American Football - Griffin III trains without problem, set to start opener

Robert Griffin III will be the starting quarterback for the Washington Redskins in their Monday Night Football season opener against the Philadelphia Eagles on September 9.

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Robert Griffin III of the Washington Redskins (AFP)

That appeared to be a foregone conclusion after Griffin practiced without any problems with his surgically repaired knee the past two weeks.

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Aaron Hernandez was a heavy drug user during his days with the New England Patriots and his behavior angered head coach Bill Belichick to the point that his job was in jeopardy, according to Rolling Stone magazine.

In story excerpts from "The Gangster in the Huddle" published online Wednesday, Hernandez was portrayed as a frequent user of PCP (angel dust) who carried a gun wherever he went and often was surrounded by gangsters.

Hernandez, 23, is in a Massachusetts prison while facing a first-degree murder charge in the June 17 death of former semi-pro football player Odin Lloyd.

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With Mark Sanchez's status in doubt for the season opener and the quarterback position a question mark, the New York Jets added Graham Harrell to the mix, according to multiple reports.

Harrell was cut by Green Bay earlier this week after the Packers decided to go with Vince Young as their backup quarterback. The 28-year-old Harrell went unclaimed on waivers Tuesday and the Jets signed him.

Sanchez is recovering from a bruised shoulder suffered in the fourth quarter of last week's 24-21 preseason victory over the New York Giants and will not play in Thursday's preseason finale against the Philadelphia Eagles.

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The big Joe Flacco banners placed in Denver by the NFL to promote the season opener are not going over well with Broncos fans.

The large banners featuring the Ravens quarterback are part of the league's marketing campaign for its "Kickoff" game. The defending Super Bowl champion Ravens play the Broncos in Denver next Thursday to begin the 2013 regular-season schedule. The Broncos were eliminated in the AFC playoffs last season by the Ravens.

One of the Flacco banners is displayed next to a similar one of Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning.

A large Flacco banner is displayed on Sports Authority Field and several smaller ones hang in downtown Denver.

Some Broncos fans have started an online petition to have the Flacco banners removed.

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Linebacker Aaron Curry announced his retirement from the NFL via Twitter.

Curry, the No. 4 overall pick in the 2009 NFL Draft by the Seattle Seahawks, was cut by the New York Giants on Sunday as the team reduced its roster to 75 players. He had two tackles in three preseason games.

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The Jacksonville Jaguars announced they have signed cornerback Will Blackmon and waived defensive back Marcus Burley.

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Chicago Bears wide receiver Brandon Marshall is taking a four-day excused leave from the team.

Marshall will miss the Bears' preseason finale on Thursday against the Cleveland Browns. He will return to the team Sunday and practice Monday, coach Marc Trestman said.

On Tuesday, Marshall had expressed his frustration with his recovery from offseason hip surgery. But Trestman declined to say whether the absence was related to Marshall's health.

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The wife of Tampa Bay Buccaneers kicker Lawrence Tynes disputed coach Greg Schiano's assessment that her husband is responding well to treatment for a serious staph infection.

"I hear my husband is responding "well" to treatment. LOL! He's NOT responding at all yet. This is our #bucslife," Amanda Tynes said in Twitter while posting a photo of her husband with an IV in an arm.

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