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Giants won't rush Beatty back

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By PFW staff

• The Giants will continue to monitor OLT Will Beatty's back and won't force him back into full time action until he's good and ready. Sean Locklear started at left tackle in the Giants' season opener vs. Dallas and did well.

• There was concern about Buccaneers CB Eric Wright when he missed some OTAs in June with an undisclosed health issue and dealt with back problems last month, but he seems to be close to 100 percent at this point, we hear. We’re told the team feels he had a solid preseason. Wright will be the Bucs’ starting right cornerback after signing a five-year, $38 million contract this offseason.

• Ask Eagles defenders who they think could break out this season and many will mention DE Phillip Hunt. He's pushed Brandon Graham and Vinny Curry down the depth chart and appears poised for an impact role.

• We hear Packers veteran LB Brad Jones could be in danger of getting released after fellow defenders Erik Walden and Mike Neal return from their league-mandated suspensions.

• Don’t underestimate versatile Niner two-way performers Will Tukuafu and Demarcus Dobbs. Tukuafu figures to come in handy both as a beefy backup to NT Isaac Sopoaga and a blocking fullback who could spell Bruce Miller, while Dobbs doubles as a backup behind DT Justin Smith and a surprisingly athletic No. 3 tight end behind Vernon Davis and Delanie Walker. “Tukuafu just destroyed people with some of his blocks in the preseason,” said one daily team observer. “Dobbs is a bit more of an offensive threat. For a 280-pounder (282 to be exact), he moves really well.”

• The injury loss of Brandon Meriweather for a few weeks has left the Redskins' secondary in semi-shambles. The depth and accountability are huge worries now.

• Lions offensive coordinator Scott Linehan likes what he’s seen from rookie WR Ryan Broyles. The second-round pick from Oklahoma, less than a year removed from a serious knee injury, has become the Lions’ No. 4 wide receiver. Said Linehan, according to the club: “We were really, really happy with him in the preseason with where he was physically as well as mentally in picking up the offense. His days are coming up.”

• We hear the Panthers are among the teams that have been contacted by DT Brian Price’s camp to gauge their interest in the third-year veteran. Price was not claimed off waivers after the Bears parted with him to make room for DT Amobi Okoye. Price, who was dealt from the Buccaneers to the Bears for a seventh-round pick in July, is hoping to catch on with a team after Week One and jump-start his career.

• We hear the Rams’ starting ORT job is officially ex-Chief Barry Richardson’s job to lose, despite the recent addition of veteran Wayne Hunter, who was obtained in a trade with the Jets in exchange for former first-rounder Jason Smith.

• On a Packer defense that has gone to great lengths to improve its tackling, who’s considered the team’s best tackler? According to our sources in Green Bay, it’s Pro Bowl OLB Clay Matthews by a wide margin. The second-best tackler was also a pretty clear-cut choice — ILB Desmond Bishop, before he went down with a season-ending hamstring injury.

• The Cowboys handled the loss of NT Jay Ratliff well in Week One with Sean Lissemore and Josh Brent carrying over their strong play from the exhibition season into a huge victory at the Giants. 

• After initially being an out-of-shape disappointment, it appears Rams fifth-round rookie Rokevious Watkins has progressed enough recently to at least start the season as the new starting left guard. “He’s got a ton of ability,” offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer said of Watkins. “He’s a young player. We have a young team. I think that’s exciting. We know there’ll be some mistakes made, but the key is the young guys and the veterans, they make a mistake, they’ve got to go to the next play. You play the game one play at a time, and he’s a big, physical guy.”

• Niners defensive coordinator Vic Fangio has been pleased by how quickly newly acquired veteran OLB Clark Haggans has adapted to the team’s defensive scheme. “He’s done well,” Fangio said of the ex-Cardinal. “Obviously he’s a veteran. He had some experience in systems similar to this. When I say ‘similar,’ the structure of it, how we make some calls, communication on the field. The systems aren’t the same where he’s been, but he’s had some background in the structure of how we do things on defense here and that has helped.”

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