After some back-and-forth sniping in recent days, the Jets and the agents for holdout cornerback Darrelle Revis agreed to take the negotiations behind closed doors. The Jets and Revis' agents, Neil Schwartz and Jonathan Feinsod, issued a joint statement Thursday, saying, "Both parties have had conversations to clear the air and will continue to negotiate with the hopes of reaching an agreement. From this point forward, all discussions regarding these negotiations will remain confidential." Revis' holdout entered its 12th day as he continues to seek an extension.
The hysteria of Darrelle Revis' protracted contract dispute, which reached Day 12 yesterday, has spread a dark cloud over the Jets' bold Super Bowl hopes, but there's actually a silver lining to the mess. There are beneficiaries to the Revis holdout -- other than the Patriots and Dolphins, that is. Jets rookie No. 1 draft pick, cornerback Kyle Wilson, is atop that list because he has been working with the first team -- something he otherwise wouldn't be doing if Revis were in camp. Wilson will start against the Giants in Monday night's preseason opener at the new Meadowlands Stadium.
Coach Mike Tomlin was non-committal today about which quarterback will start and even whether Ben Roethlisberger will play when the Steelers open their preseason against the Detroit Lions Saturday night at Heinz Field. "We're going to make you come to the stadium to find out," Tomlin said. In a morning news conference at St. Vincent College in Latrobe, Tomlin said the starter will play anywhere from eight to 12 snaps against the Lions, but he would not reveal whether Roethlisberger, Byron Leftwich or Dennis Dixon would be the starting quarterback.
Browns linebacker D'Qwell Jackson's surgeon told him Thursday that surgery is not necessary and that he could be back in three to eight weeks from a strained right pectoral muscle, a league source told The Plain Dealer. Jackson's surgeon, Dr. Frank Cordasco of the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York, reviewed Jackson's MRI and other tests taken in Cleveland on Tuesday and reached the same conclusion as the Browns' medical staff -- Jackson could be back in a month or two, the source said. If Jackson makes it back in Cordasco's minimum of three weeks, he could be ready for the season opener Sept. 12 at Tampa Bay.
The Bears on Thursday finished up their on-field preparations for their first preseason game with a two-hour, half-speed practice at Olivet Nazarene. The on-field temperatures reached 97 and the heat index was 103, but coach Lovie Smith did not cut the workout short. Afterward, he indicated the starters could play as much as one half of the Bears' preseason debut Saturday in San Diego. The starters didn't get a lot of work Thursday, though. Third-string quarterback Dan LeFevour took an inordinate amount of snaps.
Miami Dolphins coach Tony Sparano revealed Thursday that veteran cornerback Will Allen, a starter for 3 1/2 seasons with the Dolphins before blowing out his left knee last October, has been sent to a medical specialist to have that same knee checked. Allen, the expected starter at slot corner, had been progressing well in training camp until earlier this week, when he began to sit out practices. Allen, who turned 32 on Aug. 5, played in Saturday's intrasquad scrimmage and performed well, but he had been spotted several different times during previous practices limping off the field in apparent pain.
The New Orleans Saints confirmed that tailback Lynell Hamilton suffered a torn anterior cruciate knee ligament in his right knee during Tuesday's practice with the New England Patriots. They have not officially placed him on injured reserve yet, but this certainly means he'll be done for the season, leaving the Saints suddenly thin at a formerly-deep position. Hamilton was expected to replace departed veteran Mike Bell as the Saints' power back this year. Now they have just four tailbacks on the roster - veterans Reggie Bush and Pierre Thomas, plus young backs P.J. Hill and Chris Ivory.
As the 49ers ran out of patience with Kentwan Balmer's absence, the player said Wednesday that he plans to return to the team as soon as his personal matter is resolved. The third-year defensive end missed practice for the third consecutive day, this time without permission from Mike Singletary. "I talked to Kentwan as simple as I can put it. I asked him to be here. He's not here," the coach said. "Yes, he is under contract, and the fact that he's not here, that speaks to me. What it says, I really don't know." Balmer, in an interview with the Mercury News outside his Santa Clara home, said he simply needs more time to attend to a personal matter.
Percy Harvin's absence from Vikings training camp reached 10 days on Tuesday, and it's starting to look as if the dynamic wide receiver won't rejoin the team until after the first preseason game. Coach Brad Childress confirmed that Harvin is suffering from another bout of migraines, which can be triggered by stress. Harvin left camp July 31 after learning that his grandmother had died. Attempts to reach Harvin have been unsuccessful, and his agent, Joel Segal, referred questions to the Vikings. Childress said Harvin had "some" migraines recently and that he remains in the Twin Cities. "God willing he is going to work through this," Childress said.