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Arizona Cardinals RB Ryan Williams out for season

Arizona Cardinals RB Ryan Williams out for season

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) The Arizona Cardinals' already embattled ground game has taken a severe blow with the announcement that running back Ryan Williams is out for the season with a left shoulder injury that will require surgery.

The Cardinals already are without Beanie Wells until at least Thanksgiving weekend because of a severe turf toe injury.

The hard-luck Williams missed all of his rookie season a year ago with a torn patella tendon. He injured his shoulder on a hard hit during last Thursday night's loss at St. Louis.

The injury leaves Arizona with running backs LaRod Stephens-Howling, William Powell and Alfonso Smith. Stephens-Howling missed the last two weeks with a hip flexor.

The Cardinals are 4-1 despite their virtual lack of any ground game. They rank 31st out of 32 NFL teams in yards rushing per game at 63.4. Only Oakland's 60.8 is worse.

Coach Ken Whisenhunt revealed the extent of the injury in his brief meeting with reporters following the team's light workout on Monday.

``The timetable for recovery is probably three months, so that puts him out for the season,'' Whisenhunt said.

Asked if the team would look to bring in a running back from elsewhere, he said, ``We'll look and see.''

``I feel good about the guys that we've got,'' the coach said. ``We're always going to look to get better at every position. If that opportunity is there, then we'll certainly try to act on it.''

Arizona opened the season believing that its ground game would be a strength with Wells and Williams providing a solid 1-2 punch. Now that punch is down to 0-0.

``That's the NFL,'' Whisenhunt said. ``Teams have to fight through adversity and keep going. We've done a good job of that the first five weeks of the season, and now we've got another challenge, but that's OK. We'll work through it.''

Wells was off to a slow start as he recovered from knee surgery, then went down with the toe injury in week 3 against Philadelphia. The Cardinals placed him on the NFL's new injured reserve/designated for return list. That rule requires Wells to miss the next five games. He can return for Arizona's home game against St. Louis on Nov. 25.

Williams, a second-round draft pick from Virginia Tech in 2011, moved into the No. 1 running back spot and had a strong second half against the Eagles. But he and any other running back who carried the ball has had a tough time in the two games since then as the Cardinals managed 28 yards rushing in an overtime victory over Miami, followed by 45 in Thursday night's 17-3 loss to the Rams.

Williams, who didn't take an NFL snap last season, had gained 164 yards in 56 attempts, an average of just 2.8 yards per carry. He has caught seven passes for 44 yards.

``I feel horrible for Ryan,'' Whisenhunt said, ``but what I told Ryan when we sat down was that at least he won't have to deal with it through an offseason. He'll be able to go through the offseason program. He'll be able to go through practices and that will get him in better shape and ready to go next year.''

The injury is more bad news for quarterback Kevin Kolb. The lack of a running threat had been a major contributor to the intense pressure from the pass rush faced by Kolb and his team's struggling offensive line. Kolb has been sacked 17 times in the last two games, eight by Miami and nine by St. Louis.

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Wizards take out Sixers to tie season series behind Kelly Oubre and Otto Porter's hot shooting

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USA Today Sports Images

Wizards take out Sixers to tie season series behind Kelly Oubre and Otto Porter's hot shooting

The Washington Wizards beat the Philadelphia 76ers 109-94 on Sunday night. Here's analysis of what went down...

Playoff implications: Later in the season the stakes are raised and the Wizards' win over the Sixers on Sunday night could loom large in just a few weeks.

By beating the Sixers, who had won seven straight entering the matchup, the Wizards tied up the season series with their second win. A loss would have handed Philly the tiebreaker in playoff seeding if the two teams finish with the same record at season's end.

Now that their season series is over and locked even, it will come down to their record against other Eastern Conference teams if they tie. At 22-15 vs. the East, the Wizards currently have the edge on the Sixers, who are 18-14 in that category.

The Wizards dominated the Sixers for much of the night and they did so by once again moving the ball with generosity and precision. They had 35 assists on 43 field goals. The Wizards have had 30 or more assists in five games this season and four have come within the last month.

Those four games have been part of a 9-3 surge for the Wizards since John Wall got injured. With their win against Philly, the Wizards moved to 35-25 on the season and a half-game out of third in the East. The Sixers are among several teams nipping at their heels in an increasingly crowded conference.

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Oubre put on a show: The Wizards led 67-48 at halftime and that was in large part due to Kelly Oubre, Jr.'s impact on both ends of the floor. He had eight points in each of the first two quarters, including four threes, and made several key plays on defense.

Oubre had three blocks to set a career-high by halftime, including one on Robert Covington that bounced off Covington's leg and gave the Wizards possession. He also took a charge on Ben Simmons and flashed a smile for the cameras as he sprinted back down the floor.

Oubre ended the game with 19 points on 6-for-11 shooting. It wasn't long ago that Oubre was in a significant shooting slump.

In his last 11 games before the All-Star break, Oubre was averaging just 9.4 points on 31.2 percent shooting. In three games since the break, Oubre has scored 47 points (15.7/g) while shooting 51.5 percent. It's safe to say he's put those shooting struggles behind him.

Oubre had been making his mark defensively as the Wizards closed the first half on a tear, but Sunday showed how much of a boost he can provide when he's in a rhythm offensively. He completely changed the game and helped the Wizards knock off a team that came to Washington super hot.

Porter wasn't fazed: Otto Porter did something on Sunday that likely has never been accomplished before. He hit not one, not two, not three but four buzzer-beaters all in the first half. Three of them were to beat the shot clock. Then, he hit another one to end the first half:

That shot capped an 8-1 run to end the second quarter for the Wizards and it brought a burst of energy out of the crowd. Porter had 14 points in the second quarter and shot 6-for-6 in the frame. The Wizards outscored the Sixers 37-20 in the second and Porter led the charge.

Porter finished with 23 points, seven rebounds, three assists and two steals.

Much like Bradley Beal, who had 24 points in this game, Porter has thrived in this second extended absence for Wall. Both Beal and Porter battle inconsistency as they adapted to being the primary focus of opposing teams back in November when Wall first went down. But this time around, they have answers to everything teams are throwing at them.

Porter's patience at the end of the shot clock on Sunday was an example of that. His confidence seems to be at an all-time high, knowing he has enough tricks to keep his opponents guessing. That was on display with under two minutes to go when he drained a three in Covington's face, turned around to stare at him afterwards and then shook his head as he trotted down the court, as if he were saying that no one can stop him. 

Up next: The Wizards are off Monday before playing back-to-back games on Tuesday and Wednesday against the Bucks and Warriors. Tuesday is an 8 p.m. tipoff on TNT. We will have pre- and postgame coverage of Wizards-Bucks on NBC Sports Washington Plus beginning at 7 p.m.

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Dan Fegan, former agent for John Wall, dies in car crash

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Photo by Jerritt Clark/Getty Images for Caravan

Dan Fegan, former agent for John Wall, dies in car crash

NBA agent Dan Fegan, who had previously represented many high-profile NBA clients including John Wall, died in a car crash Sunday morning, according to The Aspen Times. 

According to the report, Fegan's SUV was struck by a bus while trying to merge onto Highway 82 in Colorado a little after 9 am this morning. 

The two passengers in the car - an unidentified woman and Fegan's 5-year old daughter - were airlifted to a nearby hospital with serious injuries. 

Fegan was 56.