After just two drives, Aaron Rodgers is ready to begin the season for the Green Bay Packers. San Francisco coach Chip Kelly still needs a bit more time to figure out who his starting quarterback will be once the games count next month. Rodgers made the most of his only appearance of the preseason, throwing a touchdown pass to Randall Cobb in the Green Bay Packers' 21-10 victory over the San Francisco 49ers on Friday night.
Ben Roethlisberger has played only two series this preseason, which might be all he needs. Roethlisberger torched New Orleans for 148 yards and two touchdown passes in his first action this preseason, then got the rest of the game off while the Steelers rolled to a 27-14 victory on Friday night. ''We were looking for some production and he gave us some production,'' Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said of Roethlisberger, who completed 12 of 17 passes.
Josh Gordon showed why the Cleveland Browns are so happy to have him back on the field. The talented receiver with a history of suspensions for drug violations caught everything thrown his way in his preseason debut Friday night, scoring on a 43-yard reception and also hauling in another pass from Robert Griffin III for a 44-yard gain that led to a first quarter field goal in a 30-13 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Jameis Winston threw for 259 yards and two touchdowns in one half of work for the Bucs, who achieved an objective of starting faster on offense than they did the previous two weeks.
In their first real chance to play together this preseason, Kirk Cousins and the Washington Redskins' offensive starters showed plenty of rust and then progress in a 21-16 victory against the Buffalo Bills on Friday night. With the Bills (1-2) resting almost their entire starting defense, Cousins overcame a rough start to finish 12 of 23 for 188 yards, three touchdowns and an interception. Despite coming mostly against Buffalo's second- and third-stringers, it was an important recovery for Cousins, who had thrown only five passes in the preseason and was rested last week.
Tom Brady appeared to be in regular season form Friday night. Unfortunately for the New England Patriots, they may not see that form in a meaningful game until Oct. 9 when they face the Cleveland Browns since the three-time Super Bowl MVP will serve a four-game suspension to start the season. Brady looked sharp in his preseason debut though, throwing a 33-yard touchdown pass to Chris Hogan in helping the Patriots to a 19-17 preseason win over the Carolina Panthers on Friday night.
Atlanta Falcons rookie strong safety Keanu Neal, the team's first-round pick and a projected starter, will miss the beginning of the season with a knee injury. Neal will have arthroscopic surgery on his right knee on Monday and is expected to miss three to four weeks, according to the Falcons. Coach Dan Quinn said he is encouraged Neal avoided a more serious injury that could have kept him out longer.
All-Pro safety Eric Berry plans to report to the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday, giving him two weeks and one preseason game to prepare for the start of the regular season. A person familiar with his plans told The Associated Press that Berry will join the team after its preseason game Saturday in Chicago. The person spoke on condition of anonymity Friday because he was not authorized to discuss Berry's plans publicly.
Three plays were all it took for Dallas to get yet another injury scare surrounding Tony Romo. The quarterback lasted just 90 seconds into the Cowboys' 27-17 preseason loss to the Seattle Seahawks on Thursday night before leaving with what appeared at first to be a potentially significant injury, but ended up being minor. Romo was tackled from behind by Seattle's Cliff Avril on the third play from scrimmage as Romo scrambled from the pocket.
The Patriots will try to find an ideal spot for him. A major disappointment in Cleveland, Mingo, the No. 6 overall pick in the 2013 draft was traded to New England on Thursday. The Browns received a fifth-round pick in the 2017 draft for the linebacker.
Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison and Green Bay Packers defensive players Clay Matthews and Julius Peppers met this week with NFL investigators looking into allegations linking them to performance-enhancing drugs, the players' union said Thursday. Matthews and Peppers met with league representatives on Wednesday, while Harrison did so on Thursday, according to the NFL Players Association.
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