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Panthers QB Newton returns to practice field (Yahoo Sports)

Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton (1) walks around the edge of the field during warmup before the NFL preseason football game against the Pittsburgh Steelers Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014, in Pittsburgh. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

Cam Newton is back in pads - dramatically oversized pads. The Panthers two-time Pro Bowl quarterback returned to practice Monday wearing a long, bulky flak jacket designed to provide added protection for his healing fractured ribs. Newton smiled and even stopped to pose for a picture before practice with his newly enhanced armor. Coach Ron Rivera reiterated that he expects Newton to play in the season opener Sunday at Tampa Bay.

Bills WR Watkins practices after hurting ribs (Yahoo Sports)

Buffalo Bills wide receiver Sammy Watkins (14) talks to medical staff during the first half of a preseason NFL football game against the Detroit Lions, Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014, in Orchard Park, N.Y. (AP Photo/Gary Wiepert)

Buffalo Bills rookie receiver Sammy Watkins is still experiencing soreness after returning to practice for the first time since aggravating a rib injury last week. The first-round draft pick practiced fully Monday, and says he is preparing to play Sunday, when Buffalo opens the season at Chicago. Watkins declined to reveal the nature of the injury except to say follow-up tests showed it is something more than bruised ribs. He was initially hurt in the first quarter of a 19-16 preseason loss at Pittsburgh on Aug. 16.

Jerry Jones: Cowboys looking at 'uphill battle' (Yahoo Sports)

Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett walks along the sideline in the second half of a NFL preseason football game against the Denver Broncos, Thursday, Aug. 28. 2014, in Arlington, Texas. (AP Photo/Brandon Wade)

Jerry Jones opened training camp with stories about how young his Dallas Cowboys were. The Cowboys have 34-year-old quarterback Tony Romo coming off back surgery, and Rolando McClain possibly starting at middle linebacker just a few months after deciding to retire. Not to mention a defensive line lacking star - and possibly pass-rushing - power heading into Sunday's opener against San Francisco. ''I think there is a difference being optimistic and assessing the odds,'' Jones said after the Cowboys finished a winless preseason with a 27-3 loss to last week.

Titans go for experience at kicker in Ryan Succop (Yahoo Sports)

FILE - This is a 2014, file photo showing Ryan Succop of the Kansas City Chiefs NFL football team. Veteran kicker Succop has agreed to a one-year deal with the Tennessee Titans who chose to go with experience rather than an undrafted rookie. Agent Joel Turner said Monday, Sept. 1, 2014, that Succop is happy with a

The Tennessee Titans preferred to go into the season with an experienced kicker, not with an undrafted rookie. They feel they got the best one still available in Ryan Succop. The Titans agreed to a one-year deal with Succop on Monday and waived rookie Travis Coons to make space. "There were a number of guys that were available or that were out there," coach Ken Whisenhunt said of Succop.

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