Category: Houston Texans

Houston Texans

Mora explains his Darnold/Rosen remarks

Last week, former UCLA coach Jim Mora suggested that former USC quarterback Sam Darnold, not former UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen, would be a better choice for the Browns “because of fit.” The comment made waves, even though Mora also said that the Giants and the Jets should each want Rosen at No. 2 and No. 3, respectively.

So Mora scraped up some toothpaste and jammed into the funnel in comments to Peter King of SI.com.

Remember the Week 16 Sunday Splash! report that Rosen would hesitate leaving UCLA if he knew the Browns would take him at No. 1? The report emerged before Rosen declared for the draft or hired an agent, so the universe of potential sources was small: Rosen, a close family member, a close friend, or Mora, the two-time former NFL coach whose number surely resides in the phone of the ESPN reporter who published the impractical claim that nevertheless may have had the same practical impact that Mora’s on-the-record comments were intended to have: To scare the Browns away from taking Rosen.

Swanson also missed time at the end of 2016 with a head injury.

In four seasons, Swanson played 53 games with 42 starts.

“That’s my hometown, eh? So I grew up in Humboldt,” Bednar said. “… The bulk of my childhood was in that city. I grew up as a young guy dreaming to play for the Broncos and then had the opportunity as a teenager [but] moved on to the Western League.

“I know what that team means to that town. I have a couple friends — one of their sons is a goaltender for the Broncos — and he survived. He went to surgery last night in Saskatoon, and hopefully he’s doing better. But it’s a tough time for that town. It’s a tight-knit community; it’s only 6,000 people. Yeah, we send our thoughts and prayers to them for sure.”

In the end, a $750 million public contribution for a shiny, new stadium was more than enough of a reward for NFL owners to accept any perceived risk from Las Vegas. Owners voted 31-1 in favor of the move.

“Gambling, that is a major concern for us,” Goodell said at a media conference shortly after last year’s vote. “I think we have to make sure that we continue to stay focused on making sure that everyone has the full confidence that what you see on the field is not influenced by any outside factors. That’s our No. 1 concern. That goes to what I consider the integrity of the game, and we will not relent on that.”

Currently, the Supreme Court is reviewing the federal ban on state-sponsored sports betting, and the NFL and other leagues are positioning themselves for the future.

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Packers sign CB Kyle Fuller to offer sheet; Bears quickly match

The Green Bay Packers signed Chicago Bears cornerback Kyle Fuller to a lucrative offer sheet that would have helped solve their coverage problem, but the Bears didn’t wait more than a couple of hours to match the offer.

To get Fuller to sign the offer sheet, the Packers were probably surprised they only had to offer $18 million guaranteed since similar cornerbacks such as Trumaine Johnson ($45 million) and Malcolm Butler ($30 million) received far more. Usually a team will make the deal tough for the other team to stomach, but the Packers appear to have handed Fuller to them on a very digestible platter.

The transition-tag salary is based on the top 10 salary-cap numbers from the previous year at a given position. Once the player signs the one-year transition tender it becomes guaranteed, so at worst Fuller would have made $12.9 million this year.

The Packers would have had no problem coming up with the cash for a large signing bonus, but they aren’t busting at the seams with salary-cap space and signing a cornerback with a big salary would have eaten up a lot of what they have available.

The Colts have cut defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins, who they signed last March to a three-year, $27 million deal, in their second surprising move of the day.

The decision to cut Hankins comes when the Colts are moving to a new 4-3 defensive system under coordinator Matt Eberflus. This, according to a league source, was the driving force behind the decision to part with Hankins.

Hankins was a productive and disruptive player on the Colts’ defense in 2017, quickly becoming one of its best performers. He certainly demonstrated no lack of talent and lived up to the contract he was awarded. But in 2018, the switch to a speed-based defense appears to have changed the team’s view of Hankins’ fit. The major emphasis on speed and quickness would, theoretically, limit Hankins’ effectiveness in the new scheme.

Hankins, 25, immediately becomes a free agent, and a coveted one, at that.
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Alshon Jeffery and Brandin Cooks put the Eagles and Patriots over the top

Cooks’ Patriots teammates say that his speed at the top end of his routes is mesmerizing. But they also credit him for details in his technique and say that attribute gets lost in his blazing, impressive speed.

You will not often hear Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels give a player assessment like this:

”I love Brandin Cooks. I don’t know if I’ve ever had a better player to coach who makes more of an impact. He’s done a lot, including leadership. He works as hard as any player I’ve ever been around. He doesn’t care about the credit or the attention. We are fortunate he is here. I am super excited he is going to be in a Patriots uniform on Sunday.”

The Eagles originally signed Jeffery to a one-year deal. But two months ago they extended his contract by four years and $52 million. The Patriots also during the season exercised an option to extend Cooks’ contract. Both teams appreciate what they have in Jeffery and Cooks.

The lesson here is to be wary of true rentals — players with expiring contracts who are questionable to re-sign — who come at astronomical costs. There’s a reason a dynamic winger like Evander Kane is still on Buffalo’s roster, despite being subject of trade rumors for months. (The Sabres’ asking price was reportedly a first-round pick, a prospect, a roster player and a conditional pick; that will certainly have to come down, as other talented wingers have joined the market.)

Owens did everything he could in his power to deliver a Super Bowl win to Philadelphia, even risking his career. You can’t ask for more than that from any player.

We almost had some catch rule messiness in the Super Bowl, but referees did the right thing and let this score count.

Foles found Zach Ertz across the middle for the touchdown that would end up giving the Eagles a lead they wouldn’t lose, at 38-33.

The play was awfully similar to that of Jesse James’ from the Patriots’ game against the Steelers in Week 15. James’ touchdown was overturned, and the Patriots ended up winning.

Neither team up to this point had a sack in the game. After a completion to Rob Gronkowski, Brady would be sacked by Brandon Graham, with Derek Barnett recovering the football at New England’s 31-yard line:

The Eagles would get only a field goal out of the good field position and took up only a minute and four seconds of game time to make it a 41-33 game.
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Los Angeles has several tough games on the schedule and trails the division-leading Chiefs by two games.

The Chiefs looked like the AFC’s top team earlier in the year, but have lost four of their last five as a once-explosive offense has looked lost — including a tragic defeat against a disheveled Giants team in Week 11. They would be vulnerable at 6-4, but the rest of the West has languished.

They might as well declare everyone eligible, even the McGwires, Sosas, A-Rods, and Mannys of this sordid scene.Jerry , with the Adelanto Growers Association, did not specifically mention the deal by name during a Council meeting two weeks ago, but the focus of his objection was clear.Alex feels responsible.Jim Tomsula said he has always liked the 49ers depth at tight end, adding You can go back to training camp, I always said that’s a group I’ve always been really impressed with.What hurts the most is Barkley’s inability to throw a deep ball or 50 ball with any success.Now that Forte won’t rejoin the team next year, the starting job appears to be Langford’s to lose.

“This is not a statement about anything other than we are 2-9, and we have to do what is best for the organization moving forward, and that means evaluating every position,” Reese said. “I told Eli this morning that an organization could not ask for any more in a franchise quarterback. He has been that and more.”

Manning’s missing top receiver Odell Beckham Jr., starting center Weston Richburg, and wideout Brandon Marshall, who are all on injured reserve. He’s working with the 26th-ranked ground attack in the NFL that’s averaging just 91.3 yards per game. And he’s taken 26 sacks already this season. Still, Manning has managed to throw for 14 touchdowns against just seven interceptions this year.

He said he understands where the team is coming from, even though he wants to play.
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Lawyers: The more legal threats between the NFL and Jones, the more silk-stocking attorneys cash in.

Multiple media reports have detailed the steps Jones has taken to try and slow Goodell’s new deal. Jones even went so far as to threaten legal action against the compensation committee if the deal they crafted wasn’t submitted to league owners for another vote.

There also is the belief that Jones leaked Goodell initially requesting a $50 million annual salary, free use of a private plane and health insurance for life in a new deal set to begin upon completion of his current pact in 2019.

With Samantha Ponder succeeding Chris Berman as host after 31 years, ESPN’s “Countdown” has averaged 1.138 million viewers through the first nine weeks of the 2017 season. That’s down 14.8 percent from 1.299 million viewers for the same time period in 2016 and down a whopping 25.4 percent from 1.525 million viewers during the same stretch in 2015.

Lawyers: The more legal threats between the NFL and Jones, the more silk-stocking attorneys cash in.

And: Those who hope Goodell, Jones and/or the NFL fails for a variety of reasons beyond those stated above.

Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski connected on four field goals in the 33-8 win over the Raiders. Gostkowski took advantage of the thin air in Mexico City with a career-best 62-yard field goal. He also hit field goals of 51, 40 and 29 yards at Estadio Azteca, which is 7,200 feet above sea level.

Cincinnati’s 20-17 win over the Broncos was the first victory for the Bengals in Denver since 1975. It snapped a 10-game losing streak in Denver while the Broncos’ loss also marked the team’s first six-game losing streak since 1990.
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Pete Carroll says Richard Sherman is out for season with ruptured Achilles

Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman will miss the remainder of the season with a ruptured Achilles, head coach Pete Carroll told reporters after Thursday night’s 22-16 win over the Cardinals.

Sherman left Thursday night’s game against the Cardinals in the third quarter after aggravating his troublesome right Achilles injury. Sherman went down clutching his right leg after making a play in the third quarter. He missed practice during the week due to the injury.

Toss-up: The defense has been triumphant, pitching three shutouts for just the second time in franchise history (it had four in 2000). But the offense is leaving a lot to be desired, ranking 31st in FPI’s efficiency rating. That makes the Ravens a perfect middle-of-the-road candidate.

Sergei Bobrovsky had 22 saves for Columbus in his third shutout this season and 22nd of his career. Mike Smith turned away 40 shots for Calgary.

It was the first time this season that either team ended regulation scoreless.

The Jackets outshot Calgary 2-1 for much of the game.

The Flames, however, dominated puck possession in the first 90 seconds of overtime before the Jackets pushed into the offensive zone.

Calgary’s T.J. Brodie sought to set up play from behind his own net, but the puck rolled off onto the stick of Nick Foligno, who sent it to Anderson for the game-winner.

Johnny Gaudreau’s 10-game point streak ended for the Flames.
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Chiefs sign C.J. Spiller again after releasing him twice earlier this week

Spiller was with Kansas City during training camp and the preseason, but was cut earlier this week when the team trimmed down its roster. He was brought back when cornerback Steven Nelson was placed on injured reserve, but was then cut again hours before Thursday’s kickoff.

Spiller is due a salary of $900,000 this season, but there’s a catch. If he was on the team’s roster for Week 1 then that salary becomes guaranteed. Since he wasn’t on the team when they faced the Patriots, that salary is no longer owed to him, unless he ends up playing the rest of the season.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports there’s “real doubt” whether Beckham will play. The three-time Pro Bowler is officially listed as questionable on the team’s injury report and is expected to be a game-time decision.

Beckham injured his ankle in the Giants’ second preseason game against the Browns when cornerback Briean Boddy-Calhoun hit him just above the right knee as Beckham landed from a leaping attempt to catch a high pass from quarterback Eli Manning. He has not practiced since suffering the injury, though he was seen doing straight-line running while working with a trainer Wednesday and Thursday.

Beckham, 24, caught 101 passes for 1,367 yards and 10 touchdowns last season.bears_003-223x223

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Bears waive Jeremy Langford after claiming Taquan Mizzell

The Bears waived former starting running back Jeremy Langford, the team announced on Sunday.

Langford’s roster spot went to undrafted running back Taquan Mizzell, who the team claimed off waivers from the Baltimore Ravens.

As Matt Forte’s primary backup in 2015, Langford — selected in the fourth round that year out of Michigan State — rushed for 537 yards and six touchdowns. Langford became only one of three Bears players in franchise history with 100 receiving yards, one rushing touchdown and one receiving touchdown in a single game.

When No. 11 Michigan and No. 17 Florida take the field for their opener in North Texas on Saturday (3:30 p.m. ET, ABC), they’ll be dressed well for a high school rave.

Michigan is designated as the away team for this neutral-site game and required to wear a “light” color, which this certainly is, even if it’s not the usual road white.

The first problem, of course, is that Campbell has never played or coached at Ohio State. “Did I say ‘at’ Ohio State? I meant ‘NEAR’ Ohio State,” said Pollard, adding, “Oops, fake news, eh?”

The second, bigger problem is that Ohio State is not in Michigan and does not have the word “Michigan” in its official or unofficial name. “Turns out it’s really difficult to not use the word ‘Iowa’ when you’re Iowa State University.”

Things took a bizarre turn when Campbell proposed new Cyclone uniforms for the ‘Team Out East’ game that don’t include the word ‘Iowa’.
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Skip Bayless: NFL, Roger Goodell making Ezekiel Elliott ‘face of domestic violence’

Roger Goodell was blasted for dropping the ball on the Ray Rice domestic violence case in 2014. But if the NFL Commissioner went easy on the Ravens running back then, he’s going overboard with his six-game suspension of Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott now, says FS1’s Skip Bayless.

“We’re going to show everyone that we’re going to take the hottest young Dallas Cowboy, the young star who’s risen all the way up to No. 2 on the list of merchandise sales to Tom Brady, and we’re going to take him down for six games just to show the world how serious we are about domestic violence.”

“I had hoped to keep family matters private, but at this time I have to get the facts out,” Brock said in the statement. “I have never put my hands on the mother of my children, as what has been publicly reported. The information in the police report is untrue.

“I stayed in an unhealthy relationship for the sake of my children, which was not in my best interest. As the case I was involved in has been dismissed, I am eager to move forward and focus on sharing custody of my two children and ensuring a stable environment for them.”

Brock, a two-year starter for San Francisco, concluded by saying he looks forward to continuing his football career. Reports Wednesday indicated a handful of teams had expressed interest in signing him, but coach Kyle Shanahan said the 49ers weren’t one of them.

The No. 10 overall pick in the 2011 draft came in as the potential savior with his impressive physical skills, but he quickly proved he was skittish under pressure — 40 sacks for 293 yards lost in going 4-10 as a rookie. He didn’t use much of his athleticism and kept getting worse, winning only one of his 12 final starts for the team. He’s now a below-average backup in Arizona.dolphins_075

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top receiver DeAndre Hopkins held out for one full day during training camp

Brown’s current deal averages $8.9 million per year, which ranks him just No. 17 in the league for left tackles. Brown is one of the most reliable players on the Texans’ offense. He’s by far the best player on the line that will have to protect either Tom Savage or rookie Deshaun Watson. But since he’s under contract, the Texans don’t have to back down. They probably won’t, either.

Last year, top receiver DeAndre Hopkins held out for one full day during training camp. He still doesn’t have an extension from the Texans and is set to hit free agency after the season.

So what if Brown’s holdout continues to the regular season? Let’s go to Matt Weston of Battle Red Blog for a breakdown of what it might look like for the Texans:

Without Duane Brown, the Texans’ options are either to move Chris Clark to left tackle and start Breno Giacomini or David Quessenberry at right tackle, or see if Julie’n Davenport can bound from the Patriot League to the National Football League in one summer. All of these options are horrifying.

Ouch. It’s more likely that Brown will make his way back to the team before the season begins. But if he doesn’t, that could be ugly for Houston.

Rams defensive tackle Aaron Donald skipped voluntary OTAs, but did show up for minicamp. He didn’t show up for training camp Friday, though, officially beginning a holdout.

Manning also looked old last season, and Father Time is undefeated. If he can’t play at the level he used to just a few years ago, how high is this team’s ceiling? If he’s nearing the end, how long is their contention window really open? Those are the million-dollar questions facing McAdoo and Reese, both in the present and future.
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