Jackson may miss Seahawks' game
Published: Saturday, January 13, 2007 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, January 13, 2007 at 12:00 a.m.
KIRKLAND, Wash. — Darrell Jackson's on-and-off status now seems closer to "off."
- NFC: Seahawks at Bears, 1 p.m. (FOX)
- AFC: Patriots at Chargers, 4:30 p.m. (CBS)
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The Seahawks' leading receiver unexpectedly missed practice again Friday, just before the team boarded an afternoon flight to Chicago for Sunday's NFC divisional playoff game against the Bears. Coach Mike Holmgren said the former Florida Gator's availability will be a game-time decision.
Holmgren had said at the beginning of the week that he expected Jackson, listed as questionable with a turf toe injury on his left foot, would practice by Friday and that he was "likely" to play Sunday.
Now, Holmgren's not so sure about him — or D.J. Hackett. The emerging fourth receiver sprained his ankle during last week's win over Dallas and is listed as doubtful against the Bears (13-3).
"Those will be Sunday decisions," Holmgren said. "They're going to have to show me something (during pregame drills) that tells me they can play."
It's yet another setback in season full of injuries for the defending NFC champions.
Last Saturday was the first time this season Seattle (10-7) had all of its receivers available for a game. The Seahawks started their ninth different combination of offensive linemen against the Cowboys. They have also played without quarterback Matt Hasselbeck, last season's league MVP Shaun Alexander and tight end Jerramy Stevens for at least a month each.
"Kind of the way it's gone," Holmgren said of Jackson not practicing. "But I'm hopeful we'll have one or both (Jackson and Hackett) Sunday."
Jackson, who was leading the NFL in touchdown receptions before his injury caused him to miss the final three games of the regular season, also missed practice Wednesday and Thursday. He missed all practices last week before he ran 21 plays against Dallas.
Jackson pulled himself from that game one play into the third quarter because he said the pain had become unbearable. He had two passes come his way but no catches.
By midweek Jackson was optimistic he would play in Chicago, where Seattle will be seeking its first road playoff win since 1983.
"I'm going to play as much as I can, suck the pain up as much as I can," Jackson said. "Try to give our team another weapon out there."
BRONCOS HIRE BATES
The Denver Broncos hired former Green Bay defensive coordinator Jim Bates as assistant head coach/defense Thursday, and promoted defensive backs coach Bob Slowik to defensive coordinator.
Bates, 60, was defensive coordinator for the Packers in 2005 and for the Miami Dolphins from 2000-04, including seven games as interim head coach in 2004. He has coached in the NFL for 15 years, and was a former defensive coordinator at Florida under Steve Spurrier.
Slowik, 52, was defensive coordinator for Green Bay in 2004, the Cleveland Browns in 1999 and the Chicago Bears in 1993-98. He coached the Broncos' defensive backs for the past two seasons.
GONZALEZ AGREES TO EXTENSION
Tony Gonzalez has agreed to a five-year contract extension with the Kansas City Chiefs that keeps him the highest-paid tight end in the NFL.
The eight-time Pro Bowler, just two touchdown catches short of the league record for his position, will receive about $17 million in guaranteed money, a person close to the negotiations told The Associated Press. The person requested anonymity because he was not authorized to disclose the information.
Chiefs general manager Carl Peterson said the 30-year-old Gonzalez will remain the league's top-paid tight end.
"And I think he deserves to be," Peterson told the AP on Friday. "I personally think he's the best tight end in the NFL today, and has been for many years."
A 10-year veteran, Gonzalez enjoyed one of his best seasons while helping Kansas City to a 9-7 regular-season record and its first playoff appearance since 2003. Although hampered by a shoulder injury, he caught 73 passes for a team-high 900 yards, with five touchdowns. He also scored the Chiefs' only TD in a 23-8 loss to Indianapolis in the first round of the playoffs.
OWENS REPORTEDLY HAS SURGERY
Cowboys receiver Terrell Owens had surgery in Miami to repair a torn tendon in his right ring finger, two newspapers reported Friday.
"The doctor is very optimistic," Owens told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. "I am happy I had the surgery. I am happy with the news he gave me that I will return to 100 percent."
The Dallas Morning News also reported that Owens had surgery. The Cowboys wouldn't comment when contacted by The Associated Press on Friday.
Owens caught 85 passes for 1,180 yards and an NFL-high 13 touchdowns, but injured the finger in the latter part of the season and was plagued by drops. The Cowboys dropped four of their last five games, lost their grip on the NFC East and fell to Seattle 21-20 in a wild-card playoff game last weekend.
RAIDERS INTERVIEW ASSISTANT
Oakland Raiders defensive coordinator Rob Ryan interviewed Friday for the team's head coaching vacancy.
Ryan followed former New York Giants coach Jim Fassel and Southern California quarterbacks coach Steve Sarkisian to interview to replace the fired Art Shell. Ryan is the only defensive coach to interview so far.
The son of former Philadelphia and Arizona coach Buddy Ryan, Rob Ryan was the coordinator of the NFL's third-ranked defense. While the offense struggled all season, scoring only 12 touchdowns, Oakland's defense was one of the only bright spots in a 2-14 season.
BUCS PROMOTE COACH
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers promoted Casey "Gus" Bradley to linebackers coach on Friday.
Bradley, the team's defensive quality control coach in 2006, replaces Joe Barry, who left this month to become Detroit's defensive coordinator.
Bradley was an assistant at North Dakota State for 10 seasons before joining the Bucs last year.
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