- The Washington Times - Tuesday, September 23, 2008

From combined dispatches

Brian Westbrook limped around without crutches Monday. He could be back to running and slashing this week.

The All-Pro running back is day to day with a strained ankle, encouraging news for a Philadelphia Eagles team that can’t afford to lose its top offensive player.

“I’m sure it’ll be a race to get him ready for Sunday,” coach Andy Reid said. “We’ll see how he does. I think we can manage it.”

Westbrook injured his right ankle while hurdling a teammate on a 2-yard run on the first play of the second quarter of Sunday’s 15-6 win over Pittsburgh. He walked to the locker room without help but didn’t return and left the stadium on crutches.

An MRI revealed no torn ligaments, Reid said.

“He’s limping around without the crutches,” Reid said. “I guess that’s a positive.”

The versatile Westbrook led the NFL with a franchise-record 2,104 total yards from scrimmage last season and earned his second trip to the Pro Bowl. He signed a new three-year contract in August worth $21 million, including $13 million guaranteed the first two years.

Westbrook scored five touchdowns in the first two games this season. He has 161 yards rushing and 46 more receiving.

Quarterback Donovan McNabb, who missed five plays against the Steelers in the third quarter, has a bruised chest. McNabb, who also had an MRI, is expected to play against Chicago on Sunday night.

“Do I think he’ll be sore this week? Yeah, he’s sore today,” Reid said. “I think he’ll progressively get better as the week goes on. We’ll see how he does.”

SAINTS: Tight end Jeremy Shockey, the team’s second-leading receiver through three games, is expected to be out for three to six weeks because of a sports hernia.

Shockey, who was acquired from the New York Giants in a trade shortly before training camp, had 16 receptions for 151 yards during the Saints’ first three regular-season games. He played Sunday in New Orleans‘ 34-32 loss at Denver, catching five passes for 56 yards.

On Monday afternoon, Saints spokesman Greg Bensel confirmed a report on the (New Orleans) Times-Picayune’s Web site that Shockey was scheduled to have surgery this week.

RAIDERS: Lane Kiffin is back at work Monday as Oakland’s coach despite more reports that his firing could be imminent.

Speaking at his weekly news conference, Kiffin says he will assume he is still the coach until owner Al Davis tells him otherwise. Kiffin says he has not spoken to Davis since before the season opener against Denver on Sept. 8.

Reports about Kiffin’s firing first surfaced on the eve of the second game of the season against Kansas City. The team has refused to deny the reports, but Kiffin has remained the coach.

PANTHERS: Rookie linebacker Dan Connor will miss the rest of the season with a torn ACL in his left knee.

Connor will be placed on injured reserve, but the Panthers had not immediately signed another player to take his roster spot. A third-round pick from Penn State, Connor played on special teams in the first three games.

LIONS: Bill Ford Jr. has seen enough of the way team president Matt Millen is running his father’s team.

The Ford Motor Co. executive chairman spoke to reporters after a Detroit Economic Club meeting. The vice chairman of the Lions said he was disappointed in the team’s performance and said fans deserve better.

When asked, Ford said Millen should leave the team, but he didn’t have the authority to make such a significant change. His father, William Clay Ford, is the owner and chairman of the franchise.

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