4:28 PM ET

Joint practices were the order of the day for the National Football League.

They are liked by coaches because they allow them to evaluate players at different levels. The players like them because they don't have to see the same faces and they can hit people who aren't teammates.

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A fight broke out at a joint practice by the New England and Carolina teams. The teams fought on the second day.

The New Orleans Saints and Green Bay Packers practiced together, as did the San Francisco 49ers, Minnesota Vikings and Detroit Lions.

The coaches grabbed some attention. Dennis Allen of the Saints signed autographs for fans on his way to practice, while Matt LaFleur of the Packers high-fived some fans while riding a bike to practice. Bill Belichick appeared to be smoothing things over.

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What our NFL Nation reporters saw today

The players spent time in the recovery tent to deal with heat issues. The players were able to return to the team after practice ended. The Jags practiced in the sun for the first time in a week. They practiced at TIAA Bank Field on Monday and were off on Tuesday after playing the Cleveland Browns the previous night.

Second-year right tackle Sam Cosmi was shifted inside during practice on Wednesday because of the Commanders' banged up guard. Wes Schweitzer hurt himself in practice Monday and both of Washington's projected starting guards are out. Chris Paul took snaps with the starter in full team drills. On Wednesday, Washington moved Cosmi inside and put Lucas at right tackle because of the emergency situations. Cosmi was thought to be a better guard than a tackle. He has developed nicely at tackle and can play inside as well.

Jevon Holland was the star of the day, intercepting two Tua Tagovailoa passes and covering the width of the field to break up a deep pass to Tyreek Hill. After a strong first season, he should get Pro Bowl or All Pro recognition in 2022. The Miami Heat coach and Jake Paul were watching the game.

The Kansas City Chiefs have little choice but to get a good look at some of their backups after working without Mecole Hardman and JuJu Smith-Schuster, even though they are confident in their depth at wide receiver. Hardman was taken to the hospital with a groin injury. Smith-Schuster had a sore knee for the second day in a row. He made the most of the extra work. He caught a pass and scored. In the first preseason game, he had a touchdown catch. Chris Jones was taken to the hospital with a back injury.

Each team's offense took over at their 30-yard line in a situation where a field goal was needed to win the game. Ryan Tannehill did well in his two tries. The chemistry between him and Austin is growing. The two connected on a trio of plays to set up a field goal. Tannehill led the offense on a drive that ended with a field goal.

The highlight play of the day for New England was the Mac Jones -to- Nelson Agholor connection, which took place outside of the fighting between the New England and Carolina teams. When Jones threw into heavy coverage to the right side of the end zone, Agholor was covered by the defensive backs, along with CB Jaycee Horn. Agholor made it pay off when he adjusted in the air to haul in the touchdown. Agholor said that Mac gave him an opportunity, put the ball in the air, and he just went to get it. As an offense, the quarterback gives you an opportunity to get it, and you have to do whatever you can to get it. It's you or no one.

It's only a matter of time before Matt Rhule names his Week 1 starter. It continues to look like Baker will get the job. In the final team drill against New England, he was 5-for-10 and got Carolina inside the red zone. He was 6-for-9 with a touchdown, but started his segment with an intercept. After the second of two practices against New England, Rhule said that only second- and third-team players would play in the game. He left the possibility that one could be named the starter and the other could play in the game. It's possible that backups PJ Walker and Matt Corral could play the whole game since they got the most work in the joint practices. Rhule said it could be any time when the starter is named. Two more weeks from now and it could be. We're just making sure we're done.

Kevin O'Connell's first training camp was notable for its adherence to the latest in sports science models. He has an aggressive plan for limiting the playing time of veterans in preseason games in order to protect them from preseason injury.

On Wednesday and Thursday, O'Connell had a pair of joint practices with the 49ers. It was O'Connell's goal to make sure that every minute of the two-hour sessions was intense and better for football conditioning than a preseason game.

The teams worked hard but did not fall prey to the time-wasting scrums that have marred other practices. There were no fights of note, but there were a few moments that were more intense than usual. After completing a pass to Adam Thielen, KirkCousins let out his usual celebratory phrase, "You like that!", but mixed in a rare profanity as well.

During joint practices, there is always a little more juice for obvious reasons.

The Bills are giving the team's newest corners a lot of work as they work their way back from injuries. Whenever White is healthy, Jackson has been the starter. Jackson sat out the team's first preseason game and gave rookies Kaiir Elam and Christian Benford more playing time. "Jackson's played a lot of games for us," he said. His experience is limited in the larger scheme of things. He is ahead of the rookies that we have. It was necessary for us to be able to see them more. In the next two preseason games, Elam and Benford will get a chance to show what they can do.

Last week, he suggested that the tight end would return to practice Tuesday for the first time in over a month. It was a strange situation as Waller, who is hoping for a contract extension and was also dealing with a hamstring issue, attended the Las Vegas Aces game on Sunday instead of the Raiders exhibition. "I think it was before our game started, which is, I understand that," said the coach. He would not be playing today. I do not want to make more of that. Two others who missed significant camp time in CB Rock Ya-Sin and LB Divine Deablo were also on the practice field.

The Indianapolis Colts and Detroit Lions practiced together on the first day of a two-day joint practice in Indiana. In a full-team red zone period against the Lions' starting defense, Colts quarterback Matt Ryan threw three touchdown passes on his first three pass attempts. AlecPierce made a one-handed grab on a fade route in the back corner of the end zone. Frank Reich said that Alec was like that in college. It was a step in the right direction. It was a good thing.

The coach said that La'el Collins missed the practice because of personal reasons. Collins, who missed the beginning of camp with a back issue, was out on Monday as the team tries to get him back into the mix. Taylor isn't concerned about Collins' availability for Week 1 because he doesn't have an immediate timetable for his return.

Taylor said they were confident that he would be ready. He's doing a lot of the work with FrankPollack. I think we'll be there.

Kenny Pickett took second team reps again today, the third day in a row he has been working with the second string. The coach said after the game that he was getting more runs with the second team to prepare for the Jacksonville game. "He's going to get some reps and more varsity-like action in this game in an effort to get to know him and see how he fares." He's just getting ready for it. He completed six passes to Olszewski through the 11-on-11 periods.

Top NFL news of the day

The quarterback for the Cincinnati Bengal says his appendix is rupturing.

He said that what initially felt like irritation turned into a serious matter. In his first news conference since his surgery, he said his appendix burst. The third-year player was back at practice on Wednesday for the first time since the procedure.

There is more.

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