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NFL notebook

Vikings give up on McNabb

Associated Press / December 2, 2011
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Donovan McNabb is available again.

The Minnesota Vikings waived the 13-year quarterback yesterday, giving him the opportunity to sign with another team for the stretch run in a parting coach Leslie Frazier described as mutual.

Frazier pushed for the Vikings to trade a sixth-round draft pick this summer to the Washington Redskins in exchange for McNabb. He wanted stability he believed McNabb would bring to the offense after the NFL lockout kept rookie Christian Ponder from practicing with the team or working with his coaches until training camp.

“This was the best decision for both parties,’’ Frazier said. “He was a great player and has been a great player for our league for a long, long time. Have a lot of affection and love for Donovan.’’

McNabb went 1-5 as a starter, threw for only four touchdowns, and completed just five passes of 25-plus yards.

McNabb was benched in favor of Ponder in the fourth quarter of Minnesota’s game at Chicago Oct. 16 and hasn’t played since.

Progress for Manning

Peyton Manning will increase the intensity of his workouts though he has not yet been cleared to practice, a doctor said.

In a statement released by the Colts last night, Dr. Robert Watkins said the fusion performed on Manning’s neck has achieved “firm fixation.’’ When Manning last spoke to reporters about his health, a month ago, he was still waiting for that to take place.

“I am encouraged with what Doc had to say,’’ Manning said. “I am happy that I can increase my rehabilitation program. I am hopeful for continued progress in this next phase of my rehab.’’

Watkins said he expects Manning will continue to heal but wouldn’t guess when he might be able to take the field.

“There still is no timetable for Peyton’s return to practice, which is one of many steps in his expected return to game action. He is working hard on a rehabilitation program. His response to this plan in the future will dictate his return date.’’

McClain arrested

Raiders linebacker Rolando McClain was arrested on misdemeanor assault, firearms, and other charges after police said he fired a gun during a fight in his Alabama hometown of Decatur. McClain, 22, held a gun beside a man’s head during an altercation and the man begged him not to shoot, according to a statement released by Decatur police. McClain moved the gun but fired a round beside the man’s ear, according to the statement. Raiders coach Hue Jackson said McClain was in Alabama for the funeral of his grandfather. He said McClain would play Sunday at Miami “as far as I know.’’ . . . Criticizing the NFL Players Association for blocking tests for human growth hormone, the head of the World Anti-Doping Agency said the union’s objections are “not about science’’ and have “no substance.’’ The new labor contract that ended the NFL lockout in August included a provision for HGH testing as soon as this season - but only once the NFLPA approved the process. That hasn’t happened, in part because the NFLPA said it needs more information about the test itself.

Giants’ Fewell miffed

Perry Fewell accused some members of the Giants defense of quitting in the blowout loss to the Saints Monday and he vowed that will not happen again. The Giants defensive coordinator could not explain why the Giants played so poorly in the 49-24 thrashing that knocked New York out of first place in the NFC East. “The energy level, what we did, it baffled me,’’ he said. The Saints gained 577 yards in total offense, the second-highest total an opponent has mustered in a single game in the Giants’ 87-year history . . . Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh had his appeal heard of a two-game suspension for stomping on an opponent. Art Shell, jointly appointed by the league and the players’ association to hear such cases, conducted a conference call yesterday. The league expedited Suh’s hearing so the team could know about his availability for Sunday’s game against the Saints . . . Cardinals quarterback Kevin Kolb said his injured right foot was sore but he was able to practice again yesterday and expects to start against Dallas Sunday . . . The Green Bay Packers, the NFL’s only publicly owned team, announced details about their first stock sale in 14 years and fifth in team history. The team will put 250,000 shares up for sale Tuesday at a cost of $250 per share plus a handling charge.

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