My five cents
1Coaches do players a disservice when they hide injuries. If Cam Newton isn’t injured as Ron Rivera insists, then that means the quarterback just plain stinks, which is worse. Newton obviously is playing with at least lingering injuries, which Fox reported included a right foot injury as well as soreness in his surgically repaired left ankle and the ribs cracked in the preseason. Newton’s 80.1 passer rating ranks only 27th.
2Michael Vick, 34, is playing on a one-year deal that makes him a free agent after this season. Vick, who has completed 59.8 percent of his passes for 481 yards with three touchdowns and one interception since taking over for Geno Smith, will find a market for his services as a stop-gap or backup.
3The Minnesota Vikings have gone 3-5 without Adrian Peterson. But their Pro Bowl running back could return to the field as early as next week after his hearing with the league Monday. It could be Peterson’s last season in Minnesota, though, as he has a $15.4 million cap number next season.
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4Drew Stanton is 4-3 in his career as a starter, including 2-1 this year. But the Arizona Cardinals’ season now rests on his right arm after Carson Palmer was lost for the year. Arizona signed Ryan Lindley, who was released by the Cardinals in training camp, off the San Diego Chargers’ practice squad. Lindley will compete with rookie Logan Thomas for the backup job.
5Baltimore Ravens running back Justin Forsett is having a career year, which bodes well for a nice payday in the off-season. The former Arlington Grace Prep star ranks fourth in the NFL with 721 rushing yards, has five touchdowns and averages 5.6 yards per carry. His previous bests were the 619 rushing yards and four touchdowns he had for the Seattle Seahawks in 2009. Forsett signed a one-year, $730,000 contract in March to help back up Ray Rice.