Redskins’ uniforms vs. Cowboys still a mystery

“That would put us on edge, put us on go,” he said. “You feel good, look good, you play good. … We’ve been trying to bring that all-burgundy back for a minute now, you know what I mean? I’d love if they let us decide to play in ’em.”

“The Committee is continuing its work towards finalizing a contract extension with the Commissioner, consistent with the mandate provided in the unanimous May 2017 Resolution. Regardless of what may have been reported, the Committee is working within the financial parameters outlined to the ownership at the May meeting. The negotiations are progressing and we will keep ownership apprised of the negotiations as they move forward. We do not intend to publicly comment on our discussions.”

A unanimous 32-0 vote by owners in May authorized the six-member compensation committee to finalize and approve the extension for Goodell, and normally that would be the only vote needed.

The Vikings’ offensive line was down two starters against the Panthers as Minnesota, looking to clinch a playoff spot in Week 14, lost 31-24.

Minnesota was also without starting right tackle Mike Remmers for a fifth straight game. Remmers went down with a concussion against Cleveland and was in the league’s concussion protocol until Week 12. He then sustained a lower-back injury during the week of practice for Atlanta and has not practiced since Nov. 29.

Nick Easton, who competed with Elflein at center throughout training camp, slid over from his spot at left guard to fill in for the injured rookie. Easton last started at center against Chicago in Week 17 last season.

Reserve lineman Jeremiah Sirles started at left guard, while Rashod Hill started again at right tackle in place of Remmers.
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Surging Iowa State must be wary of West Virginia

The week-to-week grind of the Big 12 season has featured four straight wins for surging 15th-ranked Iowa State, including two in the past month against teams ranked in the AP top 5.

Campbell said the pattern of success was built in the preseason, when his team worked away from the limelight when nobody was watching.

“January and February and March and April and May — that’s where our team earned its confidence in its ability,” Campbell said. “The good thing about us is we haven’t changed our approach in the year-and-a-half here. We don’t worry about anything but what goes on between our walls.”

The Arizona matchup has not an easy one for USC recently, despite the Trojans losing just twice in the past 16 years. Every game from 2007 through 2015 came down to a single possession.

Restarting that trend on Saturday would not be any deviation from the norm for either team in the context of this season, either. Arizona has played four games decided by six points or fewer; USC has played three.

Georgia ranks last in the SEC in passing yards per game with 162.6 per game. But that number is deceiving. Because of the running game, the Bulldogs haven’t had to throw that much, although freshman Jake Fromm has been efficient when called upon.

In fact, among starters in the SEC, Fromm leads the league in passing efficiency with a rating of 171.9, completing 75 of 138 passes for 1,263 yards and 13 touchdowns.

South Carolina has tightened things up since giving up 237 rushing yards to Texas A&M in the last weekend of September. The Gamecocks have held Arkansas to 106 yards, Tennessee to 120, and Vanderbilt to 107 in their last three games.patriots_322

James Harrison finally finds a home, as the Steelers defensive closer

After the Pittsburgh Steelers essentially benched their all-time sack leader the past two games, Mike Tomlin decided to make a change. To use some baseball terminology, he put Harrison in the bullpen.

I may be crazy, but if the Steelers are smart, not holding my breath on that one just yet, they would use Harrison like this every week. Maybe not waiting until the fourth quarter every week, but if the situation dictates you need a polished pass rusher, who still can get the job done, in an obvious passing situation — call on the closer.

The days of Harrison being on the field for four quarters are behind him, at least we hope so, but that is okay. T.J. Watt has proven he is very capable, even as a rookie, but when he is fatigued bringing in a fresh Harrison, who can bench press a house, by the way, could be a recipe for disaster for the opposing offense.

Harrison might not be the next Mariano Rivera, in regards to closers, but he just might be the wrecking ball the team could use to put teams away. He did just that in Kansas City, and could certainly continue to do it in the future.

Peppers, 37, continues to show opposing offenses that he can still dominate games the same way he did in the early 2000s. He isn’t done climbing the all-time sacks list, either. Doleman only leads Peppers by half a sack, while Greene had 160.

Peppers racked up 150 career sacks in 240 games and averaged 9 1/2 sacks per season from 2002 to 2016. He’s been a model of consistency throughout his entire career. The Panthers used the second pick in the 2002 NFL draft to select Peppers. During his first stint with the Panthers — which lasted from 2002 to 2009 — he compiled 81 sacks and 30 forced fumbles.

Following the 2009 season, Peppers took his talents to the Chicago Bears and continued to dominate opposing offensive linemen. He racked up 37 1/2 sacks in four seasons with the Bears.
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Brown said after the game that he’s a passionate player and got excited over a big-play opportunity.

Washington receivers coach Ike Hilliard, among others, walked past Pryor during the exchange, and Hilliard briefly turned around as Pryor started toward the fan. Another fan shouted to Pryor, “Do something, Terrelle! Do something, baby!”

But Pryor said his initial anger stemmed from a fan calling him the N-word during the Redskins’ 29-20 loss.

Via Instagram Stories, Pryor wrote that he was called this “several times to the point where an NFL employee had to step to me and stand by me the whole game from second quarter on is the exact reason why guys are kneeling during the anthem.”

Pryor, who has only stood during the anthem, said that after hearing someone call him the N-word and then having fans shout obscenities, “me flicking the person off is more deserving.”

Roethlisberger also told 93.7 that he prefers Brown talk to him about missed plays instead of creating a distraction. Asked whether Brown will get the message, Roethlisberger said, “I’m sure.”

“He’s a professional,” said Roethlisberger, who added that the players have moved on from the flare-up. “He’s probably the best wide receiver in the game now, maybe to ever play.”

On Wednesday, he tweeted an apology.

Defensive end Cam Heyward joked it’s not as if Brown acted like former Indiana basketball coach Bob Knight, who once famously threw a chair across the floor in the middle of a game.9

Pats fan who helped find Tom Brady’s missing jersey gets front-row seat for Chiefs game

The Patriots fan who helped discover the culprit behind Tom Brady’s stolen Super Bowl jersey has been rewarded handsomely by team owner Robert Kraft.

Kraft met with Dylan Wagner, 19, on Thursday morning to give him a front-row ticket to the Patriots’ opener against the Chiefs. Not only that, but Wagner will also sit in seat No. 12 (Brady’s number) and was given a signed Brady jersey.

That is unlikely to happen, but more importantly, the move gives the Colts the option to play Luck prior to Week 6, which he would not be able to do had they left him on the PUP list.

While he would be eligible to come off of the list Week 6, if he were on the list he would be unable to participate in team activities with his Colts teammates. Luck can now ease his way back into throwing now with his fellow Colts rather than someone else.

This does not mean Luck is ready to start yet. Scott Tolzien is expected to start in Week 1 against the Rams. It should also be noted that while the Colts did trade wide receiver Phillip Dorsett for Patriots backup quarterback Jacoby Brissett Saturday. Brissett is not expected to start in Week 1 either because it is likely he will be familiar enough with the offensive system.
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Patriots put LB Shea McClellin, with undisclosed injury, on IR

The New England Patriots placed linebacker Shea McClellin on injured reserve Monday.

The move was expected after McClellin, who is a key player in certain defensive packages and on special teams, missed most of the preseason with an undisclosed injury.

McClellin, who played in 14 games last season (four starts) for the team, is eligible to be a short-term IR candidate and return later in 2017.

This season we will look to identify good bargains, pick out the high-salary players with the best matchups and consider different strategies depending on whether the contest is a 50/50 or large tournament. In addition to adjusting player scoring for the defensive matchup, we put an emphasis on predicting the game script to help with projecting fantasy potential.

The ninth-ranked defense lost a useful contributor in cornerback A.J. Bouye, but it should be able to replace him with 2015 first-rounder Kevin Johnson. The Texans also get back J.J. Watt after the future Hall of Famer missed virtually all of the 2016 season with a back injury. They might be the favorites to finish with the scoring defense crown in 2017.

If anyone knows this path and the pressure that comes with it, it is Bennett, an Aussie himself and a longtime punter for the San Diego Chargers. Bennett, who retired in 2005, was named to the NFL’s All-Decade team for the 1990s after two All-Pro nods. A former Australian Rules football star, he has become the pied piper of Aussie punters down in San Diego, where his family’s home has become a safe haven for those with big legs and bags packed, thousands of miles from home.
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Ravens waive Dustin Vaughan, sign free agent QB Thaddeus Lewis

The quarterback carousel continues to spin in Baltimore.

The Ravens on Monday announced the team has waived quarterback Dustin Vaughan and signed free-agent signal-caller Thaddeus Lewis.

Clarence Hill Jr. of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported that the Cowboys’ dynamic duo will not play, and neither will fellow Pro Bowlers Tyron Smith and Sean Lee and second-year linebacker Jaylon Smith, among others.

The NFL on Friday suspended Elliott for the first six games of the 2017 regular season, pending appeal, for a 2016 domestic violence incident, but that suspension does not apply to preseason action.

The Dallas Morning News reported that Pro Bowl offensive linemen Travis Frederick and Zack Martin also are not expected to play.

The Bengals play their third home game in the first five weeks against the Bills. Buffalo beat Cincinnati 16-12 last season. That’s a game the Bengals can’t afford to lose. Cincinnati should have a good idea of where it sits in the AFC North race when it travels to face the rival Steelers.

Cincinnati needs to go 3-1 in November in order to have any postseason hopes. That means winning on the road against Jacksonville and Tennessee and taking their best shot at Denver, then returning home and beating the in-state rival Browns. That would set Cincinnati up for an interesting November.

“The whole LeBron leaving the next year, to be honest that didn’t bother me that much. Here’s why: when you have an opportunity to really put something together and put your imprint on it — rebuilding is a beautiful thing if the (owner) is going to have the patience with you. dolphins_074

Eli Manning looked like he was at a middle school dance in the locker room

Look — I’m not a good dancer. I’ll admit it. It’s tough to catch the rhythm, and sometimes you just look dumb.

But never again will I feel bad about my dancing after watching Eli Manning’s little half-dance thing in the locker room:

Former NFL safety John Lynch didn’t make it this year. He was a physically dominant player for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Denver Broncos, and his name took on recent significance as he rejoined the NFL as the general manager of the San Francisco 49ers.

The full list of finalists who did not make it this year include Tagliabue, Owens, Lynch, offensive tackle Tony Boselli, safety Brian Dawkins, offensive guard Alan Faneca, offensive tackle Joe Jacoby, center Kevin Mawae, wide receiver Isaac Bruce and cornerback Ty Law.

Last year’s class was also a big one because it included quarterback Brett Favre, and it was thought that it might be one of the best ever because it also potentially included Owens, but not only did he fail to make it then, he didn’t make it this year.

The full Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2017 has been announced, and there are a few surprises. The biggest is that former wide receiver Terrell Owens did not make it, and the class has a pair of inductees from the running back position in both LaDainian Tomlinson and Terrell Davis.

Tomlinson highlights the class, which is fully made up of Tomlinson, Davis, defensive end Jason Taylor, quarterback Kurt Warner and kicker Morten Andersen. As a contributor, Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones made it and senior committee nominee and former NFL safety Kenny Easley also made it.

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Kawhi Leonard to miss Spurs-Warriors showdown with concussion

When the Golden State Warriors and San Antonio Spurs square off Saturday in Texas, one of the best players in the game will be sitting on the sidelines.

The Spurs announced Friday that MVP candidate Kawhi Leonard has entered the NBA’s Concussion Protocol and will not play. Leonard was injured when he was hit in the head in Thursday’s Spurs-Thunder game.

Leonard is averaging 26.2 points, 5.9 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game with the Spurs, who trail the Warriors by two games for the top seed in the West.

Another slow tempo player whose counting stats are hurt by pace, Iwundu did everything he could to help himself in Kansas State’s two games.

Against Wake Forest, he was the driving force on both ends behind a terrific performance. On offense, his ability to slash and create for others was extremely important to Kansas State. Defensively, his ability to cover up for his teammates in help was crucial in slowing down Wake Forest’s attack, particularly against Keyshawn Woods.

Iwundu’s swing skill as an NBA player is going to be the jump shot. With some mechanical changes this year, Iwundu nearly doubled the amount of 3s he hit over the course of his first three years combined. However, the jury is still out on how effective it will be moving out to NBA 3-point range.

He affects the game in so many other ways, plus has elite size and good athleticism at his position, so he could end up making a roster without the jumper. But with it, he can become a legitimate rotation player in the league. Good stuff from him in front of scouts this week.saints_001-223x223

Miller is often the first person to greet him coming out of a timeout

“He usually beats me pretty good,” Miller told Sporting News. “We have fun, it gets him loose and in the right frame of mind.”

Miller’s game isn’t what it once was, and even at that, his playing style was never suited for attacking the rim against a 7-foot monster. He still got the best of though, prompting the opposing fans to cheer on the meaningless game before the real one began. “Seventeen years, still living off the jumper, brother.”

The respect the two have for each other is apparent. Miller is often the first person to greet him coming out of a timeout. It has been that way since Jokic can remember.

“He came to me first,” Jokic said. “I was young, I was a rookie (in 2015-16) and didn’t want to talk, and I didn’t want to mess with anybody. But he talked to me. To be honest, when I first met him I thought he was a little bit weird. But he’s real cool, a veteran, a leader, someone to look in front of you.”

“Just constant reps,” Powell said, when asked about his improved shooting after Game 5. “Getting extra work in in the morning, coming back late at night, watching film on Kyle Korver, Larry Bird — good 3-point shooters — and trying to make a adjustments. But it’s just the constant reps day in and day out. Trying to get get better, tweaking it here and there and finding what ‘s most comfortable for me and shooting it with confidence.”

The Celtics point guard spent Tuesday night inflicting a different kind of pain on the Wizards, scoring a career-high 53 points to lead the Celtics to a 129-119 overtime victory against Washington. Boston holds a 2-0 lead as the series heads to Washington’s Verizon Center.

“I thought he was really gonna have to gut this one out, and he not only guts it out, but he scores over 50,” Boston coach Brad Stevens said.
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