Christine Michael RB SEA 7 Hrs
Michael (hamstring) didn't participate in practice Tuesday.
Only two days remain before the NFL campaign kicks off in the home of the defending Super Bowl champions, but the Seahawks may be without one of Marshawn Lynch's backups, if Michael is unable to alleviate his hamstring concern. Consider Michael day-to-day, but his status could become more clear as soon as the final injury report of the week is released Wednesday.
Rob Gronkowski TE NE 7 Hrs6 Comments
While Gronkowski (knee) told reporters he that was in line to play in Sunday's game against the Dolphins, coach Bill Belichick indicated Tuesday that the team has not made a final determination on that front, ESPN.com reports. "I'm glad that Rob is optimistic about his situation," Belichick said Tuesday. "We will go through a week of practice, look at everything and everybody and see where everybody is at and try to do what's best for the team."
Gronkowski, who is bouncing back from Jan. 9 knee surgery, indicated Monday that he is ready to go, physically and mentally, in advance of Week 1, but Belichick isn't quite ready to publicly sign off on the notion of the tight end suiting up on Sunday. "With all due respect to Rob that he feels the way he does, but in the end we will have to make the decision that we feel is best for the team," Belichick indicated Tuesday. Meanwhile, the Boston Globe suggests that there's probably a degree of gamesmanship in play here, given the Patriots' typical reluctance to shed detailed injury information about their players. In any case, we will monitor Gronkowski's practice participation in the coming days. Assuming no setbacks, an official questionable designation seems a likely outcome on Friday. Fortunately for those inclined to roll with Gronkowski in Week 1, the Patriots kick off at 1:00 ET on Sunday.
Kelvin Hayden DB CHI 8 Hrs
Hayden agreed to a contract with the Bears on Tuesday, Aaron Wilson of The Baltimore Sun reports.
Hayden was cut by the Bears last week, but it appears the team was not ready to let him go just yet. Hayden will act as a reserve cornerback for the Bears just as he has the past few seasons.
Marquess Wilson WR CHI 8 Hrs
The Bears placed Wilson on injured reserve-designated to return, Aaron Wilson of The Baltimore Sun reports.
Wilson will need a few more weeks to recover from surgery to repair a broken collarbone, so the Bears decided to place him on injured reserve to open up a roster spot for cornerback Kelvin Hayden. Assuming Wilson's recovery continues going as planned, he will likely return to the Bears at some point later this season.
Kyle Van Noy LB DET 8 Hrs
Van Noy (abdomen) was placed on IR/designated to return Tuesday, Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press reports.
Because Van Noy is missing at least a month following surgery to fix a muscle problem in his abdomen, the move is a logical one. He'll remain out for the next eight weeks, though he could be cleared for practice after six.
Kiko Alonso LB BUF 8 Hrs
Alonso says his recovery from left knee surgery is going quite well and, while it's only an extreme remote possibility, he hasn't ruled out a return this season, BuffaloBills.com reports. Said the linebacker, "I don't think I've ruled it out. I'm just focused on getting back 100 percent."
The Bills will probably be happy if their best linebacker is able to return at close to 100 percent anytime next summer, but it's at least worth noting Alonso hasn't been placed on injured reserve yet. In other words, give a 2014 return a 2-3 percent chance of happening - at best - but we've learned never to rule out a motivated athlete.
Antonio Allen DB NYJ 9 Hrs
Allen (concussion) has been medically cleared and will start at cornerback in Sunday's regular season opener versus the Raiders, ESPN New York reports.
Allen, a converted safety, suffered a concussion during the Jets' third preseason outing, but returned to practice without a red no-contact jersey on Tuesday. Given New York's injury depleted crop of cornerbacks, Allen is slated to start in Week 1 against Oakland's rookie quarterback Derek Carr.
Brian Waters DAL 10 Hrs
Waters announced his retirement from the NFL on Tuesday, The Dallas Morning News reports.
Waters entered the league in 1999 as an undrafted rookie out of North Texas before eventually signing with the Cowboys. While the college tight end failed to make the Cowboys' regular season roster that year, he later resurfaced with the Chiefs ahead of the 2000 season and blossomed into an elite offensive guard. In fact, from 2000-2010, Waters was named to five Pro Bowls and two All-Pro teams as a Chiefs player. The accomplished lineman then earned another Pro Bowl selection with the Patriots in 2011, before finishing his career with the Cowboys last season. The NFL's Walter Payton Man of the Year Award winner in 2009, Waters retires with quite the resume during his 15-year career.
Michael Wilhoite LB SF 10 Hrs
Wilhoite appears to have won the battle for the starting middle linebacker position heading into week 1, CSN Bay Area reports.
This shouldn't come as too much of a surprise as coach Harbaugh had been leaning towards the veteran over rookie Chris Borland. Wilhoite averaged 10 tackles in the two games he started last year, so he could be a cheap source of stops in IDP leagues.
LeGarrette Blount RB PIT 11 Hrs2 Comments
Coach Mike Tomlin confirmed that both Blount and Le'Veon Bell will suit up Sunday against the Browns, NFL.com reports.
Meanwhile, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review indicates that Tomlin does not plan to discuss any possible internal punishment for the running backs, stemming from the duo's recent arrest on marijuana possession charges, with the report suggesting that no punishment via the NFL is likely to arrive any time soon. In any case, neither player is a candidate to sit out Sunday's game, which puts Bell on track to head the Steelers' backfield out of the gate, with Blount a candidate to spell him, and potentially factor in on short-yardage situations.