NFL Notebook

Published 12:00 am Sunday, August 24, 2008

Associated Press
The NFL notebook …
The New York Giants will have to defend their Super Bowl title without a key part of the defense that won it for them.
The Giants learned Sunday that two-time Pro Bowl defensive end Osi Umenyiora will have season-ending surgery on his injured left knee.
Umenyiora was hurt in the second quarter of Saturday’s preseason game against the New York Jets, and Dr. Russell Warren told the team Sunday that an MRI found a tear in his lateral meniscus.
“It was obviously the news that I did not want to hear,” coach Tom Coughlin said.
The normal recovery lasts four months, Coughlin said, adding that a non-surgical option was not discussed.
Coupled with the retirement of seven-time Pro Bowl defensive end Michael Strahan a few months ago, Umenyiora’s injury makes the Giants a bit thin at defensive end. Justin Tuck has replaced Strahan, and New York signed veteran Renaldo Wynn in the offseason.
The Giants will have to consider moving strongside linebacker Mathias Kiwanuka back to defensive end. He was switched to linebacker last year so the team could put its best 11 players on the field.
“I haven’t had a chance to talk to him so I am not going to comment on that,” Coughlin said.
REDSKINSWashington will be missing a defensive end itself after Jason Taylor was hurt. He’s expected to miss 10-14 days with a sprained right knee, putting his availability in doubt for the season opener against the Giants on Sept. 4.
Coach Jim Zorn said Taylor underwent an MRI on Sunday, a day after the six-time Pro Bowl pick was hurt in a 47-3 preseason loss to Carolina.
Taylor was acquired in a trade with Miami last month. He was hurt when his leg bent awkwardly after he ended up in the middle of the pile following DeAngelo Williams’ 5-yard run midway through the second quarter.
– Veteran safety Vernon Fox was among three players released yesterday as the Washington Redskins began to trim the roster.
RAIDERSOakland lost two players from its already-thin offense to season-ending knee injuries when receiver Drew Carter and fullback Oren O’Neal went down in Saturday night’s 24-0 loss to Arizona.
The Raiders, who were counting on Carter to perform after signing him to a $2 million contract in the offseason. He set career highs last season with 38 catches for 517 yards and four touchdowns for Carolina last season and was one of only three experienced receivers on Oakland’s roster.
Now the Raiders will need to look for a veteran to complement Javon Walker and Ronald Curry. Their entire backup group at wide receiver has just seven career catches.
BENGALS
Cincinnati quarterback Carson Palmer broke his nose during Saturday night’s preseason game against the New Orleans Saints, but coach Marvin Lewis said he should be ready for the regular season.
Palmer was sacked three times by the Saints in the first half, the last on a safety blitz by Kevin Kaesviharn with two seconds left. The quarterback walked off the field with blood spilling down the front of his face, his nose already showing a prominent bump. He didn’t return for the second half.
FALCONSMatt Ryan will be the Atlanta Falcons’ starting quarterback this season. The No. 3 overall draft pick was chosen Sunday by first-year Falcons coach Mike Smith.
– The Falcons signed veteran tight end Marcus Pollard on Sunday.
Pollard, a 14-year veteran, was released by New England on Wednesday. He has 349 career receptions for 4,280 yards and 40 touchdowns in 13 seasons.

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