One player’s status was clarified Tuesday as the regular-season opener countdown reached single digits.
But another player could be on the move before Week 1 gets underway if negotiations go smoothly over the next week.
Three things that matter
Ezekiel Elliott training with Marshall Faulk during holdout
The Cowboys star is staying in shape by working out with the Hall of Fame running back in Mexico, and while Faulk acknowledged Elliott is in prime shape, he admitted training isn’t the same as seeing in-game action.
“His fitness is great, but playing in games is different,” Faulk told ESPN . “My job is to close that gap with putting him in active game situations. The only thing we can’t simulate is the contact.”
It remains unclear if Elliott will extend his holdout into the regular season even though the Cowboys reportedly offered to make him the league’s second-highest paid rusher, which would net him an average salary between $13.125 and $14.375 million.
Jadeveon Clowney making jump to Dolphins?
Miami is rumored to be interested in trading for the Texans linebacker, who reportedly already met with Dolphins coach Brian Flores and other members of the organization. But Clowney, who has yet to sign his one-year tender worth $15.967 million and recently parted with longtime agent Bus Cook, reportedly prefers the Seahawks or Eagles as his potential destination.
Still, the Miami Herald further noted the Dolphins and Texans had “re-engaged” to explore a possible trade and that the Dolphins “consider themselves the leader in the sweepstakes to land the pass rusher.”
Cam Newton will start Week 1
The Panthers quarterback has been dealing with a foot injury, but coach Ron Rivera is confident Newton will be ready to play in Week 1 when the team hosts the Rams on Sept. 8.
“There is no doubt in my mind,” Rivera told reporters .
Newton was seen leaving last Thursday’s preseason loss to the Patriots in a walking boot after going down with a sprain in his left foot during the game, but he ditched it by the weekend and was working freely on the sideline with trainers during practice this week.
On the other hand, Rivera is feeling “uneasy” about the leg injury kicker Graham Gano is dealing with.
Two things that don’t matter
49ers release Malcolm Smith
The veteran linebacker and Super Bowl 48 MVP was released by San Francisco after just two seasons. Smith, who missed the entire 2017 season with a torn pectoral and four games with other injuries last season, had 35 tackles and one pass breakup in 12 games over that time. The 30-year-old is expected to garner plenty of interest from other teams before the start of the season.
DeSean Jackson suffers broken finger
The Eagles receiver reportedly broke his left ring finger during practice Tuesday and declined to speak to reporters after the workout, noting that he was in pain. But the injury isn’t expected to sideline him for the team’s Sept. 8 opener against the Redskins and the team has no concerns regarding his availability.
One video you have to see
Former Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski got emotional speaking about the physical and mental pain that led to his retirement decision while at a summit advocating for players to be permitted to use CBD for pain.
“I want to be clear to my fans … I was not in a good place. Football was bringing me down.”
–Rob Gronkowski on his decision to retire pic.twitter.com/zEek2QNPjH
— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) August 27, 2019
Tuesday’s tweet of the day
Antonio Brown angrily clapped back at Ben Roethlisberger after the Steelers quarterback said he wished he wouldn’t have called out the receiver last season, saying the two were “never friends just had to get my ends” and to “shut up already.”
Never friends just had to get my ends…….shut up already https://t.co/9130NN25HO
— AB (@AB84) August 27, 2019