Category: New York Jets

New York Jets

What privilege do we have?” Sherman asked about NFL players.

The privilege to be blessed that our hard work and dedication paid off, and we were able to change our families’ lives, to change our lives, and to live better. But that doesn’t change our memories or what we remember happening in our childhood. I think that’s something that sticks true to him [Baldwin] as well, and sticks true to a lot of players.

The biggest beneficiary of McCown’s revival was Jeremy Kerley. The former New York releasee, who was also jettisoned by the Lions and 49ers the past two seasons, was responsible for two big plays that gave the Jets a 14-0 lead. The first was a 30-yard fingertip catch in coverage that turned 3rd-and-6 into 1st-and-goal. The second was a 31-yard strike Kerley high-stepped into the end zone.

Brian Dutcher’s teamwill have five players returning from the 2016-17 squadwho lost in the semifinals of the Mountain West Conference Tournament. Trey Kell, Jeremy Hemsley, Malik Pope, Max Montana, and Montaque Gill-Caesar all will be returning to don the Aztec uniform in Viejas Arena. A few notes on the returning players:

The Aztecs will welcome several new faces to the team: redshirt freshman F Jalen McDaniels, true freshman guards Jordan Schakel and Adam Seiko, true freshman F Matt Mitchell, junior transfer G Devin Watson, and senior C Kameron Rooks. They will all have the opportunity to make a major impact fora team that lost four seniors to graduation as well as Zylan Cheatham, who transferred to Arizona State University.

Head coach Brian Dutcher will be heading into his 19th season at San Diego State. With Steve Fisher retiring, this will be his first season as head coach. For the past six years, Dutcher has held an associate head coach/head coach in-waiting role with the Aztecs. Joining him on the bench will be associate head coach Justin Hutson as well as assistant coaches Dave Velasquez, Tim Shelton, and Mark Fisher.
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Walton said Ball’s injury is not worse than previously thought and that there has been no setback.

The most important thing of the day: Max Scherzer makes his playoff debut for the Nationals after suffering a minor hamstring injury at the end of the regular season. Is he 100 percent, and if not, how will it affect his performance and how deep into the game Dusty Baker trusts him to go?

If you’re going to watch only one game, tune in for: Indians at Yankees. The past two games of this series have been so good that you hate that it’s a best-of-five instead of a best-of-seven. If not for the controversial failure of Joe Girardi to challenge that hit batsman call in Game 2, the Yankees could be on the brink of a stunning upset over the 102-win Indians.

Ball injured his ankle last Monday when he landed on Denver Nuggets point guard Emmanuel Mudiay’s foot near the end of the first half. He started the second half and played briefly.

If Ball’s ankle doesn’t improve enough by the opener, however, the Lakers will play it safe.

“If he is not ready, he won’t [play],” Walton said of the season opener. “Again, it is day to day so I assume he will be back by then. If he’s not ready to play basketball and really cut and move and do everything that you need that ankle you need it to do for you, we are not going to play him.”

“It’s just still sore,” Walton added. “He said he can run straight and feels no pain, but it’s going side to side that really gets him.”

We don’t know how long Smallwood will be out after he suffered a recent knee injury, but the role is too notable to ignore if he returns sometime soon (Philly plays Thursday night versus Carolina). He’s the most well-rounded back on the active roster right now and is a flex consideration when healthy. He forms a nice one-two outfit with LeGarrette Blount in the Eagles’ backfield.ravens_007

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The Jets have a defense better than expected.

Matt Ryan is in a bit of a funk with the new offense and should welcome a chance for a passing tune-up with both Julio Jones and Mohamed Sanu hurting. Coach Dan Quinn has to be pleased more with his young defenders, however.

It was nice to win a road game without the fourth-quarter heroics of Matthew Stafford and on the strength of stingy defense and much-improved power running from Ameer Abdullah. The Lions are becoming a very complete and dangerous team.

Cam Newton got well all of a sudden against a putrid Patriots defense, which didn’t do anything to make him uncomfortable. Now it’s up to the defense to pick up the pieces post-Drew Brees and Tom Brady.

Sure, Jared Goff has been good, but Todd Gurley has been downright spectacular as a runner and a receiver. They’ll need to keep playing and scoring like that, because they give up a ton of big pass plays and chunk runs to opponents, too.

The Browns have an offense worse than expected. Josh McCown gets a little revenge here while DeShone Kizer struggles with limited help against a team that’s stopping the pass well.

Frank Gore takes advantage of good timing against his former team to push up to No. 7 on the all-time rushing list ahead of Eric Dickerson. His replacement in San Francisco, Carlos Hyde, will keep the visitors in it, but it’s easier to trust Jacoby Brissett and Adam Vinatieri at home vs. Brian Hoyer and Robbie Gould on the road.
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It’s Time for John Fox to Go

I would first like to say that I don’t like advocating for people to lose their jobs. Losing a job sucks. Failure in general, sucks.

However, professional sports is a bottom-line business and the players, coaches and front office personnel are generally compensated for the fact that they may be out of a job at any moment.

When the results aren’t there, people lose their jobs. It goes that way in many lines of business but especially in pro sports.

I also think that fans are all aware that the likelihood of the Bears making an in-season coaching change is all but nil. Frankly, as grim as things seem right now, it pales in comparison to the waning days of the Marc Trestman era when a coach openly admitted to circulating previously anonymous rumors about his own quarterback.

Yet the entire organization stood by it all, warming themselves on the flames of the dumpster fire and waited until the season ended to make the final move everybody saw coming.

So if they were willing to stomach that, this will be easy.

Now, with all of that being said, what is John Fox giving the Bears right now? A lot of the team’s blame has been placed on quarterback Dak Prescott. While it was not solely his fault, it’s clear why so much blame has been put on his shoulders: he plays the most important position on the field, he is the leader of the team, and he didn’t have his best performance.

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Stevens didn’t change that outlook after the game.

“It’s a difficult time for Isaiah and his family, and for us as well,” forward Al Horford said. “We wanted to come out and be able to win this game, because there are bigger things than just basketball. For us, we are not taking it for granted, and we need to really pull through at this time. I feel like this will make us stronger, and we are going to be there to support Isaiah.”

That Thomas played at all was remarkable. Celtics coach Brad Stevens said Thomas was “struggling,” but that the decision was left to Thomas. “As he goes through it,” Stevens said before the game, “if he feels the need to not (play), whatever he wants. One of the things I’ve learned having been through situations in the past, there’s really no right or wrong answer. It’s whatever is right for him.”

Stevens didn’t change that outlook after the game. He said the team would do whatever Thomas needed, and would free him to return home should he choose to do so. Thomas declined to speak with the media after the game.

This is a big departure for Wall, who has typically struggled in the postseason. In his two previous playoff stints, totaling 18 games, Wall averaged 16.7 points and shot 37.6 percent from the field, 20.4 percent from the 3-point line. He appears to have put those struggles behind him, and has been one of the most productive postseason guards when it comes to running the pick-and-roll (12.3 points per game from the play, fifth in the league).

That is a big challenge for the Celtics, who will throw a combination of Avery Bradley and Smart at Wall, who struggled against Boston in the four regular-season games (17.8 points, 37.3 percent shooting, 15.4 from the 3-point line). Wall will attract plenty of defensive attention, but Boston will have to find ways to recover for help on Beal (22.0 points, 47.8 percent 3-point shooting) and Otto Porter (17.0 points, 67.4 percent shooting), because each was especially strong against the Celtics this season.jets_002

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Chargers coach Anthony Lynn ready to make Melvin Gordon elite

Melvin Gordon was easily one of the biggest fantasy football studs last year before an injury ended his season after 13 games.

The second-year pro out of Wisconsin was a disappointment as a rookie, but he finished last season with more than 1,400 total yards and 12 touchdowns. New Chargers coach Anthony Lynn thinks Gordon can do even more next season.

“I’ve watched some tape on him,” Lynn said, via ESPN.com. “Man, he has some upside. He did a hell of a job from his rookie year to his sophomore year. And I told him we can take this to another level. We’re going to do some things running-wise that I can think can help him.”

Despite the great leap between Gordon’s first and second years in the NFL, Lynn believes there is still room for growth.

“AB is a big contributor to our success, has been for several years now, and I think he’s capable of continuing to be that kind of player,” Steelers president Art Rooney II said. “I think he’s someone who wants to be a great player and works hard to be that. Hopefully, he’ll continue to evolve as a player and as a person.”

Going on 29, Brown was set to make $4.71 million in the final year of a six-year restructured contract, but now he’ll easily make more than salary leaders A.J. Green, Julio Jones and Dez Bryant.

A five-time Pro Bowler, Brown deserves every penny after four outstanding seasons in Pittsburgh. He finished the 2016 season with 106 catches for 1,284 yards and 12 touchdowns.

Brown has had four straight seasons of at least 100 receptions and led the league in catches in 2014 and 2015. His 136 receptions for 1,834 yards in 2015 broke his own franchise records set a year earlier, when he established a team record with 13 touchdowns. texans_136

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Malcolm Butler will earn $3.91 million, bringing his four-year contract value to $5.44 million

This year, for example, Malcolm Butler will earn $3.91 million, bringing his four-year contract value to $5.44 million, which is about what the 34th pick in the draft would earn. In addition, UDFAs are eligible for contract extensions after just two seasons rather than three for a draft pick.

While making a team as an undrafted free agent can be difficult, there are financial reasons to do what La’el Collins did a few years ago and state that if he was not drafted in the top three rounds, he would not sign a contract with that team. It worked, and he landed in the perfect spot in Dallas. He likely will earn more as an undrafted player than if he were drafted in the fourth or fifth round. More talented players who slide for whatever reasons should consider the advantages of remaining undrafted.

For projected salaries of all picks in the 2017 NFL Draft and how much teams will set aside for them, head to OverTheCap.com.

“I didn’t even feel anything, so my first thought was, ‘Oh s—, I hope I didn’t hit anybody.’ I looked around, and not only was nobody hit, they didn’t even know what had happened. So I thought everything was cool.

“Then, my jeans started to feel wet, so I looked back down at my leg. I was wearing a pair of Converse Chuck Taylors, and the toe was completely red, covered in blood. The bullet had gone through the skin and some muscle on my right thigh. It came out without hitting any arteries or bone, but there was a lot of blood.

“I turned back to one of my teammates and said, ‘We need to go to the hospital. I just shot myself.’

“He kind of blew me off like I was messin’ with him. Then he looked down at my leg and his eyes got real wide.nike_cardinals_298

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Jay Cutler doesn’t care (and that’s a good thing), his TV partner says

To say Jay Cutler didn’t care when he was an NFL quarterback would be unfair, though he certainly never did anything to keep people from having that opinion of him.

But maybe, just maybe, his uncaring attitude will actually be an asset when he steps into the TV booth. At least that’s what his new broadcast partner thinks.

It turned out Watson would be the third QB to go behind Trubisky and Texas Tech’s Patrick Mahomes, whom the Chiefs traded up 17 spots to pick at No. 10 overall, a pick formerly owned by the Bills. Watson went 12th overall to the Texans, who moved up from No. 25 overall in a trade with the Browns.

All told, Watson did have a a point. Not only did he throw for over 4,100 yards in each of his last two seasons with the Tigers, he also won two ACC championship games, while Trubisky didn’t even reach the title game in his only year as a starter.

Success in college doesn’t always translate to the NFL, but Watson successfully ran a pro-style offense. Turnovers were an issue for Watson at times, but he threw 41 touchdowns to 17 interceptions last season. That is a ratio most NFL teams could live with.

Ever since the championship game, Trubisky has seen his stock rise and is now considered a serious threat to be picked No. 1 overall by the Browns.

From a production standpoint, Watson is absolutely correct in his claim. However, every year prospects rise exponentially during the draft process, and Trubisky was one of the fastest risers this year.

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The Saints used their two first-round picks on cornerback Marshon Lattimore and offensive tackle Ryan Ramczyk

Boulware’s willingness to do whatever it takes to contribute, whether it’s making a big play on defense or stepping in at special teams to help his team, is valuable. Boulware’s toughness and instincts make him a surefire candidate to become a dominant special teamer in the makings of a Bryan Braman.

New England Patriots – The Pats traded away their first- and third-round selections for Brandin Cooks in a move many teams likely would’ve been ecstatic to make. Cooks is an established playmaker whose addition all but solidifies New England’s pass-catching corps as the best in the NFL.

New Orleans Saints – The Saints used their two first-round picks on cornerback Marshon Lattimore and offensive tackle Ryan Ramczyk. Lattimore is a physical corner who can shut down an entire side of a field. Ramczyk is a sold pass blocker and a mauler in the run game. He has the skills to keep Drew Brees upright.

New York Giants – Just when you though the Giants offense couldn’t get scarier, New York selected Ole Miss tight end Evan Engram at No. 23. Engram can line up on the perimeter and in the slot. He has a rare blend of size and speed.
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Not only do the Eagles still have Mixon — who was video taped punching a woman in 2014 — on their board, but they are very interested in him, have been doing extensive research into him off-the-field and would be willing to draft him.
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Eagles vice president of player personnel Joe Douglas also spoke very highly of Mixon last week.

A lot of people think that he is one of the top backs in this draft, Douglas said. So if you take character out of the equation, physically he is a very good player. But most teams aren’t doing that.

we know it’s tough to catch up on everything happening in the baseball world each morning

He’s an OG, having given buckets to Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, and LeBron James alike. Johnson’s a bona fide hooper. That’s why Lillard showed love on Saturday night, and that’s why his young Jazz teammates are blessed to have him.

It was only right for Lillard to pay his respects to a predecessor by turning the game ball over to a player who had put the time in. Just like it was only right for us to show him some love with this post.

We aren’t all that far removed from a time when landing a blue-chip basketball recruit came hand-in-hand with a three- or four-year pass to watch the young man develop and hopefully put himself in a position to become a pro. As such, program stability was much easier to attain. Land one or two great recruiting classes, be a national title contender for six or seven years. The struggle for success in college hoops had little to do with deciphering the formula.

Following approval by team owners last month, the NFL’s officiating chief also will now be responsible for overseeing instant replay challenges and the final call about whether a play stands. Green doesn’t anticipate that being a radical change from the previous system where the referee would head to a sideline booth and review the play before making his own decision.

Listen, we know it’s tough to catch up on everything happening in the baseball world each morning. There are all kinds of stories, rumors, game coverage, and Vines of dudes getting hit in the beans every day. Trying to find all of it while on your way to work or sitting at your desk just isn’t easy. It’s OK, though. We’re going to do the heavy lifting for you each morning and find the things you need to see from within the SB Nation baseball network, as well as from elsewhere. Please hold your applause until the end, or at least until after you subscribe to the newsletter.
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