EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. — Brett Favre's ironman streak has endured a litany of injuries and even two premature retirement news conferences.
Perhaps this is the week that, finally, Favre's health prevents him from playing.
The Minnesota quarterback, 41, has a stress fracture in his left ankle that could end his NFL-record streak at 291 consecutive starts — 315 including the playoffs.
Vikings coach Brad Childress said Monday that an MRI on Favre's foot revealed the stress fracture as well as an "avulsion" fracture in the heel bone. An avulsion fracture occurs when a bone fragment is torn away by a tendon or ligament. Childress said neither injury requires surgery.
Childress said Favre wore a walking boot around the practice facility Monday, a day after a 28-24 loss at Green Bay.
Childress says the NFL apologized for an overturned touchdown by Visanthe Shiancoe late in the second quarter. Childress said NFL vice president of officiating Carl Johnson acknowledged the mistake — a revelation that in itself might draw a fine for the coach, ESPN reported, for revealing a private communication from the league. During a radio interview with KFAN, Childress said, "That's the worst officiated game I've seen."
DOLPHINS-STEELERS FLAP: Former NFL vice president of officiating Mike Pereira said the lone officiating error — a biggie — in Sunday's controversial call toward the end of the Dolphins-Steelers game was the initial ruling of a touchdown for Pittsburgh quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. After that, Pereira said, the crew handled the situation correctly, despite debate about the replay review and explanation of the final ruling. Replays showed Roethlisberger fumbling before the end zone. Pereira, now the officiating analyst for Fox, said any ruling on the field as to which team recovered the ball was irrelevant, because the play is considered over when a touchdown signal is given, and the officials don't continue to officiate. If the linesman hadn't signaled a touchdown, the ensuing scrum for the ball in the end zone would have determined possession.
OFFICIAL'S INJURY: A hospitalized chain crew member's son says he's optimistic about his father's recovery from a head injury from a collision. Sunday, Al Nastasi Jr. was accidentally knocked to the Louisiana Superdome turf by the Saints' Courtney Roby. Al Nastasi III said his father is under observation.
BEARS: Coach Lovie Smith said he should have demanded a replay challenge when Jay Cutler fumbled on a quarterback sneak at the Redskins' 1-yard line early in the third quarter Sunday. Replays showed the ball crossed the plane of the goal line before it was knocked it out.
CARDINALS: Rookie quarterback Max Hall will start Sunday against the Bucs if he can pass required tests after being knocked out against Seattle.
JAGUARS: Starting quarterback David Garrard has to pass post-concussion tests today to be cleared to practice, but he said he expects to return this week. … Right tackle Eben Britton (torn labrum, right shoulder) will have season-ending surgery.
PACKERS: Coach Mike McCarthy said linebacker Brady Poppinga (knee) and defensive lineman Mike Neal (shoulder) are expected to have season-ending surgery.
RAMS: Running back Steven Jackson had surgery on his broken left ring finger, getting two pins put in. Coach Steve Spagnuolo said Jackson broke the finger Sunday against the Bucs.
SAINTS: Reggie Bush was optimistic that he could practice this week and play Sunday against Pittsburgh. The running back has missed five games since fracturing his right fibula in Week 2.
OBITUARY: Vince "Bananas" Banonis, the starting center for the Lions' league championship teams in 1952-53, died Saturday in Michigan, the team said. He was 89. The former star at the University of Detroit, inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1986, also played for the 1947 NFL champion Chicago Cardinals.