Former Garfield standout Beanie Wells will be back in the Arizona Cardinals backfield on Sunday against the St. Louis Rams.
The Rams remember him all too well.
The last time Wells faced them, almost exactly a year ago, he rushed for a franchise-record 228 yards in a 23-20 Arizona victory in St. Louis.
With Wells coming back from an injury and the Rams defense greatly improved, no one is expecting anything close to that this time around. But the presence of a healthy Wells is a welcome addition to a team looking to end a six-game losing streak with a rookie quarterback, Ryan Lindley, making his first NFL start.
“I feel great,” Wells said. “I’m excited to finally be able to say ‘I feel great.’ I feel good enough to go out there and do my job at a high level.”’
What was described as a “severe turf toe” injury sustained by Wells in Arizona’s victory over Philadelphia in week three was the official reason he was placed on the NFL’s new inured/designated for return list, but the true benefit was to his right knee, which had not fully recovered after arthroscopic surgery following last season.
“To me it was all for the knee,” he said. “My toe, I didn’t think it was a big issue, but it is what it is. I feel like it was a blessing in disguise that it did happen because it gave me enough time to get my knee back to where it needed to be.”
Under the new NFL rule, Wells had to be out eight weeks, which translated to seven games because of Arizona’s bye week. Shortly after Wells’ injury, his replacement Ryan Williams went down with a season-ending ankle injury. That left the running game to LaRod Stephens-Howling, a 5-foot-7 player more accustomed to a situational role.
Around the league
The New York Jets signed wide receiver Jordan White and cornerbacks Donnie Fletcher and Darrin Walls from the practice squad, hours before the team’s game Thursday night against the New England Patriots. The Patriots released wide receiver Greg Salas and activated rookie offensive lineman Markus Zusevics to the 53-man roster from the reserve/non-football injury list.… Receiver Julio Jones was limited in his return to practice for the Atlanta Falcons.
Big Ben is proud papa
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and his wife Ashley are giving thanks for their bundle of joy.
Benjamin Roethlisberger Jr. arrived Wednesday at 10:06 p.m., according to the athlete’s website. The couple’s first child weighed 7 pounds, 1 ounce, and was just over 19 inches long.
The quarterback posted Thursday that mother and baby boy were doing well.
“We want to thank everyone for their thoughts and prayers, it really means a lot to us. God is so good!” he wrote.
Roethlisberger made an appearance Thursday at a team facility in Pittsburgh, smiling and waving to a well-wisher who congratulated him as he left practice about 30 minutes early. He had previously been scratched from Sunday’s game against Cleveland because of rib injuries.
Offensive lineman Willie Colon said afterward that Roethlisberger “came in with that big old proud papa chest.”
Teammate Max Starks said that the quarterback seemed very excited.