NFL Nation reporters assess the top storylines to watch for every team on Friday.NFC East | NFC North | NFC South | NFC West AFC East | AFC North| AFC South | AFC WestNFC EASTDallas CowboysAs the Cowboys look to pare down their roster to the 53-man limit, they will actually trim the roster even more because they plan to be active in waiver claims. The Cowboys will be fourth in the claiming order for the first month of the season and in position to add players at need positions such as pass rush and offensive line. The roster that the Cowboys end with Saturday wont be the same as the roster they have at practice Monday. -- Todd ArcherNew York GiantsThe Giants have some decisions to make at wide receiver. Victor Cruz flashed on one play but didnt catch a pass in the preseason finale. He did remain healthy for the second time in five days, however. That was a big step. The Giants have to find room for wide receiver Tavarres King. He completed a strong spring and summer with an eye-opening performance Thursday night against the Patriots. King had four catches for 89 yards, including a 59-yard score in the third quarter. -- Jordan RaananPhiladelphia EaglesExpect the Eagles to be active over the next several days as they look to add talent at key positions, including wide receiver. Rookie Paul Turner had another productive outing Thursday against the Jets, which included a 71-yard punt return for a touchdown. But that wont stop general manager Howie Roseman from trying to upgrade a group that had a less-than-spectacular summer overall. Whether by trade or by waiver wire, hell be on the lookout for moves to bolster the lower half of the roster. -- Tim McManusWashington RedskinsThe Redskins have a number of players who made decisions a lot tougher when it comes to final cuts based on their performance in the preseason finale vs. Tampa Bay. Safety Deshazor Everett and running back Mack Brown, both of whom likely would have been off the roster, might have played their way on. Everett is an excellent special-teams player, which helps, and he might be why the Redskins keep five safeties. Brown could end up being a fourth running back -- the Redskins dont need to keep a fullback so they could afford to do this. And center Austin Reiter played his best game of the summer. If they keep nine linemen, he might take that spot. -- John KeimNFC NORTHChicago BearsNow that preseason action is over, the Bears can focus on the health of Kyle Long (shoulder) and Pernell McPhee (knee). The outlook on Long is optimistic. The three-time Pro Bowl guard is expected to try and practice next week, and he could return for Chicagos Week 1 game at Houston. McPhee is a different story. The pass-rusher is a strong candidate to open the season on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list and miss a minimum of six weeks. McPhee has done rehab work on the side at practice, but he does not look ready to test out his balky knee in true game conditions. The question now becomes when, if ever, McPhee will resemble the player the Bears signed in free agency in 2015. -- Jeff DickersonDetroit LionsThere are some tough roster decisions for the Lions over the next few days, but a few players made their cases during the preseason finale. Defensive lineman Kerry Hyder, a longshot, had three sacks in the first three quarters Thursday. Receiver Jay Lee, in a legit competition for the final receiver spot, caught a touchdown, as did slot receiver Jace Billingsley. Itll be a long couple of days for those three players, but they have good tape at worst for other teams to watch. At best for them, all three end up with Detroit either on the practice squad or 53-man roster. Or if they are cut, another team claims them. -- Michael RothsteinGreen Bay PackersWill the Packers keep five, six or even seven receivers? Part of that might depend on the severity of rookie Trevor Davis shoulder injury. The fifth-round pick left Thursdays preseason finale against the Chiefs after the first series. He landed hard on his right shoulder after a 13-yard catch near the sideline. -- Rob DemovskyMinnesota VikingsThe Vikings will be hunting for a quarterback over the weekend, and their answer could come in the form of a veteran who is released in final roster cuts. General manager Rick Spielman said the team is not going to mortgage its future for quarterback help after Teddy Bridgewaters injury, and though Spielman has to project a position of strength to other GMs, it isnt the Vikings style to part with young players or high picks. Considering the team is spending only about $5.5 million on quarterbacks for the 2016 season, the Vikings could afford to use some of their cap room on a free agent, should one be available. -- Ben GoesslingNFC SOUTHAtlanta FalconsIt was a positive sign to see wide receiver?Julio Jones out on the field before Thursday nights game working on some light pass-catching drills. Jones, who injured an ankle in last weeks preseason game against Miami, wasnt spotted on the practice field all week, although coach Dan Quinn said he wasnt too concerned about it. Jones is expected to be fine for the regular-season?opener against Tampa Bay. Jones wasnt moving full speed during his brief pre-game appearance, so its hard to say how much the ankle still bothers him, if at all. But it makes sense for the Falcons to be extra cautious with their best player. -- Vaughn McClureCarolina PanthersThe Panthers got a head start on installation for their regular-season?opener at Denver, and they will continue Sunday with a short week before the Thursday night game. The next two days will be about cutting the roster to 53 players. The toughest decision will be at wide receiver, where depth is better than ever with the return of Kelvin Benjamin. Deciding whether to keep rookie linebacker Jeremy Cash or put him on the practice squad -- where he is vulnerable to being scooped up by another team -- will be another position to watch. -- David NewtonNew Orleans SaintsWe still dont know how smooth the Saints offense will look when they line up for the real thing next Sunday at home against the Raiders. But at least they got to end on a (somewhat) high note after an ugly preseason. Quarterback?Drew Brees led the starting offense on a field goal drive before calling it a night in Thursdays preseason finale against the Ravens backup defense. Brees hadnt started a preseason finale since 2006, but coach Sean Payton wanted to generate a little momentum. Brees was 3-of-6 for 40 yards. Even better, running back?Mark Ingram ran three times for 21 yards. -- Mike TriplettTampa Bay BuccaneersIn his day-after-game news conference, coach Dirk Koetter was asked about what appeared to be a sideline outburst from tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins in Wednesday nights game. Oh, Id say frustration was the cause of that. Any time you see situations like that, its almost always caused by frustration, and last night was no exception. That kind of stuff happens in every game; sometimes you guys see it, sometimes you dont. It happens in practice almost every day; sometimes you guys see it, sometimes you dont. But its caused by frustration. Koetter also said ASJ played extensively in that game because the team thought he needed to play more, and also because Kivon Cartwright left the game with a shoulder injury. -- Jenna LaineNFC WESTArizona CardinalsFormer CFL sack master Tristan Okpalaugo left the game in the second quarter of Arizonas preseason finale with a right knee injury, and it was announced he wouldnt return. While he was on the bubble to make the 53-man roster, Okpalaugo wouldve provided depth to already stout pass rush. But if hes either released or placed on IR, a roster spot can open for another defensive or offensive lineman. -- Josh WeinfussLos Angeles RamsThe Rams front office and coaches watched film of their last preseason game during their flight from Minnesota to Los Angeles late Thursday night. Theyll reconvene at around 10 a.m. PT, and at 11, theyll begin making final cuts, trimming the roster from 75 to 53 before Saturdays 4 p.m. ET deadline. Rams coach Jeff Fisher said the toughest cuts will come at offensive line, linebacker and wide receiver. Mike Thomas, Austin Hill, Paul McRoberts, Duke Williams and veteran Brian Quick seem to be on-the-bubble receivers. Darrell Williams, Isaiah Battle and Eric Kush could be vying for spots on the offensive line. At linebacker, its probably Josh Forrest and Nic Grigsby. -- Alden GonzalezSan Francisco 49ers49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick did not stand or sit for the national anthem in Thursdays preseason finale against San Diego. Instead, Kaepernick took a knee just before the song. This time, he had company. Safety Eric Reid joined Kaepernick in taking a knee, and the pair hugged when the song was over. Nate Boyer, the former Green Beret and long snapper, stood next to Kaepernick and Reid as the anthem played. Kaepernick started the game and led the opening drive as boos rained down on him from the Chargers crowd. -- Nick WagonerSeattle SeahawksCornerback Jeremy Lane took a seat during the national anthem before Thursday nights preseason finale against the Raiders. Lane, 26, has been with the Seahawks since 2012. He re-signed with the team as a free agent this offseason and is expected to be the starter opposite Richard Sherman. Sherman said earlier in the week that teammates had discussed potentially following Colin Kaepernicks lead. Sherman noted he wouldnt go against the flag and that any player who was thinking about sitting should be ready to deal with the criticism.-- Sheil KapadiaAFC EASTBuffalo BillsThe Bills rested 28 players for Thursdays preseason finale in Detroit, but they did not emerge unscathed from the game. Safety Colt Anderson (foot) left the game in the second quarter with a foot injury and was later ruled out. The extent of the injury is unclear; Anderson was expected to make the 53-man roster as a special-teams contributor. Any extended absence could help Jonathan Meeks chances to earn a roster spot. -- Mike RodakMiami DolphinsDolphins first-round pick Laremy Tunsil joined key veterans Thursday night by not playing in the preseason finale against the Titans. This is a sign that Miamis coaching staff is comfortable with what theyve seen from Tunsil, who started the previous two preseason games at left guard. His next game action? When the regular season begins next week at Seattle. -- James WalkerNew England PatriotsPatriots quarterback Tom Brady played the entire first half of the teams preseason finale against the Giants, totaling 39 offensive snaps and finishing 16-of-26 for 166 yards with one touchdown pass and one interception. While it wasnt a shock?that Brady started, his extended workload was a bit of a surprise, in part because the Patriots lost starting left tackle Nate Solder on the ninth snap of the game to a leg injury. While Brady took some hits, he appeared to come out of the game clean in his last work until he returns from suspension Oct. 9 against the Browns. In all, Brady played 55 snaps over two games in the preseason. -- Mike ReissNew York JetsThe Jets will start making cuts Friday, but the quarterback suspense could be gone. Bryce Petty suffered a throwing-shoulder injury of unknown severity, which could save the Jets from having to cut one of their four quarterbacks. Even if its not a long-term injury, they cant possibly make him the No. 2. That role will go to Geno Smith, who will back up Ryan Fitzpatrick. Rookie Christian Hackenberg will be stashed at the bottom of the roster. -- Rich CiminiAFC NORTHBaltimore RavensWide receiver Breshad Perriman looked sharp in his NFL debut. In the preseason finale, he finished with two catches for 25 yards in one half of work. The Ravens targeted the 2015 first-round pick on the first two plays, and he came through with crisp routes and physical runs after the catch. This should give Perriman and Baltimore confidence heading into the regular season. -- Jamison HensleyCincinnati BengalsThere were few surprises in the fourth preseason game against the Colts, as the Bengals sat most of their significant starters. There likely wont be many surprises during final roster cuts Saturday, either. The release of kick returner Brandon Tate earlier in the week is likely going to be their biggest name on the transaction wire by the time theyre done cutting the roster to 53. Theyll be saying goodbye to starting linebacker Vontaze Burfict for a while, however, as hell begin his three-game suspension at the conclusion of the preseason. -- Katherine TerrellCleveland BrownsIs the Browns offense ready for the season opener? In the first quarter when the starters played, Robert Griffin III totaled 31 yards on eight throws. Top running backs Isaiah Crowell and Duke Johnson ran for 19 yards on eight carries. The top three receivers (Terrelle Pryor, Corey Coleman and Andrew Hawkins, with Josh Gordon suspended) had no catches. And the Browns touchdown came on a short field after the Bears bungled a punt. -- Pat McManamonPittsburgh SteelersThe Steelers were looking to solidify their defensive back depth in the preseason finale against the Panthers, and even though giving up 138 first-half passing yards to Joe Webb is rarely a good thing, first-round cornerback Artie Burns had his bright moments with multiple pass breakups, including a near-interception in the red zone. He looks recovered from that nagging quad injury and eager to give the Steelers a return on investment. -- Jeremy FowlerAFC SOUTHHouston TexansDuring the Texans fourth preseason game against the Cowboys, coach Bill OBrien and general manager Rick Smith got a good look at a few players who are on the bubble of making the 53-man roster. Wide receiver Keith Mumphery, who is competing for a fifth or sixth receiver spot, had two nice catches, including a 64-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Brandon Weeden. At running back, Akeem Hunt and Kenny Hilliard played well?-- though?Hilliard did fumble -- but both will likely still fall short of making the regular-season roster. -- Sarah BarshopIndianapolis ColtsThe Colts had a successful night in their preseason finale against the Bengals. They didnt add any?names?to their long list of key players already injured. That happened because coach Chuck Pagano didnt play any players expected to have a key role with the Colts this season. That means there was no sign of Andrew Luck, T.Y. Hilton, Frank Gore, DQwell Jackson or Mike Adams on the field against the Bengals -- Mike WellsJacksonville JaguarsLinebacker?Myles Jack certainly made an impact quickly at weakside linebacker in the Jaguars preseason finale. He made tackles on Atlantas first three offensive snaps. Jack has spent all of training camp and the previous three preseason games working behind middle linebacker Paul Posluszny, but the Jaguars wanted to get him snaps at weakside linebacker, which is the spot manned by Telvin Smith. That may be a bit of a message to Smith, in addition to getting Jack some much-needed experience. -- Mike DiRoccoTennessee TitansThe Titans have major questions in the return game, which may provide comfort for incumbent punt returner Dexter McCluster, a veteran running back. Rookie cornerback Kalan Reed got his chance Thursday night in Miami. In the first half, he fumbled two punts, losing one, and grabbed another after waving for a fair catch -- after the ball bounced. -- Paul KuharskyAFC WESTDenver BroncosThe Broncos held out 25 players of Thursday nights preseason finale in Arizona, and that meant several young players who find themselves on the roster bubble were in prominent roles. Start with running back Kapri Bibbs, who needs the Broncos to keep four running backs, in addition to fullback Andy Janovich, to have a shot at making the roster. Bibbs opened the game at running back against the Cardinals, ahead of Ronnie Hillman (the Broncos leading rusher in 2015) and looked comfortable. Also, linebacker Zaire Anderson continued to state his case for a roster spot. He was consistently around the ball when he was in the game and had a fumble recovery. -- Jeff LegwoldKansas City ChiefsThe preseason concluded without key veterans playing snaps: linebackers Justin Houston and Tamba Hali, safety Eric Berry and running back Jamaal Charles. The bigger issue is whether any will play and how effective they will be in the regular-season opener against the Chargers. Houston wont play, but the others have been practicing and should be available. -- Adam TeicherOakland RaidersAs expected, the Raiders sat most of their starters for their preseason finale against the Seahawks. Only two players on defense -- rookies Jihad Ward (defensive lineman) and Karl Joseph (strong safety) -- who were atop the teams unofficial depth chart started. Oh, and every Raiders player stood for the national anthem. -- Paul GutierrezSan Diego ChargersJoey Bosa participated in an on-field workout with veteran players but did not suit up for San Diegos final preseason game, watching from the sideline in a T-shirt and shorts. Bosa said he felt good after the workout. Chargers coach Mike McCoy will not disclose if Bosa will play in the season opener at Kansas City, but if all goes well during practice next week, the Ohio State product has a chance to play. -- Eric D. Williams LOS ANGELES, California - The Texas A&M Aggies 2016 campaign came to an end Friday with the No. 7 USC Trojans advancing to the NCAA Championship third round on a penalty kick shootout, 4-3. The squads played to a 0-0 draw after a grueling 110 minutes of action at McAlister Field.The shootout opened with USC goalkeeper Sammy Jo Prudhomme making a save on Sarah Shaws offering. The Trojans got the upper hand with Mandy Freeman making her shot.Texas A&Ms Mikaela Harvey and USCs Kayla Mills were successful with their second-round shots.The shootout evened out in the third round as Brittany Crabtree scored for the Aggies and Danielle Rice made a save on Morgan Andrews shot.USC gained the advantage again in the fourth round as Grace Pipers shot hit the crossbar for the Aggies and the Trojans Amanda Rooney found the back of the net with her attempt.In the final round, Haley Pounds put pressure on the Trojans, making her kick, but Alex Anthony answered with the decisive shot.The Aggies had a streak of prevailing in 10 consecutive shootouts snapped. The streak included seven NCAA Championship matches.In what was her collegiate match, Rice had a stellar performance in goal. She made eight saves and snuffed out numerous crosses and set pieces to register her eighth shutout of the season and the 11th of her career. Prudhomme made four saves for USC to register her shutout, including a stonewall of a solid blast from Emily Bates late in the first overtime period to stave off the sudden death goal.Rice made a pair of impressive saves in the first five minutes of the contest to keep the Trojans off the board.In the second minute, the Aggie goalkeeper made a kick save on a shot by Alex Anthony. In the fourth minute Rice used her fingertips to make a save on a shot by Taylor McMorrow.USC had a shot by Rooney hit the crossbar and hit in front of the goal line in the 19th minute. A Trojans shot by Ashleigh Plumptre went inches wide of the left post in the 32nd minute.The Aggies had a pair of scoring opportunities snuffed out by Prudhomme in the opening act. Crabtree was on the shooting end of both Prudhommes save, including offers in the second and 19th minutes.Crabtree appeared to score in the last 10 minutes of the first half. With an emergence of the clans in the six-yard box, Crabtree put a ball iinto goal, but she was deemed to have kicked the ball out of the keepers hands.dddddddddddd.USC owned the advantages in shots (11-4) in the first half. Corner kicks (1-1) and shots-on-goal (2-2) were even in the opening stanza.Rice came up huge in the second half as she made five saves. Ultimately, it was a defensive save by McKayla Paulson with the game in its waning seconds that sent the match to overtime. Andrews lofted a howitzer from 20 yards which leapt over Rice who was five yards off the line, but Paulson booted the ball clear of the goal with three seconds left in regulation.The Maroon and White end the season with a 12-8-2 mark. They earned their 22nd consecutive NCAA Championship bid and advanced to the second round for the 19th consecutive season.USC (15-4-2) heads to an NCAA Championship third round match against Utah on Sunday. The Utes toppled the Florida State Seminoles, 2-1, earlier in the day.?Head Coach G Guerrieri Texas A&M Head Coach G Guerrieri Opening Statement... Congratulations to Southern California, they are a great team. I think we did a great job of being able to keep them contained. Dani Rice in our defense was fantastic throughout the match, to shut out and attack like that. Then their goalkeeper made a great save. One great save, and we hit the post on the other one, but she was up to the task and they deserved to win. I didnt think we deserved to lose, but I think a very good Southern California team now moves on.On the season... This, to an extent, was a little bit like a lot of our season. True grit, fight, determination and love for each other. We pulled through some tough times during the season, and some really tough times today during the match. We came up a bit short, but they should always be proud of the effort.On what you tell to returning players... Well be second guessing ourselves on different things. The biggest thing is were going to return the majority of this team. The majority of the players in this lineup come back, with three of our redshirts coming back next year. Well be excellent going forward, and these seniors have been a big part in helping propel this program to the top in the very near future. ' ' '