Fresh off the wire

Injury roundup: Julio Jones remains out of practice


Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones (hamstring) missed practice Wednesday. That's the bad news. The good news in Atlanta is that Jones is expected to participate more on Thursday. Falcons linebacker Sean Weatherspoon (ankle) should be back this week against Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

A four-part series on player health and safety with reporter Andrea Kremer aired Tuesday through Friday on NFL Network:

Tuesday: Football's safety issues
Wednesday: Virginia Tech's helmet technology, The "Hit System"
Thursday: Inside Darrelle Revis' rehab
Friday: The lack of common safety standards in youth football

» For more information on player health and safety, visit

Here are the rest of the big Week 12 injuries:

1. The Green Bay Packers were due for some good injury news. Greg Jennings (abdominal tear) practiced for the first time since his surgery on Wednesday. Linebacker Clay Matthews (hamstring) is doubtful to play against the New York Giants. Both players could return next week; it still feels like Jennings is a week away.

2. It's unclear if Pittsburgh Steelers running back Isaac Redman (concussion) will play Sunday vs. the Cleveland Browns, but he's fully practicing again. Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said he's unsure who will start at running back between Rashard Mendenhall, Jonathan Dwyer and Redman.

3. The New England Patriots declared Chandler Jones (ankle) and Logan Mankins (ankle) out against the New York Jets, in addition to Rob Gronkowski (forearm). Tight end Aaron Hernandez (ankle) is expected to play, according to's Albert Breer.

4. Buffalo Bills running back Fred Jackson has cleared his post-concussion tests, but he will now play a supporting role behind C.J. Spiller against the Indianapolis Colts. Fantasy owners can celebrate.

5. Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick and running back LeSean McCoy remain in Stage 1 of post-concussion testing. They didn't practice Wednesday and their statuses for this week against the Carolina Panthers doesn't look encouraging. Andy Reid indicated rookie Bryce Brown will start for McCoy if "Shady" is out.

6. The Cardinals announced rookie Ryan Lindley will start at quarterback this week. Kevin Kolb isn't ready and John Skelton isn't good. (It's no wonder why we stuck a fork in this team. The Kansas City Chiefs, meanwhile, announced Brady Quinn will start at quarterback. These two items fit together.

7. Chicago Bears quarterback Jay Cutler has been cleared for practice, but not game action yet. Chicago didn't practice Wednesday, but signs look good for him playing this week against the rival Minnesota Vikings.

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8. 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh indicated that he believes Alex Smith will be cleared to play by the end of the week. Harbaugh isn't tipping his hand about who will start against the New Orleans Saints.

9.'s Albert Breer reports Houston Texans cornerback Johnathan Joseph (hamstring) will be a game-time decision for Thursday's game against the Detroit Lions.

10. Lions tackle Jeff Backus (hamstring) will likely miss his first start in 188 games on Thanksgiving. Sad timing.

11. Dallas Cowboys running back DeMarco Murray (foot) is doubtful. Left tackle Tyron Smith (ankle) is questionable, but no one expects him to play vs. the Washington Redskins.

12. Minnesota Vikings wide receiver Percy Harvin (ankle) missed another practice.

Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter @greggrosenthal.