T.O. doesn't participate in Cowboys' first practice

Dallas Cowboys: Terrell Owens didn't take part in the Cowboys' first practice session Wednesday, a day after getting a
break to rest his sore hamstring.

Owens wore shorts and spent part of practice working out with trainers, at one point doing high leg kicks alongside Flozell Adams, the 6-foot-7, 340-pound offensive tackle who got a break from practice while recovering from arthroscopic knee surgery this
summer. Owens stood with other offensive players during team drills.

After the morning practice, Owens signed autographs but didn't respond to reporters' questions. Coach Wade Phillips said Owens was sore -- not injured.

"He doesn't have a hamstring problem," Phillips said.

It wasn't clear if Owens would participate in the scheduled afternoon practice Wednesday. Owens was on the field Tuesday in uniform, without shoulder pads or a helmet. He didn't participate in drills after coach Phillips told the 33-year-old wide receiver to take it easy.

The Cowboys were without their top two receivers in practice Wednesday. Terry Glenn was back in Dallas for arthroscopic surgery on his right knee that will keep him out for about two weeks.

Elsewhere in NFC camps:

Washington Redskins: So much for the Redskins team that was supposed to be healthy. Five key starters -- Clinton Portis, Chris Samuels, Marcus Washington, Santana Moss and Randy Thomas -- are either sidelined or are having their practice time curtailed less than one week into training camp.

Running back Portis was out for the second straight day Wednesday, reduced to riding a stationary bicycle because of swelling and soreness because of tendinitis in his right knee, the same ailment that hampered him during offseason workouts.

"As much as he thought he was ready to go, it's two-a-days," trainer Bubba Tyer said. "We're going to try to modify his workout some and concentrate a little bit more on his strength work and his conditioning work without the trauma of practicing, cutting and turning. He feels a little discomfort when he cuts and turns."

Tyer said Portis will return in a matter of "days, not weeks" but will not participate in Saturday's scrimmage against the Baltimore Ravens.

Right guard Thomas was supposed to have recovered from last month's knee surgery by now, but he's only just starting to take part in some drills, doing a little more each day. Receiver Moss' work is being limited because of a sore leg, perhaps from overcompensating for the sprained groin he had this spring. Strongside linebacker Washington has been rested for several practices after feeling a twinge in his surgically repaired hip. Left tackle Samuels, who sprained a knee ligament Monday, is expected to miss four weeks at most, which would put him on pace to return for the season opener Sept. 9.

Also sidelined Wednesday morning were tight end Pete Schmitt (bruised shoulder), receiver Mike Espy (bruised knee), linebacker Dallas Sartz (strained hamstring), tight end Tyler Ecker (sore groin) and receiver Carl Berman (hamstring).

Seattle Seahawks: Backup fullback David Kirtman broke his hand during practice Wednesday morning, the third injury of Seattle's four-day-old training camp.

Kirtman, a fifth-round draft choice from 2006 out of Southern California, was participating in a running plays drill with backs and linemen when he suddenly walked off the field with a trainer while holding his right arm. By the afternoon, Kirtman was wearing a soft brace over his right hand and wrist.

A Seahawks spokesman said Wednesday night that the team has yet to determine a treatment course for Kirtman, so there is no estimate on how long he will be out.

Kirtman spent most of last season on the practice squad before being added to the active roster in December. He did not appear in a game. But he stands to get more opportunities this season. Mack Strong, Seattle's two-time Pro Bowl fullback who turns 36 in September, said Wednesday that coaches have told him he will be yielding some of his playing time to younger players this season.

Minnesota Vikings: After missing the first nine practices of training camp to rest his strained hamstring, Bryant McKinnie was taken off the non-football injury list Wednesday morning and sent to rejoin Minnesota's first-team offense.

Artis Hicks returned to right guard, where he was initially expecting
to fight Anthony Herrera for the starting spot Hicks held last season. McKinnie's injury, however, forced Hicks to move over.

Perhaps this will delay the line's cohesion until later in August, but it did allow the Vikings to get some early contingency work in. Most games, they'll only activate seven linemen, so the flexibility is important. Ryan Cook, who is leading Marcus Johnson in the competition at right tackle, is also Matt Birk's first backup at center.

Left guard Steve Hutchinson and Birk have been to nine Pro Bowls between them, and McKinnie is a former seventh overall draft pick who has been inconsistent at times but still has the potential to be a star. The right side was certainly the weaker side last year, but coach Brad Childress has praised the improvement of Cook and has always been confident in Hicks.

This is the group that must guide the Vikings to better offensive production, if it's going to happen. The addition of rookie Adrian Peterson to a backfield featuring 1,200-yard rusher Chester Taylor should make the ground game much stronger, but the passing attack is still a major question.

Their experience and their expense -- Hutchinson and McKinnie have contracts that could fetch them nearly $50 million each if they play the entire length of the deal -- make these linemen the bearers of much responsibility.

New Orleans Saints: The Saints waived defensive end Jon Hamm on Wednesday. Hamm had hardly practiced since training camp began because of a strained quad muscle. He ultimately became the first player sent packing from the Millsaps College campus.

Two other reserve defensive ends on the training camp roster are expected to be out of action as well. Rob Ninkovich is out for a month with a sprained left knee, while Anton Palepoi has not practiced since Sunday, when he twisted an ankle.

That meant there were only four defensive ends on the roster Wednesday who were healthy enough to play. Two were starters Charles Grant and Will Smith, while the others were Willie Evans out of Mississippi State and Josh Cooper out of Ole Miss. Those two could be in for a lot of work on Sunday night.

Another possibility is that the Saints would sign Scott Scharff, who has been on and off the Saints roster before and who showed up at Millsaps on Wednesday.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Two injury-filled seasons removed from an outstanding rookie year, receiver Michael Clayton is healthy again and eager to hold off the competition for his starting job.

"Obviously, in this league you have to compete, you have to produce," said Clayton, who's being challenged for playing time by a group of hungry receivers that includes second-year pro Maurice Stovall and former Pro Bowl receiver David Boston.

"I'm trying to stay healthy by doing things with my body to put myself in the best position to play for 16 games. It's something I haven't done the past two seasons. That's the best way I'm going to be able to help this team -- by staying healthy," he said.