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NFL notebook

Reigning rushing champ Foster will play

Associated Press / September 17, 2011

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Texans coach Gary Kubiak expects running back Arian Foster to play tomorrow against the Dolphins.

Foster returned to practice this week after missing the season opener because of a left hamstring injury.

“He looks ready to play,’’ Kubiak said after practice yesterday. “He’s had a good week. I think he’ll be fine. As long as there’s no setbacks, he’s ready to go.’’

Foster, who ran for 1,616 yards last season to lead the league, has been bothered with the injury for a month.

Although Kubiak said he wouldn’t put a play count on Foster, he didn’t expect him to play as many snaps as he normally would.

“We’ll go out and play and I’ll watch him and see how he’s holding up,’’ Kubiak said. “I would think that he’s definitely not going to be a 60-play guy, like he normally is for us. He’s a three-down player. We’ll listen to Arian, [running backs coach] Chick [Harris] will watch him, we’ll all watch him. Hopefully everything goes smooth.’’

Foster said he can’t wait to get back on the field, but wasn’t sure how much he’d play.

“That remains to be seen,’’ he said. “I’m going to go out there and see how I feel and if I feel like it’s not an issue and my conditioning isn’t an issue, which I don’t think it is, I’m going to play like I normally play.’’

While Foster should return tomorrow, the Texans will be without running back Derrick Ward, who is out with a sprained right ankle. Ward started for Foster against the Colts and scored a touchdown.

Some fine messes The NFL fined three players for unnecessary roughness during the Ravens’ 35-7 win over the Steelers. Ravens linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo was fined $15,000 for his horse-collar tackle; Steelers safety Troy Polamalu was fined $15,000 for his horse-collar tackle on Ravens running back Ricky Williams; and Steelers cornerback Ike Taylor was fined $15,000 for head-butting a Ravens player . . . Giants safeties Antrel Rolle and Kenny Phillips have been fined a total of $30,000 for unnecessary roughness calls in last weekend’s loss to the Washington Redskins. The NFL confirmed the fines but did not identify the plays, but both probably involved Redskins tight end Fred Davis. Rolle was fined $20,000 for spearing an opponent with his helmet. Rolle was flagged for an unnecessary roughness call against Davis with roughly eight minutes left in the Redskins’ 28-14 win. Phillips was fined $10,000 because he unnecessarily struck an opponent in the head and neck area. The only play in question involving Phillips happened late in the third quarter on a tackle of Davis. A penalty was not called.

Chiefs extend Flowers Cornerback Brandon Flowers said on Twitter that he’s agreed to a new contract with the Chiefs. Flowers is in the final year of the rookie contract he signed in 2008. Terms of the new deal were not available. A message left with Flowers’s agent was not returned. The Chiefs’ policy is to not announce contract extensions, but Flowers tweeted: “Thanx everyone for the congrats on the new contract . . . wanted to be a chief forever and we made it happen.’’ . . . The NFL has “enhanced’’ its security pat-down procedures for fans entering stadiums. The league asked its 32 teams to instruct stadium security to search fans from the ankles up for banned items such as alcohol and weapons. Previously, the search was from the waist up. Last week, a man was arrested for using an illegal stun gun at Sunday’s Cowboys-Jets game.

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