NFL

Updated at 7:15 a.m. ET:

The Minnesota Vikings announced early Wednesday morning that they had placed running back Adrian Peterson on the exempt/commissioner's permission list.

The change to Peterson's status "will require that Adrian remain away from all team activities while allowing him to take care of his personal situation until the legal proceedings are resolved," according to a statement issued by the team.

In the seventh round of the NFL draft, the St. Louis Rams picked Michael Sam, making him the first openly gay player to be drafted by a pro football team.

Sam, who played for Missouri in college, came out earlier this year in media interviews with ESPN and The New York Times. His team and coaches knew his sexual orientation before the interviews, but kept it private for his final college season.

A federal judge rejected a preliminary approval of a $765 million settlement over NFL concussion claims.

U.S. District Judge Anita B. Brody said she was concerned the settlement may not be enough to cover all retired players.

The AP adds:

"'I am primarily concerned that not all retired NFL football players who ultimately receive a qualifying diagnosis or their (families) ... will be paid,' Brody wrote in a 12-page opinion filed Tuesday morning.

photo courtesy flickr.com/dbking

When the Philadelphia Eagles defeated the Dallas Cowboys Sunday night, many Texas football fans hung their heads. 

But with an Eagles victory comes an NFC wild-card game that could answer a definitive question for Central Texas high school football fans: Who was the greatest Westlake quarterback?

A decade apart, New Orleans Saints' quarterback Drew Brees and the Philadelphia Eagles' Nick Foles both led the Westlake Chapparals to state championships and remain among the most storied players in the school's history. But tomorrow's NFC wild-card game could prove, at least this season, who the best Chap in the NFL really is.

There was a 108-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.

A last-minute drive that could have won the game for San Francisco.

An MVP performance by Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco.

The four NFL players who were fined and given multi-game suspensions for their alleged parts in the New Orleans Saints' "bountygate" scheme that paid bonuses for injuring opposing players have had their punishments vacated, the league says.

The not-so-long, not-so-much of a national nightmare is over.

Regular NFL officials will be on the field starting with tonight's game now that the league and its referees union have reached tentative agreement on a new, eight-year contract.

Though the nation's football fans — from President Obama and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney to the average couch quarterback — are begging the two sides to settle their contract dispute so that regular NFL referees can come back to work, there seems to be no clear reason to think that's going to happen in time for this week's games.

Despite complaints from NFL coaches and players, the league and its locked-out officials are no closer to reaching a deal than they were last week, according to reports. The two sides are separated by "significant and serious economic gaps," an anonymous source tells the AP.

A representative of the NFL Referees Association confirmed that talks had taken place, but he would not go into detail, the AP reports.

twitter.com/VinceYoung

Vince Young has taken to Twitter to defend himself against media scrutiny, including reports the former Longhorn has hit hard times. Yesterday, Young tweeted

"It’s a shame to see people revel in and rally around negativity in the media but I guess it’s to be expected. Yes, I need a job, who doesn’t.”

Young has taken to Twitter ever since the Associated Press released a story describing his financial and occupational difficulties.

The AP wrote on Wednesday that “Vince Young finds himself without a team and with only a fraction of the money he received from a contract that guaranteed him $26 million.” A quote from his attorney was also included, stating: "I would just say that Vince needs a job."

In his defense, Young tweeted the following:

We are working to rectify some unfortunate finical (sic) losses, which stemmed from betrayal by those I trusted most.

But these rumors are disheartening & just untrue . I’ll keep pushing through regardless. God Bless. Trill