NFL notes: Browns offensive tackle Joe Thomas injures leg

Joe Thomas

Browns offensive tackle Joe Thomas has never missed a play in his eight seasons with the team.

(David Richard / Associated Press)

The Cleveland Browns were awaiting further medical tests on Joe Thomas, their durable Pro Bowl left offensive tackle who injured his right leg at practice when massive rookie nose tackle Danny Shelton inadvertently rolled up on it during an 11-on-11 drill.

Thomas, who has never missed a play in his eight-year NFL career, screamed in pain as his leg was struck from behind by the 339-pound Shelton.

Thomas limped off and was examined by trainer Joe Sheehan, who tested the stability in the lineman’s knee and looked at his calf area and ankle.

Newton in scuffle


Carolina quarterback Cam Newton was involved in a heated practice-field scuffle — a common occurrence at training camps but rare for a franchise quarterback. Newton went at it with cornerback Josh Norman, a skirmish that ended with both players at the bottom of a pile and having to be separated by teammates. Neither player was injured.

The altercation occurred after Norman made a sliding interception of a pass by Newton, got up and began to return the ball toward the opposing end zone as defensive players are instructed to do by their coaches. Newton pursued, but Coach Ron Rivera said Newton got stiff-armed by Norman along the way. “It escalated from there,” Rivera said.

Patriots cut Flynn, sign Lindley

Still unsure of Tom Brady’s status, and with the preseason opener coming up, New England released veteran quarterback Matt Flynn and signed Ryan Lindley to replace him as the team’s third-stringer. Flynn was on the non-football injury list. Lindley struggled as an emergency starter for injury wracked Arizona at the end of last season and in a playoff loss to Carolina.


Steelers lose Suisham

Pittsburgh kicker Shaun Suisham suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament and cartilage damage in his right knee on the second-half kickoff of Sunday’s preseason opener against Minnesota, probably ending his season. Suisham converted 59 of 64 field-goal tries over the previous two seasons and, since signing with the Steelers during the 2011 season, is the most accurate field-goal kicker in team history.

NFL investigator sued

The former Miami offensive line coach implicated in the Dolphins’ 2013 bullying scandal filed a lawsuit against Ted Wells, the NFL’s lead investigator into the case. Assistant coach Jim Turner was fired five days after Wells released a report on his investigation in early 2014. The suit claims he suffered “significant psychological and emotional pain and suffering.”


The lawyer for Washington linebacker Junior Galette said a civil suit against the player has been dismissed. Galette was arrested in January in Louisiana after an alleged domestic dispute with a woman. . . . Philadelphia rookie cornerback JaCorey Shepherd has a torn ligament in his right knee that will likely end his season. He suffered the injury Sunday during practice. . . . The New York Jets placed safety Antonio Allen on season-ending injured reserve and activated defensive lineman Kevin Vickerson from the active/physically unable to perform list. . . . Chicago rookie receiver Kevin White, the No. 7 overall pick in the draft, hasn’t practiced because of shin splints and may not be able to play until the regular season.