"We kept Mark out as a precautionary measure," coach Joe Gibbs
said. "He looked good this morning. We don't anticipate any
Brunell felt the strain while dropping back to pass near the end
of Thursday's practice. He said the injury might have concerned him
had it happened on Saturday, but he said he expects to be fine in
time to face the 49ers.
Brunell did take a few snaps Friday, but backup Patrick Ramsey
got the majority of the work.
"I dropped back a little bit and I was able to plant and throw,
so that's good," Brunell said. "I feel better."
Several players who missed practice Wednesday and Thursday were
back on the field. Running back Clinton Portis, who has a sore
calf, practiced and is expected to play. Center Casey Rabach
(ankle) and cornerback Carlos Rogers (ankle) also returned and are
listed as probable.
Gibbs also indicated that rookie Nick Novak would be the kicker
for at least another week, even though John Hall's practice load
increased substantially this week after missing four games with a
Dallas Cowboys: Halfback Julius Jones could only do rehab work on his high ankle sprain Friday, so he is expected to be scratched for a second consecutive week. The team still lists him as questionable, but Bill Parcells hasn't played a back who doesn't take a snap in practice. Jones hasn't taken a snap in two weeks.
-- John Clayton, ESPN.com senior writer
Pittsburgh Steelers: Receiver Hines Ward was
upgraded to probable for Sunday's AFC North game at
Cincinnati after missing a game for the first time in his NFL
career with a hamstring injury last weekend.
Ward was listed as questionable when the practice week began,
but took part in drills Thursday and Friday after missing practice
last week. He sat out a 23-17 overtime loss Sunday to
the first time he has missed a game since being drafted in 1998.
Cornerback Deshea Townsend, upgraded to questionable on
Thursday, was downgraded to doubtful and is unlikely to play in the
first of the Steelers' two games against the Bengals this season.
After injuring a hamstring Sunday, Townsend was replaced by rookie
Bryant McFadden and 13-year veteran Willie Williams.
"I took reps every day with no setbacks," Bailey said. "I'm
ready to go."
Bailey missed two games with a strained left hamstring. He
returned last Sunday against New England, but played only a portion
of the game.
"I feel good and I didn't hold back on anything," he said. "I
ran around and covered the best I could."
Bailey is listed as probable for Sunday's game.
Teammate Nick Ferguson showed no ill effects of a sprained right
ankle injured on a special teams play last week.
"I'm playing," he said. "I hurt it making a tackle. My leg was
trapped underneath, the pile fell on me and my ankle gave way."
Edwards has missed two games since undergoing surgery on Oct. 8
to clean out an infection in his right arm. He was hospitalized for
four days, and returned to practice this week with his arm wrapped
in a sleeve.
Cleveland coach Romeo Crennel said Edwards would be a game-time
"The [doctors] are pleased with the way the wound looks,"
Crennel said of the long incision in Edwards' arm. "Their major
concern is the wound itself and will he be able to make it through
the game without breaking that thing open again. Some of the
concern is what kind of padding and what kind of procedure they
need to do to try to keep those stitches together if he plays in
"If the doctors say he can play, we'll probably play him
Edwards, the No. 3 overall pick in April's NFL draft, has nine
catches for 166 yards and one touchdown.
"Hes going to go get it looked at now, so well see where its
at," coach Herman Edwards said.
Also, cornerback Ty Law was downgraded to questionable because
his back tightened up on him. He was limited in practice. Running
back Curtis Martin also missed practice with a sore knee but is
listed as probable.
Green Bay Packers: Ahman Green hasn't gotten the green light
just yet, but indications are Green Bay's featured running back
will return to the starting lineup Sunday for a pivotal early
season game at Minnesota.
Green practiced all week after nursing knee and thigh injuries
for two weeks. Head coach Mike Sherman said Friday the team will
make a final decision Saturday on Green, who's listed as
questionable on the injury report.
"He was limited in some capacity," Sherman said of Green's
practice workload this week. "But, what he did do, he looked good
at. [We're] hopeful that he'll be able to play on Sunday and give
us what we need."
The Packers are itching to get their once-dominant running
attack on track.
They rank 28th in the league with an average of only 77.8
rushing yards per game and are 29th with a per-carry average of 3.3
Buffalo Bills: Cheeseburgers and a walking tour are
back on the Bills' travel itinerary.
Coach Mike Mularkey announced this week he's reintroducing the
regimen for when the Bills travel to San Francisco on Saturday for
their game at Oakland the following day.
"I think it's a team-builder," Mularkey said.
The walk, especially, helps offset the affects of the
cross-country plane trip, Mularkey added. "I think it's good to
get the blood flowing."
The cheeseburgers, meanwhile, are something Mularkey got from
Eagles coach Andy Reid, who has traditionally treated his players
to the same meal on their travels to the west coast.
It worked last year for the Bills, who ended a six-game losing
streak on the road dating to 2003 by winning their final four away
games. The turnaround began with a 38-9 win at Seattle, which
coincided with the introduction of the additional meal and walk.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.