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Bengals Release BenJarvus Green-Ellis

Bengals Release BenJarvus Green-Ellis

Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images(CINCINNATI) --  Veteran running back BenJarvus Green-Ellis has been cut by the Cincinnati Bengals, the team announced Friday.

The move was expected, as Green-Ellis did not dress for the Bengals' last two preseason games.  Giovani Bernard will be the team's starting running back, with rookie Jeremy Hill serving as the primary backup.  Cincinnati selected Hill in the second-round of this year's NFL draft.

"It's very difficult to release such a fine player and person as BenJarvus," coach Marvin Lewis said. "He has been an exceptional player and teammate, as well as mentor to our younger players. He has also been a standout person in the community. We thank Bennie for all he has done and wish him the best of luck in the future."

Green-Ellis was entering the final year of his three-year contract and was scheduled to make $2.3 million this season.  In his two seasons in Cincinnati, Green-Ellis rushed for more than 1,700 yards.  He averaged a career-low 3.4 yards per carry last season and had just four catches.

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Jim Irsay Reportedly Has Plea Deal in Place

Jim Irsay Reportedly Has Plea Deal in Place

Joe Robbins/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay has reportedly reached a plea deal as part of his impaired driving case. That according the Indianapolis Star, citing court officials.

Irsay was arrested in March on a pair of misdemeanor charges. The Colts owner was arrested near his home after failing a field sobriety test. Officers on the scene said he had trouble reciting the alphabet. Police reports showed that Irsay had various prescription drugs and $29,000 in cash in his position at the time of the arrest.

"I cannot provide any details of -- or even verify the existence of -- an agreement unless and until one would be tendered to the Court at such a hearing," said Andre Miksha, a spokesman for the Hamilton County prosecutor.

The trial, originally scheduled for Oct. 30, was reportedly rescheduled for Tuesday. While details of the plea agreement were not released, the announcement of the plea will allow NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to deliver his punishment of Irsay.

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49ers’ LB Aldon Smith Suspended 9 Games

49ers’ LB Aldon Smith Suspended 9 Games

Brian Bahr/Getty Images(SANTA CLARA, Calif.) -- San Francisco 49ers linebacker Aldon Smith has been suspended for the first nine games of the season after violating the NFL's personal-conduct policy.

Smith was sentenced in July to 11 days of work release in a Santa Clara County (Calif.) court after his September 2013 arrest for drunken driving.

On April 13, Smith was arrested at Los Angeles International airport for making a false bomb threat after an altercation at the security checkpoint, but the Los Angeles City Attorney's office declined to press charges.

"Our organization has known this decision would come and we have prepared for it as a team," 49ers general manager Trent Baalke said in a statement. "Aldon has taken responsibility for his actions and has continued to show growth personally and professionally. We will continue to support him, but it is time to put this matter behind us and focus on the season ahead."

Smith is eligible to return to the 49ers roster on Nov. 10.

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Titans Reward Jurrell Casey with Contract Extension

Titans Reward Jurrell Casey with Contract Extension

National Football League(NASHVILLE, Tenn.) -- After a breakout season in 2013, the Tennessee Titans have rewarded defensive lineman Jurrell Casey with a four-year extension.

ESPN reports Casey's deal will pay him $36 million over those four years, with $20.5 million guaranteed.

"We are excited to come to an agreement on an extension with Jurrell," Titans general manager Ruston Webster said in a statement. "This is something Jurrell has earned not only with his play on the field but his work ethic as well. We appreciate Jurrell's professionalism through this process and look forward to many good years to come."

Even though the team has moved from a 4-3 defense to a 3-4, the team has assured Casey he will still be able to play like he's used to at the pro level.

Casey is entering his fourth season with the Titans after the team selected him in the third round back in 2011. After accumulating 5.5 sacks his first two seasons, Casey exploded for 10.5 sacks in 2013 to go along with 55 total tackles.

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Adrian Peterson Excited about the Vikings Offense

Adrian Peterson Excited about the Vikings OffenseAndy Lyons/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Running back Adrian Peterson has been carrying the Minnesota Vikings offense for years, but now he's excited to see how the rest of the team's playmakers have developed heading into the 2014 season. “This is g...

Jets Suspend Cornerback Dimitri Patterson for Rest of Preseason

Jets Suspend Cornerback Dimitri Patterson for Rest of Preseason

Joe Robbins/Getty Images(FLORHAM PARK, N.J.) -- After he never showed up for the team's preseason game, the New York Jets have suspended cornerback Dimitri Patterson for the remainder of the preseason.

Patterson didn't show up for the team's preseason game last Friday night against the New York Giants. He went AWOL and wasn't heard from for 48 hours.

"I think there's a level of accountability," guard Willie Colon said. "I think if he's able to stand up in front of the team and say, 'Hey, this is how I felt, such-and-such happened,' whether it's right, wrong or indifferent, for him to say something would be welcomed. We'll have to proceed from there."

Though there was speculation that Patterson could be cut, the team has decided to just suspended him until Monday as they get ready for their first game of the 2014 regular season.

The 31-year-old Patterson is a nine-year NFL veteran, but this is his first season with the Jets.

He's battled injuries the past few seasons, as he's played in just 15 out of a possible 48 games over the past three seasons.

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Steelers RB’s Le’Veon Bell and LeGarrette Blount Await Punishment

Steelers RB’s Le’Veon Bell and LeGarrette Blount Await Punishment

Pittsburgh Steelers/NFL(PITTSBURGH) -- Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin is not worried about being without both his running backs come the season opener against the Cleveland Browns.

"Everything's on the table," Tomlin said regarding punishment coming to running backs, LeGarrett Blount and Le'Veon Bell.

The two were charged with marijuana possession and driving under the influence during their trip to play the Philadelphia Eagles last week and both could be suspended at the start of the regular season.

Veteran wide receiver Lance Moore defended his teammates.

"We don't spend a lot of time talking about what happens off the field. Obviously what's going to those guys is going to happen to those guys, and nothing we can do or say here is going to change that," he said. "We're not going to disown them or treat them differently. Obviously it's a situation that we would like to have not have happened, something that maybe could have been avoided. They made a decision, [but] once we walk through these doors, it's all work."

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Dez Bryant Still Seeking Long-Term Deal with Cowboys

Dez Bryant Still Seeking Long-Term Deal with Cowboys

Rich Schultz/Getty Images(ARLINGTON, Texas) -- Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant is entering the final year of his rookie deal, and if a deal is not done before week 1 of the regular season, he won't be talking about it during the year.

Bryant will be paid $1.78 million this season and is seeking a long-term deal.

"I don't want to talk about it anymore," Bryant said Monday evening after an event to announce the Cowboys' corporate sponsorship deal. "Put it behind me. I love this game. Either way, I feel like I can't be distracted once I'm on the football field."

"We're in conversation," Bryant added. "I'll say that. We're talking. We are talking. It only gets better from there. Let's see what happens."

Bryant is hoping to have a deal done before they open up on Sept. 7 against the San Francisco 49ers.

The Cowboys remain positive that both sides will be able to work out a deal.

"He obviously feels in the right circumstances he wants to get something done. We do, too. That can be good," Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said of negotiations.

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Brandon Meriweather Suspended Two Games

Brandon Meriweather Suspended Two Games

NFL Shield(ASHBURN, Va.) -- Washington Redskins safety Brandon Meriweather was suspended for the first two games of the season by the NFL on Monday.

The punishment comes after another helmet-to-helmet hit from Meriweather on Baltimore's Torrey Smith over the weekend.

"Meriweather delivered a forceful blow to the head and neck area of a defenseless receiver with no attempt to wrap up or make a conventional tackle of this player," said NFL executive vice president of football operations Troy Vincent in a statement.

Meriweather said after the game on Saturday that he did not believe there was anything wrong with the hit on Smith.

"I'm trying to do what the NFL asked me after going through the offseason, and working on the things I need to work on, and the first chance I get, it seems like I failed," he said.

Meriweather has been fined five different times by the league over the course of his career, including a $42,000 fine for a hit on Packers running back Eddie Lacy in 2013. The safety was also suspended two games last year, but had it reduced to one game following an appeal.

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Broncos’ Prater Apologizes for Suspension

Broncos’ Prater Apologizes for Suspension

National Football League(ENGLEWOOD, Colo.) -- One day after being suspended by the NFL for violating it's substance abuse policy, Denver Broncos kicker Matt Prater apologized to his friends, teammates, and fans. 

"I'm definitely going to make some changes in my life,'' Prater said following Monday's practice. "Not drink at all or risk doing anything stupid like that [and] keep myself out of certain situations like not go to places where people are drinking."

"Now I'm going to dedicate myself to working out and getting stronger in the time I have off," he continued. "I'll come in here and be here five days a week hitting the weights and I'll have to kick at a high school field.''

The violation, which is alcohol-related, could have earned Prater a year-long suspension, but it was reduced to just four games. Because of a bye week in Week 4 for Denver, Prater will not be able to compete until a Week 6 matchup with the New York Jets on October 12.

Prater will be allowed to attend team functions and use the weight room, but cannot be on the field or sidelines with the team during his suspension.

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Cam Newton Suffers Fractured Rib

Cam Newton Suffers Fractured Rib

Streeter Lecka/Getty Images(CHARLOTTE, N.C.) -- Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton will not play in the teams final preseason game this week after he suffered a hairline fracture of the ribs during Saturday's game, head coach Ron Rivera said in an announcement Sunday.

Coach Rivera added he expects Newton to play in the regular season opener.

"I do, but a lot of it is he had to get past the soreness, which we expect, and we'll see how he starts to progress," Rivera said.

Newton underwent both an MRI and a CAT scan after showing up to practice in a great deal of pain. The tests showed that the quarterback suffered the break when New England's Jamie Collins stepped on his back in a vulnerable spot on the flak jacket Newton was wearing.

The 2011 number one pick was 8-for-12 passing with 88 yards in Saturday's affair, but missed some key opportunities in his return from offseason ankle surgery.

Rivera hoped to give his quarterback one more game to work on his timing. Instead, Newton will be re-evaluated over the weekend in preparation for the Sept. 7 opener at Tampa Bay.

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Rams Quarterback Sam Bradford Tears ACL, Out Entire 2014 Season

Rams Quarterback Sam Bradford Tears ACL, Out Entire 2014 Season

Scott Boehm/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Less than two weeks before the start of the regular season, and the St. Louis Rams are dealing with a devastating injury. Quarterback Sam Bradford will miss the entire season with a torn ACL.

Bradford suffered the injury during the team's preseason win over the Cleveland Browns on Saturday. This is the same ACL that Bradford tore last season that caused him to miss the final nine games of the season.

"Anyone that's gone through that procedure and the rehab understands and to have it happen again within the calendar year is very, very difficult," Rams head coach Jeff Fisher said. "We're thinking of Sam. I met with him this morning. He's left the building to spend time with his parents. I really can't give you any timetable as to when he's going to have this procedure done."

The Rams by all accounts have one of the better rosters in the NFC, but play in the ultra-competitive NFC West, so this will certainly have an effect on their playoff hopes.

Bradford was entering his fifth season in the NFL, all with the Rams.

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Welker Leaves Game with Concussion

Welker Leaves Game with Concussion

Hyoung Chang/Denver Post(DENVER) -- Wes Welker missed three games during the 2013 season after suffering a pair of concussions. On Saturday night, the Broncos wide receiver left the game when he sustained another one following a hit from Houston Texans safety D.J. Swearinger.

"It was determined it was a concussion," said Denver head coach John Fox. "He'll go through the protocol. The biggest thing on him is, of course, player safety."

The hit came late in the second half as the Broncos were driving. Welker caught an 11-yard pass from Peyton Manning on the previous play, and as Manning went back to him on the next snap, Welker went into a slide and Swearinger made the tackle.

Replays showed that as the wideout slid, Swearinger led with his shoulder and forearm, hitting Welker in the head. The safety was assessed a personal foul as Welker got up and walked to the sideline before entering the locker room.

There is no timetable for Welker to return to game action. Denver went on to lose 18-17 to the Texans.

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Sam Bradford Hurts Knee against Browns

Sam Bradford Hurts Knee against Browns

Scott Boehm/Getty Images(CLEVELAND) -- St. Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford left Saturday night's game against the Cleveland Browns in the first quarter after getting hit in the left leg by defensive lineman Armonty Bryant.

Bradford limped off the field on his own power after doctors and the team staff made sure he was able to.

Bradford received tests which showed no initial damage to his surgically repaired leg, ESPN NFL insider Adam Schefter reports.

"I've talked to Sam," Rams head coach Jeff Fisher said after the game. 

"He's fine, he's upbeat," Fisher continued.  "We'll see."

Bradford suffered a torn left ACL injury against the Carolina Panthers last October and was making his second preseason start.

Bradford was 4 of 9 for 77 yards before the injury.

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Jets Name Geno Smith the Starting Quarterback

Jets Name Geno Smith the Starting Quarterback

Joe Robbins/Getty Images(FLORHAM PARK, N.J.) -- Despite the signing of Michael Vick in the offseason, the New York Jets have named Geno Smith the team's starting quarterback.

"I think he's taken off from where he left off [last season]," Jets head coach Rex Ryan said. "I expect great things in the future."

Smith was the team's starting quarterback last year, and played well at times as he navigated through his rookie season. Even though Vick has been a Pro Bowl quarterback, he will start the season on the sidelines.

"I think it's great for Geno," Vick said. "I knew the entire time that Geno was going to be the starter, but Geno went out and proved that he's capable of running this team and putting this team in a position to win."

In five quarters of play in the preseason, Smith threw only one interception. He also completed 70 percent of his passes with one touchdown.

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ESPN: Manziel Fined $12K

ESPN: Manziel Fined $12K

Elsa/Getty Images(NEW YORK) --Cleveland Browns rookie quarterback Johnny Manziel was fined $12,000 by the NFL for making an obscene gesture toward the Washington Redskins sideline during a preseason game Monday night, according to ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.

The incident occurred after Manziel threw an incompletion in the third quarter of the Browns 24-23 loss to the Redskins.                                                                                                                                                  According to ESPN's Ed Werder, Manziel's agent Erik Burkhardt says the rookie hasn't decided whether to appeal the fine.                                                                                                                                                  

The 21-year-old Manziel, who was recently beat out by teammate Brian Hoyer for the starting quarterback job, was selected with the 22nd overall pick in this year's draft.

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Scoreboard Roundup – 8/22/14

Scoreboard Roundup – 8/22/14

Hemera/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- MLB: Chicago Cubs 4 (56-72) - Baltimore Orioles 1 (73-53)

Tampa Bay Rays 8 (63-65) - Toronto Blue Jays 0 (65-63)

Philadelphia Phillies 5 (57-71) - St. Louis Cardinals 4 (69-58)

San Francisco Giants 10 (68-59) - Washington Nationals 3 (73-54)

Houston Astros 5 (55-75) - Cleveland Indians 1 (64-62)

New York Yankees 4 (65-61) - Chicago White Sox 3 (59-69)

Seattle Mariners 5 (69-58) - Boston Red Sox 3 (56-72)

Kansas City 6 (71-56) - Texas Rangers 3 (49-78)

Atlanta Braves 3 (68-61) - Cincinnati Reds 1 (61-68) 12 Innings

Pittsburgh Pirates 8 (66-62) - Milwaukee Brewers 3 (71-57)

Arizona Diamondbacks 5 (54-75) - San Diego Padres 1 (59-68)

Minnesota Twins 20 (57-70) - Detroit Tigers 6 (68-58)

Los Angeles Dodgers 6 (73-57) - New York Mets 2 (60-69)

Oakland Athletics 5 (75-52) - Los Angeles Angels 3 (76-51)

Miami Marlins 13 (64-63) - Colorado Rockies 5 (50-77)

NFL Preseason: New England Patriots 30 (2-1) - Carolina Panthers 7 (1-2)

Detroit Lions 13 (2-1) - Jacksonville Jaguars 12 (1-2)

New York Giants 35 (4-0) - New York Jets 24 (2-1)

Green Bay Packers 31 (2-1) - Oakland Raiders 21 (1-2)

Seattle Seahawks 34 (2-1) - Chicago Bears 6 (2-1)

NASCAR Nationwide Series: Ryan Blaney wins the Food City 300 at Bristol Motor Speedway

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Saints’ Graham Fined $30K for Dunks

Saints’ Graham Fined $30K for Dunks

Chris Graythen/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- New Orleans Saints tight end Jimmy Graham was fined $30,000 on Friday by the NFL for dunking on the goalpost twice during a preseason game against Tennessee last week. 

The new rule, instituted this season, re-defines unsportsmanlike conduct to include any act using the ball as a prop. Many have referred to the new interpretation as the "Jimmy Graham rule" directed at the veteran tight end's signature touchdown celebration.

Graham twice dunked the football after scoring touchdowns against the Titans, resulting in a pair of 15-yard penalties. The acts also drew some frustration from head coach Sean Payton as the Saints committed a total of 28 called penalties. 

League rules state that players can be fined at least $11,025 for a their first unsportsmanlike penalty, and $22,050 for a second offense if the league deems necessary. Cleveland Browns quarterback Johnny Manziel was fined $12,000 for making an obscene gesture towards the Washington Redskins bench on Monday night.

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Cowboys Linebacker DeVonte Holloman Advised to Retire

Cowboys Linebacker DeVonte Holloman Advised to Retire

Darrin Kilmek/Thinkstock(IRVING, Texas) -- Due to neck injuries, doctors have advised Dallas Cowboys linebacker DeVonte Holloman to retire from football.

Holloman missed seven games last season with a bruised spinal cord.

Just 23 years old, Holloman received a second opinion from a doctor who recommended he immediately retire. He will reportedly seek out a third opinion.

"I don't want to get into anything medical about it," Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett said. "I don't know that much about it, and there's a lot of very specific things regarding that. But it has to do with his neck and he had that injury last year and he dealt with it again this year."

It's a very challenging, difficult thing for a young man who has dreams of being an NFL football player, achieves those dreams," he added.

In what could be his final NFL game, Holloman recorded 11 tackles and two sacks in Week 17 against the Philadelphia Eagles.

Holloman was selected in the sixth-round of the 2013 Draft. He made 26 tackles in nine games during his potentially lone season in the NFL.

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Steelers RB’s Le’Veon Bell and LeGarrette Blount Face Pot Charges

Steelers RB’s Le’Veon Bell and LeGarrette Blount Face Pot Charges

Pittsburgh Steelers/NFL(NEW YORK) -- Steelers running backs Le'Veon Bell and LeGarrette Blount were charged with marijuana possession on Wednesday.

The Steelers were on their way to Philadelphia for their third preseason game against the Eagles Thursday and were found with marijuana at a traffic stop.

Ross Township traffic officer Sean Stafiej pulled over a Camaro operated by Bell around 1:30 p.m. after smelling a strong odor of marijuana.

"We are aware of the reports and still gathering information," Steelers spokesman Burt Lauten said. "We will have no further comment at this time."

The NFL is also expected to review the incident.

Both runningbacks are still expected to play against the Eagles.

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