Mark Clayton, WR, BAL
Huddle Up: After missing the last two weeks with a sprained ankle Ravens' WR Mark Clayton made his return to the practice field on Monday and according to reports he will be in the starting lineup on Monday night against the Bengals. Clayton was diagnosed with a minor ankle sprain but was held out of practice and the team's final preseason game as a precaution. And it looked like the team did the right thing. Clayton reportedly ran at full speed in practice on Monday and Tuesday and his ankle has held up well. So unless he suffers a setback look for Clayton to be healthy for the start of the regular season.
Donald Driver, WR, GB
Huddle Up: Packers' WR Donald Driver remains questionable for Sunday's regular season opener against the Eagles, but his sprained foot is improving and there is a chance that he will be cleared to play. According to reports Driver, who suffered a sprained foot during the team's third exhibition game, did not play in the team's final preseason game as precaution. Driver participated in individual drills in practice the last three days and he reportedly looked healthy. Driver apparently ran without a limp and didn't have problems cutting or jumping off of his foot. Head coach Mike McCarthy said that Driver was doing well and he indicated that he could take part in team drills as early as Wednesday. Driver remains confident and he told a reporter following practice on Monday that he would play in Week 1. Team officials hope that he will be healthy enough to play but they aren't sure until they see him in a few more practices. Check back on Friday for an update.
Terry Glenn, WR, DAL
Arthroscopic Knee Surgery
Huddle Up: According to several reports Cowboys' veteran WR Terry Glenn will attempt to participate in team drills on Wednesday and if all goes well in practice on Thursday and Friday he could be cleared to play in this weekend's regular season game. Glenn, who is recovering from arthroscopic knee surgery, ran routes and caught passes over the weekend and he reportedly participated in individual drills on Monday and Tuesday. But he's clearly not at full strength and he probably won't be at full speed for at least another couple of weeks. So even if he plays in Week 1 Patrick Crayton will probably get the start and see a majority of the playing time opposite the Cowboys' number one receiver Terrell Owens.
Travis Henry, RB, DEN
Huddle Up: Broncos' RB Travis Henry is reportedly close to full strength and if all goes well in practice this week he should be in the starting lineup this weekend against the Bills. Henry, who missed the team's final exhibition game because of a grade 1 MCL sprain, returned to practice on Monday and according to reports he looked good. The medical staff expects him to practice at full speed as early as Wednesday and barring a setback he should be cleared to play on Sunday.
Priest Holmes, RB, KC
Huddle Up: Chiefs' RB Priest Holmes, who was attempting to make his return to football after missing nearly two years while recovering from spinal stenosis, has been placed on the Non-Football PUP list which means that he won't be able to practice or play for the first 6 weeks of the regular season. Holmes was scheduled to practice last week and even play in the team's final preseason game but head coach Herman Edwards and the medical staff felt that he still wasn't ready to play. But Holmes continues to be optimistic. He recently told reporters that he wouldn't have attempted this comeback if he didn't want to play football. So he will continue to work while on the PUP list in hopes that he will get clearance when he's eligible to be activated.
Torry Holt, WR, STL
Recovering from Arthroscopic Surgery
Huddle Up: The Rams' coaching staff continues to remain optimistic about Holt's knee but he recently told reporters that his knee was still only "70-80 %" and that he wasn't sure if it would "ever heal all the way." Holt, who had off-season arthroscopic surgery to repair damaged cartilage in his knee, has not recovered as quickly as the medical staff had anticipated. Holt was limited throughout training camp and was held out of all four of the team's preseason games while recovering. He was able to take part in several team drills in practice on Monday and Tuesday but his reps were limited, as they will likely be for the remainder of the week. Head coach Scott Linehan spoke with reporters following practice on Tuesday and said that he was satisfied with Holt's participation and it looked as if his knee was fine. But obviously this is not the case. As Holt said there is a good chance that he won't be at full speed at any point this season, which certainly hurts his value. He was able to play the entire year last year with torn cartilage in the same knee and he put up very good numbers. But he wasn't very consistent. And while he'll have his moments this season don't be surprised if he is inconsistent and under performs.
Kevin Jones, RB, DET
Recovering from a Lisfranc Fracture/Dislocation
Huddle Up: Lions' RB Kevin Jones was removed from the team's PUP list and he practiced with teammates on Monday for the first time since suffering a Lisfranc Fracture/Dislocation last year. However he still favors his surgically repaired foot and the team indicated that he is still several weeks away from being ready to play in a game. According to reports the Lions' appeared ready to place Jones on the reserve PUP list, which means that he would miss the first 6 weeks of the regular season. But after consulting with several medical specialists and the coaching staff the team felt that Jones would be ready to play before the end of the 6 weeks. Coach Rod Marinelli told reporters that Jones' foot was completely healed and that it was no longer an issue. But Jones admitted to reporters that he is still "a little timid at times" and that he was still a few weeks away from being in "football shape." It looks like Jones will be back on the field soon, but he is one of the least durable players in the NFL. This is one guy that you can't count on. Anything you get from Jones should be considered bonus.
Thomas Jones, RB, NYJ
Huddle Up: Jets' RB Thomas Jones, who has missed the last three weeks while recovering from a strained calf, made his return to practice on Monday and according to reports he will be ready to play this weekend against the
Patriots. Head coach Eric Mangini has adopted the "Bill Belichick" approach to injury news in that he just doesn't provide any to the media. So it's been tough keeping track of Jones' progress. But Jones was seen running on his own last week and he reportedly looked sharp in team drills the last couple of days. At the moment Mangini won't say if Jones will be in the starting lineup for Week 1. However it looks like he is ready to play so expect him to play on Sunday.
Randy Moss, WR, NE
Huddle Up: Patriots' WR Randy Moss, who missed all of training camp because of a strained hamstring, made it through practice on Monday and Tuesday and according to reports he will likely start this upcoming weekend against the Jets. Head coach Bill Belichick told reports that he was pleased with Moss' recovery but said that he would be evaluated on a daily basis before a decision on his availability is made. By all accounts Moss isn't favoring the involved leg and has looked pretty good in workouts this week. However Moss admitted in an interview that he was concerned about his conditioning. So while it looks like he will be in the starting lineup for Week 1 the Patriots may limit his playing time. Check back on Friday for a final update.
Greg Olson, TE, CHI
Huddle Up: Bears' rookie TE Greg Olson will be a game-time decision for this weekend's regular season opener after leaving last Thursday's preseason finale with a sprained left knee. According to reports an MRI on Olson's injured knee showed very little structural damage. However the medical staff believes it could take anywhere from 1 - 2 weeks to heal. Olson, who has not practiced since the injury occurred, was seen walking with a limp on Monday and his knee remains wrapped up. Head coach Lovie Smith told reporters that a decision on Olson's status won't come until gameday, but don't be surprised if he is held out of action until Week 2.
Clinton Portis, RB, WAS
Huddle Up: Despite missing all four preseason games and nearly all of training camp with patella tendinitis in his knee the Redskins indicated that RB Clinton Portis will be the team's starting RB for Week 1. Portis' draft day value has taken a massive hit because of his knee problems and fantasy owners stayed away from the former Pro Bowler because they feared that his knee would prevent him from playing in Week 1 and would linger the entire season. But head coach Joe Gibbs insisted throughout the preseason that the Redskins were just being extra cautious with Portis and that he would have played in the team's final two exhibition games if they were regular season games. This didn't seem to matter on draft day as many leagues saw Portis fall into the third round and in some instances watched him go in as low as the sixth round. But those who passed on Portis after the second round could regret it. He returned to the practice field on Monday and according to reports he took part in all team drills. What's more Gibbs told the team's official website that Portis would be the Week 1 starter with Ladell Betts getting carries. We'll keep you posted on his performance in practice this week but it looks like anybody who drafted Portis in the third round or lower got themselves one heck of a bargain.
L.J. Smith, TE, PHI
Huddle Up: Eagles' TE L.J. Smith continues to recover from a strained groin muscle and according to reports his status for this weekend's game against the Packers remains questionable. Smith, who sat out several weeks of practice because of the groin injury, returned to the field on Monday but was limited to non-contact drills. He told reporters following practice that he was only "75%" and that he wasn't sure if he would be ready to play in Week 1. Head coach Andy Reid said that Smith will become more involved in practice later this week, but don't be surprised if a decision on his status isn't made until the team sees how he does in pre game warm-ups. Even if he plays he won't be full strength so if you have another option at TE we suggest you use it.
Michael Turner, RB, SD
High Ankle Sprain
Huddle Up: The Chargers received some good news last week regarding the health of backup RB Michael Turner. Turner, who injured his right ankle during the team's third exhibition game over a week ago, was diagnosed with a high ankle sprain and the medical staff initially feared that he would be out of action anywhere from 4 - 6 weeks. But additional tests revealed that the high ankle sprain was of the minor variety and there is chance that he could be ready to play as early as this weekend. Turner began running last Thursday and according to reports he will take part in team drills during practice tomorrow. He remains questionable for Week 1 but his status will be adjusted based on how he does in practice this week. He wasn't going to see the field a lot this year anyway, but we are sure that LT owners who were smart enough to draft Turner as well are happy that their first round insurance policy is nearly back to full strength.
Mike Walker, WR, JAX
Lingering Problems in Surgically Repaired Knee
Huddle Up: Promising rookie WR Mike Walker, who continued to be bothered by soreness and instability in his surgically repaired knee during training camp, was placed on Injured Reserve by the Jaguars and will miss the entire 2007 season. Walker had surgery to repair a torn ACL in his knee back in 2005. Unfortunately he just didn't seem comfortable running on the knee and the medical staff felt that a year on the sideline would be more than enough to get him ready for the NFL next year. Walker did impress the coaching staff in the off season and there was some discussion before his knee problems in training camp about him potentially cracking the starting lineup this season. So don't be surprised if a healthy Walker makes a serious run for a starting job in 2008.