The NFL will keep a close eye on hits to the knees of defenseless players this season, with the possibility of extending the rules protecting such players.
Chief of football operations Ray Anderson told The Associated Press on Tuesday that if the NFL’s competition committee sees enough evidence this season that hits to the knees are “becoming a problem,” it could take action.
The committee could make a recommendation in March to the owners to prohibit direct hits to the knees of defenseless players. The owners would then vote on such a change.
Currently, hits to the head and neck of defenseless players are outlawed. But two direct hits to the knee in preseason games that injured Miami tight end Dustin Keller and Minnesota defensive tackle Kevin Williams have drawn complaints from some players.
Packers RB Harris out for season
Packers starting running back DuJuan Harris is out for the year after injuring his right knee last week against the Seahawks.
Harris said he hurt the patella tendon and hoped to have surgery soon. He hurt the same knee during the offseason.
Wolfe back in action after scary hit
Defensive end Derek Wolfe practiced with the Denver Broncos for the first time since his arms and legs went numb following a frightening hit in a preseason game at Seattle 10 days earlier.
Showing his neck was fine, Wolfe swiveled his head from side to side on the podium.
That was a far cry from the night he was strapped to a backboard and taken off the field in an ambulance amid fears he had a cervical spine injury that would keep him off the football field and maybe off his feet forever.
Lions release ‘Kickalicious’
The Detroit Lions released kicker Havard Rugland, otherwise known as “Kickalicious.”
Rugland became an Internet sensation after producing a YouTube video with a lot of quirky trick shots.
The Lions signed the 28-year-old Norwegian in April 11 to give kicker David Akers some competition. Rugland made each of his three field goals during the preseason.
Around the league
Baltimore linebacker Jameel McClain, Carolina running back Jonathan Stewart and Dallas defensive tackle Jay Ratliff will all miss at least the first six weeks of the regular season after being placed on the physically unable to perform list. … The San Francisco 49ers confirmed they have traded outside linebacker Parys Haralson to the New Orleans Saints and will receive an undisclosed 2014 draft pick in return. A fifth-round draft pick by San Francisco in 2006, Haralson has played in 86 games with 68 starts…. New York Giants receiver Victor Cruz expects to play in the regular-season opener against the Dallas. The Giants’ leading receiver the past two seasons, Cruz was injured Aug. 18 against Baltimore when his foot was stepped on by a defender. … New York Jets wide receiver Santonio Holmes practiced for the first time since last September, but is unsure if he will be ready for the season opener. He is recovering from a serious foot injury.