Sep 26, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett (95) reaches for Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields (1) during the third quarter at FirstEnergy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Galvin-USA TODAY Sports

Justin Fields practices in full, Andy Dalton limited for 2nd straight day

The Chicago Bears received the full participation of rookie quarterback Justin Fields at practice for the second straight day Thursday, easing concerns about his availability for Chicago’s next game against the Detroit Lions at home Sunday.

Nose tackle Eddie Goldman (knee) also worked out without restrictions.

Fields, the No. 11 overall draft pick in this spring’s draft, suffered a right thumb injury in his first career start against the Cleveland Browns last Sunday. The Bears lost 26-6 as Fields completed just 6 of 20 passes for 68 yards.

Several teammates have been impressed by his response to that outing.

“When you go through a day like we went through on Sunday, that’s tough on everybody, especially the quarterback and especially for your first start,” tight end Cole Kmet told the team site. “It’s been cool to see his attitude towards it and him wanting to get back to work this week. I’m still excited for him. He’s an unbelievable player and I think that’s going to show.”

The position, however, remains a mystery. The Bears’ previous starting quarterback, Andy Dalton, was limited Thursday with an injured knee, and Bears head coach Matt Nagy has expressed a preference for starting Dalton.

“Andy’s the 1, Justin’s the 2 and Nick is the 3,” Nagy said earlier this week. “The starter will be sorted out once we have a clearer picture.”

Dalton was joined by wide receiver Darnell Mooney (groin) on the limited list, while linebacker Khalil Mack (foot), cornerback Xavier Crawford (back), safety Tashaun Gipson (hamstring), linebacker Joel Iyiegbuniwe (hamstring) and tight end Jesse James (personal) were held out.

–Field Level Media

Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg perform on the Coachella Stage during the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival at the Empire Polo Fields in April 2012 in Indio. The rappers surprised the crowd when they performed with a hologram of Tupac Shakur, who died in 1996.

Coachella 2012 2

Super Bowl halftime: Dr. Dre, Snoop, Eminem, Mary J. Blige, Kendrick Lamar

The first Super Bowl to be played in the Los Angeles area in 30 years will feature a cast of hip-hop and R&B icons performing at halftime.

The NFL announced Thursday that Dr. Dre, Snoop, Eminem, Mary J. Blige and Kendrick Lamar will perform in the Super Bowl LVI Halftime Show on Feb. 13 at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, Calif.

Dr. Dre and Kendrick Lamar hail from the Los Angeles-area city of Compton, and Snoop Dogg is from nearby Long Beach.

“The opportunity to perform at the Super Bowl Halftime show, and to do it in my own backyard, will be one of the biggest thrills of my career,” Dr. Dre said in a statement. “I’m grateful to JAY-Z, Roc Nation, the NFL, and Pepsi as well as Snoop Dogg, Eminem, Mary J. Blige and Kendrick Lamar for joining me in what will be an unforgettable cultural moment.”

Five artists will collaborate for the halftime show one year after The Weeknd was the solo act.

–Field Level Media

Sep 12, 2021; Houston, Texas, USA; Houston Texans kicker Joey Slye (16) attempts a field goal during the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Texans cut K Joey Slye ahead of Ka’imi Fairbairn return

The Houston Texans cut kicker Joey Slye on Thursday, just one week after signing him from their practice squad.

The move comes ahead of the expected return of Ka’imi Fairbairn from injured reserve. Fairbairn had pulled a groin muscle while warming up for the final preseason game vs. Tampa Bay in August. The 27-year-old returned to practice this week after sitting out the minimum three games.

“I don’t think you’re going to put a player out there that can’t perform to the best of his abilities on any phases or role being asked,” said special teams coordinator Frank Ross regarding Fairbairn, according to the Houston Chronicle. “If he’s going to go out there and be our kicker on Sunday, he’s going to be ready to kick whatever his range is. If he can kick from 75 out, we’ll kick from 75 out.”

According to the report, Ross said Fairbairn “cut it loose” in Wednesday’s practice, swinging his leg at full strength, and was not sore afterward.

The 25-year-old Slye was elevated from Houston’s practice squad prior their first two games to handle kicking duties and was officially signed to the 53-man roster ahead of last Thursday’s 24-9 loss to the Carolina Panthers.

Slye made four of five field goals and converted seven of extra points in three games. He was released by the Panthers late last month after two seasons.

The Texans (1-2) visit Buffalo (2-1) on Sunday.

–Field Level Media

Carson Wentz hands off to running back Jonathan Taylor during second half action on Sunday, Sept. 26, 2021, at Nissan Stadium in Nashville.Indianapolis Colts And Tennessee Titans At Nissan Stadium In Nashville Tenn Sunday Sept 16 2021 In Nfl Week 3

Seven starters miss practice for Colts, with Carson Wentz limited

Seven of the Indianapolis Colts’ 22 starters did not practice Thursday, three days out from their road contest at the Miami Dolphins.

Quarterback Carson Wentz, however, was able to practice on a limited basis for the second straight day as he deals with two sprained ankles.

Tight end Jack Doyle (back), All-Pro left guard Quenton Nelson (ankle/knee) and right tackle Braden Smith (foot/thumb) missed practice for the second straight day on offense. Three more on defense have now missed two in a row: rookie defensive end Kwity Paye (hamstring), safety Khari Willis (ankle/groin) and cornerback Rock Ya-Sin (ankle).

Right guard Mark Glowinski (knee) went from limited participation in Wednesday’s practice to being held out of Thursday’s, meaning there’s danger that Indianapolis could be down three of its starting offensive linemen come Sunday.

It wasn’t all dire news for the Colts. Left tackle Eric Fisher was back to full participation after a rest day Wednesday, and Pro Bowl linebacker Darius Leonard (ankle) returned to practice on a limited basis. Running back Jonathan Taylor (knee) remained limited for the second straight day.

–Field Level Media

Sep 12, 2021; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker T.J. Watt (90) following the game against the Buffalo Bills at Highmark Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Steelers LB T.J. Watt (groin) returns to practice

Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker T.J. Watt was a full participant in practice Thursday and could be in line to play Sunday’s road game against the Green Bay Packers after missing last week’s game against the Cincinnati Bengals.

Watt, 26, sustained a groin injury during the first half of a 26-17 Week 2 home loss to the Las Vegas Raiders. He played just 16 snaps against the Raiders.

The three-time Pro Bowl selection has three sacks, six quarterback hits, seven tackles and two forced fumbles so far this season.

Sunday’s game will mark something of a return home for Watt, who is a native of the Milwaukee area. He was a first-round draft pick by the Steelers (No. 30 overall) in 2017 out of Wisconsin.

–Field Level Media

Sep 12, 2021; Nashville, Tennessee, USA; Tennessee Titans wide receiver Julio Jones (2) and Tennessee Titans wide receiver A.J. Brown (11) before the game against the Arizona Cardinals at Nissan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports

Titans WRs Julio Jones, A.J. Brown miss another practice

Wide receivers A.J. Brown and Julio Jones missed a second straight practice Thursday, putting their availability in jeopardy for Sunday’s game against the New York Jets.

Titans offensive tackle Taylor Lewan returned to practice Thursday.

Both Jones and Brown were injured and left last week’s win over the Indianapolis Colts. Brown sustained a hamstring injury in the first quarter and is considered week-to-week, ESPN reported.

It’s unclear when Jones was injured, but he was limited to about half the snaps against the Colts. He is questionable for Sunday.

Brown didn’t catch a pass before exiting after the first quarter. He has just seven receptions for 92 yards and one touchdown this season. Last season, Brown caught 70 passes for 1,075 yards and 11 touchdowns in 14 games (12 starts) and made the Pro Bowl.

Jones, who joined the Titans in an offseason trade in June, has 12 catches for 204 yards this season.

A seven-time Pro Bowl selection through his first 10 seasons, all with Atlanta, Jones has 860 career receptions for 13,100 yards and 60 touchdowns.

In addition to the duo, DE Bud Dupree, CB Caleb Farley, DL Larrell Murchison and punter Brett Kern all missed Thursday’s practice.

The Titans (2-1) will be vying for their third straight victory when they meet the Jets (0-3) on Sunday.

–Field Level Media

Sep 13, 2021; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Las Vegas Raiders running back Josh Jacobs (28) runs the ball against the Baltimore Ravens during the second half at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Raiders RB Josh Jacobs returns to practice

Las Vegas Raiders Pro Bowl running back Josh Jacobs returned to practice Thursday after missing the past two games with an ankle injury.

Also, Raiders RB Jalen Richard has been designated to return from injured reserve. He suffered a foot injury during training camp and missed the first three games. The Raiders have three weeks to activate him.

Jacobs was injured in the Raiders’ season-opening win over the Baltimore Ravens. He rushed for just 34 yards on 10 carries.

Jacobs rushed for 1,065 yards and 12 touchdowns and had 33 catches for 238 yards in 15 games last season. The 23-year-old has rushed for 2,249 yards with 21 touchdowns and added 54 receptions for 410 yards in 29 career games since being selected by the Raiders with the 24th overall pick of the 2019 NFL Draft.

Richard, 27, has rushed for 1,293 yards in 77 career games (two starts), all for the Raiders. He has four career rushing TDs and three scoring receptions.

–Field Level Media

Sep 16, 2021; Landover, Maryland, USA; Washington Football Team running back Antonio Gibson (24) carries the ball against the New York Giants at FedExField. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Washington RB Antonio Gibson (shin) misses practice

Washington running back Antonio Gibson missed practice Thursday with a shin injury.

Gibson, 23, didn’t show up on the team’s injury report Wednesday.

Gibson is top 10 in rushing among running backs, with 190 yards through three games. He has averaged 4.2 yards per carry and also has 95 yards receiving with a touchdown.

Gibson was the team’s leading rusher in 2020 as a rookie with 795 yards.

Washington (1-2) travels to Atlanta to play the Falcons (1-2) on Sunday.

–Field Level Media

Sep 26, 2021; Inglewood, California, USA;   Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) takes a snap in the first half of the game against the Los Angeles Rams at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Tom Brady on Patriots: ‘I want to kick their butt’

As he prepares for his return to New England as a member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers for the first time, Tom Brady reflected on his career Thursday. But he isn’t letting nostalgia dampen his competitiveness.

“I still have a lot of great friends there, but they know I want to kick their butt this week,” Brady said at his weekly news conference in advance of Sunday night’s highly anticipated game between the Bucs and Patriots in Foxboro, Mass. “They’ll know exactly how I’m feeling once I’m out there.”

His comments came on the 20th anniversary of his first start for New England, a 44-13 trouncing of Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts. Brady, then 24 and starting for an injured Drew Bledsoe, was 13-of-23 passing for 168 yards that day.

Brady and coach Bill Belichick went on to make history together, winning six Super Bowl titles and creating a dynasty. Brady said Thursday that when he decided to leave in free agency, he and Belichick didn’t discuss it, and he didn’t get into details.

“All those things are super personal,” Brady said. “We had a great relationship. I think everything was handled the right way. We handled everything as gracefully as we could. It was an amazing time. It was handled perfectly. I think everyone understood where we were at, the people involved in the situation. Things worked out for the best for all of us and we’re all trying to do the best we can do now.”

Brady went on to guide the Bucs to the Super Bowl championship after his first season in a Bucs uniform. The Patriots didn’t make the playoffs.

“The last 18 months have been very fulfilling in a lot of different ways,” Brady said. “I love my football experience here.”

He thanked general manager Jason Licht and coach Bruce Arians for opening their arms to him at his time of transition.

“You go through these experiences, and you don’t know where life is going to lead. I think the only thing I know how to do is give it all I can, every day, moment. The people who really bet on me, I want to do really well for them,” he said. “Jason and Bruce, them coming into my life and saying ‘Hey, we really want you to be here’ has been an amazing thing for me.”

The Bucs enter the game with a 2-1 record; the Patriots are 1-2 behind rookie QB Mac Jones. Brady has connected on 97 of his 141 pass attempts for 1,087 yards and an NFL-leading 10 touchdowns.

–Field Level Media