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Jets’ Sanchez says neck injury won’t limit him

Associated Press / December 20, 2011
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Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez said last night that he is “feeling good’’ and did not need follow-up tests after injuring his neck during the team’s game at Philadelphia Sunday.

Sanchez said he expects to take all the snaps in practice today and should have no limitations leading up to Saturday’s game against the Giants.

Coach Rex Ryan said on his weekly radio show that Sanchez received treatment at the team’s facility, and “he’ll be starting Saturday.’’

Sanchez was injured when he was hit by Eagles defensive end Jason Babin in the third quarter. He was was bent over and needed help walking off the field, but remained in the game until it was out of reach.

Jets running back/kick returner Joe McKnight has a separated right shoulder and his status for Saturday’s game is uncertain.

Ryan confirmed the injury, adding that “we’ll see’’ if McKnight can play. It was not known when McKnight, who leads the NFL in kickoff return average, was injured Sunday.

McCoy in limbo

Colt McCoy has improved from his concussion. However, his status for this week, the rest of the season - and beyond - remains uncertain.

Browns coach Pat Shurmur said yesterday that McCoy has not been medically cleared to practice or play. No decision has been made on who will start at quarterback Saturday when Cleveland travels to Baltimore to face the Ravens.

McCoy suffered a concussion Dec. 8 when he was blasted on an illegal helmet-to-face mask hit by Pittsburgh linebacker James Harrison, who was suspended for the Steelers’ game in San Francisco last night as punishment for the devastating shot.

McCoy’s concussion and the Browns’ handling of his head injury brought the team under intense scrutiny last week. Both the NFL and NFL Players Association sent medical personnel to meet with the team to discuss the treatment of McCoy, who was never given the standard concussion test while he was on the sideline and returned to the game after sitting out just two plays.

Bulaga hurting

Packers right tackle Bryan Bulaga may be unable to play this week because of a sprained left knee, and backup offensive lineman Derek Sherrod is recovering from surgery on his broken right leg. The Packers no longer are perfect after Sunday’s loss at Kansas City, and their injuries are mounting. The Chiefs beat the Packers, 19-14, ending a 19-game winning streak . . . Bears receiver Johnny Knox will miss the rest of the season after undergoing back surgery yesterday. Coach Lovie Smith confirmed that Knox would not play again this year. He was taken from the field on a cart early in Sunday’s blowout loss to the Seahawks. Smith said the surgery to stabilize a vetebra in his lower to mid back started yesterday morning and was not finished as of midday. The injury is not considered career-threatening.

Charge by Peterson

Vikings running back Adrian Peterson said he thinks the Saints were purposely trying to injure his sprained left ankle in their game Sunday. Peterson had 10 carries for 60 yards against the Saints after missing the previous three weeks with a high ankle sprain. Peterson said after the game he expected the defensive players to target his ankle while trying to bring him down. But he also says he took particular offense to one play when cornerback Jabari Greer twisted his ankle in a pileup. Peterson says he confronted Greer because he thought that “it kind of got overboard.’’ Peterson said he didn’t injure the ankle anymore in the 42-20 loss . . . Vikings left guard Steve Hutchinson is recovering from a concussion. Hutchinson was hurt Sunday against New Orleans . . . Buccaneers cornerback Aqib Talib has been placed on injured reserve with a sore right hamstring that sidelined him much of the past three games. The team announced the move yesterday, two days after Talib was able to play only one series during a 31-15 loss to the Cowboys. Defensive tackle Jovan Haye was signed to fill the roster opening.

Vote of confidence

Titans coach Mike Munchak is sticking with Matt Hasselbeck as his quarterback for Saturday’s home finale against Jacksonville. Despite handing the Colts their first win this season in large part because of their own mistakes, the Titans (7-7) remain mathematically alive for the playoffs. Munchak said Hasselbeck got the Titans to this point and that rookie Jake Locker will have to wait for his first start because Hasselbeck deserves the opportunity to finish the job . . . Falcons coach Mike Smith said his heart is fine. Smith said his doctors have a plan to address the discomfort that caused him to be examined in a Charlotte hospital following the Falcons’ win over the Panthers Dec. 11. But the doctors said Smith’s heart wasn’t the cause of the discomfort . . . The York family has sold two small stakes in the 49ers . . . Harley Sewell, a Lions offensive lineman during the team’s championship seasons in the 1950s, died in Allen Park, Mich. He was 80. The team said Sewell died Saturday after an extended illness. Obituary, B12.

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