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LB Lance Briggs to visit with 49ers on Monday


(3/28/2015) Free-agent linebacker Lance Briggs said he will meet with the 49ers on Monday, reports ESPN.com.

Briggs, a seven-time Pro Bowler, has played all 12 of his NFL seasons with the Bears.

Briggs appeared in just 17 games during the last two seasons due to various injuries.

The 49ers are looking to replace linebacker Chris Borland, who recently announced his retirement.

Bears sign CB Alan Ball to one-year deal


by Igor Mello | CBSSports.com
(3/27/2015) The Bears have signed cornerback Alan Ball to a one-year contract on Friday, per the team's official website.

Ball, 29, spent the last two seasons with the Jaguars, but was limited to only seven games in 2014 due to a biceps injury. He racked up 59 total tackles, 17 passes deflected and three interceptions over that span. He has played eight NFL seasons with the Cowboys, Texans and Jags.


Giants' Coughlin: WR Victor Cruz looks 'really good'


by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(3/26/2015) Giants head coach Tom Coughlin is encouraged that wide receiver Victor Cruz can return to form, according to the NY Daily News. Cruz suffered a torn patellar tendon that forced him to miss 10 games last season.

“I think he will be back to the player that he was and hopefully better. Victor looks really good, he’s starting to run, I was in the field house watching him rehab, he’s coming along well.” … As for when Cruz will be back at practice, full-time, Coughlin added, “I don’t know. I shouldn’t say this, because medically I really do not have a definite answer, but by training camp, hopefully. He will work his way through.”

Through his five years in the NFL, Cruz has 264 receptions for 3,963 yards and 24 touchdowns.


Patriots LB Dont'a Hightower to miss at least six months


by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(3/26/2015) Patriots linebacker Dont'a Hightower is going to miss between six and seven months, according to the Boston Globe.

Hightower had surgery this February to repair a torn right labrum. The team is concerned that he might not be able to be ready for the start of the reguar season. He played through the injury for a good portion of the 2014 season prior to surgery.

The 25-year-old started all 12 games he played, collecting 89 total tackles, six sacks, two passes defensed and one forced fumble.


LB Brandon Magee still committed to playing in NFL


by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(3/26/2015) After being released by the Buccaneers, linebacker Brandon Magee is going to participate in spring training with the Boston Red Sox. That being said, he is still committed to playing in the NFL, according to Pro Football Talk. 

Magee's agent, Blake Baratz, emailed Pro Football Talk regarding his client's desire to resume his NFL career.

“There have been rumors circulating that Brandon Magee, who was recently released by Tampa Bay, has given up football with the intention of playing professional baseball. This could not be further from the truth,” Baratz wrote. “While he does attend spring training for a few weeks up until the beginning of the NFL off-season program, he is 100% fully committed to playing in the NFL.”

Magee, 24, has seen action in 17 games the last two seasons, nine of which were in 2014 with the Buccaneers. He has registered 10 total tackles in his career.


Report: DeAngelo Hall could move to free safety


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(3/26/2015) The Redskins are looking for a starter at free safety and could move veteran corner DeAngelo Hall into that role, reports the Washington Post. Hall, 31, is coming back from two surgeries to fix the ruptured Achilles' tendon he suffered last year.

Coach Jay Gruden mentioned to the paper that many free safeties are converted cornerbacks, including Oakland's Charles Woodson. Hall has said previously he'd be open to such a move, but he and the team have not discussed it yet, per the paper.


Chip Kelly says Sam Bradford worth the injury risk


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(3/26/2015) Quarterback Sam Bradford has played seven games over the past two seasons while getting his left ACL repaired twice. Eagles coach Chip Kelly, who traded for Bradford, said he is not overly concerned about the injury risk.

"Look at our starting receiver last year [Jeremy Maclin], who had 85 catches," Kelly said at the NFL owners meetings, per the Philadelphia Inquirer. "Look at the year he had coming off of two ACLs.

"Look at our center. Jason Kelce had an ACL right before I got there and had a sports hernia in the middle of last season, and still made the Pro Bowl. Our left tackle [Jason Peters], who is arguably a Hall of Famer, has had two Achilles' [injuries] and is playing at an outstanding level.

"I would say it's easier for a quarterback with a knee injury [to come back] than a shoulder injury, as we went through the history of it. We didn't bring Sam in to run the ball 75 times a game. I think it's a lot easier for a quarterback with an ACL than it is for a receiver with an ACL. The history in terms of sports science right now and what doctors are doing is unbelievable."


Stephen Tulloch to be starting MLB when he returns


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(3/26/2015) The Lions' Stephen Tulloch will start at middle linebacker again once he returns from the torn ACL he suffered Week 3 last year, reports MLive.com. "He's highly experienced and highly productive," coach Jim Caldwell told the website. "And he's a great leader."

Tulloch, 30, is progressing well in his rehab, the report said, but it's unclear when he'll return. Tulloch had 135 tackles and 3.5 sacks in 2013, his last full season.

Tahir Whitehead likely will fill in until Tulloch returns. Whitehead had 86 tackles and two interceptions last year.


LB Kiko Alonso on track for OTAs


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(3/26/2015) Eagles linebacker Kiko Alonso, who's coming back from surgery to fix a torn ACL, is on track to be ready for organized team activities, coach Chip Kelly told the Philadelphia Inquirer. Alonso suffered the injury last offseason and did not play in 2014.

Philly acquired Alonso as part of the LeSean McCoy trade. In 2013, Alonso had 159 tackles, four interceptions and two sacks for the Bills.


Seahawks DE Cassius Marsh (foot) recovered and 100 percent


by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(3/26/2015) Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said defensive end Cassius Marsh is 100 percent after recovering from a broken foot sustained this past October. 

“He’s in great shape,” Carroll said, via ESPN.com. “That’s a tremendous addition. It’s like a brand new draft choice for us because he didn’t really get a chance to get started last year. Cassius is a really high-energy, creative and productive football player. We can’t wait to get him out there. He’s in great shape and looks terrific.”

Marsh only played in five games a season ago and recorded five tackles. 


Seahawks' Pete Carroll: Jeremy Lane's injury recovery a 'long process'


by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(3/26/2015) Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said cornerback Jeremy Lane will endure a lengthy rehab process following his injury in the Super Bowl. 

Lane suffered a compound wrist fracture and a knee-ligament tear in the game. 

“That’s a long process to get back,’’ Carroll said, via ESPN.com. “It’s about how he handles the final stages of it.”

There isn't a set timetable for Lane's recovery at this time. He finished the 2014 regular season with 13 tackles, one forced fumble and three pass deflections. 


No timetable on return for Giants WR Victor Cruz


by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(3/25/2015) Although Giants head coach Tom Coughlin is cautiously optimistic about the return of wide receiver Victor Cruz, he seems to be lowering his expectations, according to the New York Post.

“I think he’ll be the player that he was, and hopefully better,” Coughlin said during the NFC coaches’ breakfast at the Arizona Biltmore. “But as far as when, I would be careful. Hopefully, it’s the first [regular-season] game. But if it isn’t, we’ve done that before. We just went through it.”

Cruz suffered a nasty patellar tendon injury in 2014. Coughlin liked what he saw in last week's workout for the wideout, stating that he hopes to have Cruz available at the start of training camp. But they won't rush him back.

“You’re not just going to throw him to the wind,” Coughlin said. “He’ll work his way through.”

The 28-year-old was signed by the Giants as an undrafted free agent in 2010. Over his five-year career, he has tallied 264 receptions for 3,963 yards and 24 touchdowns.


Cardinals LB Sean Weatherspoon looks to rebound from injury


by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(3/25/2015) Linebacker Sean Weatherspoon was signed by the Cardinals in free agency this offseason. He has high hopes that he'll rebound after rupturing his achilles tendon in 2014 while with the Falcons, according to the team's official website.

“Once it happened, I figured I’d come back from this,” Weatherspoon said. “That’s what I told myself when I was sitting there down and out looking at everything that was happening. I was down, but I was ultimately thinking about the comeback.”

In addition to missing all of the 2014 season, the 27-year-old missed all but seven games in 2013. The linebacker is optimistic that the time off could benefit him on the field.

“Mike Peterson played linebacker in the league for a long time, and he was a guy who took me under his wing in my rookie year in the league,” Weatherspoon said. “He would come out and he would make some plays, and I’d be like, ‘Man, how you still do that after so much time off and not even being the starter anymore, but you’re still able to just go out there and make it happen?’ He said, ‘It’s just like riding a bike.’

“I just have to get back to practicing a little bit more and being on that steady routine, but I definitely think it saved my legs being off of them for the past two years. I’m just looking forward to going out there and trying to reestablish myself as being the player that I am.”

In four years with the Falcons, Weatherspoon recorded 290 total tackles, eight sacks, 15 passes defensed, two interceptions and one forced fumble.


Dolphins LB Koa Misi, DE Dion Jordan staying at positions


by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(3/25/2015) Dolphins Inside linebacker Koa Misi and defensive end Dion Jordan will remain at their respective positions for the time being, according to the Sun Sentinel.

Head coach Joe Philbin talked about Misi's ankle injury and how it affected his play last season. But the coach also likes what that have in Misi.

"We like the way he plays defensive football. We think he plays fast, physical and tough," Philbin said of Misi.

Jordan, the team's first overall draft choice in 2013, will stay at defensive end for now, as the team still believes he can get after the passer from the position.

"We want to get his training there [on the line] to improve so he can continually develop his pass rushing ability. If we play him at linebacker, move him there full time when is he going to practice rushing the passer?" Philbin reasoned. "That doesn't mean he'll never cover a tight end again. But that's kind of where we are right now."


Chiefs S Eric Berry doing well in treatment process


by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(3/25/2015) Chiefs safety Eric Berry is staying positive and doing well in his treatment to battle Hodgkin lymphoma, according to the Kansas City Star.

“He’s doing well in that treatment process, but that’s a tough process to go through,” said Clark Hunt, who visited Berry in Atlanta in January and gets regular updates on his status.

Head coach Andy Reid also reiterated that Berry is progressing well.

“He’s doing well,” said Reid, who said he last spoke to Berry a week before he arrived for the meetings. “(He’s) positive and upbeat.”

Berry, 26, has 289 total tackles, 5.5 sacks, eight interceptions and 31 passes defensed in five seasons with the Chiefs.


Rams WR Brian Quick 'starting to see the light'


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(3/25/2015) Rams wideout Brian Quick is coming along in his rehab from shoulder surgery and is "starting to see the light," coach Jeff Fisher told ESPN.com. Fisher, however, would not commit to Quick being ready for training camp.

Quick, 25, caught 25 passes for 375 yards and three touchdowns before getting hurt in the seventh game of the season.


Allen Robinson, Marqise Lee projected as starting outside WRs


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(3/25/2015) Allen Robinson and Marqise Lee are expected to be the Jaguars' starting outside receivers this season, per the team's website. Justin Blackmon remains suspended indefinitely, and Cecil Shorts left the team via free agency.

Under this scenario, Allen Hurns would be a backup or possibly play the slot.

"The Jaguars like Lee and Robinson on the outside," the website said. "That’s where they envision them."


Bills to pick up 5th-year option on CB Stephon Gilmore


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(3/25/2015) Bills general manager Doug Whaley confirmed the team will exercise the 2016 option on cornerback Stephon Gilmore, reports ESPN.com. Gilmore will earn just over $11 million in 2016, which will be his fifth year in the league.

Gilmore, 24, has six interceptions and 32 passes defensed over his first three seasons.


49ers GM 'very confident' about NaVorro Bowman's recovery


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(3/25/2015) 49ers linebacker NaVorro Bowman did not play last season after suffering a devastating knee injury in the NFC Championship Game following the 2013 season. “We’re very confident with where he’s at with his recovery," general manager Trent Baalke told CSN Bay Area.

Baalke expects Bowman and Michael Wilhoite to be the team's starting inside linebackers this season, with Nick Moody a key contributor.


Rams' Fisher confirms Browns tried to trade for Sam Bradford


by Michael Hurcomb | CBSSports.com
(3/25/2015) Rams coach Jeff Fisher confirmed Wednesday the Browns tried to trade for quarterback Sam Bradford in early March, and the compensation involved draft picks and not players, per Cleveland.com.

Fisher added the Browns did not offer the No. 12 pick in the NFL Draft, which indicates they offered the No. 19 pick. Other compensation was also discussed before the Rams traded Bradford to the Eagles for quarterback Nick Foles and an exchange of draft picks.

"There were discussions (with the Browns) late in the process,'' Fisher said. "There were never really any concrete offers per se. The misconception is that it started at the combine. It didn't. I stood up at the combine and said that Sam was our quarterback. This came well after that, several days before we initiated the trade with Nick, but there was a pick involved. There were numerous things that were discussed, different options. The compensation looked different over a period of a couple of days. I'm not going to go onto what it was, but it didn't involve  a player."

Fisher added acquiring the No. 12 pick in the draft probably wouldn't have sealed the deal.

"At that point, you still don't have a veteran quarterback," Fisher said. "Again, Nick for us was the perfect fit for us, and I have talked with (Eagles coach) Chip (Kelly) and he thinks Sam is the perfect fit, so this was a good deal. But for us, we get a younger quarterback that's won a lot of games in this league, can make all of the throws and is somewhat durable. I know he's had shoulder issues, but most everybody has.''


Bucs waive OLB Brandon Magee


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(3/25/2015) The Buccaneers waived outside linebacker Brandon Magee, who will pursue a baseball career in the Red Sox organization, reports the Tampa Bay Times. Magee, 24, played in nine games last year, making seven tackles.

Chiefs GM getting 'very positive' reports about Eric Berry


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(3/25/2015) Chiefs general manager John Dorsey told Sirius XM NFL Radio that safety Eric Berry's battle with Hodgkin's lymphoma is going well.

"Well, anybody who knows Eric Berry knows that if there's a challenge presented to him, he will attack it with a vengeance," Dorsey said, per NFL.com. "And he will do that. Everything that I have gotten back has been very positive. I have not spoken with him on the phone for probably six weeks, but I have texts. We communicated through texts. He's in good spirits, he's fine, he's driving, and he's going to conquer it."

Berry, 26, was diagnosed in December. His career is on hold while he fights the treatable disease.


Coughlin: Victor Cruz 'looks good, light, and just started running'


by Larry Hartstein | CBSSports.com
(3/25/2015) Giants coach Tom Coughlin said the goal for receiver Victor Cruz is to participate in training camp and be ready for the season opener, reports the New York Post. Cruz "looks good, light and just started running," Coughlin said.

Cruz is coming back from a torn patella tendon suffered last October.


Report: Bears sign LB Mason Foster


by Dave Peters | CBSSports.com
(3/24/2015) The Bears have signed linebacker Mason Foster on Tuesday, according to CSN Chicago.

Foster, 26, was said to be deciding between the Bears and the Chargers. During his four seasons with the Buccaneers, he posted 343 total tackles, six sacks, 12 passes defensed, three interceptions and two forced fumbles. Two of his three interceptions were returned for touchdowns.


Dolphins' Hickey doesn't rule out bringing back Knowshon Moreno


by Jason Butt | CBSSports.com
(3/24/2015) Running back Knowshon Moreno was unable to provide much of anything for the Dolphins a year ago thanks to an ACL tear in Week 6. 

While the Dolphins haven't been expected to re-sign Moreno, it's not out of the question. According to the Miami Herald, general manager Dennis Hickey said the Dolphins are still open to the possibility of bringing Moreno back to the team. 

Moreno signed a one-year, $3 million deal in 2014. He's now an unrestricted free agent. 

Moreno hasn't been working out at the Dolphins' team facility though Hickey said the organization has been keeping tabs on his rehab and recovery. If Moreno is still available on the free-agent market in the early summer, it's possible the Dolphins to bring him in if they're unable to select a quality runner in the draft. 


 
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