The New York Jets held their annual Green and White scrimmage on Saturday night. Rookie quarterback Geno Smith had a fine, if uneven, performance, but that just might be enough to win him the starting job. Mark Sanchez had a handful of mistakes and was booed by fans in attendance, much to the chagrin of Antonio Cromartie. If Smith doesn't belly-flop in preseason, he may be starting in Week 1.
Here are some other NFL news items for Sunday:
Green Bay Packers rookie running back Eddie Lacy picked up right where he left off from the BCS National Championship Game at Saturday's Family Night scrimmage. Playing second behind James Starks but with the first-team offensive line, Lacy gained 65 yards on just eight carries.
The Packers still have a crowded backfield to sort out in preseason, but the second-round pick made a good first impression after entering training camp with weight concerns.
Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver A.J. Green is still dealing with a sore knee and won't travel with the team to Thursday's preseason game against the Atlanta Falcons. Green hasn't practiced since bruising his knee on July 25. It's not a serious injury and he should be ready for the regular season, but the Bengals aren't about to rush back their star receiver in meaningless games.
The San Diego Chargers are eager to lock up promising young linebacker Donald Butler before the season starts, opening up contract extension talks. Butler is in the last year of his rookie contract and is scheduled to make $1.32 million in 2013. The Chargers will not negotiate any deals during the regular season, so they have just under five weeks to get a deal done. Butler will be joined by rookie Manti Te'o as the centerpiece of a rebuilding defense.
Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski is still not close to returning from back surgery, spending practice sessions in street clothes on the sidelines. It's looking more likely that he will start the regular season on the reserve/PUP list, costing him the first six weeks of the season. As usual, the Patriots are keeping a tight lid on updates, not even making Gronk available to the media until he is activated.
San Diego Chargers wide receiver Vincent Brown is still not recovered from a nagging hamstring injury, missing his sixth straight day of practice. His running has improved in recent days, but it's unlikely that he will be ready for Thursday's preseason opener against the Seattle Seahawks. Malcom Floyd will continue to work as the No. 2 wideout, with Eddie Royal and Keenan Allen competing for slot duties.