An abbreviated look at what’s going on around the NFL on Friday, Aug. 26:
• Mario Williams isn't the only Texans defender making the switch from defensive end to outside linebacker this season. Connor Barwin's on the move too, as he tries to make up for an injury-shortened rookie year.
• Marion Barber has yet to wow anyone in Chicago. That is, anyone other than Lovie Smith, who has been impressed with Barber despite the running back's early preseason struggles.
• Patriots rookie running back Shane Vereen faced an uphill battle to earn significant playing time this season. A nagging hamstring injury has made his task even more difficult and opened the door for Steven Ridley. • Austin Pettis and Greg Salas, respectively the Rams' third- and fourth-round draft picks, are running out of chances to prove they deserve to be on the depth chart.