Pack Loses Matthews...Gronkowski's Return Date Still Iffy...Jets Lose Barnes...Vikes Sign Robison to Extension 10/10/13
Packers coach Mike McCarthy says Pro Bowl linebacker Clay Matthews will miss at least a couple weeks with a thumb injury. Matthews was hurt last weekend against the Lions. He has also been bothered by a sore hamstring. A hamstring injury sidelined Matthews for four games last season.
Also in the NFL:
- New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski appears closer to making his 2013 debut, although a person with knowledge of Gronkowski's condition says doctors haven't cleared him to play yet and won't know for a few days. He has missed all five games while recovering from offseason surgeries on his broken left forearm and back. But he might play Sunday against the New Orleans Saints.
- The New York Jets have placed outside linebacker Antwan Barnes on season-ending injured reserve with a knee injury. Barnes was hurt in the fourth quarter of New York's 30-28 victory over the Falcons Monday night. Barnes, who signed in the offseason after spending the last three years with San Diego, had two sacks this season.
- The Minnesota Vikings have signed defensive end Brian Robison to a four-year contract extension that includes $12 million in guaranteed money. Robison was a fourth-round draft pick of the Vikings in 2007. He has 31 sacks in seven seasons and is one of the team's most consistent defensive players.
- San Francisco 49ers linebacker Aldon Smith has been charged with three felony counts of illegal possession of an assault weapon, stemming from a party at his home in June 2012. The 24-year-old is on an indefinite leave from the team while undergoing treatment for substance abuse following a DUI arrest Sept. 20.
- Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder says the team cannot ignore its history when it comes to the name of the club. In a letter to season-ticket holders, Snyder said he hopes those offended by the team's nickname will "try to respect what the name means" to the team, its fans and some Native Americans. He cited polls and anecdotal evidence that indicate support for the name from American Indians.
- The Los Angeles City Council has reaffirmed its support for efforts to bring an NFL team to the nation's second-largest city. Members voted 14-0 Wednesday for a resolution saying it is in the interests of both the city and the league to bring a team to Los Angeles. A year ago, the council approved a plan by the sports and entertainment company AEG to build a $1.5 billion downtown stadium, but construction can't begin until a team is secured.