Month: August 2017

Blake Bortles named Jaguars starter for Week 1 vs. Texans

After putting Blake Bortles on notice this preseason, Jaguars coach Doug Marrone announced Saturday morning that Bortles will be the team’s starting quarterback Week 1 against the Texans.

Despite the benching, Bortles is expected to get repetitions with the first-team offense, and the two quarterbacks will share a similar snap count.

Henne, a 10-year veteran, started 22 games for the Jaguars from 2012-2014. He went 6 of 10 for 44 yards and was the victim of two end-zone drops in last Thursday’s 12-8 loss to the Buccaneers.

Bortles is 11 of 18 for 81 yards through two preseason games and his struggles throwing the ball deep haven’t improved. Bortles was just 4 of 31 last season on passes of 25 yards or more. His worst throw of the night in last week’s game was a badly underthrown ball to a wide-open Allen Robinson.

If neither quarterback impresses Thursday, the Jaguars could look elsewhere. Rumors surfaced this week that they are interested in former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick.

The Dolphins set the safety market on fire this offseason for Jones with a $12 million-per-year contract for their 29-year-old safety. Jones has missed 14 games over the last three seasons, including 10 games last year. Most players at his age coming off a six-game season would have about 60 percent of this number, so Miami really stuck its neck out to make its safety happy.seahawks_101

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Steph Curry appeared on ‘Ballers’ with The Rock, and it was special

Stephen Curry was on HBO’s Ballers for a brief moment on Sunday night and it was awesome. Here’s what you need to know:

Judging from the pre-call freak out, Spencer didn’t expect Steph to call him. Yet, when they connect Steph appears to know him so well he’s already devised a weird nickname for him.

Elite Womens Jerry Rice Jersey Come on Steph. You don’t say this on the tarmac with people around. There are two guys standing there. The only two passengers on the private jet to the Bahamas will be Steph and Ayesha. How did he think they could hide this?

Sunday night was the season premiere, and it seems Curry will be a focal point — at least from the ebb and flow of this episode. Spencer is desperate to sign him as a client, and their meeting being delayed gives us the chance for more Curry.

Johnson is all about defense. He was a starter on a No. 1 seed, but so was Zaza Pachulia. Amir is better than that, though his value will be purely situational. It’s was unlikely Boston could have afforded to pay him or prioritize him, which meant he was looking for a new fit on the market. Philadelphia jumped at the chance to add veteran leadership.

Nene played well on a discount for the Rockets and proved his worth coming off the bench behind Clint Capela last season. The combination of his age (nearly 35) and frequent injuries most likely scared off teams off from making a big long-term commitment, but he’s a very solid re-sign for the Rockets.

Elite Womens Robin Lehner Jersey The whole point of this new rule was to keep star players in one place. The logic was that tossing more money at these players would convince them all to sign on the dotted line as soon as possible and not worry about teaming up to chase championships.

Left-handedness in the NBA hits a happy medium for professional sports.

On one extreme, there’s baseball, a sport where decisions and lineups are made based on a player’s handedness. On the other is football, where you’ll never know which hand is the dominant one for any position but quarterback. In basketball, left-handedness has a meaningful effect on the game itself, but it also mostly manifests itself aesthetically. Something about a left-handed jump shot seems beautiful, perhaps just because we don’t see it as often.

We went through and identified about nine players who are the best left-handers through the league’s history, albeit with some important qualifications.
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That is three-time NBA Champion Toni Kukoc to you. Member of the 72-10 Chicago Bulls. A Croatian basketball star who was one of the first European players to really establish themselves in the NBA. A guy who could play any position, really. May we never forget the impact of this lefty in basketball history.

Authentic Kids George Blanda Jersey Smith should’ve been a no-brainer for any of the big companies. He ended up being a late lottery pick at No. 9, but he’s one of the most athletic players in the draft class as a guard. Sneaker companies want to sign guards because of how often they have the ball. All eyes are always on them.

Plus, Dallas is one of the best media and television markets in the world, which makes Smith all the more enticing. Mix that in with his flashy play and athleticism, and he’s the kind of prospect that Nike and Adidas could regret not landing.

FIBA’s rule change has American players super excited for hoops overseas

The people who complain about traveling in the NBA usually complain about a specific type of play: the gather step. Everyone knows and accepts that you can take two steps before passing or releasing the ball, but the NBA kind of, sort of gives you a third step — any strides you take while still in the process of catching the ball don’t count as one of your two.
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Womens Laurent Duvernay-Tardif Jersey Most leagues below the NBA are a little more strict about that rule. You can disagree with the NBA’s incredibly liberal interpretation of the rule, but you’re probably on the minority side — the NBA’s popularity keeps increasing, and virtually no fans of the sport actually complain about that.

Now FIBA — the International Basketball Federation that governs a majority of the European professional leagues — has adopted the same traveling rules as the NBA. Here are the specifics, as provided by FIBA.

Kaepernick said in December that Buffalo was the worst city he played in. He noted a difference in perspective between Black and White America. He said he didn’t understand how White America didn’t understand him. He received death threats. Bills fans threw bottles at him.

This was the America that Kaepernick had exposed: two distinct groups that admired and resented him, respectively, for one 90-degree bend of the knee.

Across the country, it was the same. Headline after headline. On the football fields of Texas, black boys in Beaumont knelt and lost their season. In Charlotte, after another shooting, organizers faced cops in riot gear and knelt in front of a football stadium.

Cowboys vs. Rams 2017 live stream: Start time, TV channel, and how to watch online

It seemed like everything that could possibly go wrong happened to Los Angeles in 2016. Rookie quarterback Jared Goff didn’t start until Week 11 because he struggled with getting acclimated to the NFL, and running back Todd Gurely and the rest of the Rams’ offense couldn’t gain traction.

The team finished with a 4-12 record and had the worst offense in the league. Jeff Fisher was fired after nearly five seasons with the franchise, and the Rams hired Sean McVay, a 31-year-old who was Washington’s offensive coordinator, to groom Goff into a franchise quarterback.

Alison Blue, media relations for the AMB Group, tells SB Nation.com what the restaurant will be on Sundays.

“This stand will become a custom concept called “Fries Up” on Sundays when we have games and “Fries Up” is operated by us in partnership with Levy, our concessions partner in the stadium. The menu items take a southern spin on classic poutine fries and are intended to be shareable items with unique packaging designed for portability.”
It’s okay though, because there might be another option for fans.

The Vikings will take another step toward fighting that fatigue Friday night when they travel to Seattle for a preseason game against the Seahawks. Kickoff is set for 10 p.m. ET on NFL Network, with a live stream available on Watch NFL Network.

Minnesota held off Buffalo in a 17-10 preseason slog that saw the Vikings’ offense gain just 34 yards in its first three series. Bradford, entering his second season with the team, completed five of his seven passes, but his check-down routes left him with an inefficient five yards per attempt. Rookie tailback Dalvin Cook, pegged as the heir to Adrian Peterson’s vacated throne, gained only 13 yards on five carries. One of his backups, new addition Bishop Sankey, tore his ACL in the contest and will miss the entire 2017 season.

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The Arizona Coyotes must have a new arena location to succeed.

The letter, sent to the Arizona Legislature, advocates for Senate Bill 1149, which would green light public funding for a proposed $395 million arena in Phoenix to house the Coyotes.

Let me be abundantly clear: The Coyotes’ current location in Glendale at Gila River River Arena is not economically capable of supporting a successful NHL franchise, Bettman wrote, referring to the city’s 13-year-old facility it built specifically for the team, funded primarily by taxpayers.
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For the past 15 years, a succession of ownership groups and the League have tried everything imaginable to make the Glendale location financially sustainable, the letter continues. Our combined efforts all have yielded the same result a consistent economic loss.

The simple truth? The Arizona Coyotes must have a new arena location to succeed. The Coyotes cannot and will not remain in Glendale.

Now, to be completely clear, the bill has not passed yet, and, almost all accounts indicate it stands little chance to pass in its current form. Though that has become more of a reality due to the pushback of transgender advocates, religious groups, and law enforcement, the one adversary that has created the biggest hurdle through its opposition is corporations, and that’s where the NHL comes in.

Thurman Thomas Limited Jersey Precedent has already been set if the NHL was to decide to withdraw its intent to host the draft in Dallas. The NBA pulled the 2017 All-Star Game out of Charlotte after North Carolina passed similar legislature that pertains to which bathroom transgender people can and can’t use.

That’s the kind of rental they should get to bolster their chances at one last run.

The other strategy: Realize this might be the last run for the Moustakas-Hosmer-Cain core, and trade some of those organizational options for win-now players. The Royals are interested in Lance Lynn, perhaps. Good.

Game Kids Patrick Corbin Jersey Could be. But they also might go five years without being within three games of first place in July. Just ask a Royals fan. They went nearly two decades. There’s something to be said about a team that’s raised expectations like the Royals giving their fans one last ride on the roller coaster. This is a familiar group. The fans like them. A summer of reinforcements seems like it would be better for the Royals’ burgeoning brand than a summer of sell-offs.

Brent Burns Limited Jersey It’s worth noting at this point that Beltre was actually younger than his listed age. When he came up for his debut, agent Scott Boras said something like, Wow! Can’t believe you got called up when you were 20!, and Beltre responded with, Actually, I’m 19. The domino effect led to suspensions and fines throughout the Dodger organization.

Beltre was absolutely not a Hall of Famer at this point. He led the league with 48 homers and finished second in MVP voting in his final year with the Dodgers. But in the six seasons prior, he hit .262/.320/.428, which was good for an adjusted OPS of 97. Those aren’t future Hall of Famer numbers.

On the other hand, here are the players with 23 wins or more before turning 25. There are cautionary tales (Jason Heyward, Cesar Cedeno). For the most part, though, there are Hall of Famers. The ones whom people who don’t even like baseball have heard of. Even if Beltre’s was defense-heavy, it was still a sign that he possessed athleticism that others didn’t.

A brave Mets fan finally told Neil Walker that fans call him ‘daddy’

Whenever you start a conversation with I’m not trying to make things weird, there’s a strong chance that you are, in fact, about to make things super weird with whoever you are talking to at that very moment.

Fortunately for a Mets fan who broke some exciting (?) news to New York second baseman Neil Walker on Tuesday night at a charity event, that opening statement turned out to be wrong for once and the conversation did not, in fact, get super weird.

A little weird, maybe. But not super weird.

The fan, labeled as Julia on Twitter, took a video of the encounter, in which she told Walker what Mets fans have been up to for a while now — the practice of calling him daddy at every opportunity.

Over that 13-3 run, the Cubs have a team ERA of 3.71 while averaging 6.54 runs per game on offense.

Elite Womens Connor Shaw Jersey Arizona has not enjoyed a second-half surge like the one that the Cubs are on. Instead, the Diamondbacks are hovering around .500, going 7-9 through their first 16 games out of the All-Star break. With the Los Angeles Dodgers running away with the NL West, Arizona’s main focus over the next month will be to hold on to a wild card spot.

Elite Womens Kenta Maeda Jersey The Diamondbacks enter Tuesday with a five-game lead over Milwaukee in the wild card standings. Arizona is just 2-8 in its last 10 games against Chicago.

The UNDER is 5-1 in the last six meetings between these two teams at the sportsbooks.

At 60-45, Arizona has a better season record than Chicago’s 56-48 coming into this series, but the Cubs seem to have the momentum. Wednesday’s game will pit Zack Godley against Jake Arrieta, and Thursday’s game sets up as a pitcher’s duel between Zack Greinke and Jose Quintana.

Brandon Marshall on drama with Sheldon Richardson: ‘That’s dead’

Brandon Marshall is over the controversy surrounding his contemptuous relationship with former Jets teammate Sheldon Richardson.

The Jets defensive end said last week that Marshall “knows what he did to the locker room” and essentially called him a drama queen during a radio interview.

Marshall said that, to him, the drama with Richardson was “dead” and he has no desire to go back to that dramatic atmosphere.

“I wasn’t surprised,” Marshall when he heard Richardson’s most recent comments (via ESPN). “But, you know, there is so much good energy here and the environment is amazing. I don’t really have time … I don’t have time to go back to that.

There is little doubt national anthem protests will be prevalent this season. The Seahawks’ Michael Bennett and Raiders’ Marshawn Lynch sat during the anthem before their teams’ preseason games this weekend, and Bleacher Report spoke with multiple NFL players who expect the protests to continue, especially after the racial violence in Charlottesville this past weekend and President Trump’s initial response to it.

The movement to sit during the anthem to protest perceived racial oppression was started last season by Colin Kaepernick. Kaepernick left the 49ers as a free agent this spring and is still unsigned, which many league observers believe is a direct result of his actions.

Goodell said he agrees with a player who told him there is a “time and a place” for such silent protests. Goodell did not reveal who the player was but said, “We all have to, sort of, understand, the responsibility of doing it at the right time and in the right way… Protest to progress is what I call it. We all have to recognize that people want to see change. Let’s go out and try to make that happen in a peaceful and an important way.”
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We mentioned the Sonny Gray rumors, and on Friday the club was connected to Texas right-hander Yu Darvish.

Cooperstown Confidential, by Ze’ev Chafets: Similar to James’ work, Chafets’ book offers a particular focus on the 2007 election.

A Legend for the Legendary, by James A. Vlasich: Bill James touted this book in The Politics of Glory, writing that Vlasich masterfully covered the Hall of Fame’s founding. Having read Vlasich’s book based on James’ recommendation, I can say it’s true. Vlasich got access in the 1980s to the personal papers of Alexander Cleland, the founding secretary of the Hall of Fame. Vlasich used this to produce an exhaustive history of the Hall’s founding.

We mentioned the Sonny Gray rumors, and on Friday the club was connected to Texas right-hander Yu Darvish. Darvish, who has a career average of 11.0 Ks per nine innings and a 3.45 ERA this season, would be a huge rotation addition as a short-term rental (he’s a free agent after the season).
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Elite Kids David Bakhtiari Jersey If the Cubs decide to target pitchers with years of control remaining — remember, both Jake Arrieta and John Lackey are free agents after the season — it makes sense they’d be very interested in a couple AL East pitchers. Tampa Bay’s Chris Archer was once a Cubs farmhand; he was drafted by Cleveland and traded to Chicago in the Mark DeRosa deal, then shipped from the Cubs to the Rays in the Matt Garza deal. If the Blue Jays decide to restructure, Marcus Stroman could be available for the right price, too.

The guy who held this role, Miguel Montero, forced his way out of that clubhouse (albeit unintentionally) with his comments about Jake Arrieta’s inability to hold runners on base. The Cubs called up rookie Victor Caratini to replace Montero, but he’s hit just .188 in his first taste of the majors. Starter Willson Contreras has shouldered the lion’s share of the playing time, starting 10 of the 11 games since Montero’s comments.