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Chargers' LaDainian Tomlinson might not play

Groin injury could keep San Diego running back on the sidelines for Sunday's playoff game against Pittsburgh.

January 06, 2009|ASSOCIATED PRESS

A groin injury suffered in the final regular-season game might force running back LaDainian Tomlinson to sit out the San Diego Chargers' playoff game at Pittsburgh on Sunday.

Tomlinson said he wasn't sure whether a week's worth of treatment was going to be enough to allow him to play.

"I don't know. It's tough," Tomlinson said after the Chargers' light workout Monday. "This is a tough injury. I would probably venture to say it's probably the toughest of my career. We'll see what happens."

Tomlinson came out of San Diego's 23-17 overtime win over Indianapolis after scoring on a three-yard run early in the second quarter of the wild-card game Saturday.

The Chargers say Tomlinson has a strained groin. There have been reports he has a detached tendon. Tomlinson did not clarify the situation.

"I won't because it is a medical issue and different doctors have their opinions," he said.

Patriots intend to lock in Cassel

The New England Patriots plan to put the franchise tag on quarterback Matt Cassel, according to a National Football Post report.

Cassel's future hinges heavily on Tom Brady's recovery from a season-ending knee injury suffered in the first game this season.

The Patriots refused to comment, and David Dunn, Cassel's agent, did not return calls seeking comment.

Without a franchise tag, Cassel would become an unrestricted free agent Feb. 27. The period for a team to designate a franchise player is Feb. 5 to 19.

A team can put the franchise tag on one player per year. It would have to pay that player at least the minimum of the average of the five highest salaries of players at the same position, estimated at $14 million for Cassel.

Cassel started 15 games for the Patriots, who missed the playoffs despite finishing at 11-5. He passed for 21 touchdowns, his 3,693 yards passing were fourth-most in the AFC and his 63.4% (327 of 516) completion percentage was third best in Patriots history.

Status of Arizona's Boldin is uncertain

Arizona Cardinals receiver Anquan Boldin has a strained hamstring and his status is uncertain for Saturday's NFC divisional playoff game at Carolina, Coach Ken Whisenhunt said.

Boldin was injured in Arizona's 30-24 wild-card playoff victory over Atlanta on Saturday.


Pittsburgh linebacker James Harrison, was selected by the Associated Press as NFL defensive player of the year. Harrison had a career-high 16 sacks, a Steelers record. . . . Green Bay fired five assistant coaches, including defensive coordinator Bob Sanders. . . . Scott Pioli, New England's vice president for player personnel, was scheduled to meet with Kansas City Chiefs owner Clark Hunt about the team's general manager's job, a source told the AP. . . . Boston College Coach Jeff Jagodzinski reportedly is interviewing for the New York Jets' head coaching job, but the Jets declined comment. Jagodzinski reportedly was told by Gene DeFilippo, the school's athletic director, that he would be fired if he interviewed with the Jets. DeFilippo declined to comment. . . . The Jets will interview Cardinals offensive line coach Russ Grimm on Thursday. . . . Raheem Morris, Tampa Bay's secondary coach, met with the Denver Broncos about their coaching vacancy.

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