My weekly Thursday live chat begins at 3:00 p.m. ET and promises to be filled with LenDale jokes, waiver-wire suggestions, and people complaining about me not sticking strictly to football questions. If that sounds like fun or you're just looking for an excuse not to do anything productive this afternoon, come check it out.
While my life gradually turns into a never-ending live chat, here are some notes from around football .
* As if being steamrolled for 332 rushing yards in Week 7 wasn't bad enough, the Chiefs spent Wednesday handing Larry Johnson a one-game suspension for his latest off-field issue and placing both Brodie Croyle and Damon Huard on injured reserve. Tyler Thigpen will be the overmatched starter while Quinn Gray tries to learn the offense, so things are about to get even uglier for poor Dwayne Bowe.
Croyle has been viewed as the Chiefs' long-term quarterback since they selected him in the third round of the 2006 draft, but he's 0-8 as an NFL starter, can't stay healthy, and turns 26 years old a week after the Super Bowl. He'll probably get a chance to compete for the job with a first-day draft pick next season, but coach Herm Edwards summed the situation up when he said: "We've got to move on."
* Edwards said that the decision to suspend Johnson was his, because the NFL has yet to step in with discipline of their own after the running back was recently accused of assaulting a woman for the fourth time in five years. In other words, Johnson is no sure thing to be back in the lineup next week. Kolby Smith will get the nod in his place Sunday after gaining just 20 yards on 10 carries last week.
Smith's measly 2.0 yards per carry came against the Titans' vaunted run defense and he should have more success against the Jets, but don't expect much given that he'll be splitting snaps and losing third-down work to rookie Jamaal Charles. Neither player is more than a mediocre RB3/FLEX play, but Charles might be the better option in PPR leagues.
* Brian Westbrook somewhat surprisingly put in a complete practice Wednesday, signaling that he's a near-lock to return this week. Westbrook may get a slightly lighter workload than usual, with Correll Buckhalter stealing some snaps to keep him and his broken ribs fresh, but he's a must-start and upper-level RB1 option against the Falcons' shaky run defense.
* Sammy Morris sat out the Patriots' entire practice Wednesday after injuring his knee Monday night, which is a sign that he's unlikely to suit up versus the Rams. Morris owners should check back on his status Friday to make sure, but for now it looks like LaMont Jordan will get the start after sitting out three straight games with a calf injury of his own. If Jordan is the clear starter, he's a RB3/FLEX play.
* Adam Schefter of NFL Network reported Wednesday that Matt Hasselbeck will not return this week despite "making some progress" with his back injury, so it'll be Seneca Wallace making his second straight start. Wallace looked absolutely awful Sunday night against the Bucs, but the 49ers are a less daunting matchup and he's a decent low-level QB2 option.
* Kellen Winslow has appealed his one-game suspension, with a hearing set for Friday or Saturday, but there's speculation that the Browns will simply make him inactive even if the punishment is overruled. That would involve paying Winslow over $235,000 to sit, but the Browns seem pretty committed to being without him either way. Steve Heiden would fill in versus the Jaguars and be a nice TE2 play.
Two-Minute Drill: Amid rumors that he's playing through some sort of arm injury, Brett Favre is absent from the injury report . Willie Parker (knee) is absent from the injury report and will start against the Giants, but figures to lose major snaps to Mewelde Moore . Coach Wade Phillips has taken over play-calling duties for the Cowboys' sagging defense . New coach Mike Singletary gave his offensive coordinator a vote of confidence Wednesday, saying that he has "full confidence in Mike Martz and his staff going forward" . Jason Campbell (groin) is absent from the injury report heading into a great matchup versus the Lions . One day after revealing that the Ravens have a bounty on Hines Ward, Terrell Suggs said Wednesday that Troy Smith should be starting over Joe Flacco . Rams safety O.J. Atogwe made a great play to pick off a rare Brad Johnson deep ball Sunday and has 10 interceptions over his last 14 games . Jerry Porter said Wednesday that he expects his role in the offense to increase, but it won't happen this week with Matt Jones' suspension apparently being delayed . Eddie Kennison could be done in the NFL after he was released Wednesday by the Rams.
Red Zone:Anquan Boldin practiced Wednesday after having the wires removed from his surgically repaired jaw and looks likely to return this week, but may be a game-time call . Steven Jackson missed practice Wednesday, but said that his quadriceps injury "is definitely going in the right direction" . Justin Gage (knee) put in a limited practice Wednesday, giving him a shot to block for Chris Johnson and LenDale White against the Colts . Jeremy Shockey (groin) missed practice Wednesday, leaving his Week 8 status up in the air . Laveranues Coles (head) and Jerricho Cotchery (shoulder) are both uncertain to play this week after being limited in Wednesday's practice . Jay Cutler (finger) took part in Wednesday's bye-week practice, with coach Mike Shanahan saying that "he'll be OK" for Week 9 . According to Colts boss Bill Polian, Joseph Addai (hamstring) has a "50-50" chance to return Sunday after putting in a limited practice Wednesday . Various reports suggest that Felix Jones (hamstring) won't be back until after Dallas' bye in Week 10 . Drew Bennett (foot) remains several weeks from playing and may be placed on season-ending injured reserve.