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Ratliff was seen walking around on crutches in the locker room following the Cowboys 20-19 win over the St. Louis Rams on Saturday. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones stated that Ratliff had suffered an ankle sprain in the first half, with the MRI needed to determine just how serious the sprain may be.
Ratliff's status for the season opener against the New York Giants on Sept. 5 is uncertain.
The veteran nose tackle had missed nearly all offseason workouts and most of the preseason while working through plantar fasciitis in his right foot, and had recently returned to the field after being cleared for practice.
Questions hovered over the heads of the Cowboys offense on Saturday, as multiple starters sat out of the traditional "dress rehearsal" game, including wide receivers Dez Bryant and Miles Austin. Just 15 minutes into the game, it appeared that many of those questions were answered and a standout option for the third receiver was revealed.
Tony Romo and second-year receiver Dwayne Harris combined for two touchdowns of 61 and 38 yards in the first quarter, giving the Cowboys a 17-3 lead. So dominant was the play of the first-team offense that many starters were pulled heading into the second quarter, with Kyle Orton taking over under center.
Sam Bradford and the first-team offense for the Rams would struggle against the Cowboys defense, with the third-year quarterback just 6-of-17 for 64 yards in the first half. The Rams threatened in the second quarter but Cowboys cornerback Mo Claiborne broke up a Bradford pass on 4th and goal from the 5-yard line.
The backups for the Rams would fight back with two fourth-quarter touchdowns, an Austin Pettis two-yard reception from Kellen Clemens and a Chase Reynolds four-yard run with time winding down in the fourth quarter.
After the starters put on a show in the first half, the New Orleans Saints' reserves brought home a 34-27 win against the Houston Texans in New Orleans on Saturday night. The Saints moved to 2-2 in the preseason, handing the Texans their first preseason loss.
The fans were given an exciting first half of football, as both teams played starters on both sides of the ball for the duration of the half. The teams went into the half tied at 24-24, having combined for 457 yards and five lost fumbles.
The Texans jumped out to a 14-0 first-quarter lead, capped by a 10-yard touchdown pass from Matt Schaub to Keshawn Martin. The Saints responded with 17 straight points, including a 16-yard fumble returned for a touchdown by defensive end Junior Galette.
Drew Brees was 17-25 for 179 yards and two touchdowns in the first half, including an eight-yard score to tight end Jimmy Graham with 21 seconds left in the first half. Schaub kept pace with an accurate 15-18 for 194 yards and one touchdown. The Saints' Chris Ivory led all rushers with 57 yards on eight carries.
The Saints secured the win when quarterback Chase Daniel connected with Joseph Morgan on a four-yard touchdown pass with just under four minutes left in the game.
Criner, a fifth round pick in the 2012 NFL Draft by the Raiders, started off his night with a 39-yard touchdown reception from Terrelle Pryor and bested himself with a 76-yard touchdown from Pryor about six minutes later in the game. The touchdowns put the game out of reach for the Lions who were unable to find the endzone in the first half.
The starting quarterback for the Lions, Matt Stafford, left the game early with a finger injury to his non-throwing hand and was replaced in the game by Shaun Hill.
Raiders quarterback Carson Palmer had a night worth forgetting despite his 181 yards passing with two interceptions in the second quarter that slowed the progress of the team's offense.
Be sure to visit Pride of Detroit for more Lions coverage, and check out SB Nation's NFL hub for even more coverage from around the league. You can also visit Silver and Black Pride for more Raiders news.
The Pittsburgh Steelers wiped the floor with the Buffalo Bills in Week 3 preseason action on Saturday night, winning 38-7. While the Bills got on the scoreboard first in this one, that one-yard touchdown run by Fred Jackson in the first quarter was the last time Buffalo scored.
It was all Pittsburgh from there, with 38 unanswered points. The Steelers put up their first points in the second quarter with a five-play, 18-yard drive that resulted in a short touchdown run by Isaac Redman. Just before the first half ended, Ben Roethlisberger and Antonio Brown connected on another Steelers touchdown, as Pittsburgh went into halftime with a 14-7 advantage.
Then the Steelers picked up where they left off at the start of the third quarter, as it took just one play for Byron Leftwich to connect with Brown for a 39-yard touchdown and Brown's second TD reception of the game.
By the fourth quarter, it was just Pittsburgh piling on since the Bills had little to counter.
Roethlisberger completed 17 of his 24 pass attempts for 169 yards, while Leftwich went 5-of-8 for 105 passing yards. Neither Bills quarterback, Ryan Fitzpatrick nor Vince Young, completed at least 50 percent of their pass attempts.
St. Louis wide receiver Brian Quick went down early in the second half in the Rams' game against the Dallas Cowboys on Saturday night. Quick was blasted in the midsection by Cowboys safety Mana Silva and remained on the turf for several minutes.
The play came on a first down near midfield, as Rams quarterback Kellen Clemens tried to complete the pass to Quick near the Cowboys' 36-yard line. It was just the third play of the third quarter.
The 6'3" receiver caught four passes for 29 yards in the Rams' first two preseason games. Quick had yet to catch a pass tonight before leaving the field.
Quick is the Rams' second-round draft pick out of Appalachian State. He played in all four years for the Mountaineers, amassing 3,418 yards and 31 touchdowns. In his senior season, he caught the eye of scouts with 1,096 receiving yards and 11 touchdowns.
Jimmy Graham is a beast. Case and point:
And then eight plays later he gets into the end zone with an eight yard catch.This was next:
Now let's see how many different ways people can say Jimmy Graham is awesome.
North Korea has the bomb; America has Jimmy Graham. America wins.— SC_DougFarrar (@SC_DougFarrar) August 26, 2012
Jimmy Graham.. Jimmy score, Jimmy spike, Jimmy like.— trey wingo (@wingoz) August 26, 2012
Jimmy Graham just punked two Houston defenders for that last TD catch. Then slammed it over the goal post. My prediction rings true: 24-24.— Jeff Duncan (@JeffDuncanTP) August 26, 2012
Jimmy Graham is just sick. wow.— Paul Kuharsky (@espn_afcsouth) August 26, 2012
Jimmy Graham stiff arm attribute should be 100 on Madden 13. BEAST— Cutty(@LilCutty) August 26, 2012
Best part of that TD pass? Watching Jimmy Graham almost nail Gumbo the mascot with the dunk over the crossbar.— WWL-TV Sports (@wwltvsports) August 26, 2012
He finally took a step in the right direction on Saturday night against the Lions. It's just preseason and it's just one play but Pryor displayed his athleticism on a 59-yard sprint against the Lions.
He actually fumbled the ball as he fell but was ruled down. Two plays later, he did it again and took off from 17 yards out to get into the end zone.
Given some of Pryor's struggles and the suspension last year -- "The suspension really screwed me," Pryor said this week -- it's easy to forget that Pryor does have a unique skill set which can be an advantage if put to use right. Like 59-yard runs. Do that more often.
Smith, who missed several games during the 2011 NFL season with an injury to the same ankle, was obviously unhappy with the injury to his ankle and was seen punching the bench in frustration. He left the game with zero yards on the ground, despite three carries.
Just on Friday, Smith told reporters that he's "never felt better" entering Saturday's game. Smith has spent his entire career with the Lions after being selected in the third round of the 2008 NFL Draft. After a solid rookie season with just under 1,000 yards and eight touchdowns, injuries have consistently followed the running back.
Two defenders have Dwayne Harris hemmed in here, almost forming a wall. He doesn't care at all.
Last week, this was Junior Galette:
RELATIVELY LARGE GUY TOUCHDOWN!
Tony Romo is having a big night against the St. Louis Rams. Preseason, Rams, so take it for what it's worth. He connected with Dwayne Harris for a first quarter touchdown, the first of two touchdowns for Romo and Harris.
Here's the first one, a 61-yarder that had the Rams defense beat by a mile.
After Darren McFadden scored to give Oakland a 7-3 lead, the kicker's injury came on the following kickoff. The Lions' Stephfon Green took Janikowski's kickoff through a seam. Janikowski's attempt to redirect Green was just slightly successful, and Green was pushed out of bounds later at Oakland's 21-yard line.
After the play, Janikowski had his kicking leg stretched by trainers, and the report came that he would be finished for the night with a sore groin. No further report on the seriousness of the injury is known at this time.
Janikowski, the 13-year pro, holds a career field goal percentage of 88.6%, with a career long of 63 yards which ties the all-time NFL record. He has missed just four games in his 13-year career.
So this was rather impressive. Darrius Heyward-Bey managed to snag a pass with one hand, pinning it against his shoulder with a defender's arm in between. Words don't quite do it justice.
Stafford was injured when his hand collided with a Raiders helmet.
The 24-year-old has had some injury problems in the past despite playing a full slate of 16 games last season. In the two prior campaigns, the Georgia product missed six games in 2009 and all but three in 2010.
Losing Stafford for any amount of time would obviously be a huge blow to their chances. Detroit is of course in the extremely difficult NFL North with the likes of the Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears.
Stafford is one of only five quarterbacks in NFL history to throw for 5,000 yards in a season. He accomplished that feat last year when he amassed 5,038.
Buffalo Bills wide receiver Stevie Johnson has the highlight of the night so far in his team's preseason game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. He lays out for this beauty over the middle, a 23-yard snag.
Then he had this one, which was not exactly worthy of the highlight reel. It would go great with Yakety Sax though.
Yeah, that would have been a first down had he just kept going straight.
Steelers offensive lineman David DeCastro left Pittsburgh's game against the Bills with a knee injury. Just minutes after kickoff, DeCastro was carted off the field after what appeared to be at least a hyperextension, if not something more serious.
The play in which DeCastro was injured can be seen below:
DeCastro, the 6'-5" guard, was the Steelers' 24th overall pick in the 2012 NFL Draft. The Stanford graduate played two full seasons for the Cardinal. After being named an All-American after his junior year, DeCastro entered the draft and was selected by Pittsburgh.
DeCastro was the first offensive guard taken in the first round by Pittsburgh since the 2002 draft, when the team selected Kendall Simmons. The 22-year old DeCastro played high-school football in Bellevue, Wash.
The Bills currently lead the Steelers 7-0 midway through the first quarter.
Washington led 7-0 early after a touchdown by running back Alfred Morris, but Luck led Indianapolis on a 12-play drive culminating in a 31-yard touchdown pass to T.Y. Hilton.
On Washington's next possession, Griffin III led the Redskins on a 12-play drive of his own, which was finished off by a 4-yard touchdown pass to Santana Moss.
Both quarterbacks played the entire first half and one series each in the third quarter. Griffin III finished 11-for-17 for 75 yards and a touchdown. Luck was 14-for-23 for 15 yards and a touchdown.
The Redskins led 14-7 at halftime and led 30-10 until Indianapolis got a 2-yard touchdown run from Darren Evans with 3:48 remaining in the game.
Neither team had a turnover. Washington's defense sacked Indianapolis quarterbacks four times.
Alfred Morris is making the Washington Redskins' running back picture even cloudier than it already was. A rookie from Florida Atlantic, he got the start against the Indianapolis Colts on Saturday afternoon, a footnote in game headlined by a pair of rookie quarterbacks. Morris torched the defense.
Morris piled up 107 yards on just 14 carries, working into the early part of the third quarter for the Redskins. On Washington's third drive of the game, Morris and RGIII did the heavy lifting to put Washington on the board first. Morris carried the ball five times for 33 yards, punching it in with a two-yard score on first-and-two.
He broke off a 24-yard run in the third quarter, bouncing outside to the right.
Washington's running back picture is muddled, to put it kindly. Morris got the start on Saturday, but Tim Hightower suited up as well, finishing with 28 yards on five carries.
Will this be enough to earn Morris the starting gig? Mike Shanahan is the coach, so stay tuned until further notice.
Robert Griffin III answered Andrew Luck's touchdown pass with a beauty of his own late in the second quarter. He rolls out and hits Santana Moss in the corner of the end zone with a defensive back in man coverage.
That put the Redskins on top 14-7, which is where things stand after two quarters of play.
Watching RGIII vs. Andrew Luck is a treat for football fans. You might get fooled into thinking this is what football looks like all the time.
Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III are not disappointing in the battle of blue chip rookie quarterbacks. Both players have shown flashes of why the Colts and Redskins, respectively, made them the first two players picked in the draft. Luck threw the game's first touchdown pass, a beauty to T.Y. Hilton.
The pass itself is a perfect reminder of why Luck was so coveted coming into the NFL. It is literally a perfect throw, with just the right touch on it and perfectly placed for his receiver to grab. Equally impressive is Luck's work under pressure. Notice him step up to make the throw and avoid an oncoming pass rusher? Veteran move.
Luck is 9-for-14 with 105 yards and a touchdown. His offensive line is going to cause some problems for him this season. As you can see here, Luck is that rare quarterback who makes his offensive line better than it really is.
Fans in Indianapolis are really fortunate to have Luck to replace Peyton Manning.
Robert Griffin III was hit hard by the Colts defense when he was under center and the Redskins defense is returning the favor to Andrew Luck, who was sacked twice in three plays FedEx Field Saturday afternoon.
The first is a complete break down by the Colts offensive line. Ryan Kerrigan and London Fletcher both got there, splitting the sack. There were a few different Redskins players who could have had the sack.
On the next sack -- two plays later -- Luck tried to step up into the pocket but Redskins defensive end Stephen Bowen was bursting through the line at the same time and Bowen was able to get a hold of Luck and pull him down.
At least through one quarter the Colts and Redskins defenses are the ones making headlines. Just like everyone thought, right?
Robert Griffin III started off well enough earning a first down with a strong last second effort, diving over the first down marker. But he was also rocked by Colts linebacker Jerrell Freeman as he released the ball on a first quarter pass attempt
This is one violent-looking hit:
Take a closer look and you see that RGIII is not expecting the hit which means he didn't have time to brace himself for a 6'0, 234-pound man to come crashing into him.
Redskins fans collectively let out a sigh of relief when RGIII got up after that play. At least Redskins fans know he can take a hit.
The Andrew Luck vs. Robert Griffin III game will take place in wet conditions. Rain has been coming down throughout the afternoon at FedEx Field so the field is wet and it doesn't appear to be letting up anytime soon. Weather reports indicate it could be raining on and off throughout the game.
It's not clear how this affects the game plan but we may not be seeing the best of RGIII anyway. NFL Network's Albert Breer reported that the Redskins don't plan to show much of their offense in this game, which isn't unusual in the preseason.
The top two picks in April's NFL Draft take center stage as Andrew Luck and his Colts meet RGIII and the Redskins on Saturday afternoon.
The Houston Texans visit the New Orleans Saints on Saturday night as the NFL preseason moves closer to its conclusion.
The Dallas Cowboys and St. Louis Rams will meet in preseason action on Saturday.
The top two picks from the 2012 NFL Draft are facing off with Robert Griffin III of the Washington Redskins and Andrew Luck of the Indianapolis Colts in Week 3 of NFL preseason action.
The Steelers and Bills clash in Week 3 of the preseason in Buffalo with both teams looking to make a statement.
The Detroit Lions and Oakland Raiders face off in each team's penultimate preseason game with both teams seemingly headed in opposite directions.
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