Whispers from around the NFL

• Our sources tell us that Dolphins DE Jason Taylor's sore back won't force him to miss the regular-season opener at Pittsburgh. However, after injuring the back early in camp and being sidelined for 12 practices, Taylor is taking things slowly and will play sparingly in the remaining preseason games.

• With Tedy Bruschi out until September and with Monty Beisel ailing with an injured hand, word is the Patriots' signing of recently retired Junior Seau is an indication of how concerned they are about their ILB depth. Though the 37-year-old Seau has played in only 15 games the past two years because of injury, the team believes his experience and ability are an upgrade over the reserves on the roster.

• Word is the Jets' medical staff made the determination that RB Lee Suggs' surgically repaired knee would not hold up over the long haul. That resulted in the failed physical, voiding the trade that had sent CB Derrick Strait to Cleveland for Suggs. Interestingly, while Suggs has had myriad injuries (ankle, thumb, neck, toe, shoulder) during his short NFL career, the knee injury is an old one, suffered when he was at Virginia Tech. He hadn't missed a practice with the Browns this summer.