American Football - National Football League roundup

Aug 21 (Sports Xchange) - Chicago Bears rookie linebacker Jon Bostic received a $21,000 fine on Wednesday for lowering his head while hitting San Diego Chargers wide receiver Mike Willie in a preseason game last Thursday, according to multiple reports.


Bostic hit Willie in the chest area on a short pass in the Bears' 33-28 win. The force of the blow caused Willie to drop the ball. No penalty was called.

Teammate and fellow Bears linebacker Lance Briggs confirmed the news Wednesday morning when he tweeted, "Bostic's hit illegal. Hit on Dustin Keller. Legal."

Keller, a tight end for the Miami Dolphins, is out for the season after suffering a knee injury on a low hit that the NFL considers legal by Houston Texans safety D.J. Swearinger in a preseason game last weekend.

Bostic will have the option to appeal the fine.

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Houston Texans defensive end Antonio Smith was officially suspended for the team's final two preseason games and the regular-season opener for using the helmet of an opponent as a weapon.

Smith was given the ban based on his history and apparent intent. However, he said he will appeal the ruling and told the Houston Chronicle the he considered the suspension harsh because he "pulled back" when swinging the headgear.

During a play in the preseason game against the Dolphins, Smith ripped the helmet off Miami guard Richie Incognito, then swung at Incognito. The swing missed its target. The suspension costs Smith $352,944 in lost wages.

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Former Oakland Raiders punter Ray Guy, as well as former defensive lineman Claude Humphrey, were named Wednesday by the Seniors Selection Committee to be among the final 17 candidates considered for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2014.

This means they will join 15 yet-to-be-named modern-era candidates on the list of finalists from which the Class of 2014 will be selected. The Hall of Fame selection meeting will be held Feb. 1, 2014, the day before Super Bowl XLVIII in New Jersey.

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Former No. 2 overall pick Jason Smith was released by the New Orleans Saints, coach Sean Payton announced.

The second pick in the 2009 draft previously washed out with the St. Louis Rams, who drafted the former Baylor left tackle to be a linchpin of their offensive line and then traded him to the New York Jets in 2012.

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New York Jets fullback Lex Hilliard suffered a broken scapula during Tuesday's practice and was to undergo season-ending surgery, according to reports.

The Jets announced that Hilliard was placed on injured reserve and the team signed wide receiver Marcus Rucker to replace him on the roster.

Hilliard, who was competing with rookie Tommy Bohanon at fullback and fighting for a roster spot, was slated for the surgery on the shoulder blade on Wednesday, reported.

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Pittsburgh Steelers rookie running back Le'Veon Bell is getting a second opinion on his mid-foot sprain and likely will miss Saturday's preseason game against the Kansas City Chiefs, coach Mike Tomlin said.

According to multiple reports, Bell may have a Lisfranc injury. ESPN reported that he will be out six weeks. The team was awaiting a diagnosis from the second evaluation.

Bell underwent an MRI on Tuesday, but Tomlin said Wednesday that he did not know the severity of the injury. Bell was hurt during the first quarter of the Steelers' 24-13 loss to the Washington Redskins on Monday night.

Also, Steelers tight end Matt Spaeth is projected to miss eight to 10 weeks with the Lisfranc injury.

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New York Giants offensive lineman David Diehl was slated to undergo surgery to repair instability in his right thumb.

Diehl struggled at right tackle through the first two preseason games and was moved to left guard for Tuesday's practice. He wore a cast on his hand, but said it didn't affect him.

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Kicker Rian Lindell signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and the 14th-year veteran stands a good chance to open the regular season as the team's kicker.

The Bucs lost Connor Barth to a torn Achilles tendon over the offseason and signed Lawrence Tynes, but Tynes has been unable to practice due to a knee injury. That has left inexperienced Derek Dimke as the only healthy kicker in camp.

Tampa Bay also announced it has waived linebacker Joe Holland.

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Houston Texans running back Arian Foster was added to the team's active roster and moved off the physically unable to perform list.

Foster practiced with the team for the time in training camp. A back problem has kept Foster out of camp and the team's preseason games. He was placed on the PUP list initially because of a calf injury suffered during organized team activities.

The Texans would welcome Foster's return to good health for their regular-season opener on Sept. 9 against the San Diego Chargers. He rushed for 1,424 yards and 15 touchdowns on 351 carries last season.

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The Miami Dolphins terminated the contract of veteran cornerback Richard Marshall, the team announced.

The Dolphins tried to trade Marshall but found no takers, reported. He was listed as a starter on the Dolphins' depth chart ahead of Dimitri Patterson and Nolan Carroll.

After signing a three-year, $16 million contract with the Dolphins in 2012, Marshall was able to play in only four games last season because of a back problem. He was placed on injured reserve in November.

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The Baltimore Revens traded wide receiver David Reed to the Indianapolis Colts in exchange for running back Delone Carter, the teams announced.

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