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Anthony Castonzo talking extension with Colts

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Quarterback Andrew Luck’s going to need a new contract soon and wide receiver T.Y. Hilton hasn’t been shy about discussing his desire for a bigger deal with the Colts, but Indianapolis’s contract concerns on offense go beyond those two players.

Tight ends Dwayne Allen and Coby Fleener are entering the final year of their pacts and so is left tackle Anthony Castonzo, who joined the team as a first-round pick a year before the other four players from the class of 2012 came on board. Castonzo said Monday that his representatives have been talking with the team about a long-term extension that would keep Castonzo on Luck’s blind side for years to come.

“If you play well, you get taken care of, that’s sort of the way I see it,” Castonzo said, via the Indianapolis Star. “If I was playing like garbage, I wouldn’t be here.”

The Colts haven’t built the strongest of lines in front of Luck over the last three years, but Castonzo has given them one player that they don’t need to think about replacing. While Luck’s next salary will eat up some of the cap space the team has had on hand, a chunk of what’s left should be devoted to making sure they don’t have to think about finding a new left tackle in the near future.

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Reggie McKenzie: “There’s a chance” Raiders sign Tony McDaniel

Super Bowl XLIX - New England Patriots v Seattle Seahawks Getty Images

Defensive tackle Tony McDaniel lost his job with the Seahawks in a move that was fueled by the need to rebalance the books in Seattle after handing out extensions to quarterback Russell Wilson and linebacker Bobby Wagner.

Coach Pete Carroll said the decision to release McDaniel “sucks” and held out hope that there would be a way to bring him back to the team, but a former member of Seattle’s staff may get a chance to coach McDaniel instead. Raiders General Manager Reggie McKenzie said, via Jerry McDonald of the Bay Area News Group, that “there’s a chance” that the team signs McDaniel and reunites him with former Seahawks assistant and current Raiders defensive coordinator Ken Norton Jr.

Norton sounded like that would suit him fine, although he acknowledged he’s not the man making those decisions.

“I’ve had some good battles and good times with Tony,” Norton said. “Those decisions are made in another group but if they can do anything to help improve us, if there’s someone out there that can help us get better, let’s bring him in and give him a shot.”

McDaniel will likely have interest from other teams as well after a strong 2014 for the Seahawks, but the familiarity with Norton shouldn’t hurt the Raiders if a bidding war for his services should materialize. Their dismal record in recent years could have a less positive effect if McDaniel developed a taste for deep playoff runs the last couple of years.

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Justin Hunter’s attorney confident case will “end well”

Ken Whisenhunt, Justin Hunter AP

Titans wide receiver Justin Hunter faces a felonious assault charge in Virginia after a July fight that prosecutors say Hunter touched off by punching a man in the face at a bar.

Hunter’s alleged victim was left with a broken jaw and a cracked tooth, but Hunter’s attorney Toby Vick says that there are witnesses willing to corroborate that Hunter wasn’t the aggressor in the incident. Vick said that there are “significant” reasons to doubt the credibility of Hunter’s accuser and that he’s “confident that this is going to end well” for his client.

“There were a number of people involved and Justin is the only person that they identified,” Vick said, via the Tennessean. “Here you have an NFL player — with what they believe to have deep pockets — identified when lots of things were going on in there. I think it’s going to emerge that [Hunter and his friends] weren’t even the aggressors.”

There aren’t many lawyers who spend the time before their client’s case is resolved preaching their guilt from the rooftops, so there’s still a need to let things play out in court. Hunter is due there on September 3 for a hearing and the NFL has said they are reviewing the case as a possible matter for review under the personal conduct policy.

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Bucs look to Doug Martin as “lead guy” in backfield

Doug Martin AP

When the Buccaneers opted not to exercise the fifth-year option on running back Doug Martin’s contract, it seemed like the natural progression of things for a player who hasn’t impressed since his rookie season.

Martin ran the ball 319 times for 1,454 yards and 11 touchdowns as a rookie in 2012, but injuries and ineffectiveness have limited him to just 261 carries over the last two seasons. Bobby Rainey looked better last year, the team drafted Charles Sims in the third round last year and brought in a new offensive coordinator this season, so the time seemed ripe to move on from Martin as the main man in the backfield.

That’s not how things are playing out, however. Martin’s offseason work garnered good reviews and coach Lovie Smith says he’s the top man in the backfield again this year.

“Definitely a key for us,” Lovie Smith said, via the Tampa Bay Times. “We talked about being able to establish the run. Doug will be the lead guy doing that, so it’s very important that we open up some holes and let him do his thing. I don’t know about 2012 and, last year, none of us performed the way we needed to. I just know Doug has been great through the offseason program. Seems like he is running hard out there right now. No complaints. Again, he, like the rest of us, plans on performing a lot better this year and he’ll get an opportunity to.”

The lack of the option makes this a contract year for Martin, so there’s much to be gained if he can turn the clock back to his rookie season and a very uncertain future in the NFL if the trends of the last two seasons continue in 2015.

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Panthers will reevaluate Star Lotulelei in a few weeks

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Panthers defensive tackle Star Lotulelei was in a walking boot after injuring his right foot at Monday’s practice and a report from Ed Werder of ESPN indicated that the team didn’t believe the injury was a serious one.

The Panthers offered their own update on Monday evening and it fell more into the “ask again later” category. It’s the same foot that Lotulelei broke a bone in while practicing during the playoffs last season and team trainer Ryan Vermillion said that the team would be taking their time to make sure that the defensive tackle was healthy before getting him back on the field.

“Star has a stress reaction in his foot. We are going to be cautious. He is in a walking boot and we will reevaluate his foot in a few weeks,” Vermillion said in a statement on the team’s website.

That timeline would put Lotulelei at risk of missing the preseason since it’s hard to imagine he’ll start going 100 percent the first day back on the practice field. That’s not ideal, perhaps, but it should be fine with Carolina if it means he’ll be in the lineup for the start of the regular season.

The team is also waiting on defensive tackle Kawann Short, who is dealing with back soreness. Coach Ron Rivera said he’ll be evaluated on Tuesday, but that “everything looks positive” for the team’s other starter up front.

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Jordan Cameron: I know I can be a Pro Bowl player

Brent Grimes, Jordan Cameron AP

The Dolphins made a change at tight end this offseason when they let Charles Clay go to Buffalo without matching the Bills’ offer for the restricted free agent and signed Jordan Cameron away from the Browns.

It’s a move that would have looked like an upgrade after the 2013 season. Cameron had 80 catches for 917 yards and seven touchdowns that year and looked like a rising star at the position. That star took on some tarnish last season as shoulder and head injuries helped limit him to just 24 catches in 10 games. The Dolphins would obviously like something closer to the 2013 numbers and Cameron says he feels capable of providing them.

“In my mind I know I can play,” Cameron said, via ESPN.com. “I know I can be a Pro Bowl player. I’m trying to help this team win. Right now I’m not going to set any goals and tell you what I’m going to do in the season. Right now I’m getting better at my craft and that’s the only thing I’m focusing on.”

Durability remains a question mark for Cameron, whose 2013 totals are more than the rest of his career combined, but he should get a boost from playing with a stable starting quarterback in Ryan Tannehill. Clay was targeted frequently the last two seasons and a healthy Cameron could approach his past highs if the Dolphins continue to make the tight end a focal point after overhauling their receiving corps this offseason.

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Report: Star Lotulelei injury not believed to be serious

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The Panthers lost wide receiver Stephen Hill to a torn ACL over the weekend and saw a more integral part of their team need the assistance of a cart to make it back to the locker room during Monday’s practice.

Defensive tackle Star Lotulelei appeared to suffer a right foot injury during the session and was seen icing it while riding with medical personnel. Lotulelei broke a bone in his foot during a practice before the Panthers faced the Seahawks in the playoffs in January, so seeing the same part of his body receiving treatment was a reason for concern even after coach Ron Rivera said Lotulelei was sore.

“We might be being overly protective about it,” Rivera said, via the Associated Press.

Ed Werder of ESPN reports that anyone not reassured by Rivera’s words can breathe a little easier. Werder reports that the injury is “not believed” to be serious, although Lotulelei will wear a protective boot on his foot to ensure that it doesn’t get any more serious.

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Report: Matt Elam to miss entire season

Matt Elam AP

Coach John Harbaugh wasn’t optimistic about safety Matt Elam’s status after he suffered an arm injury over the weekend and it doesn’t look like Harbaugh will be having any pleasant surprises on that front.

The reports on Monday morning that the Ravens were “not counting” on having Elam on the field this season because of a torn biceps have been followed by one from Ed Werder of ESPN with a Ravens source confirming a full tear of the muscle. That means surgery and a spot on injured reserve for the third-year safety.

Elam was trying to bounce back from a 2014 season that saw him knocked out of the lineup in favor of Will Hill and the former first-round pick had drawn some good reviews from coaches after the team made it plain that it was rapidly approaching now-or-never in terms of Elam contributing to the team.

Hill and Kendrick Lewis are the expected starters at safety and the Ravens are short on experienced options behind them, which could lead them to make an addition or two as cuts start happening around the league.

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Haloti Ngata lands on non-football injury list

Haloti Ngata AP

When it became clear that the Lions wouldn’t hold onto defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, one of the first things they did was swing a deal with the Ravens to acquire behemoth Haloti Ngata.

Ngata’s training camp debut is going to have to wait, however. The team announced Monday that Ngata has been placed on the non-football injury list.

The Lions didn’t disclose the injury that’s keeping Ngata out of the lineup and there’s a chance that the team is just being cautious now in hopes of allowing Ngata to work himself into football shape on the sideline before jumping into the middle of drills. Ngata worked through a variety of injuries during his time in Baltimore, but only missed nine games in nine years and four of those were because of a suspension.

Tyrunn Walker and Caraun Reid will likely see increased playing time while Ngata is off the field for a defense that’s hoping to repeat last year’s success despite Suh’s trip to South Florida.

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DeSean Jackson: I don’t think anyone can guard me

the San Francisco 49ers play the Washington Redskins Getty Images

DeSean Jackson led the league with 20.9 yards per catch last season and he’s been one of the top big-play threats in the league for several years.

He doesn’t sound like a man who expects to see a drop in that area in the 2015 season. The Redskins wide receiver was asked Monday what it is like going up against cornerback Chris Culliver during practices and responded that Culliver had one thing in common with every other cornerback in the NFL.

“I don’t think no one can guard me,” Jackson said, via ESPN.com. “It’s how I feel about myself. I don’t feel no one can stop me. You can get Darrelle Revis, Richard Sherman — whoever you want to get.”

Jackson’s big plays were a big part of the Redskins offense last season, but his 56 catches for the year don’t exactly fit with being uncoverable by anyone that an opponent can throw your way. Jackson says he’d “love to do more” for the offense this season and hopes chemistry with Robert Griffin III as well as increased play action passing allow that to happen. One test he’ll have to overcome is an October 18 matchup with Revis that will almost certainly be hyped up with the above quote,

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John Fox “can’t predict” when Kevin White will practice

Kevin White AP

The Bears are five practices into training camp and they’ve yet to have their first-round pick on the field for any of them.

Wide receiver Kevin White landed on the physically unable to perform list to open up his first professional camp and there’s no timetable at this point for when his shin injury will be healed enough for him to begin working with the team. Coach John Fox said Monday that he’s looking at White’s absence as a “day-to-day” proposition, but after six weeks of dealing with the injury he “can’t predict” when White will be well enough to join his teammates.

“I think he’s making headway,” Fox said, via the Chicago Sun-Times. “Like I said, he was on the shelf for six weeks. His conditioning level [and] soft tissue has built him back to have a chance to come back and play.”

Last year, Odell Beckham missed the entire preseason for the Giants while dealing with a hamsting injury and then missed four regular season games before having a rookie year for the ages. Repeating Beckham’s exploits is too much to ask, but the Bears hope for impactful contributions to their offense after a shorter absence from their rookie wideout.

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Cardinals clear Jermaine Gresham, Troy Niklas to practice

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The Cardinals opened up training camp without two of their tight ends eligible to practice, but they’ll be better stocked at the position this week.

The team announced on Monday that Jermaine Gresham has been activated from the physically unable to perform list and that Troy Niklas has come off the non-football injury list.

Gresham was a late addition to the Cardinals roster after spending most of the offseason recovering from back surgery that Gresham had after physicals taken while Gresham was visiting teams as a free agent in March turned up a herniated disc. Niklas had ankle surgery in June and also has dealt with a hamstring problem.

Both players will likely be eased back into the flow of practice and take some time before they’re back to a full workload. Once they are, they should move to the top of the depth chart at the position. Gresham has averaged 56 catches a year over his career, but the position hasn’t been targeted often in Bruce Arians’s two years as the team’s coach.

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Judge rules St. Louis can spend tax money on stadium without public vote

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A judge in St. Louis has ruled that the city does not need a public vote in order to spend city tax dollars for the construction of a proposed stadium to replace the Edward Jones Dome.

Judge Thomas Frawley agreed with the argument made by the Regional Convention and Sports Complex Authority that the ordinance requiring a vote is invalid because it is too vaguely worded. One point of vagueness was that a new stadium was required to be “adjacent” to an existing convention center, which opponents argued did not apply to the current stadium proposal. Frawley ruled that the two sites did not need to be contiguous to qualify as adjacent.

“‘Adjacent’ has commonly been interpreted by Missouri courts to mean ‘near or close at hand’ and as ‘not necessarily meaning contiguous,’ i.e. not necessarily meaning touching each other or immediately next to each other,” Frawley wrote in his ruling, via the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

The ruling opens the door for the use of city money for a new stadium, although that may not be enough to stop the Rams from pursuing a move to the Inglewood, California stadium proposed by owner Stan Kroenke. It would allow the possibility of landing another team in the event the Rams did depart without hurting the chances of keeping them in town and the league will be holding a meeting next week to discuss stadium issues in St. Louis, San Diego, Oakland and Los Angeles.

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Star Lotulelei carted off at Panthers practice

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The start of training camp is a good time in the football calendar because it draws us closer to meaningful games after months without the game, but the increased tempo and intensity of practices also creates an added risk of injuries that leads to players being carted off the field during workouts.

That’s what happened at Panthers practice on Monday. Defensive tackle Star Lotulelei needed the cart’s help to return to the locker room after going down during a drill.

Steve Reed of the Associated Press reports that Lotulelei limped off the field at the end of a play and received medical attention from trainers before riding off the field with his right foot wrapped in ice. Coach Ron Rivera said, via the team, only that Lotulelei’s foot is sore.

Lotulelei broke a bone in his foot in practice during the playoffs last year and any absence during the season would be a blow to a Panthers defense that relies on Lotulelei and fellow 2013 draft pick Kawann Short to control things in the middle of their defensive line.

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PFT Live: Mark Rodgers, Chargers talk with Kevin Acee

Russell Wilson AP

The Seahawks and quarterback Russell Wilson beat a start of camp deadline to agree on a new extension and we’ll be looking at how they struck that agreement on Monday’s edition of PFT Live.

Wilson’s agent Mark Rodgers will join Mike Florio on the show to walk us through the steps that he took to secure Wilson’s four-year, $87.6 million extension. We’ll also find out how close Wilson came to playing out the 2015 season on his current deal during Rodgers’s visit.

Wilson isn’t the only quarterback whose contract has been a topic of conversation this offseason. Philip Rivers’s deal with the Chargers is up after this season and word out of San Diego that there’s a drop-dead date for talks looming. Kevin Acee of U-T San Diego will talk to Florio about where things stand on that front and fill us in on anything else of note from Chargers camp.

We also want to hear what PFT Planet thinks. Email questions at any time or get in touch on Twitter at @ProFootballTalk to let us know what’s on your mind.

It all gets started at noon ET and you can listen to all three hours live via the various NBC Sports Radio affiliates, through the links at PFT, or with the NBC Sports Radio app.

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