Chris Hogan (thigh) remained "limited" in Thursday's practice.
Hogan seems fully on track to suit up against the Steelers. He'll be a risk/reward WR3 in DFS leagues.
Raiders RCB Sean Smith is recovering from shoulder surgery.
"He's going to be just fine," were the words of GM Reggie McKenzie on Thursday. Smith missed Week 9 with a shoulder ailment. Headed into the second season of a four-year, $40 million contract, Smith was literally benched in Week 1 before settling into a decent campaign. Turning 30 in July, Smith will return as a 2017 starter.
Taylor Gabriel (foot) remained "limited" in Thursday's practice.
The Falcons are just managing Gabriel's reps ahead of Sunday's NFC title tilt.
James Starks (concussion) has yet to resume practicing.
Starks hasn't played since Week 14. It's surprising he hasn't been placed on injured reserve. The Pack are holding him in reserve for a potential Super Bowl appearance.
Jordy Nelson (ribs) participated without pads in Thursday's practice.
It means he hasn't been cleared for contact. He should remain "limited" on the injury report, which has him ahead of Davante Adams (ankle) and Geronimo Allison (hamstring). Coach Mike McCarthy indicated Thursday that both Adams and Allison will likely suit up against the Falcons. Nelson's status isn't clear, but he's certainly giving himself a shot to be active for the biggest game of the season. If Nelson does play, he obviously won't be in for his usual complement of snaps. The Pack could have to lean on Trevor Davis and Jeff Janis.
Ladarius Green (concussion, illness) was downgraded to "DNP" on Thursday.
It's the worst possible news after Green got in a "limited" session on Wednesday, though the flu is apparently going through the Steelers' locker room. Either way, with his latest head injury continuing to linger, Green is unlikely to suit up for the AFC Championship Game, leaving Jesse James as the Steelers' No. 1 "seam stretcher." The Steelers' offense has been operating at an extremely high level, but lacks viable weapons behind Le'Veon Bell and Antonio Brown.RotoGrinders.com Daily Slant:
If he's ultimately unable to suit up, Jesse James would start at tight end and be a viable option in GPPs given the lack of quality choices at the position. Still, our ownership projections don't display a large gap between James and Jared Cook - about 38% for Cook vs. 20% James - meaning there's not a huge advantage to be gained from a game theory perspective by pivoting to the lesser TE.
Free agent Johnny Manziel admits he was "lost in the sauce" last year.
Manziel also called himself a name, and said he's now focusing on "trying to be a good PERSON." He's apparently attempting a comeback. Manziel is still only 24, but a no-room-for-error "prospect" who's been a disaster off the field is going to be disappointed if he's waiting for the phone to ring.
Even if the Raiders are approved for relocation to Las Vegas, they plan to play the next two seasons in Oakland.
That should go swimmingly. Owner Mark Davis has no other choice, as Las Vegas doesn't have a suitable temporary venue, unlike Los Angeles and its ancient football stadiums and modern soccer parks. The NFL has handled the relocation of three of its 32 franchises in disastrous fashion the past two years.