- The Washington Times - Friday, September 18, 2009

From combined dispatches

Anthony Gonzalez may be out longer than the Colts first feared, and they appear to have a replacement for him, too.

Coach Jim Caldwell said the third-year receiver could miss up to two months after spraining ligaments in his right knee during Sunday’s 14-12 victory over Jacksonville.

Indiana apparently has signed former Philadelphia receiver Hank Baskett to take Gonzalez’s place. Though Caldwell would not confirm the move Thursday, quarterback Peyton Manning did.

“Since Anthony’s going to be out a while, hopefully we can catch him up as soon as possible,” Manning said when asked directly about having Baskett on the roster. “It’s a lot of offense to learn in a couple of days, but he’s a veteran, so he could help us.”

The Colts play Miami on Monday.

Team president Bill Polian said Monday the Colts would sign a veteran receiver only if Gonzalez was expected to miss more than four weeks.

Caldwell did not provide any new details about the injury other than to say: “It could be two to between six and eight weeks.”

EAGLES: Philadelphia isn’t giving up hope of having Donovan McNabb on the field for its home opener Sunday against New Orleans.

McNabb made a brief appearance on the practice field but did not take part in any drills after fracturing his rib on a touchdown run late in Philadelphia’s 38-10 victory over Carolina last weekend.

“Donovan is working very hard,” offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg said. “You know Donovan. He’s doing everything in his power to get back out there, make it to this game. He’s played with a broken ankle, a broken sternum and all these things. Donovan is a very tough man.”

If McNabb isn’t available, the Eagles will go with Kevin Kolb, the team’s second-round draft pick in 2007.

BLACKOUTS: Jacksonville’s home opener has been blacked out for the third time in six years.

Because of the slumping economy and last season’s 5-11 record, the Jaguars saw this one coming months ago. But it became a reality when team officials didn’t bother asking the league for a ticket-sales extension for Sunday’s game against Arizona.

The Jaguars lost 17,000 season-ticket holders after last season, a significant number that could lead to local television blackouts for every home game in 2009.

The Jaguars aren’t alone, either. Arizona, Cincinnati and Oakland needed extensions to avoid blackouts last weekend. Detroit and San Diego received extensions Thursday in hopes of selling out their openers.

GIANTS: Chris Canty’s return to Dallas is now in doubt.

The defensive tackle missed practice, and his status for Sunday night’s game in Dallas against the Cowboys is uncertain.

Canty, who left Dallas to sign with the Giants as a free agent, was hurt in practice Wednesday. He received treatment Thursday while the team practiced.

OBITUARY: Former Detroit Lions coach Monte Clark died at 72.

The Lions said Clark died Wednesday night at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit. He had a bone marrow malignancy associated with lung and liver disease.

Clark coached the Lions for seven seasons and was an assistant on the Miami Dolphins team that went 17-0 in 1972. He was the coach of Detroit from 1978 to 1984 and had a 43-61-1 record in the regular season.

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