Bad day for Rivers, Vick


Published: Monday, January 1, 2007 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, January 1, 2007 at 12:00 a.m.

Philip Rivers injured his right foot on Sunday, making the San Diego Chargers grateful for their first-round bye in the playoffs and time off for their banged-up quarterback.

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The Associated Press

Rivers was hurt when he was sacked by Arizona's Chike Okeafor late in the first quarter of San Diego's 27-20 win over Arizona. He left for a play, then returned and threw two touchdown passes before being pulled in the third quarter.

Rivers, who pulled up and limped each time he threw a pass, finally came out after some high-level huddling on the sideline that included coach Marty Schottenheimer, trainer James Collins, Dr. David Chao, offensive coordinator Cam Cameron, backup QB Billy Volek and third-stringer Charlie Whitehurst.

Later, he said he was fine.

"To me, it's not the biggest news of the day," Rivers said of the injury. "To me, it'll be a non-issue come two weeks from now. Whatever it may be, you don't want to make it worse. I think that was more the case than anything. Had this game been for all the marbles, I'd probably still been going."

Michael Vick was knocked out of Atlanta's game in Philadelphia with a sprained right ankle when he was sacked on the first play of the third quarter. Matt Schaub replaced Vick for the Falcons, who lost 24-17 in their final game of the season.

Kansas City's Trent Green was also hurt, spraining an ankle in the third quarter against Jacksonville. He missed one series but returned late in the quarter.

And Denver's Jay Cutler was knocked out of the Broncos' game with San Francisco after being hit in the head. He returned later and led his team on a game-tying touchdown drive but the 49ers won 26-23 in overtime, knocking the Broncos from the playoffs.

In Tennessee, the Patriots were upset about an injury to their strong safety and defensive leader, Rodney Harrison. Harrison hurt his right leg when blocked in the second quarter against the Tennessee Titans and didn't return.

Harrison went to the ground and slapped the turf after being blocked by Titans receiver Bobby Wade, whose helmet appeared to hit Harrison's right knee in a low block. He walked off the field on his own.

"Everyone was pretty mad about it," New England quarterback Tom Brady said.

"You keep your poise and try to let your play do the talking. I think sometimes we stooped down to the level we're playing against. We've got to find ways to overcome that type of play."

Patriots linebacker Rosevelt Colvin said it was unnecessary and hopes Harrison can return for the wild-card playoff game against the Jets.

Another playoff bound team, Seattle, lost starting cornerback Kelly Herndon, who broke his leg against Tampa Bay. He was injured tackling Tampa Bay's Joey Galloway during a leaping 44-yard reception late in the first quarter. The Seahawks also said linebacker Leroy Hill suffered a concussion. His return was questionable.

In Irving, Texas, rookie right tackle Jonathan Scott of Detroit was taken off the field with a hip injury early in the fourth quarter of the Lions' 39-31 win over the Cowboys.

Coach Rod Marinelli said after the game that Scott was being evaluated at a hospital. He didn't elaborate on the severity of the injury.

Scott was tended to by medical personal while he laid on the field for several minutes. He was then strapped to a stretcher and loaded onto a motorized cart. Scott, a fifth-round draft pick from the University of Texas, flashed a Hook 'em Horns sign with his right hand while being put on the cart.

Chicago rookie Devin Hester left late in the third quarter of Sunday's game against Green Bay after suffering a leg injury on a punt return. Hester set an NFL record with six touchdown returns. He ran back three punts, two kickoffs and a missed field goal a record-tying 108 yards.

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