Antonio Brown will reportedly remain eligible to play Sunday when the New
England Patriots visit the Miami Dolphins.
Brown, the subject of a civil suit by his former trainer alleging rape and sexual assault, was under consideration for the Commissioner's Exempt List, according to USA Today on Friday. Commissioner Roger Goodell, however, will not enact his authority in the matter at this time, per the report.
Whether Brown will be active and on the field for the Patriots at Miami after three days of practice is up to Patriots head coach Bill Belichick. Multiple reports indicate the Patriots were not aware of the civil suit Saturday when they agreed to a one-year deal with Brown hours after he was released by the Oakland Raiders.
Brown, 31, inked a reported one-year, $15 million deal that includes a $9 million signing bonus and a $20 million team option for 2020.
--The Miami Dolphins, the Patriots' opponent this weekend, have given defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick permission to seek a trade, but the club is seeking a first-round pick in return, ESPN reported.
Agent Joel Segal has had contact with a number of teams, according to the report. Fitzpatrick, the 11th overall pick in the 2018 draft, is unhappy with playing cornerback, nickel cornerback and safety, the report stated. Miami, a 59-10 loser to Baltimore in Week 1, has traded left tackle Laremy Tunsil, wide receiver Kenny Stills and linebacker Kiko Alonso since the end of preseason.
Also on Friday, the point spread for the Patriots-Dolphins game climbed to 18.5 points. Only one team in NFL history has been a 20-point favorite in September -- the New York Jets were favored by 20 over the Buffalo Bills in 1968. The Bills won the game 37-35.
--When the Washington Redskins take the field Sunday for their home opener against the Dallas Cowboys, they will do so very shorthanded. The team announced that tight end Jordan Reed will miss his second straight game because of concussion, while defensive end Jonathan Allen will sit because of a grade 1 knee sprain sustained in the season opener.
The team also put running back Derrius Guice on injured reserve after he underwent surgery for a torn meniscus in his right knee, though the team is hopeful he can return after eight weeks. He missed his rookie season in 2018 after suffering a torn left ACL in a preseason game.
Finally, the team signed cornerback Aaron Colvin one day after his release by the Houston Texans became official.
More injury news ...
--San Francisco 49ers rookie defensive end Nick Bosa returned to practice but remains listed as questionable for Sunday's game at Cincinnati. Bosa, who aggravated an ankle injury in a 31-17 season-opening win at Tampa Bay, registered one sack and three quarterback hits during his NFL debut. ... Oakland placed rookie first-round pick Johnathan Abram on injured reserve and signed defensive back Juston Burris. Abram, a safety, injured his shoulder early in the Raiders' 24-16 season-opening victory against visiting Denver on Monday night and is expected to miss the rest of the season.
--Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end Yannick Ngakoue won't play at Houston because of a hamstring injury sustained in the team's season-opening home loss to Kansas City. ... New York Giants wide receiver Sterling Shepard won't play against the visiting Buffalo Bills because of a concussion. He had six receptions for 42 yards in a season-opening loss to the Dallas Cowboys.
-- New York Jets running back Le'Veon Bell will return to practice on Saturday after sitting out two days with an ailing shoulder. The team will be without quarterback Sam Darnold (mononucleosis) against Cleveland on Monday night, while inside linebacker C.J. Mosley (groin) and defensive tackle Quinnen Williams (ankle) are making progress but not a lock to play, head coach Adam Gase said.
Around the league ...
--Jets defensive coordinator Gregg Williams dismissed Odell Beckham Jr.'s accusation that he told his players to injure the wide receiver during a preseason game when he was an assistant with the Browns in 2017. Beckham, now with Cleveland, told reporters on Thursday that he needed to watch out for "cheap shots" and "dirty hits" during Monday night's game pitting the Browns against New York because Williams "likes to teach" those tactics.
--The two eldest daughters of late Denver Broncos owner Pat Bowlen filed a motion in a Colorado court seeking to have his trust invalidated, contending he didn't have the mental capacity to know what he was signing when the trust was formed. In August, a judge dismissed a suit filed by Bill Bowlen, Pat's brother, seeking to remove the Patrick D. Bowlen Trust, executed in 2009. The NFL is serving as the arbitrator in the fight over the ownership of the Broncos at request of the trust.
--Wide receiver Torrey Smith announced his retirement after eight seasons in the NFL. Smith, a 2011 second-round draft pick by Baltimore who was released by the Carolina Panthers on Sept. 1, won Super Bowls with the Ravens in his second season and Philadelphia two seasons ago.