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NFL roundup: Patriots may keep Gronkowski active

The SportsXchange

Injured tight end Rob Gronkowski won't be able to play for at least the first week of the regular season, but the New England Patriots are considering keeping him on the 53-man roster during final roster cuts Saturday.

The Patriots got started Friday by making 10 cuts.

Gronkowski had offseason back and forearm surgery and was hoping to make it in time for the first game of the season. That is not likely to happen, and the earliest he's likely to play is Week 3.

Retaining Gronkowski rather than putting him on the physically unable to perform list burns a roster spot that could signal the end of third-string quarterback Tim Tebow's tenure with the Patriots. Tebow tossed two touchdowns Thursday in New England's preseason finale.

---Quarterback Mark Sanchez has a deep right shoulder bruise and is unlikely to be available or the New York Jets' regular-season opener Sept. 8.

Rookie Geno Smith, a second-round pick, would likely start against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers if Sanchez cannot play.

---New York Giants running back Andre Brown will be out four to six weeks after fracturing his left leg in the preseason finale against the New England Patriots on Thursday night, according to ESPNNewYork.com.

--- Dr. James Andrews has cleared Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III to play in the opener, but he expressed concerns about how the team will use Griffin, a source told ESPN's Trey Wingo.

According to the ESPN report, Andrews does not want the Redskins to expose Griffin's knee to excessive punishment during games. It's not clear which plays or type of plays concerned Andrews.

In a text to ESPN 980's Chris Russell, Andrews didn't criticize the Redskins.

"He is in their hands," he said, referring to the Redskins. "They will take good care of him."

Denver coach Mike Shanahan said he will announce on Monday whether Griffin will start the opener.

---The Houston Texans will activate safety Ed Reed from the physically unable to perform list on Saturday, ESPN.com reported.

Reed has been on the PUP list throughout training camp and the preseason while he recovers from surgery to repair a partly torn labrum on April 30. It's unclear whether Reed will be ready to play in the Texans' regular-season opener against San Diego on Sept. 9.

---The Arizona Cardinals placed No. 7 overall draft pick Jonathan Cooper on injured reserve, ending his season after he broke a leg during a preseason game.

---Quarterback Matt Leinart wrote on Twitter that he was released by the Buffalo Bills before the team could even issue an official release. Leinart was signed Sunday.

The Bills also announced they have signed center Eric Wood to a contract extension.

---Linebacker Brian Banks didn't survive final roster cuts and was released by the Atlanta Falcons.

The 28-year-old, exonerated after five years in prison, made Atlanta's 90-man training camp roster following a successful tryout with the team.

The Falcons are trying to find employment for Banks within the organization.

---San Francisco 49ers reserve running back LaMichael James sprained the medial collateral ligament in his left knee in Thursday's preseason game.

The severity of the injury was not immediately known, but the team will go to Kyle Williams to return punts and Quinton Patton will return kickoffs for the time being.

---The Baltimore Ravens made 11 roster cuts, including terminating the contract of vested veteran Caleb Hanie, a quarterback.

---The NFL suspended Cincinnati Bengals defensive end DeQuin Evans eight games for violating the NFL's performance-enhancing substance policy.

Evans, 26, has not played in a regular season game in two previous seasons with Cincinnati.

---Indianapolis mayor Greg Ballard announced that the city plans to put in a bid to host Super Bowl LII, which will be played in 2018.

Tampa, New Orleans, Denver, and Minneapolis are also expected to bid for the 2018 game.

---A Denver Broncos fan was hospitalized after falling from an escalator at Sports Authority Field at Mile High during Thursday night's preseason game between the Broncos and Arizona Cardinals, according to CBS4-TV in Denver.

Police said the fan could have serious bodily injuries because of the fall but was conscious and breathing at the time he was taken to a hospital.

---The Chicago Bears cut 17 players from their roster, including offensive tackle J'Marcus Webb and quarterbacks Jordan Palmer and Trent Edwards.

Webb was waived while Palmer and Edwards were vested veterans who had their contracts terminated.

The Bears waived 14 players and terminated the contracts of three vested veterans.
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