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49ers Alex Smith injures shoulder; David Carr at quarterback

10.24.10 at 3:26 pm ET
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San Francisco 49ers quarterback Alex Smith was knocked out of Sunday’€™s game against the Panthers in the third quarter. Smith took a massive hit and left with an apparent shoulder injury, reports Pro Football Talk. X-rays revealed a shoulder sprain for Smith and he will miss the remainder of the game.

San Francisco (1-5) has struggled this year and Smith has received criticism for some of his play this season. Smith had a 73.9 passer rating on the year with 1,425 passing yards, eight touchdowns, and nine interceptions entering Sunday’€™s game. Smith was 9-for-19 attempts with 129 with one touchdown to Vernon Davis before suffering the injury. Former Texans quarterback David Carr is now in at quarterback for San Francisco.

Read More: Alex Smith, David Carr, NFC West, Rumor Mill

Falcons’ Thomas DeCoud injured in helmet-to-helmet collision

10.24.10 at 3:23 pm ET
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Falcons safety Thomas DeCoud was forced out of Sunday’€™s game against the Bengals after a helmet-to-hemet collision, reports ESPN. DeCoud collided with Cincinnati running back Cedric Benson with 3:17 remaining in the first quarter. Trainers assisted the safety on the field and he was escorted to the bench. The extent of the injury is not known at the moment. There was no penalty called during the play.

The collision is especially interesting because of the recent controversy surrounding helmet-to-helmet hits. Many defensive players have insisted that the NFL’€™s new strict stance on violent hits will favor offensive players at the expense of defenses. The Falcons’€™ secondary has already been at the heart of the controversy with the fine levied on cornerback Dunta Robinson, who suffered a concussion in a collision with Eagles receiver DeSean Jackson in Week 6. Neither Robinson nor Jackson were active for Sunday’€™s games.

Read More: Atlanta Falcons, Dunta Robinson, NFL Policy, Rumor Mill

Magic Johnson ‘definitely interested’ in Dolphins ownership

10.24.10 at 3:21 pm ET
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Earlier in the week, former NBA great Magic Johnson sold his ownership shares with the Los Angeles Lakers, leading to suggestions that Johnson would seek ownership in a NFL franchise. Johnson reportedly indicated a desire to bring an NFL team back to Los Angeles, the second biggest television market in the nation.

Johnson sold his 4.5 percent stake in the Lakers on Monday, with Johnson’€™s shares worth an estimated worth of $27 million. He also sold his Starbucks outlets back to the company for a reported $75 million. Many ownership groups have expressed interest in adding the NBA legend to their organizations.

Johnson also indicated Sunday that he would be interested in an ownership position with the Miami Dolphins, reports CBS Sports. NFL Network’€™s Jason LaCanfora said Magic ‘€œpraised GM Jeff Ireland, [owner Stephen Ross] Ross, Bill Parcells and the [Dolphins] organization,’€ and expressed a definite interest in becoming a minority owner.

Patriots owner Bob Kraft also told USA Today that he’€™d be surprised if the NFL did not return to L.A. in the next five years.

‘€œI’€™d be very surprised if it doesn’€™t happen in the next five years,’€ said Kraft. ‘€œWe have to be in L.A. How can we not be in the second-largest city in America, which is a gateway to Asia and Mexico?’€

So far, the 51-year-old Johnson has spurned interest in positions with the Dodgers, Golden State Warriors and Detroit Pistons.

Read More: Bob Kraft, L.A., Magic Johnson, Miami Dolphins

Peyton Manning, Colts won’t talk contract until after season

10.24.10 at 1:08 pm ET
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According to ESPN.com, quarterback Peyton Manning informed the Colts that he will not discuss a contract extension until after this season. Manning is playing the last year of a seven-year, $99.2 million deal. Manning’s agent, Tom Condon, told ESPN.com that there had been “zero negotiations” between the team and the four-time NFL MVP.

Colts GM Bill Polian told WEEI.com in July that talks with Manning and Condon had been slowed by the uncertainty surrounding the NFL’s negotiations over a Collective Bargaining Agreement. But while Manning and the Colts have agreed to table discussions this year, Tom Brady and the Patriots were able to enact a four-year, $72 million extension.

Read More: Bill Polian, Indianapolis Colts, Peyton Manning, Rumor Mill

Ravens’ Heap will start against Bills

10.24.10 at 12:51 pm ET
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Baltimore Ravens tight end Todd Heap, who was on the receiving end of a helmet-to-helmet hit from Patriots safety Brandon Meriweather last Sunday, will start for the Ravens on Sunday against the Bills. Heap had been listed as questionable in Baltimore’s final injury report. For the full list of inactives in the Ravens-Bills game, click here.

Read More: Baltimore Ravens, Brandon Meriweather, New England Patriots, Rumor Mill

Miami called Patriots about Mankins

10.24.10 at 12:46 pm ET
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According to the Miami Herald, Dolphins GM Jeff Ireland called New England to kick the tires about whether a deal for hold-out offensive lineman Logan Mankins might prove possible.

“I suppose the sound on the other end of the phone line was Bill Belichick laughing uncontrollably at the suggestion he might trade a Pro Bowl player to a division rival,” Armando Salguero wrote in the Herald. “But you have to admire Ireland’s moxie for exploring the issue, however improbable. The Patriots, after all, have made some curious trades and roster decisions lately.”

With the Patriots reportedly seeking a first- or second-round pick for the All-Pro guard, Mankins was not traded before last week’s NFL trade deadline. Now, he has until Nov. 16 to decide whether or not to sign his tender offer from the Patriots in hopes of accumulating enough service time to be eligible for unrestricted free agency.

Read More: Logan Mankins, Rumor Mill,

Kerry Collins gets the start for Titans; Vince Young out with ankle sprain

10.24.10 at 11:28 am ET
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According to multiple media outlets, Kerry Collins will start at quarterback for the Tennessee Titans Sunday against the Eagles, with Vince Young out with what ESPN’s Chris Mortensen is classifying as a high ankle sprain. To read Mortensen’s Tweet click here.
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Jenn Sterger’s manager says client’s silence not for sale

10.24.10 at 11:10 am ET
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According to the New York Post, Jenn Sterger’s manager, Phil Reese, said that contrary to a Friday report in the St. Paul Pioneer-Press his client’s cooperation in regard to her case involving Brett Favre won’t be steered by any settlement with the quarterback. Reese told The Post, “Jenn’s willingness to cooperate with the NFL’s investigation is not for sale. This decision is ultimately Jenn’s to make, and hers only.”

Reese went on to tell the newspaper that Sterger is “strongly considering” meeting with the league, and “doesn’t know what to do at the moment.”

To read the entire report click here.

Read More: Rumor Mill,

Jerramy Stevens won’t play after his arrest on drug charges Saturday night

10.24.10 at 10:54 am ET
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According to the Tampa Tribune, Tampa Bay tight end Jerramy Stevens won’t be playing in the Bucs’ game against the Rams Sunday after being arrested on multiple drug charges, two of which are felonies. The team released a statement on the matter through team spokesman Jonathan Grella,  saying, “We’re deeply disappointed by this news. We take such matters seriously. Obviously, Jerramy Stevens will not be participating today. We will address this matter with the seriousness it deserves, but in the meantime, we’re focused on the Rams game.” To read more on Stevens’ arrest click here.

Read More: Rumor Mill,

New Hampshire runs away with first-ever ‘Colonial Clash’ at Gillette Stadium

10.23.10 at 11:56 pm ET
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In the first-ever collegiate football game played at Gillette Stadium between the University of Massachusetts and the University of New Hampshire, appropriately dubbed the ‘€œColonial Clash,’€ the Wildcats ran away with a commanding 39-13 victory. The Wildcats, who improve to 5-3 overall on the season, and 3-2 in the Colonial Athletic Association, scored first and never looked back as the Minutemen (4-3, 2-2) suffered their second-straight loss.

Sophomore linebacker Matt Evans from New Hampshire won the annual Bill Knight Award, given traditionally to the MVP of the game between the two conference rivals, after recording a team-high 13 tackles, an interception and forcing a fumble. Bill Knight was a long-time Sports Information Director at UNH who died in 1985 after a long battle with cancer. Evans is the 25th recipient of the award.

The first collegiate football game held at Gillette Stadium attracted a CAA-record 32,848 fans in attendance. Supporters for both sides arrived hours early to tailgate in the parking lots and eat in the designated restaurant headquarters in Patriots Place.

New Hampshire was led by sophomore running back Dontra Peters on offense, who carried the ball 23 times for 98 yards and two touchdowns, while senior quarterback R.J. Toman ran in two scores of his own, while throwing for one more. UMass senior quarterback Kyle Havens threw 55 times, completing 32 passes for a career-high 450 yards in the loss. UNH has a bye week next weekend, while UMass returns to action on Saturday, Oct. 30, at James Madison University.

Read More: Colonial Clash, University of Massachusetts, University of New Hampshire,