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Antonio Gates Returns From Suspension This Week Monday, October 5, 2015 | Time: 10:34 PT |  Reported by
The Facts: Philip Rivers will get old friend Gates back from a four-game suspension.
Diehards Line:Gates was suspended for using performance enhancing drugs. This week, after watching receivers Malcom Floyd (concussion) and Stevie Johnson (hamstring) go down Sunday, the tight end will be a welcome sight in San Diego and on the rosters of fantasy owners. It'll be interesting to see if Ladarius Green, who was productive when healthy during Gates' absence, can continue to contribute.
Martavis Bryant Returns From Suspension This Week Monday, October 5, 2015 | Time: 10:32 PT |  Reported by
The Facts: Bryant will return to the fold after missing the first four games for violating the league's substance abuse policy.
Diehards Line: Bryant was slated for a monster second season despite the ban. Bryant torched defenses deep with Ben Roethlisberger under center last season. We'll see how much having Mike Vick under center hinders the wideout's ability to make the leap this season.
Andrew Luck Day-To-Day With Thursday Game Coming Monday, October 5, 2015 | Time: 9:15 PT |  Reported by
The Facts: The Colts tried to get Luck back as soon as they could, but after testing the quarterback's arm on Saturday, it was clear he wasn't ready to play yesterday. They survived in overtime against the Jaguars, but now have to wonder if he'll be ready in time to play the Texans Thursday night. "He made progress all week," HC Chuck Pagano said. "He made progress. So we're going to continue, . . . he's getting treatment right now. He'll work out tomorrow and we'll just take it day-by-day and see where he's at."
Diehards Line: Matt Hasselbeck made the start in Luck's absence and though he fared well enough, the Colts needed the Jaguars to miss a pair of late field goals to have a chance to sneak out with a win, but sneak out they did. The competition may not necessarily be better this week, but that’s not as much concern as Luck’s shoulder. So the most-watched shoulder in Indiana will be under scrutiny the rest of the week, now that it’s clear the Colts are going to struggle unless Luck single-handedly drags them to success. ... Stay tuned.
O'Brien Not Ready To Say If Ryan Mallett Lost His Job Monday, October 5, 2015 | Time: 9:07 PT |  Reported by
The Facts: The Texans benched their starting QB for the second time in the first four weeks on Sunday afternoon when they put Brian Hoyer back into the lineup to replace Ryan Mallett with the Falcons ahead 42-0 in the second half. After the game, HC Bill O'Brien wasn't willing to make a commitment to either player, although he said the score of the game was the immediate reason for the change. "It was 42-0," O'Brien said. "I'll have to watch the film. Again, we just made some substitutions."
Diehards Line: While there were obviously problems across the board for things to get that out of hand, Mallett wasn’t helping the cause by going 12-of-27 for 150 yards and an interception. Hoyer led the Texans to three late touchdowns while going 17-of-30 for 232 yards. The Texans replaced Hoyer after the first week of the season and Mallett has gone 63-of-124 for 622 yards, two touchdowns and three interceptions in his three starts for the team. The Texans play again on Thursday, which would usually leave too little time for a quarterback change but Hoyer’s prior experience in the top job could alleviate that concern when it comes time to name this week’s starter. ... Stay tuned.
Cowboys Fear Lance Dunbar Has Torn ACL, MCL Monday, October 5, 2015 | Time: 9:06 PT |  Reported by
The Facts: Following up on a the previous item. ... NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported early Monday morning that the Cowboys are fearful Dunbar tore both his ACL and MCL on the play.
Diehards Line: He'll have an MRI later on Monday, Rapoport reports. ... Stay tuned. We'll be following up as needed.
Drew Brees Hits 400-TD Pass Mark Monday, October 5, 2015 | Time: 12:03 PT |  Reported by the Associated Press
The Facts: Brees hit C.J. Spiller with a short pass that the running back turned into an 80-yard touchdown — the 400th of the Saints quarterback's career — on the second play of overtime and New Orleans won for the first time this season, 26-20 over the injury-decimated Cowboys on Monday night.
Diehards Line: Brees, who missed New Orleans' previous game because of a bruised rotator cuff in his right (throwing) shoulder, completed 33 of 41 throws for 359 yards and two TDs in his return. "It felt fine. Felt good enough, got the job done, so we're all good," Brees said of his shoulder. Seems safe to assume he'll be on the field for the next game.
DeMarco Murray Doesn't Think He's Getting The Ball Enough Monday, October 5, 2015 | Time: 12:02 PT |  Reported by
The Facts: With just eight carries versus Washington, the 2014 Offensive Player of the Year's lack of productivity this season is now coming into question. When asked if he was getting the ball enough after the game Murray said, "no I'm not. I don't think I am."
Diehards Line: He then softened his stance a little. "But it's how the plays are being called. You know, I love this offense, I love playing with these guys and it's how it is." Murray had a nice 30-yard run in the first quarter but only had six yards after the scamper. The five-year veteran ended Sunday's defeat with eight carries for 36 yards. Murray now has a grand total of 47 rushing yards on the season. Murray is not getting the ball enough but that's just one of many issues for the Eagles.
Report: Philbin's Job Status Could Be Decided Today Monday, October 5, 2015 | Time: 12:00 PT |  Reported by
The Facts: Per a league source with knowledge of the situation, owner Stephen Ross is now expected to make a decision on HC Joe Philbin's job status by Monday.
Diehards Line:Despite the absence of any obvious internal candidates, one of the big factors will be a desire by the owner to demonstrate to key players that he’s committed to improving the situation. Which is an ominous sign for Philbin. Making a move now also gives the team a head start on finding a new coach for 2016, which will make it easier for executive V.P. of football operations Mike Tannenbaum to make the best possible hire. ... Stay tuned.
Lance Dunbar Leaves Game With Knee Injury Sunday, October 4, 2015 | Time: 9:22 PT |  Reported by
The Facts: Dunbar suffered what appears to be a significant left knee injury early in the second half of tonight's game against the Saints, and was helped off the field by trainers.
Diehards Line: Dunbar caught 10 passes for 100 yards last week against the Falcons, and has impressed early this year as a third-down back. The Cowboys are already without a few guys you might have heard of — Tony Romo and Dez Bryant — and also lost linebacker Sean Lee to a concussion in the first half. ... Stay tuned. More as developments warrant.
Jordan Reed Concussed Versus Eagles Sunday, October 4, 2015 | Time: 8:51 PT |  Reported by
The Facts: Reed suffered a concussion in Sunday's game against the Eagles and will go through the protocol during the week.
Diehards Line: Reed missed the final six games of 2013 with a concussion. Stay tuned. We'll be following this one closely in coming days in an effort to gauge how severe this concussion might be.