Report: Pats approach Rams about McDaniels

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Report: Pats approach Rams about McDaniels

Meet the new offensive coordinator, same as the old offensive coordinator?
Maybe.
Bryan Burwell of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch quotes a "well-placed league source" in reporting the Patriots are one of two teams -- Scott Pioli's Chiefs, to no one's surprise, is the other -- to approach the Rams about permission to speak to Josh McDaniels. (UPDATE: Albert Breer of the NFL Network reported Friday afternoon that the Rams have granted permission to both teams.) McDaniels was the Pats' offensive coordinator from 2006-08 (though it's assumed he was also the de-facto O.C. in 2005, the year after Charlie Weis left the post) before taking over as head coach of the Denver Broncos in 2009. He was fired by the Broncos late in the 2010 season and spent this past year as offensive coordinator for the Rams.
St. Louis fired head coach Steve Spagnolo earlier this week, and a new coach would probably bring in a new staff . . . though it's also rumored that ex-Titans coach Jeff Fisher, one of the contenders for the Rams' job, is interested in retaining McDaniels.

Patriots-Steelers injury report: Seven Pats listed as questionable

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Patriots-Steelers injury report: Seven Pats listed as questionable

FOXBORO -- The Patriots will head into Sunday's AFC title game with seven players listed as questionable, including three receivers. 

Danny Amendola, Malcolm Mitchell and Chris Hogan have all been limited in practices this week due to their injuries. Amendola has been dealing with an ankle issue since a Week 13 win over the Rams, while Mitchell has not played since injuring his knee in Week 16 against the Jets. Hogan suffered a thigh injury against the Texans and left the game in the third quarter.

Both Hogan and Mitchell indicated this week that they were moving in the right direction in terms of their recoveries. One would think that the Patriots would need at least one, if not both, to help stress the back end of the Steelers secondary this weekend.

Hogan has been the team's most consistent down-the-field threat this season, averaging a whopping 17.9 yards per catch during the regular season. Against the Texans, before his injury, he reeled in four passes for 95 yards. 

Mitchell, meanwhile, had a very productive second half of his rookie season before he was hurt. He compiled 25 catches for 306 yards between Weeks 11 and 16, establishing himself as one of Tom Brady's go-to targets. 

The overall health of the Patriots receiving corps -- which will also include Julian Edelman and Michael Floyd -- will bear watching when the Patriots and Steelers kick off in two days.

The injury report for Sunday's Patriots-Steelers game:

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

QUESTIONABLE
WR Danny Amendola (ankle)
TE Martellus Bennett (knee)
RB Brandon Bolden (knee)
LB Dont'a Hightower (shoulder)
WR Chris Hogan (thigh)
WR Malcolm Mitchell (knee)
DL Jabaal Sheard (knee)

PITTSBURGH STEELERS

QUESTIONABLE
TE Ladarius Green (concussion/illness)
LB James Harrison (shoulder/triceps)
RB Fitzgerald Toussaint (concussion)

NOT LISTED
RB Le'Veon Bell (not injury related)
K Chris Boswell (illness)
LB Anthony Chickillo (ankle)
S Sean Davis (shoulder)
C B.J. Finney (illness)
WR Darrius Heyward-Bay (illness)
DE Ricardo Mathews (ankle)
QB Zach Mettenberger (illness)
S Michael Mitchell (not injury related)
QB Ben Roethlisberger (not injury related)
LB Vince Williams (shoulder)