Browse Month by November 2016
Seattle Seahawks

What we learned (and didn’t learn) in Week 12: Can the Seahawks be trusted?

Trust is tough to find and tougher to hold in this crazy, unpredictable world, but with the Seattle Seahawks, I really thought we were good.

Coming off three straight wins — one of which was in Foxborough — with Russell Wilson looking healthy, Thomas Rawls back and the offensive line showing signs of coming together, the Seahawks looked like the rare NFL team we could trust. Fire ’em up in Tampa: Start all of your Seahawks in fantasy, feel good about it. They lost 14-5.

It’s like going away and leaving your teenager to watch the house. You’ve done it before for a night here or there, because he’s a good kid and you feel sure he’s ready for the responsibility. Then you come home and there are beer cans everywhere, the garage has a chunk out of it at the exact height of the car’s rear bumper, and somehow, someone managed to put a whole toilet on the roof.

“Philip has put up some tremendous numbers in this game. We’ve all been fortunate to play for a long time and been able to do a lot of great things. That would be an awesome honor, but hopefully that’s a long way off.”

With years left to spare, all three players rank top-10 all time in touchdown passes and top-15 in passing yards.

Roethlisberger was the 11th overall pick in 2004, seven spots after Rivers and 10 after Manning. In the past, Roethlisberger used that as motivational fuel to play well. But no longer. He’s simply about winning games, he says.
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The way Roethlisberger sees it, everything worked out perfectly. He isn’t concerned with what the New York fishbowl would have been like. Then-Giants general manager Ernie Accorsi was high on Roethlisberger and might have selected him under different circumstances. (Manning was drafted No. 1 by the Chargers but refused to play for them and was traded a short time later in a deal for Rivers, who was drafted by the Giants.)

“I wouldn’t change what happened for anything in the world,” Roethlisberger said.

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Vikings want to keep Adrian Peterson

Adrian Peterson has been the best running back in the NFL since being drafted in 2007 by the Minnesota Vikings. He’s still suspended, but talk about whether or not he’ll be back with the Vikings in 2015 is heating up ahead of free agency. General manager Rick Spielman praised Peterson and tamped down any speculation about whether or not Peterson would return to the Vikings on Wednesday at the combine.

“I don’t think any team in the Ahtyba Rubin Authentic Womens Jersey NFL wouldn’t want an Adrian Peterson-caliber running back on their team,” Spielman said. “We want Adrian Peterson back with the Minnesota Vikings.”

Peterson is still under contract with the Vikings.

Many suggested that Suh could wind up getting franchise tagged this offseason, and it’s still not out of the question. The problem is that franchise tag is massive given the multiple restructures the Lions have asked of Suh over the years. On two separate occasions, Suh restructured his deal in such a way that converted portions of his base salary into signing bonuses that were distributed at the end of his contract.

Because the tag pays an average amount of cap money spent on the position over the last five years or 120 percent of a player’s previous season’s cap number, Detroit dug itself into a hole.

If the Lions felt confident in getting a deal done for Suh in the end, they can still franchise tag him before the March 2 deadline. Then, they would have until July 15 to void the tag and sign a long-term contract.

Suh, despite getting in trouble with the league and earning something of a reputation Bobby Wagner Authentic Womens Jersey for “dirty” play, has been named to four Pro Bowls and has been named a first team All-Pro four times as well. He was the AP NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year in 2010, and has 239 tackles, 36.0 sacks and two forced fumbles in his career.

Seattle Seahawks

Carmelo Anthony on game winner: ‘I wanted that moment’

There’s a loud contingent of fans, media, and even some opposing front office members, who think the New York Knicks would be best served running their offense primarily through Kristaps Porzingis and asking Carmelo Anthony to take a secondary role.

Nights like Friday, though, poke holes in Chris Culliver Authentic Womens Jersey that theory.

Yes, Porzingis is the future. No one questions that. But the present-day Knicks will need Anthony healthy, productive and playing a prominent role to reach their potential.

“When you have a team new together, once you get to that point where you realize you’re a good team, then you become a good team,” Wade explained after the game. “And I think on this trip, with the way we performed, we started to understand that we’re a good team and we can play with anyone in any building. And that’s key for a team, especially a young team like us trying to come together.

So once you have that confidence that you can go in anywhere and win, and be able to win, then that goes a long way. It’s early in the season still and we know we got a long way to go, but to be 16 games in and we’ve played 11 on the road, not a bad start.”

Jimmy Butler averaged better than 28 points during the Bulls’ six-game road trip while Dan Marino Authentic Womens Jersey the circus took over the United Center, capped by the 26 points he scored Friday in a win over Philly.

Wade’s production on the floor and his leadership off of it are big reasons why the Bulls have opened so strong. But the reason the Bulls have been able to believe in themselves and the possibility for sustained success throughout the season is because of Butler.

“He continues to impress,” Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg said. “He’s doing it in every possible way on the offensive end.”

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

it’s also possible that the Giants cheated to beat Branca and the Dodgers

Oh, it’s also possible that the Giants cheated to beat Branca and the Dodgers. We’ll get to that in a moment.

Branca was a local kid from Kony Ealy Authentic Jersey Mount Vernon who signed with the Dodgers in 1943 and reached the majors in 1944 at 18. In 1947, at age 21, he went 21-12 with a 2.67 ERA while throwing 280 innings. He made the first of his three All-Star teams and helped the Dodgers win the NL pennant. He was a big right-hander who threw hard and at this stage in his career had Hall of Fame potential. Of course, we’d never let a 21-year-old throw 280 innings these days and that would prove to be Branca’s best season, although he followed it up with All-Star berths in 1948 and 1949.

Segura: The best player in the group in 2016, he gives the Mariners a much-needed leadoff hitter (they were 24th in the majors in leadoff wOBA). In fact, Segura was one of the best players in baseball. After Dave Stewart and Tony La Russa acquired him from the Milwaukee Brewers, Segura hit .319/.368/.499 while leading the National League with 203 hits. He played mostly second base for Arizona, but will move back to shortstop, where he graded out as a league-average defender during his time with the Brewers. He ranked 19th among MLB position players in Baseball-Reference WAR and 22nd in FanGraphs WAR.

The question: Is he the 5.7-WAR player of 2016 or the player who was worth 0.6 WAR total in 2014 and 2015? Segura improved from 16 doubles to 41, from six home runs to 20. Even if he had some batted-ball luck in 2016, you don’t pound out 68 extra-base hits by accident. Indeed, Segura showed up in spring training with a new stance, holding his hands lower. “Now with my hands lower, I don’t Kurt Coleman Authentic Jersey have to go down and then go up to hit the ball. I go directly to the ball,” Segura told Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal early in the season. “I do everything in one motion instead of doing it three times. When I attacked the ball with my hands up, I had to go down, go up again and swing.”

According to ESPN Stats & Information research, Segura’s well-hit rate increased from .093 to .164. His exit velocity was up as well. He’s still an extreme ground-ball hitter, although he did lower his ground-ball rate from 59 to 54 percent. Some regression is in order — he’s moving to the better league and a tougher park — but it appears his 2016 season wasn’t necessarily a complete fluke.

Seattle Seahawks

Capers’ inside linebackers were Joe Thomas and Carl Bradford

He’s playing without his top two cornerbacks, Sam Shields (concussion) and Damarious Randall (groin). That has contributed to chronic coverage mismatches and increased the risk of getting burned on blitzes. Ladarius Gunter, Micah Hyde and Quinten Rollins just don’t have the speed of Shields and Randall, and over the course of a game that’s exposed.

And anyone calling for the Packers to find Jon Weeks Authentic Womens Jersey somebody else, who, exactly, should they bring in? It’s Week 12 of the season. Every team is injured. The best practice-squad players now are on 53-man rosters. Deion Sanders isn’t working at a McDonald’s.

Also, a pass rush that looked strong early in the season brought almost nothing Sunday night. Clay Matthews (hamstring) returned after missing three games but wasn’t himself. Washington figured out early on its tackles could handle him one-on-one. Same for blocking Nick Perry and Julius Peppers.

Cousins said it was just an in-the-moment situation.

“No, there’s nothing,” Cousins said. “I was just excited coming off the field with emotion. I would prefer for that to happen with no cameras and no microphones. But I ran into him on the field where there were cameras and microphones. We’re both competitors who Kareem Jackson Authentic Womens Jersey want to win desperately and both feeling great in that moment.

“Scot has done a phenomenal job bringing in the right people … that have made a big difference in the success of this team. A big reason we are where we are and part of the reason we enjoy being here is because of the team Scot assembled.”

It’s a fair question, but answers aren’t that simple. Colts coach Chuck Pagano offered a plausible explanation: That Luck did not begin experiencing concussion symptoms until well after the game. After Pagano’s postgame locker room speech, Luck spoke with reporters while still dressed in his uniform, per usual, then returned to the dressing room to shower and change. He was seen interacting with teammates and even some members of the 2006 roster who were in attendance for the team’s Super Bowl XLI championship reunion. Nothing seemed amiss with his demeanor and Luck seemed to be alert.

Shortly afterward, Luck was seen heading to the training room at the rear of the locker room, out of the view of reporters.

“I think somewhere in the fourth quarter is where it happened,” Pagano said, “but I don’t have an idea.”

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Russell Westbrook didn’t need a good reason to crush the Rockets’ spirit

With seven seconds left in the Thunder vs. Rockets game, Russell Westbrook decided that he wasn’t going to leave the arena without making sure Clint Capela regretted choosing basketball as a profession. I don’t know what Stephen Curry Authentic Womens Jersey Capela ever did to him. Maybe they have beef from the past?

Because this is the type of dunk you reserve for someone you would throw bottles at in the club.

The best thing about that dunk is that it’s totally unnecessary. Westbrook could have just held the ball. His team was up by three points with seven seconds left. All he had to do was get the pass, take the foul, make the free throws, and run the game out. But this is the child that’s always up to something. There was no way this game was ending without him converting some poor defender to nihilism by force.

Everybody just kind of stood around like nobody knew what had happened.

At that juncture of his career, Theismann was still a decent football player and an icon Tim Hardaway Authentic Womens Jersey in Washington. Of course, I’d been playing against him for years. And during our time, we spent a lot of time together and we’d see each other a lot. Just like anybody else, you hate to see somebody sit there and suffer. So I wanted to get some help out there for the sumbitch.

Popovich said he received about 100 emails after he first spoke out against Trump last week. Most of them were positive, but a few angry ones promised to never spend money on the Spurs again.

Popovich spoke out against Trump’s appointment of Steve Bannon as his chief strategist, who is Wilt Chamberlain Authentic Womens Jersey an outspoken white nationalist who has publicly expressed racist views in the past.

Seattle Seahawks

Marv Levy is among those Hall of Famers who want Tasker to join them

Every year, the Hall of Fame voting process unfolds a bit like a judicial case. But instead of 12 jurors deciding an individual’s fate, 48 members of the Hall of Fame Selection Committee—comprising sportswriters from every NFL market, a handful of “at large” members from national media outlets, and two Hall of Famers (currently Dan Fouts and James Lofton)—are responsible for deciding who gets in and who doesn’t.

“I knew I’d get one shot to make an impact,” he Nevin Lawson Authentic Womens Jersey continued. “And I just wanted to give it everything I had. I wanted to win.”

During the early 90s, that’s exactly what the Bills were doing—winning. Tasker soaked up every last second of it. No matter where he went throughout Western New York, he said, people treated him like family. They patted him on the back, and called him by his first name. Even after the four lost Super Bowls, the love and appreciation of Bills fans never wavered. Tasker always felt welcome. He always felt at home in Buffalo. When he retired from football in 1997, he decided to stay in the area and work as a NFL broadcaster for CBS.

“My first game in the booth was a Bills game in San Diego. When the ball was kicked off at the start of the game, I realized I didn’t care who won,” he said. “That’s when I knew I made the right decision.”

These days, Tasker still covers games for CBS. He attends local events throughout the Buffalo area, and makes surprise appearances at youth football practices. Whenever he comes through One Bills Drive, he makes a point to stop and chat with everyone from the security guard in the lobby to media representatives and coaches. The conversations vary, but they tend to circle back to one prevailing topic: the Hall of Fame.

“Some people feel obligated to tell me I belong in there, as a conversation starter. But I don’t need that,” said Tasker. “It’s great and I love it, and my teammates are all rooting for it, but for me … it’s a hard sell, I think.”

“With the Hall of Fame, it comes down to numbers, numbers, numbers.”

Tasker has been on the preliminary list for the Hall since 2003 and made it to Nick Fairley Authentic Womens Jersey the top 25 six times—2004, 2008-10, and 2012-2013—but that’s as far as he’s gotten, even though he is widely believed to be the best special teams player in the history of the league. In fact, that could be part of the reason for his exclusion.

Seattle Seahawks

Carmelo Anthony understands LeBron James’ reaction to Phil Jackson ‘posse’ comment

Carmelo Anthony said he understands why LeBron James was offended by Phil Jackson’s use of the word “posse” to describe the Cleveland Cavaliers star’s business associates.

Houston still had chances later on, but Anderson and Ariza each missed long jumpers sandwiched around Gordon’s miss on a drive. Westbrook pushed the lead to three when he made one free throw, and Harden missed a 25-footer for the tie. After his miss, Harden stole an outlet pass and sent a bounce pass toward Ariza, who was moving toward the rim, only to see it hop out of bounds.

Houston appeared to have one final chance when Clint Capela grabbed a rebound off a missed layup. But it seemed Westbrook slapped Capela on the wrist to force the ball out of bounds with seven seconds remaining. A review confirmed it was OKC ball.

“It’s a hard game to referee,” D’Antoni Authentic Jordan Jenkins Jersey said. “It goes both ways. We (as a team) just need to get a little bit better.”

After officials finished their review, Westbrook finished the Rockets. He dunked on Capela, pushing the Thunder lead to five. It was a mind-blowing play, starting in slow motion and ending in a flash. Westbrook drove from the corner toward the Rockets’ center. Capela did what he was supposed to do: challenge the play. It didn’t work out.

So the Rockets come home knowing the 13 fourth-quarter points weren’t enough in a game they should have won.

“We were up 10 in the third quarter, and we’ve Authentic Julian Howsare Jersey got to go up 12 or 15,” Harden said. “They cut it to five and made it tough on ourselves. Tough game for us. We didn’t play well and we didn’t shoot the ball well. We still had an opportunity to win. Tomorrow, we have a game at home against Portland.”

And the Rockets can’t let that one slip away, either.

James Harden had 13 assists to go with 13 points Wednesday, but the Rockets couldn’t hold a fourth-quarter lead and lost 105-103 at Oklahoma City.

Harden dismissed the double-teams as something that might have worn him down, but he went 4-for-16 on the night with 13 assists and 13 total points. Harden didn’t reach double figures until nailing a 3-pointer with 1 minute, 40 seconds left in the third quarter.

Harden was asked if Roberson contributed to his troubles.

Seattle Seahawks

Cooks held on to it despite being drilled by safety T.J. Ward at the 3-yard line

The first was the 37-yarder in the third quarter, tucked perfectly over the head of cornerback Bradley Roby. And Cooks held on to it despite being drilled by safety T.J. Ward at the 3-yard line.

There are calls to trade Romo. Assuming he’s healthy, QB-starved teams would offer high picks for him, even though he’s about to turn 37 and, at this point, is clearly a major injury risk. By trading him (or releasing him), they would save $5.1 million on their 2017 salary cap. Prescott is scheduled to cost a mere $635,848 against the 2017 cap, and not much more in 2018 or 2019.

But even if they trade or release Romo, the Cowboys will still carry a $19.6 million cap charge for him in 2017 — the result of an unwieldy contract made even more challenging by continual restructures. So it’s not as if they’ll be able to just throw around money like a team that’s committing only 0.4 percent of its cap to the most important position. If the Cowboys think Romo can still play at a high level, there’s a case for keeping him, given how Dwight Freeney Authentic Womens Jersey much he’ll cost them regardless.

The important thing to know about the Cowboys’ quarterback situation — short-term and long-term — is that it’s a good thing. If Romo is the backup, they have the best overall quarterback situation in the entire league. If Prescott struggles and Romo takes over again, Prescott isn’t the type to crawl into a shell and pout. He knows he has shown he can play in the league, and if his career doesn’t turn out to be an unbroken arc of success, he’s smart and circumspect enough to know that’s more normal than not. What have we seen from Prescott to indicate he wouldn’t bounce back Grady Jarrett Authentic Womens Jersey if he got benched, Romo got hurt, and he had to go back in and play?

And if Prescott doesn’t struggle, and the Cowboys decide to move on from Romo after this season, financial consequences be damned, the relationship between him and the team is solid enough that it won’t be an ugly parting. If he can figure out a way to keep himself healthy — a big “if” at this point — Romo has every reason to believe he can help someone win in 2017. That could be any number of teams, including the Cowboys.

On its own, Prescott’s ascendance illustrates the moral of the Cowboys’ quarterback situation: You never know what’s going to happen. Having Romo healthy and Prescott playing well makes Dallas that much better prepared.

At this time, in mid-October, there are whispers by people in the know about where Romo’s support lies. They say Jones, coach Jason Garrett and tight end Jason Witten are among the strongest voices in giving the job back to Romo when he’s healthy. But the weeks that follow will convince even the strongest Romo loyalists that it’s better to keep things the way they are until something changes.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Brazil’s magic at the Mineirao exposes Argentina’s creaky defence in 3-0 win

Neymar worked wonders as the creative hub of Brazil’s attack, combining with Philippe Coutinho for the Selecao’s first goal and scoring the second himself.
BELO HORIZTONE, Brazil — Three quick thoughts from Brazil’s 3-0 win over Argentina in World Cup qualifying from the Estadio Mineirao.

1. Brazil needed some magic at the Mineirao

That doesn’t mean there won’t be Juan Samuel Youth Jersey more tests. As comfortable as Jackson is with the attention he is receiving — and as much as he was introduced to it as early as eighth grade, when the recruiting rankings started rolling in — there’s something different about feeling it on a nightly basis or after a tough loss or when the shots don’t fall for a week or a month or all season. The lights can get bright.

“It was more so seeing so many familiar faces that you’ve been seeing for years sitting in certain seats,” Wade said. “People that before certain games like to give you eye contact, like to do their own ritual with you … that was probably the thing that was the weirdest, being on the other side of the lens. The video was cool, but we were already in the game.

“I’m glad [this game] is over with. When I first looked at the schedule, I was like why so early? I’m glad it’s over early so we can focus.”

After the game ended, Wade shook hands with former teammates and Heat personnel. He walked off the floor to loud cheers with a sign in the stands just above him that read: “This will always be Wade County.”

“Probably the most emotional I got was at the end of the game, when I went around and hugged certain people,” Wade said. “Just to see the people that I call family. That was probably one of the most emotional moments for me.”

Now Wade and the Bulls can move forward as they get set for a two-week-long, coast-to-coast road trip that starts after a Saturday game at home against the Washington Wizards.

“I can only imagine what he was going through Larry Andersen Youth Jersey today with all the emotions coming back here,” said Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg. “I thought he handled it great. It was a really cool moment for him with the video tribute and on the floor. It was great for him, and it was great for Miami. … Dwyane, obviously, [this] was a very important game for him.”