Fox's long run ends in Carolina

As John Fox left the practice field Friday, he insisted he has known about his impending departure for about two years.

A few hours later, the Carolina Panthers formally announced the end of his nine-year run in which he led the franchise to its only Super Bowl as the contracts of Fox and the rest of his staff wouldn’t be renewed after Sunday’s game at Atlanta.

“It’s been a lot of great memories, a lot of fond memories, a lot of great relationships and something I’ll cherish forever,” Fox said. “Now (I’ll) just embark on the next chapter.”

Fox was first denied a contract extension after the 2008 season. He is 78-73, which includes the franchise’s only Super Bowl appearance after the 2003 season.


Jon Kitna is listed as questionable for the Dallas Cowboys’ season finale.

The Lincoln High grad did not practice Friday, increasing the odds that quarterback Stephen McGee will make the first start of his NFL career Sunday in Philadelphia.

Kitna hasn’t practiced because of a muscle in his side that hurts when he throws.

David Buehler might not be kicking extra points and field goals as six days after he missed an extra point in the 28-27 loss to Arizona, the Cowboys signed kicker Kris Brown, who could be used against Philadelphia.


The NFL has reduced the fines for Atlanta’s Dunta Robinson and New England’s Brandon Meriweather, both cited for flagrant hits against defenseless receivers.

Robinson’s fine was reduced from $50,000 to $25,000. Meriweather’s went from $50,000 to $40,000.

Robinson’s hit on Philadelphia wide receiver DeSean Jackson left both with concussions, and Meriweather picked up a 15-yard penalty for unnecessary roughness after hitting Baltimore tight end Todd Heap in the head.

Vikings quarterback Joe Webb was fined $5,000 for a major facemask penalty against Philadelphia.


A tornado warning siren alerted the St. Louis Rams to bad weather, sending them indoors to finish practice Friday at Rams Park. ... The Vikings listed quarterback Brett Favre as doubtful for Sunday’s game at Detroit because of lingering effects of a concussion. ... Texans Pro Bowl receiver Andre Johnson will miss Houston’s game against Jacksonville and will have arthroscopic surgery on his right ankle. ... Jets coach Rex Ryan declined to comment on a new set of foot-fetish photos that allegedly feature his wife, calling it “a personal matter.” ... Pierre Thomas appeared to hurt his left ankle at practice, and the Saints running back was listed as questionable for Sunday’s game against Tampa Bay. ... Jacksonville running back Maurice Jones-Drew will not play at Houston because of a knee injury. ... Buffalo starting quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick is questionable for Sunday’s season finale against the New York Jets because of a right knee injury. ... Cleveland running back Peyton Hillis missed his third practice in a row because of sore ribs. ... Receiver Chad Ochocinco will miss Cincinnati’s game in Baltimore with a bad left ankle that needs surgery. ... Giants Pro Bowl center Shaun O’Hara (Achilles’ tendon), receiver Hakeem Nicks (broken big toe) and backup defensive lineman Dave Tollefson (knee) will not play against the Redskins.