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NFL Roundup: Roethlisberger has surgery, Packers' Harris has lung cyst removed

The SportsXchange

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger had surgery on his right knee Wednesday but will be back on the field for the start of training camp next month.

The surgery was to trim damaged cartilage that was causing discomfort and is the same procedure Roethlisberger had seven years ago on his left knee. He emerged from that surgery without setbacks.

The 31-year-old QB said two weeks ago that he was finally fully healthy after enduring a painful and complicated rib and shoulder injury last season. He missed three games, marking the fourth consecutive season Roethlisberger missed at least one start.

---Offensive tackle D.J. Fluker agreed to terms with the San Diego Chargers on a rookie contract.

Fluker, the No. 11 overall pick in the NFL Draft in April, received a four-year, $11.4 million contract that includes a $6.6 million signing bonus, NFL Network reported.

A two-year starter at right tackle for national champion Alabama, Fluker joins a team that hopes to solidify its offensive line. The 6-foot-5, 339-pound Fluker was a second-team All-American last year.

The Chargers became the seventh NFL team to have all of its picks from this year's draft under contract.

---Green Bay Packers running back DuJuan Harris said doctors discovered a "fist-sized cyst" on his lung near his heart.

Harris did not practice with the team Wednesday, but confirmed via Twitter that the medical issue would sideline him for the short term.

"Should be 110% very soon and back to work. Thanks for the prayers and keeping me lifted!!!," Harris wrote.

---Cleveland Browns running back Trent Richardson was held out of minicamp practice Wednesday and will not practice Thursday because of a muscle pull in his lower right leg near his shin. However, Richardson said a report he will not be ready for the start of training camp is untrue.

"I still expect to be out there Day One," he said after practice. "People are saying I've got another injury. No, it's not. Coach (Rob Chudzinski) has me out for precautionary reasons. It's nothing that big to worry about."

Training camp begins on July 26.

---Arizona Cardinals quarterbacks coach Freddie Kitchens underwent heart surgery Tuesday night after becoming ill during an OTA practice earlier in the day.

Kitchens began to feel dizzy, light-headed and went to the Cardinals' training room. He was taken to a hospital for further evaluation and testing. A CT scan revealed a defect to his aorta, and surgery was performed at the Arizona Heart Institute. Doctors said the initial prognosis is good.

Kitchens is in his seventh season as a Cardinals assistant and coached the tight ends last season. He took over the quarterbacks following the hiring of Bruce Arians as head coach.

---New Orleans Saints cornerback Keenan Lewis missed the team's minicamp workouts Tuesday because he spent the night in a local hospital.

According to the Times-Picayune, Lewis was hospitalized after he complained of stomach pains, a source familiar with the situation said. Lewis' condition wasn't serious, but doctors wanted to keep him overnight for observation.

---Coach John Harbaugh and the Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens were honored by President Barack Obama on the South Lawn at the White House on Wednesday.

The once-in-a-lifetime opportunity didn't overwhelm Harbaugh, who ended the ceremony by telling onlookers, "We plan to be back next year."

---Houston Texans left tackle Duane Brown could be sidelined until the start of training camp next month to recover from foot surgery performed Wednesday.

Brown had a bone spur removed from his ankle area. He has missed only five starts in five seasons, a former first-round draft pick that excels in Houston's swift-moving zone-blocking scheme.

Houston remains optimistic running back Arian Foster (strained calf) will also be back on the field next month.

---Pro Football Hall of Famer Lem Barney believes head injuries are partly to blame for Deacon Jones' death on Monday night at age 74.

"It's a shame that he's gone," Barney told USA TODAY Sports. "I'm sure it's due to the head injuries."

Indications are that Jones, the former Los Angeles Rams defensive lineman and member of the famed "Fearsome Foursome," who was considered the author of the sack, died of natural causes.

Based on personal observation, Barney said he could see evidence of Jones' deterioration. Barney, a former Detroit Lions defensive back who retired in 1977, and Jones played together in five Pro Bowls.

"I know he didn't complain about it," Barney said. "But you could see that he was slower in speech when you saw him or had phone conversations. He was still the Deacon, but you could see some things being lost."

Barney is one of more than 4,000 former players who have taken legal action alleging the NFL didn't provide enough information concussions and the long-term effects.

---Agent Drew Rosenhaus contends that he's owed $400,000 in unpaid loans by Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson and has filed a grievance with the NFL Players' Association, Yahoo! Sports reported.

The report claimed the loans were made between November 2009 and March 2012. There have been rumors of financial issues between Jackson and Rosenhaus for some time.

Jackson announced Tuesday that he had fired Rosenhaus, who negotiated a five-year, $51 million deal with the Eagles last March.

Reports recently surfaced that Jackson had signed with Jay Z's upstart Roc Nation Sports, but he said that was not the case.

---The parents of Denver Broncos running back coach Eric Studesville were killed in an accident on Tuesday afternoon in Texas, the team announced.

Alfonso and Janet Studesville were riding a Honda Goldwing motorcycle when a tow truck pulling a grain trailer traveling east veered into the westbound lane on U.S. Highway 54 and struck them head-on. The couple was thrown into a ditch and pronounced dead at the scene, the Texas Department of Safety said.

Alfonso Studesville was 67 and his wife was 68.

The truck driver, Anthony Buck, was not injured.

---The Buffalo Bills signed offensive lineman Doug Legursky, the team announced. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Legursky, who plays center and guard, has started 17 of 51 games the past four years with the Pittsburgh Steelers. The 6-foot-1, 315-pound Legursky signed with the Steelers as an undrafted ree agent in 2008.

In his first season with the Bills, Legursky could vie for a starting guard spot with Colin Brown, Chris Scott, Thomas Welch, Zach Chibane and Sam Young.

The Bills also announced that linebacker Greg Lloyd has been waived to make room on the roster for Legursky.
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