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Training camp roundup: Tyrann Mathieu 'pretty close' to return, Chad Henne still Week 1 starter

Bruce Arians said his star safety is almost ready to come off the PUP, while Gus Bradley stressed that Henne is still his projected starter.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports


Maclin tweaks hamstring

There was a brief panic in Philadelphia after wide receiver Jeremy Maclin left Eagles practice with a hamstring problem. But Maclin, who missed the 2013 season with a torn ACL, told the injury "shouldn't be a big deal."

Maclin said he was unsure whether he'd be able to play in the preseason game against the New England Patriots on Friday.

Clay missing time for aggravated knee

Charles Clay, the tight end who emerged as a versatile contributor for the Miami Dolphins offense last season, hasn't practiced since Aug. 4. On Wednesday it was revealed his absence is due to a flare-up in the knee he had arthroscopic surgery on this offseason. There's been no timetable released for his return, but for now it doesn't seem to be anything serious.

Mathieu close to coming off PUP

Bruce Arians shouldn't be without his star safety much longer. The Arizona Cardinals coach told the team's website that Tyrann Mathieu is "pretty close" to returning from the physically unable to perform list.

Mathieu, who has been out of commission since tearing his ACL and LCL last December, said he hopes he'll be ready for the regular season opener but is still unsure. Early estimates had him missing the first two or three games.

"I'm itching to hit somebody," Mathieu said. "I'm itching to get my hands on the ball. I'm tired of playing catch with the trainers."

More injury news

Position battles

Henne still the projected starter in Jacksonville

Blake Bortles' impressive preseason debut against Tampa Bay last week had the rumor mills churning out reports of a bonafide quarterback competition with Chad Henne. But the Jags are still committed to Henne as their Week 1 starter, coach Gus Bradley told Alex Marvez of Fox Sports.

"Chad has done a nice job," Bradley said. "I know that Chad has a body of work that he can really rely on. We've seen really good progress as far as his mentality and mindset from OTAs. We think that coupled with his experience and the way he's performed to this point really puts him in that position.

"Blake has done some good things, but he's missing kind of that body of work. We're in the process of building that."

We'll see how long Jacksonville sticks to that script if Bortles continues to impress in the preseason.

Murray 'leader of a committee' in Dallas

Cowboys coach Jason Garrett had some compliments for running back DeMarco Murray on Wednesday that suggest he'll be grabbing the lion's share of carries this season in Dallas.

Murray has proven he has the ability to be a feature back, but has yet to show the durability to do so. He's been notoriously injury-prone, which opens the door for third-year man Lance Dunbar to get a good share of the rock. Dunbar's garnered a lot of buzz in camp so far.

Giants still searching for tight end

The New York Giants have been anxiously waiting for one of the six tight ends on their roster to step up this training camp, and it would appear they're still waiting. Offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo suggested to Ed Valentine of Big Blue View that Larry Donnell and Daniel Fells were the front-runners for the job, but Valentine remains unconvinced that either is ready to take over the role. Fells is recovering from injury and Donnell has yet to showcase dependability, leading Valentine to deduce that "the Giants will have to scour the waiver wire or explore the trade market for someone who can be a consistent pass-catching option at tight end."

Cowboys and Raiders keep going at it

The Cowboys and Oakland Raiders made waves on Tuesday when their joint practice devolved into a brawl. Temperatures were still running hot on Wednesday.

The fans were getting into it as well.