Carlos Hyde's breakout performance wasn't the only running back news out of San Francisco from Monday night.
NFL Media's Rand Getlin reported Tuesday, per a source briefed on the injury, that running back Reggie Bush is week-to-week with a calf strain that he suffered in the first quarter of the 49ers' 20-3 win over the Vikings.
Bush was carted off the field after compiling just two carries for eight yards. His absence paved the way for a monster night from Hyde and also freed up some carries for Rugby League transplant Jarryd Hayne.
That didn't take long. Week-to-week doesn't offer a whole lot in terms of a timetable for fantasy owners. With Bush out, the Niners will need consistent production out of Hyde and Hayne in road clashes with the Steelers and Cardinals. Colin Kaepernick needs a stable running game to balance the offense against those formidable fronts. Without Bush in the arsenal, the young backs will have to carry the load.
Tuesday, September 15, 2015, 8:29pm
On Tuesday evening, the Colts waived/injured Ballard.
If Ballard clears waivers, he will revert to the Colts injured reserve.
After knee and Achilles injuries ended Ballard’s previous two seasons, the fourth-year running back battled hamstring injuries throughout Training Camp and the preseason.
Of Adrian Peterson's 10 carries on Monday night, six came with Teddy Bridgewater under center. Four were with Bridgewater in the shotgun, about 4-5 yards behind the center with Peterson standing next to him. Peterson gained just 7 yards on those four handoffs, as opposed to 24 yards on six carries in an I-formation. And while it was only four handoffs, it was also 40 percent of the workload for Peterson on his first night back, after he'd taken just 60 carries in the shotgun in the last two years.
"You really just need to be more patient, allow the pulling guard to get on his block and hit it up in there," he said Monday night. "Those are the ones I felt like I was kind of hesitant on. I really wanted to hit like I was coming out of the I-formation."
Said coach Mike Zimmer on Tuesday: "I don't think he looked tentative. I think he was aggressive, trying to get to the hole and maybe trying to get to it a little bit too fast at times."
A big part of Peterson's game has been starting 7 yards deep in the backfield, taking a handoff and hitting the line at full speed. He's going to be asked to change that approach with Bridgewater, who was under center only about 34 percent of the time last year, and there's inevitably going to be an adjustment period for Peterson. But even in the limited success the Vikings had with Peterson in the shotgun Monday night, there were hints of why they want to play that way.
Tuesday, September 15, 2015, 8:22pm
Harper, undrafted out of Cal, had a productive preseason for the Pats. He caught a few breaks along the path to a spot on the 53-man roster, too. Brandon Gibson, who looked like a good bet to make the team, suffered a torn ACL in the Pats' second preseason game, and the Reggie Wayne signing didn't work out.
The Pats brought Thompkins, a favorite target of Brady's, back into the fold this past week. He spoke Monday about what it's like to be back "home" in New England. The Pats also reportedly worked out ex-quarterback-turned-receiver Terrelle Pryor Tuesday.
Tuesday, September 15, 2015, 8:21pm
A person with knowledge of the deal says the Dallas Cowboys have acquired receiver Brice Butler from Oakland for a conditional late-round draft pick after losing All-Pro Dez Bryant for at least a month with a broken right foot.
Butler was inactive for the Raiders' season-opening 33-13 loss to Cincinnati. A seventh-round pick in 2013, Butler had 30 catches for 383 yards in two seasons with Oakland. The person spoke Tuesday on condition of anonymity because the deal hasn't been announced.
Rams running back Todd Gurley got some practice repetitions with the starting offense on Tuesday, and although his NFL debut still appears to be a long shot this Sunday, coach Jeff Fisher wouldn't rule him out for the Washington game.
"We'll see," Gurley said after practice. "It's not my decision. It's the trainers' decision. Well, it's both our decisions together. It just depends on how I feel. We'll see how that goes."
Gurley has made a steady progression, from individual drills only in training camp, to having the "yellow beanie" _ which signifies no-contact removed at the end of the preseason.
It's remains uncertain whether Tre Mason (hamstring) will be available this week for Washington. He did stretching and individual work Tuesday, the only portion of practice open to the media, the story said.
Bush exited the 49ers’ season-opening 20-3 victory over the Minnesota Vikings with a calf strain after being stopped for no gain on a third-and-1 running play. He did not return to action.
Tomsula said he saw Bush in the training room Tuesday morning and does not believe the injury is serious.
“He looked good,” Tomsula said. “He’s not running, yet. But he looks fine. They’re treating and he’s getting everything checked. . . He walked fine and he was on the table.”
The story said it appears doubtful Bush will be available to play on a short week Sunday against the Pittsburgh Steelers, however. Carlos Hyde and Jarryd Hayne were the only other running backs in uniform on Monday. Rookie Mike Davis is likely to be among the 49ers’ 46 active players on Sunday.
Tuesday, September 15, 2015, 5:15pm
Brown was listed as the No. 4 running back on the depth chart and was inactive on Sunday in the season opener. His release has made room for Marcell Dareus, who was activated after serving his one-game suspension.
The Bills traded a fourth-round pick in 2014 to acquire Brown from the Philadelphia Eagles, but he never panned out in Buffalo. He had trouble holding onto the ball and was not a reliable back for Rex Ryan and the Bills.
After a hand injury forced Tennessee Titans tight end Delanie Walker from the team's 42-14 season-opening win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, head coach Ken Whisenhunt said it's unclear yet whether Walker will be able to play Sunday against the Cleveland Browns.
"I'm optimistic. There's a chance he'll play this week. We'll see how it progresses during the week,” Whisenhunt said, per the team's official website. “That was good news…because on the field, I thought it was broken. And it's not, so that's good. There is a chance he'll play this week, and if he doesn't, then at least we'll get him back relatively quickly compared to what we thought it would be.”
Walker had three catches for 43 yards and touchdown before suffering the injury against the Buccaneers. The good news for the Titans is the team is carrying five tight ends on the roster, which gives Whisenhunt options in the event Walker is unable to play. Whisenhunt said Chase Coffman, who was inactive in Week 1, would help fill in for Walker if need be. This could be heading toward a game-time call.
The Detroit Lions didn't leave Qualcomm Stadium with many positive takeaways after suffering a colossal collapse, but rookie running back Ameer Abdullah is one player who shined in the 33-28 loss versus the San Diego Chargers.
Abdullah carried the ball, caught passes and returned kickoffs for a total of 199 all-purpose yards. Moving forward, Lions head coach Jim Caldwell plans to use the young back in similar fashion.
"What he did (Sunday) is kind of what we see him doing," Caldwell said, per Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press. "He's returning kicks, he's running the ball and he's catching the ball out of the backfield. I'm not certain there's anything more (he can do) than that. He had 199 yards or so of total offense. That's the kind of role that I think you'll see him play, for the most part."
Abdullah recorded 11 offensive touches versus the Chargers (seven rushes, four receptions), which means he touched the ball on 23.4 percent of the Lions' 47 offensive plays. The Lions want to keep Joique Bell and Theo Riddick in the mix, according to the Detroit Free Press, so don't expect a huge spike in Abdullah's offensive touches any time soon. We just posted a news story about how the team will likely phase out Riddick, who will mainly be a pass catcher and didn't get a rush in Week 1. Abdullah sure seems like the back to own in this offense, especially in PPR leagues.
Cowboys owner, president, and general manager said his team ran the two-minute drill "inordinately" in the club's 27-26 last-second win over the New York Giants Sunday at AT&T Stadium. The norm, according to Jones, is for running back Joseph Randle to get 20-plus carries in a game.
"The facts are as that game went, apart from that first drive, we departed from the way that you'll hopefully see the Cowboys play," Jones told "Shan & RJ" on Dallas-area 105.3 The Fan. "Now, every game, we'll have to make adjustments for what happens and other things could happen. But, for instance, I think Randle got about 10 or 15 or 16 carries, but you will probably see him in a normal game, and one that didn't go the way that one went, you'd probably see him up there at 22, 23, 24 carries."
Randle carried the ball 16 times for 65 yards and averaged 4.1 yards on the ground. His longest rush went for 15 yards on left end in the first quarter. In his career, the most rushing attempts Randle has had was 19 against the Philadelphia Eagles on Oct. 20, 2013, his first career start. Jones also indicated that had the Cowboys not dug themselves a hole with three turnovers that the Giants converted in 17 free points, running back Darren McFadden, who only had six carries for 16 yards, would have been featured more, the story went on to say.
Wait ... Sam Bradford? X-rays? Gulp.
Apparently, after Bradford's final pass deflected off the hands of Jordan Matthews and ended up in the arms of the Falcons, which prevented the Eagles from overcoming a late two-point deficit, Bradford headed straight for the X-ray machine. And when Bradford undergoes an X-ray, people notice, even if he appears to be alright.
After, Bradford insisted that he's OK.
"Don't worry about it," he said via NFL.com. "I'm all good. They said everything is all good. I'm fine."
It's unclear where exactly Bradford could be hurt, if he even is hurt. Some have speculated that it could be an ankle injury, but Chip Kelly insisted that his quarterback is all good.
And then there's Theo Riddick. Remember him?
He was such an offseason darling last year that he got his own hype train. But all that talk about him breaking into the rotation proved to be just that -- talk. He had some nice moments as a receiver, which has always been his strength, but he finished with just 20 carries for 51 yards on the ground and was neglected for long periods when everyone was healthy.
After the loss to San Diego on Sunday, it looks like it will be more of the same in 2015.
Riddick did not enter the game until 4 minutes remained in the second quarter. By then, every other tailback had touched the ball.
He didn't get any carries, and both of his catches -- for 37 yards and one touchdown -- came late in the fourth quarter with the game essentially sealed.
"When he gets the ball in his hands, he's pretty dangerous," coach Jim Caldwell said. "But then the other thing is, we have a number of guys that you're looking at. I think that's the thing that we have to manage."
Riddick's 21-yard touchdown catch was actually a brilliant play, creating separation from linebacker Manti Te'o with a great cut to the inside, then splitting three defensive backs for the score. But he finished with just eight offensive snaps overall, more than only receiver Corey Fuller (seven), Zenner (two) and offensive lineman Taylor Boggs (one). What we learned about Riddick from the opener: He might not play much this season, barring injury, and will be used primarily as a pass-catcher when he does see the field.
"I didn't have any setbacks after the game," Cobb said, per ESPN's Rob Demovsky. "I feel the same way I did before the game yesterday, so I guess that's a good thing. Hopefully it continues to progress."
Cobb said he tried to get out of bounds or dodge hits whenever he could, according to ESPN. He finished the game with a team-leading five receptions for 38 yards and a touchdown.
The story went on to say until his injury is fully healed, Cobb must be careful to protect himself, that includes against a ferocious Seattle Seahawks defense in Week 2.
Bryant had surgery on Monday, the same day that ESPN's Chris Mortensen reported that Bryant's recovery could take as long as eight weeks.
And ESPN's Adam Schefter added: "ESPN's Dr. Mark Adickes said [four to six] weeks was an aggressive time frame, and a more likely time frame for Dez Bryant's recovery is [eight to twelve] weeks."
As the story said, everyone heals differently. But past cases of similar injuries have taken up to 8, even 12 weeks to heal for some athletes. Bryant tweeted not to believe the craziness and he would personally keep everyone updated. But as we all know by now, athletes tend to think they will return sooner-than-later.