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Judge erases Brady ban, NFL to appeal

(AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File)

NEW YORK (AP) Tom Brady learned Thursday he will start the season on the field after a judge lifted the league's four-game suspension of the star quarterback for a scandal over deflated footballs, saying he was treated unfairly by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. The league quickly appealed.

U.S. District Judge Richard M. Berman criticized Goodell for dispensing "his own brand of industrial justice" as he found multiple reasons to reject the suspension one week before New England's Sept. 10 opener against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

The Super Bowl MVP has insisted he played no role in a conspiracy to deflate footballs below the allowable limit at last season's AFC championship game, a 45-7 rout of the Indianapolis Colts.

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RG3 speaks but not about losing QB job

WASHINGTON (AP) Robert Griffin III made his first public comments since losing his job to Kirk Cousins, but didn't address the Redskins' starting quarterback situation.

Griffin spoke at a team awards luncheon attended by roughly 500 guests on Wednesday. He was honored by the Redskins for his community work with military families.

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Ex-Colt McNary found not guilty of rape

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) A jury has found former Indianapolis Colts linebacker Josh McNary not guilty of forcing a woman he met in a bar to have sex.

McNary, 27, had been charged with rape, criminal confinement and battery in the trial, which began Monday. The jury decided he was not guilty on Thursday.

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Redskins GM's wife apologizes for tweet

ASHBURN, Va. (AP) The wife of Washington Redskins general manager Scot McCloughan has apologized for "disparaging" and "unfounded" comments on her Twitter account about an ESPN reporter.

The Redskins issued a statement on behalf of Jessica McCloughan on Wednesday night in which she acknowledged making the remarks, which said the reporter exchanged sexual favors for information.

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Former Bears LB Briggs plans to retire

CHICAGO (AP) Lance Briggs, a seven-time Pro Bowl linebacker who helped the Chicago Bears reach the Super Bowl, plans to retire.

Briggs said Wednesday afternoon during CSN Chicago's telecast of the Cubs' game against the Reds at Wrigley Field that he is ready to call it a career.

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Raiders sign free agent LB Alexander

ALAMEDA, Calif. (AP) The Oakland Raiders have signed free agent linebacker Lorenzo Alexander.

The Raiders waived linebacker Horace Miller on Wednesday to make room on the roster.

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Panthers extend QB Anderson for 2 years

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) The Carolina Panthers have signed backup quarterback Derek Anderson to a two-year contract extension that will keep him with the team through the 2017 season, providing depth and experience behind Cam Newton.

Financial terms of the deal were not announced Wednesday.

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Bears get TE Lee from Texans for pick

LAKE FOREST, Ill. (AP) The Chicago Bears have acquired tight end Khari Lee from the Houston Texans for a 2017 sixth-round draft pick.

A product of Division II Bowie State, Lee entered the league as an undrafted free agent this year. He had 107 receptions for 1,255 yards and four touchdowns over 40 games in college.

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Ex-49ers owner DeBartolo Hall finalist

CANTON, Ohio (AP) Edward DeBartolo Jr., who as owner of the 49ers helped build one of the NFL's dynasties, is a finalist for the 2016 class of the Pro Football Hall of Fame as a contributor.

DeBartolo was nominated Wednesday by the nine-member contributors committee. Elections will be held on Feb. 6, the night before the Super Bowl. DeBartolo, 68, must receive 80 percent of the ballots to be elected to the Hall of Fame.

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Ex-NFL RB Phillips charged with murder

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (AP) Former NFL running back Lawrence Phillips has been charged with murder in the death of his cellmate at a Central California prison.

Phillips is suspected of killing 37-year-old Damion Soward at Kern Valley State Prison in April. Officials determined Soward was strangled.

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