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    NFL notebook

    Notes: Michael Vick will remain starter for Eagles

    Michael Vick will remain the starting quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles.

    Coach Andy Reid announced the decision on Wednesday. The Eagles are off and Reid and Vick are not scheduled to address the media again until Thursday.

    Vick, a four-time Pro Bowl quarterback, has struggled this season and Philadelphia (3-4) has lost three straight games.


    Reid didn’t endorse Vick after Sunday’s 30-17 loss to Atlanta, saying he’s going to evaluate all his starters. Vick then said he would support whatever decision Reid makes.

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    That led to speculation Vick’s days were numbered. But Reid is sticking with Vick over unproven rookie Nick Foles as of now.

    The New Orleans Saints host the Eagles Sunday night in the Superdome.

    Herzlich could start again

    New York Giants middle linebacker Mark Herzlich isn’t preparing any differently for Sunday’s game against the Pittsburgh Steelers. It’s just a little more exciting for the Boston College alumnus and cancer survivor who was the feel-good story of last season after making the Giants’ roster.

    Herzlich has a chance to get back in the starting lineup with Chase Blackburn nursing a hamstring injury.


    Blackburn, who was hurt in the Giants’ 29-24 win over Dallas, did not practice Wednesday. He spent the warm-up riding a stationary bike.

    It’s a big game for the Giants (6-2), who have used a four-game winning streak to open a 2½-game lead in the NFC East.

    Pittsburgh (4-3) will be bringing a two-game winning streak to New Jersey for its first game at MetLife Stadium.

    ‘‘This week is a big week for our team and for me, especially,’’ said Herzlich, who started two games last season before being sidelined with an ankle injury. ‘‘If I get a chance to go out there and start, then I'll go out there and make the most of it.’’

    Motion upsets ex-players

    Arguing that ‘‘football has become the site of perhaps the gravest health crisis in the history of sports,’’ lawyers for thousands of former NFL players asked a judge to reject the league’s bid to dismiss their lawsuits about concussions.


    In a brief filed in US District Court in Philadelphia, the players dispute the league’s framing of the cases as a labor issue that should be governed by the sport’s collective bargaining agreements instead of the legal system.

    Among the players’ arguments: Relevant CBAs did not address long-term brain injuries, the NFL committed fraud by concealing risks of repeated head trauma, and the league has a common-law duty to protect players.

    ‘‘The NFL knew that players were exposed to risks of severe neurological injuries, yet did nothing to prevent them,’’ the brief says, adding that the league ‘‘failed to warn players about the dangers of concussive and sub-concussive impacts,’’ did not advocate preventative rule changes, and did not ‘‘implement equipment standards adapted for head trauma.’’

    More than 100 concussion lawsuits against the NFL have been brought together before US District Judge Anita B. Brody.

    No Jaguars-Tebow talks

    The Jacksonville Jaguars are back in the middle of Tim Tebow talks again. Though this time, they say the reports are not true. A local television station reported that the Jaguars and the New York Jets were talking about a trade involving the popular quarterback. The report by Action News in Jacksonville sounded plausible since the Jaguars tried to acquire Tebow in March. But Jaguars coach Mike Mularkey says there’s no truth to the report of ongoing talks between the Jets and the Jaguars . . . Peyton Manning’s right thumbnail was covered with white tape and put under a media microscope upon his return to the football field. Manning’s throws and hand-offs at practice were unaffected by his thumb injury in his first action since smacking his throwing hand on a defender’s helmet Sunday. Manning said his thumb was ‘‘sore, but it’s more of an irritant than anything else.’’