Washington Redskins fullback Mike Sellers apologized Saturday for throwing the American flag to the ground during lineup introductions before an exhibition game against the New England Patriots.
"I meant no disrespect," he said.
Sellers said he acted in the "heat of the moment" Friday night. He said he's aware of proper conduct when it comes to the flag and should have known better, having grown up in an Army family.
The Redskins last year began a routine in which the last person introduced before a game runs out of the tunnel hoisting the American flag. Sellers carried the flag to midfield, then flung it down near the 50-yard line before joining his teammates in a midfield huddle. Linebacker Robert Hanson removed the flag from the turf.
"I made a mistake by setting it down the way I did, and I apologize if I offended anybody out there," Sellers said. "I was asked to bring it out, last minute, didn't know who to give it to. I got hyped up and put the flag down. It was in the heat of the moment."
BENGALS: Released cornerback Jamar Fletcher, a ninth-year player who appeared in 11 games for them last season.
EAGLES: Two-time Pro Bowl offensive lineman Shawn Andrews practiced for the first time since reinjuring his surgically repaired back and hopes to play the season opener against Carolina on Sept. 13.
Meanwhile, Michael Vick will play in the Eagles' final preseason game Thursday night against the New York Jets at the Meadowlands, and might even take some snaps as a conventional quarterback.
49ERS: Former Pro Bowl offensive tackle Marvel Smith retired after being plagued by back problems during training camp.
Smith won two Super Bowl rings with Pittsburgh and made the Pro Bowl in 2004. Smith started 108 regular-season games with Pittsburgh but only played five games last season. He had surgery on his back in November and missed the Super Bowl.
Smith signed a two-year deal with San Francisco in the offseason. He was losing his battle for the starting right tackle job to Adam Snyder.
PATRIOTS: Coach Bill Belichick says Tom Brady left Friday night's exhibition game so the coaches could look at the backup - not because of injury.
The team had announced at the game that Brady had a sore right shoulder. Belichick said in a conference call Saturday it was a "football decision" to remove him.
VIKINGS: Defensive end Jared Allen is expected to play Monday night at Houston after sitting out Minnesota's previous preseason game with a sprained ankle.