude really resonated with the young guys in the locker room. And I know a lot of fans were upset to see him go, but as incredible as his Super Bowl performance was, you can’t forget that in the seven games leading up to the Super Bowl he averaged 2.9 yards per carry. And he’s 31 years old. If the reported numbers are correct, Blount’s $4.5 million 2018 salary makes him the 12th-highest-paid running back in the league. Good for him. I wish him well. He was a huge part of that 2017 team. But it made no sense for the Eagles to bring him back.

3. It’s amazing how much money teams keep throwing at Sam Bradford. He’s got 34 wins in eight seasons, he’s never had a winning record, he’s never made a postseason, and on the rare occasions when he’s been healthy, he’s won only 43 percent of his starts. Oh, and he’s missed 42 games since 2013. “He’s our guy!”

4. Speaks volumes that both Blount and Torrey Smith singled out Duce Staley in their tweets or Instagram posts saying goodbye to Philly after joining new teams. Staley wasn’t even Smith’s position coach, and he still singled him out. Blount wrote: “To my main man Coach Duce Staley — You have impacted my life on and off the field and pushed me to be the best version of me I can be and for that I thank you!” Staley is such a natural leader and such a big part of what the Eagles accomplished in 2017. He’s going to be a head coach one day.

5. The Eagles lost Vinny Curry, but they have Brandon Graham, Derek Barnett, Michael Bennett and Chris Long. They lost Trey Burton and Brent Celek, but they have Zach Ertz. They lost Smith, but they have Alshon Jeffery, Nelson Agholor and Mack Hollins. They lost Blount, but they have Jay Ajayi and Clement. They lost Patrick Robinson, but they have Sidney Jones, Jalen Mills, Rasul Douglas, Ronald Darby and Daryl Worley. They’ve lost a lot, but they’re still stocked at every position where they lost someone. Pretty darn good roster planning.

6. I feel like in the wake of Nick Foles’ brilliant postseason, people are forgetting exactly how good Carson Wentz was before he got hurt. So here’s a list of every quarterback in NFL history with 33 or more touchdown passes and seven or fewer interceptions in a season before his 30th birthday: Carson Wentz.

7. I wonder how much Haloti Ngata has left. He’s 34, he’s coming off a torn biceps, and he’s five years removed from his last Pro Bowl. Beau Allen was quietly a solid backup defensive tackle and played a big role in that D-line rotation the second half of the season after Tim Jernigan hurt his ankle. I don’t mind the signing. Ngata comes cheap and there’s really nothing to lose. But it’s been a while since he’s been a dominant player, so it’ll be interesting to see how he fits in.

8. If you’ve never been to Canton, Ohio, plan your trip now. The Pro Football Hall of Fame is a great place to visit any time. But the weekend of Brian Dawkins’ induction is going to be unforgettable. Dawk’s speech is going to be epic.

9. The Philly Special may be the greatest play in Eagles history, but where does the fourth-quarter, fourth-down conversion rank? The Eagles trailed with 5½ minutes left and faced a 4th-and-1 inside midfield when Foles converted a short completion to Ertz. If they don’t convert, they lose. That’s gotta be a top-10 all-time play. Maybe top-five.

10. Tight ends with more catches than Ertz in their first five NFL seasons: Kellen Winslow Sr., Jimmy Graham, Jason Witten and Antonio Gates.