Lions RB Best still unable to play

Lions RB Best still unable to play

ALLEN PARK, Mich. (AP) Detroit Lions running back Jahvid Best is still not cleared to play.

Best spent the first six weeks of the season on the physically unable to perform list, but he's eligible to return now. Best hasn't played since last October because of concussion problems, and his future remains uncertain after general manager Martin Mayhew said Monday night he can't come back yet.

``After today's consultation with medical experts, including representatives from our medical and training staffs, it has been determined that Jahvid will not be permitted to return to play at this time,'' Mayhew said in a statement. ``Throughout this entire process we always have placed the highest priority on what is best for Jahvid from a health and safety standpoint. While today's decision is disappointing from a football perspective, we fully and entirely respect and support this recommendation.''

Best was put on the reserve-PUP list, meaning he needed to miss the first six weeks of the season. That time period is now over, meaning the Lions have three weeks to start a three-week practice window for Best. If he's not active by the end of that practice window, he must sit out the rest of the season - so Detroit has a maximum of six weeks to bring Best back.

``Jahvid will continue to work with our medical and training staffs with the hope that he ultimately will be cleared to return to the playing field,'' Mayhew said.

Best was drafted by the Lions in the first round in 2010. He ran for 555 yards and caught 58 passes as a rookie, but he hasn't played since a loss to San Francisco last season. Best also missed time during the preseason last year because of a concussion, and when he was a college player at California, he missed a few games after a fall knocked him out and sent him to the hospital with a concussion and sore back.

When coach Jim Schwartz met with reporters earlier Monday, he said he wasn't sure what Best's status was at that point.

``You know, I've said this time and time again, it's different than any other injury,'' Schwartz said. ``Any other injury you can try and put some kind of timetable on it, and that you can't. So we'll just listen to people that know what they're talking about and when we get a decision we'll let you know.''

The Lions were otherwise upbeat Monday after beating Philadelphia 26-23 in overtime last weekend. Detroit (2-3) had lost three in a row, so following up the open date with a win was big.

Wide receiver Nate Burleson talked a bit about restoring the team's swagger. The Lions weren't earning much respect after an offseason marred by arrests and off-field problems.

``We had a lot of discipline issues during the offseason, and we wanted to tighten up because the perception of this organization started to change - what we'd worked for was getting torn down and we wanted to be more of a mature team,'' Burleson said. ``But finding that maturity off the field can't compromise who we are on the field, and who we are on the field are the bad guys.

``We're the ones that nobody wants to see succeed, and we like it that way. We play better that way. I think everybody took it in their own hands to be better men off the field, and that followed us a little bit on the field, but I think we're back where we need to be.''

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NHL Power Rankings: The home stretch

USA Today Sports

NHL Power Rankings: The home stretch

We are down to the home stretch. Only 10 games remain in the Capitals' regular season. Those 10 games will ultimately decide if the Caps finish in first place in the Metropolitan Division and who they will play in the first round of the playoffs.

Washington currently sits in first place in the division, two points ahead of the Pittsburgh Penguins and four points ahead of the Philadelphia Flyers. Of those 10 remaining games, only three come against teams currently in playoff position. The most critical of these comes on April 1 when the Caps travel to Pittsburgh in a game that could ultimately decide the division.

The Caps still hold a narrow lead in the standings, but where do they stand in the rankings? See this week's updated NHL Power Rankings here.

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Need to Know: Looking at the Redskins' offensive depth chart after early phase of free agency

Associated Press

Need to Know: Looking at the Redskins' offensive depth chart after early phase of free agency

Here is what you need to know on this Monday, March 19, 38 days before the NFL draft.  

Free agency notes and nuggets

Looking at the 2018 depth chart—offense

The Redskins are likely to make a few more free agent acquisitions and there is the draft, but the depth chart is beginning to settle in. Let’s take a look at where the offensive side of the ball stands now. The defense is up tomorrow

Quarterback: Alex Smith
Backups: Colt McCoy

The only question here is if the Redskins will draft a late-round project quarterback to develop as the backup. McCoy is in the last year of his contract and he may not be back in 2019.

Running back: Samaje Perine
Backups: Chris Thompson, Rob Kelley, draft pick

This is an area to watch. Thompson could end up being the only carryover if they get a draft pick who can start and decide to keep 2017 late-season addition Kapri Bibbs or if they find another veteran. They also could go with only three running backs.

Wide receivers: Josh Doctson, Paul Richardson, Jamison Crowder
Backups: Maurice Harris, Robert Davis, Brian Quick

They may not carry six, so Harris, Davis, and Quick might battle it out for two spots. It’s possible that they will put a draft pick into the mix as well.

MORE REDSKINS: The Redskins week that was

Tight end: Jordan Reed
Backups: Vernon Davis, Jeremy Sprinkle

As of right now, this appears to be one of the few position groups you can write in with a Sharpie. If the Redskins are going to be better in 2018, a lot of the improvement will have to come from improvement of 2017 draft picks like Sprinkle. If he can develop into a solid blocker and a moderate receiving threat he will be an asset.

Offensive line: LT Trent Williams, LG Arie Kouandjio, C Chase Roullier RG Brandon Scherff, RT Morgan Moses
Backups: T Ty Nsekhe, G/T Tyler Catalina, G Kyle Kalis, T T.J. Clemmings

Kouandjio is a placeholder at left guard for the moment. He was solid pass blocking but struggled in run blocking in six starts in injury fill-in duty. I think that if they bring in another interior O-lineman in free agency or in the draft, Roullier will remain at center. I think Jay Gruden likes the way he is developing there and wants to continue.

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page and follow him on Twitter @TandlerNBCS.

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Days until:

—Offseason workouts begin (4/16) 28
—Training camp starts (approx. 7/26) 130
—2018 NFL season starts (9/9) 174

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