Patriots' Brady returns to practice after report of injury

FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Tom Brady participated in practice Thursday on a limited basis because of a left shoulder injury.

The New England Patriots quarterback had missed Wednesday's session, but the team said his absence was not injury-related.

Comcast SportsNet reported that same day that Brady had X-rays to check for a separated left shoulder and was told he was "all set." Patriots spokesman Stacey James said Thursday: "If there was an injury then it would be on the injury report."

Brady was listed on Thursday's report as having participated on a limited basis with the shoulder injury. He was one of 17 Patriots listed as participating on a limited basis, meaning a player took part in fewer than 100 percent of his normal repetitions.

He loosened up and ran with his teammates at the start of the practice while reporters were allowed to watch.

Brady landed hard on his left shoulder with 1:40 left in the fourth quarter Saturday when he was tackled by Kevin Burnett on a scramble in a 27-24 win over the Miami Dolphins in which he also scored on two 1-yard sneaks.

The Patriots have one more practice on Friday before a walkthrough on Saturday for Sunday's regular-season finale against the Buffalo Bills (6-9).


Future Hall of Fame running back LaDainian Tomlinson admitted Thursday that it has crossed his mind that the New York Jets' regular-season finale in Miami could be his final professional football game. Tomlinson is in the final year of his contract. And the Jets need to win this game plus have some outside help in order to make the playoffs.

"There's definitely the thought that this possibly could be my last game," Tomlinson said. "You never know how things are going to shake out. For me, it just depends on the situation. I've said that before. I would love to keep playing but if the situation isn't right, then I won't. This could possibly be my last game."

Tomlinson, 32, has played 169 regular-season games over 11 seasons in the NFL, the last 28 with the Jets after spending nine seasons in San Diego.

Tomlinson heads into Sunday's game needing only 34 yards to pass Jerome Bettis for No. 5 on the all-time rushing list. He needs 474 yards to pass former Jet Curtis Martin for No. 4, but Tomlinson sounds like he would be content to finish exactly where he is.

Said Tomlinson: "It's weird but this is how I see it. If this is my last game, I've enjoyed 11 years of playing football, playing a kid's game with two great organizations ... There is nothing I can complain about, really."


New Orleans Saints running back Pierre Thomas was handed a $7,500 fine by the NFL on Thursday for pulling a golden bow out of his pants and sticking it on the football in a Christmas touchdown celebration Monday night.

It was determined Thomas had violated the league's policy that stipulates the football cannot be used as a celebratory prop, USA Today reported.

Thomas, who gave the football to a fan as what he described as a "wonderful gift," also incurred a 15-yard penalty for the act.

To make matters worse for Thomas, he was also among a number of Saints players fined $5,000 each for wearing red and green tape on their arms and ankles to celebrate the holidays.

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