NFL Rumors Week 11: Latest on Reggie Bush, Brett Favre and More

Elliott Pohnl@@ElliottPohnl_BRFeatured ColumnistNovember 17, 2010

NFL Rumors Week 11: Latest on Reggie Bush, Brett Favre and More

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    NFL Rumors Week 11 are swirling around injuries to a pair of fallen stars.

    Reggie Bush is expected to return to action when New Orleans hosts Seattle, while Brett Favre likely will extend his consecutive games started streak for at least one more week.

    Elsewhere, more details are emerging about Donovan McNabb's new deal with Washington.

    Multiple reports are documenting an opt-out clause, enabling the two sides to part ways after this season.

    Here's a closer look at those stories and other happenings in the NFL Wednesday.

No. 15: Details of Donovan's New Deal

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    Donovan McNabb's $70 million deal with Redskins might not be so lucrative after all.

    Citing a source within the NFL Player's Association, ESPN's Adam Schefter reported the contract won't actually kick in unless McNabb's $10 million option is picked up.

    Should the 'Skins pick up his option, McNabb could make an addition $8 million if he is active for every game over the next five seasons, and $10 million if he quarterbacks the team to the Super Bowl.

    But if Washington declines the option, McNabb will hit the open market in the offseason and have another chance to get even richer.

    According to McNabb's agent, the structure of the deal coincides with the uncertain labor situation in the NFL.

    Although the 34-year-old has been adamant that he wants to finish his career in D.C., it now appears likely he could move elsewhere.

    His play down the stretch this season will go a long way in determining his future.

No. 14:NFL Players Association Responds to League's Proposal for 18-Game Season

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    The NFL Players Association and the NFL can't seem to agree on much these days, but at least, they're trying.

    According to Chris Mortensen of ESPN, the NFLPA has submitted a counterproposal detailing demands should the league go through with the expansion of the regular season.

    The players lobbied for reduced voluntary workouts in the offseason and fewer practices with full-pads during training camp.

    Additionally, the NFLPA is seeking two bye weeks during the regular season and expanding each team's roster by three or four players.

    Amidst the NFL's long overdue crusade for player safety, the NFLPA has been very critical of the plan to lengthen the regular season.

    With the two sides still far apart in labor negotiations, talk of a longer season figures to be another point of contention.

No. 13: Will Sidney Rice's Season Be Over Before It Ever Begins?

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    The Vikings have an abundance of issues heading into Week 11, and Sidney Rice's health is becoming another bizarre subplot.

    Rice's agent Drew Rosenhaus said his client would be back on the field last week against Chicago, but he was not activated for the game.

    Now, the Vikings have only one more opportunity to activate him from the PUP list before he will become ineligible to play this season.

    The Minneapolis Star-Tribune reported Monday Rosenhaus is now singing a different tune.

    With Rice set to become a free agent after the season, it might make sense for him to sit out the season in hopes of cashing in and giving his hip more time to mend.

    Minnesota's ship is sinking fast, and Rice's return wouldn't be enough to save the season.

    It's possible his future won't be known until Sunday when the Vikings release their inactives list.

No. 12: Dolphins Prepare for Tyler Thigpen To Start at Quarterback

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    Tyler Thigpen will get his chance in Week 11 when Miami hosts Chicago.

    Depending on how he performs, he might end up being the Dolphins' starter for the remainder of the season.

    After being anointed as quarterback of the future, Chad Henne was benched in Week 10 and replaced by veteran Chad Pennington.

    Pennington didn't even make it through the first quarter before suffering a shoulder injury that could end his career.

    Henne came into the game but suffered what looked to be a serious knee injury.

    That left Thigpen as the last man standing, and he responded.

    While leading Miami to a win over Tennessee, Thigpen showed off a strong arm and excellent mobility.

    He spent several seasons in Kansas City, where he demonstrated flashes of talent but struggled with consistency.

    With only three days between games, the Dolphins have no choice but to start Thigpen Thursday and hope for the best.

    Henne is expected to be available to return this season, but he sat out practice Wednesday and isn't likely to be active against the Bears.

No. 11: Albert Haynesworth Prepares for Return to Tennessee

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    Albert Haynesworth's performance as a Tennessee Titan made him a very rich man.

    Now, he returns to the place where it all began as a shell of his former self.

    Haynesworth talked to the media Wednesday, and said he sometimes wishes he had stayed in Tennessee.

    In the end, $40 million in guaranteed money was an offer he simply couldn't refuse.

    Haynesworth's struggling Redskins meet the struggling Titans in Week 11 in Nashville, providing a showcase for two of the NFL's most disappointing teams.

    Despite showing flashes during his limited action, Haynesworth has lost his spot on the defensive line and plays mostly in pass-rushing situations.

    Mike Shanahan is as stubborn as they come.

No. 10: DeAngelo Williams Done for the Season

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    DeAngelo Williams was said to be close to returning to the field.

    Apparently, something has changed.

    ESPN is reporting Panthers' coach John Fox said the star running back wouldn't have played for a couple more weeks, and the decision was made to place him on IR to free up a roster spot.

    That means Mike Goodson will get more chances to show what he can do.

    Goodson ran for 100 yards in Week 10 against the Tampa Bay's struggling run defense but faces a tough challenge this week against Baltimore.

    Making matters worse, Jimmy Clausen's status for Week 11 is up in the air.

    Clausen suffered a concussion against the Bucs and hasn't been cleared to practice.

No. 9: Matt Schaub Hospitalized with Knee Problem

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    Matt Schaub spent Tuesday night in a Houston hospital after being diagnosed with a bursa sac problem in his right knee.

    Schaub complained of pain Tuesday and was sent for treatment.

    He missed practice Wednesday, but head coach Gary Kubiak said his star quarterback should be able to play in week 11.

    If Schaub isn't able to go, Houston's bleak playoff hopes will take another hit.

    After a strong start to the season, the Texans have lost three straight games and sit at 4-5 on the season.

    Although he has stayed healthy for the last year and a half, Schaub has missed 12 games in his career with knee and shoulder problems.

    Dan Orlovsky is listed as the No. 2 quarterback for Houston, with Matt Leinart behind him on the depth chart.

No. 8: Jericho Cotchery Likely Out with Groin Strain

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    Jericho Cotchery is likely out for Week 11 as he looks to recover from a strained groin suffered late in the New York Jets' win over Cleveland.

    The slot receiver played through pain to make a sensational catch on a key third down before spending the remainder of the game on the sidelines.

    Although Santonio Holmes, Braylon Edwards and Dustin Keller are Mark Sanchez's primary targets, Cotchery's contributions will be missed.

    New York returns home to face Houston Sunday.

No. 7: Shawne Merriman One of Three Buffalo Bills To Sit in Week 11

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    Shawne Merriman has another injury that will keep him off the field in Week 11.

    According to the team's website, the linebacker has been ruled out when Buffalo travels to Cincinnati.

    Merriman is dealing with an Achilles strain but is expected to return before the end of the season.

    In other injury news, Bills rookie C.J. Spiller and defensive end Spencer Johnson will be sidelined by hamstring injuries.

No. 6: Matthew Stafford Won't Have Surgery on Shoulder

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    Matthew Stafford has decided against surgery and will instead try to rehab his separated throwing shoulder.

    Stafford had his right shoulder examined by Dr. James Andrews earlier this week and is targeting a late-season return to the field.

    The second-year pro originally hurt the shoulder way back in Week 1 against the Bears before re-injuring it late in the loss to the New York Jets in Week 9.

    Detroit isn't likely to rush him back to the field, and there is a chance he won't play again this season after all.

No. 5: Brad Childress Not Likely To Be Fired During the Season

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    Brad Childress' fate in Minnesota likely won't be decided until the end of the season.

    There are growing indications Vikings' owner Zygi Wilf will let his embattled head coach keep his job, no matter how many losses pile up.

    Defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier had been rumored as a possible midseason replacement for Childress, but the time to elevate him has come and gone.

    Instead, Coach Chilly will face the firestorm as Minnesota's season trudges painfully onward.

    The Vikings host the Packers Sunday afternoon.

No. 4: NFL Looking Into Another Alleged Spitting Incident

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    First it was Le'Ron McClain, now it's LaRon Landry who is facing spitting allegations.

    Philadelphia center Mike McGlynn has accused Landry of spitting on him during Monday's demolition of Washington.

    According to, the NFL is investigating the allegations.

    Last week, the league ruled there wasn't enough evidence to discipline McClain for allegedly spitting at Dolphins' linebacker Channing Crowder.

    Landry told the Washington Post that there is no truth to the allegations, adding he doesn't remember even encountering McGlynn during the game.

    As the tape will show, the safety was indeed spending most of his time chasing Eagles' receivers down the field.

No. 3: Hines Ward Likely To Play in Week 11

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    Hines Ward was visibly upset when Pittsburgh's medical personnel would not allow him to return Sunday against New England.

    After seeing his streak of 186 straight games with a reception come to an end, all indications point to the veteran being ready to go in Week 11. reported Ward was nearly allowed to return against the Patriots.

    Assuming that report is true, he should have no problem passing the mandatory concussion tests this week.

    Pittsburgh's offense got nice performances from rising star Mike Wallace and rookie Emmanuel Sanders against the Pats', but Ward remains Ben Roethlisberger's target of choice on third downs.

No. 2: Report: Reggie Bush Will Be Back Sunday

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    Reggie Bush is finally ready to return in Week 11 when New Orleans hosts Seattle.

    Adam Schefter of ESPN reports Bush has told teammates he will play Sunday, making his first appearance since breaking his fibula in Week 2.

    Bush's return comes as welcomed news for the Saints, who have also been playing without running back Pierre Thomas.

    The Saints' coaching staff has been frustrated by Thomas' slow recovery time from a sprained ankle.

    Don't be surprised if Bush sees more carries than usual as Sean Payton tries to establish some sort of ground attack.

No. 1: Brett Favre Preparing To Face Packers

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    Brett Favre's ability to stir up drama has been one of the most intriguing aspects of the 2010 NFL season.

    Even after his latest comments, it doesn't appear he is ready to ride off into the sunset just yet.

    Favre reportedly told ESPN's Ed Werder his right shoulder was acting up again, generating concern he might be forced to miss time.

    That concern quickly lifted after Favre said the shoulder is "okay."

    So which is it?

    As usual, Brad Childress had no knowledge of the injury and disputed reports that an MRI had been scheduled.

    Wednesday, Favre told reporters he was completely focused on facing his former team in Week 11 and not concerned about his throwing shoulder.

    If only we could tell when No. 4 was telling the truth.