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Wednesday NFL Notes

The biggest league-wide news to emerge Wednesday was Tom Brady's left knee injury, which the quarterback sustained during an 11-on-11 drill against the Buccaneers defense. Though it was undoubtedly a nervous moment for Patriots fans, Brady's MRI came back negative, suggesting the injury was likely a sprain. Brady will remain day-to-day as a result of the injury, but it seems extremely likely the Patriots would go ahead and sit him out of Friday's preseason contest with the Bucs, if not the rest of the exhibition schedule as a precaution. As a 14-year pro, Brady probably doesn't even need any preseason snaps to be ready to go for Week 1, so assuming his recovery goes smoothly, the injury shouldn't affect his stock in fantasy drafts.

After losing the majority of first-team snaps to Mark Sanchez over the first two days of the week, Geno Smith turned in his worst performance to date in Wednesday's session, throwing three interceptions in a performance coach Rex Ryan called "brutal." Ryan believes Smith is still troubled by the ankle injury he sustained in the preseason opener, and though he hasn't missed any practice time, Smith seems to be losing momentum in his battle for the starting job by the day. Expect Sanchez to get the start for the second preseason game, and if he excels or Smith continues to perform poorly, he could be named the starter for Week 1 shortly thereafter.

Moving on to a quarterback battle that has become more competitive in recent days, it appears Kevin Kolb (knee) is in line to start Friday's preseason game against the Vikings. Kolb missed four days of practice last week to attend to a personal matter and was plagued by the knee issue early on, but after a few consecutive clean sessions, coach Doug Marrone will give him the opportunity to stake his claim to the starting job. EJ Manuel, considered to be the frontrunner for the job at the moment, was able to hold his own in the team's preseason opener but wasn't very efficient, managing just 107 yards on 21 pass attempts. That modest performance may open the door for Kolb to gain ground in the QB race with a strong outing.

Jamaal Charles seems to be progressing well two days after leaving practice with a foot strain, as coach Andy Reid said he has recovered to the point that he could have been able to practice Wednesday if deemed necessary. File this injury away into the day-to-day category, as it seems Charles will be back on the field by the end of the week.

The Chargers have been as snake-bitten as any team this summer when it comes to training camp injuries, but they received a dose of good news Wednesday, as Keenan Allen (knee) was able to practice fully. He continued to see first-team reps with Malcom Floyd still recovering from a knee injury. Floyd's injury isn't likely to keep him out for the start of the regular season, but at the very least, it seems like Allen is in line for a No. 3 receiving role for the Chargers right out of the gate.

A.J. Green (knee) returned to practice Wednesday for the first time in three weeks, stating that he was 100 percent recovered from his injury. He's not expected to play in Saturday's preseason game against the Titans due to the long layoff, but he should receive ample action in the team's third exhibition.

Randall Cobb remained out of practice Wednesday and was ruled out for Thursday's session as he continues to deal with biceps discomfort. Like Green, it would seem he's unlikely to play Saturday, but the Packers believe the rest will allow any swelling Cobb is experiencing to subside. If the injury lingers into next week, the Packers could very well be without two of their top receivers for the all-important third preseason game, as Jordy Nelson (knee) has already been ruled out for the entire exhibition schedule.

In contrast to Green and Cobb, Hakeem Nicks is expected to play in the team's second exhibition game Sunday against the Colts. Nicks sat out the Giants' opener but looks to be back at close to full speed after reeling in some catches during the last few days of practice.

Coby Fleener's concussion seems to have been as mild as mild can be, as he was cleared to return to practice Wednesday, just three days after he was deemed to have sustained a concussion in the Colts' preseason opener. It still sounds like he may miss the club's second preseason game as a precaution, but his return to practice is what's most important here.

Robert Griffin (knee) hit another milestone in his recovery from a torn ACL and LCL, taking his first snaps in 11-on-11 drills Wednesday. While coach Mike Shanahan has already ruled Griffin out for the preseason, there's no reason to think he won't be on the field for Week 1 unless some sort of setback occurs.

Rookie Caleb Sturgis officially won the kicking job for the Dolphins over incumbent Dan Carpenter, who was subsequently released following the announcement. The Dolphins offense hadn't afforded Carpenter many scoring chances the last few seasons, so unless Ryan Tannehill makes a sizeable leap as a passer in Season 2 and Lamar Miller and/or Daniel Thomas can adequately stabilize the running game following the departure of Reggie Bush, Sturgis figures to be one of the lower-end fantasy options at his position.

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