Saints players troll Vikings after blowout loss in NFC championship game

The Saints were clearly still very bitter about their last-second loss to the Vikings last week. During and after the Eagles’ 38-7 beatdown of the Vikings on Sunday night, Saints players, such as Michael Thomas, got in a few jabs on social media.

Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones is doing right by Tony Romo. The question is what comes next as the NFL’s quarterback-needy teams try to fill that position when the league’s signing window opens at 4 p.m. Thursday.

The Cowboys are expected to release Romo on Thursday, according to a person familiar with the situation, confirming several reports. The Cowboys can designate Romo as a post-June 1 release, enabling them to spread the salary cap hit of the move over two seasons instead of one.

LeBeau had been the Titans defensive coordinator the last three seasons and helped the Titans improve from 20th in total defense in 2016 to 13th in 2017.

If LeBeau does retire, it will end a coaching career that began in 1973 as the Eagles special teams coach. After three seasons in Philadelphia, he joined the Packers staff as a defensive backs coach in 1976.

LeBeau rejoined the Bengals in 1997 as the defensive coordinator on Bruce Coslett’s staff. When Coslett resigned in 2000, LeBeau became the head coach. Though considered one of the best defensive coordinators in NFL history, LeBeau was just 12-33 over two-plus seasons as the Bengals head coach. He was fired following the 2002 season and spent on year as the Bills assistant head coach before returning to Pittsburgh.

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NFC championship: Eagles fan takes big hit from train platform pillar

Fresh information emerged Monday: Deadspin reported the incident took place before the game and the fan was trying to pump up the crowd on the train.

We hope this Eagles fan will be ready for Super Bowl 52 in two weeks. We also hope he gets home by then.

The fellow earned himself a bruise when he failed to account for a pillar that stopped him in his . . . well, his tracks as he raced alongside a Philly train Sunday night.

It stings, Keenum said of the loss to Philadelphia. Like I said last night, it’s going to take a while to process. A little more perspective this morning after sleeping on it, not getting much sleep. I watched the film and it still sucks.

The Patriots and Eagles had a combined 10 Pro Bowl players.

Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, who led the NFL with 4,577 passing yards, was replaced by Raiders quarterback Derek Carr as Brady plays in his eighth Super Bowl. Steelers fullback Roosevelt Nix replaces New England’s James Develin on the AFC roster. Colts tight end Jack Doyle will replace Rob Gronkowski. Titans safety Brynden Trawick is replacing Patriots receiver Matthew Slater as the AFC special teams player.

But most people have just been tweeting the still image of an official smiling after a Pats TD, which completely takes the moment out of context. Very few showed the video of what happened with the official and the Patriots to show why he was smiling.

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The Ravens have found their groove against bad teams.

The Dolphins need to win out, and they need help from other teams winning out and losing out. Miami wins head-to-head tiebreakers over Tennessee and Los Angeles, but it loses them against Oakland and Baltimore.

In addition to upsetting the Chiefs and splitting with the Bills, to get in, the Dolphins need to finish 8-8 along with the Titans, Chargers and Bills while wanting the Ravens to pull away and jump to the top wild card.

Also, and bare with me here, but is there a more Philly story than the first pick in the draft trying to play through a mysterious injury, possibly getting shook, mysteriously changing his shot, becoming a punchline and a meme, becoming fodder for sports talk what ifs and podcast redrafts, becoming the guy who should have gone second or third or outside the top ten, becoming the subject of an endless stream of hypotheticals only to come back and become not just what we expected, but better than we expected? Is there anything more Philly than countless talking heads deciding our first pick was a miss only to have him drop a go ahead hesi pull-up jimbo right over Jayson Tatum in the waning seconds of a close playoff game?

I experienced ownership and upper management changes on several occasions during my Vikings career, and it was a nerve-wracking experience on each occasion. And the higher I rose in the organization, the more vulnerable I felt regardless of the team’s success.

In 1984, a major ownership shift with the Vikings created front office uncertainty for several years as a battle was waged for control of the team. I was plenty nervous about getting fired because I was close to the previous lead owner Max Winter, but I was protected by then-GM Mike Lynn, who promoted me to assistant GM. I then sweated out a major management change when Lynn left to run NFL Europe, but fortunately, I wound up in the GM role with our group of 10 owners.

Kyrie Irving guided the Boston Celtics to the best record in the Eastern Conference, but he reportedly had to request a trade from the Cleveland Cavaliers to get there. Now, as part Cheap Basketball Jerseys of a wide-ranging feature by ESPN’s Jackie MacMullan, Irving said he believed the team attempted Wholesale NFL Jerseys Free Shipping to trade him well before he requested to be moved.

They didn’t want me there, Irving told MacMullan.

Falcons CB Desmond Trufant fined for failed punch attempt on Michael Thomas, report says

Falcons cornerback Desmond Trufant escaped a penalty flag Sunday when he tried to punch Saints wide receiver Michael Thomas, but punishment ultimately found him.

According to NFL.com, Trufant has been fined $12,154 for unsportsmanlike conduct after taking a swing at Thomas during Atlanta’s Christmas Eve loss to the Saints.

Stafford gave Caldwell credit for his development. Over the four seasons under Caldwell, Stafford improved his completion percentage, cut down his interceptions and became generally more efficient. He completed 64.6 percent of his passes with 107 touchdowns and 45 interceptions from 2014 through 2017, averaging 4,323 passing yards per season.

He’s been great. He’s as levelheaded a guy as I’ve ever been around, Stafford said. Understands the position of quarterback really well and was great for me and great for a lot of guys on offense just to bounce ideas off of. I have a ton of respect for him, just the way he carried himself, the way he coached us, the way he treated everybody. He’s a great guy and a great coach.

We do not know Robert nor can we confirm any of his statements,” Sandhu wrote in an email.

We have confirmed with Odell that he has never placed any bets on any professional sports games, Sandhu’s email continued. We can assure you that he has and will always continue to comply with all of the NFL’s rules and regulations regarding gambling activities.”

The sample sizes for recent seasons are smaller (similar to Darling), but Markstrom turned in an .892 penalty-kill save percentage during the previous two campaigns, but is taking a pounding on the penalty kill this season. His .809 save percentage on the penalty kill is better than only Laurent Broissoit among goalies with 10 starts. The Canucks boast many of the same personnel in front of Markstrom that helped him to a decent total last season, so there’s no reason not to bank on a positive regression. If the Canucks and Markstrom could take away some of the damage being done on their opponents’ power plays, it could go a long way to pushing Markstrom into No. 2 fantasy goaltender territory. That said, waiting until Bo Horvat is ready to return to the ice would be the prudent move, as Horvat and Brandon Sutter are the team’s main man-down assets.

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We’ve highlighted some of the noteworthy players you should keep an eye on in each bowl.

Total score: 34. Head coaches: 5 (Mike Shanahan, Josh McDaniels, John Fox, Gary Kubiak, Vance Joseph). Winning percentage: .605 (5th). Playoff appearances: 9.

The respective ends to the Mike Shanahan and Josh McDaniels eras were not pretty, but John Fox and Gary Kubiak combined to take the Broncos to five straight playoff appearances and one Super Bowl. Kubiak’s tenure came to an end after he stepped down following a 9-7 season in 2016.

Outgoing Panthers owner Jerry Richardson likes to follow the Steelers’ model, and that’s reflected in his head coaches. John Fox lasted nine seasons and wasn’t let go until a 2-14 campaign in 2010. With new ownership coming in after this season, it’s anyone’s guess how long Ron Rivera will be on the sidelines in Charlotte.

The .519 regular-season record isn’t what Cowboys owner Jerry Jones expected, but the Cowboys did go 13-3 in 2016. Dallas hasn’t made back-to-back playoff appearances since 2006-07.

The Vikings had a different quarterback then in Sam Bradford. Case Keenum has put together a superb stretch of games since replacing the injured Bradford.

Thigpen has a long way to go to develop the nuances and technique for playing as an edge rusher, but there are a ton of physical tools there for teams to fall in love.

Jackson is not only a stout tackler with plus length and physicality, he has outstanding instincts, anticipation, and ball skills that give him a first-round grade if he enters the 2018 NFL Draft.

Cruikshank boasts great length and ball skills for the position. He attacks the ball with the mindset of a receiver, though his feel for the receiver and ability to MLB Jerseys China stay tight on the inside needs improvement.

There are moments. Moments when he unfurls himself toward the basket and Nike NFL Jerseys Supply finishes in traffic with a finger-roll or soft bank-shot. When he unleashes his signature spin move and uses his length to get all the way to the rim. When he gets out in transition and Euro-steps a poor defender on the way to another bucket. There are moments when it’s hard to believe Andrew Wiggins is not a star.

Only 1 other FBS player has more than Sam Darnold’s 20 turnovers.

Darnold is fourth in the NCAA with 13 interceptions this season and first in fumbles with eight. He has a great arm, a big body, good mobility and a quicker release than he gets credit for, but like Josh Rosen he needs to cut down on the mistakes to be as good as he can be.

Despite that, throws like the one he made on the run to his left truly show what he could be if he plays within himself. He finished 26 of 45 for 356 yards with no touchdowns and an interception.

After missing the past 11 games for the Golden State Warriors with a right ankle sprain, Stephen Curry returned in emphatic fashion Saturday night.

The two-time NBA MVP exploded for 38 points, shot 13-for-17 from the floor and nailed a season-high 10 of 13 3-pointers in 26 minutes to guide the Warriors to a 141-128 win over the Memphis Grizzlies.

I just wanted that feeling again, Curry said. It was pretty special.

It felt like it was the first day of school again.

It was Curry’s ninth 30-point game of the season, and his 10 treys were the highest total for any NBA player this season. Although it was nearly a month since he last played, he didn’t miss a beat.

Draymond Green picked up his ninth and 10th technical fouls of the season Saturday night, leading to his second ejection from the Warriors’ win against Memphis.

I was just happy to be back out there with my guys, he said. You sit and watch for 11 games, you just wonder what it’s going to be like to get back out there, and I finally got that opportunity. I really didn’t know what to expect. I just wanted to get some good reps, get up and down, see how my wind was and, surprisingly, I think my body felt way better than I expected.

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NFL rules state the following about when a quarterback leaves the pocket, as Rodgers did on the play in question

When the passer goes outside the pocket area and either continues moving without the ball (without attempting to advance the ball as a runner) or throws while on the run, he loses the protection of the one-step rule … and the protection against a low hit … but he remains covered by all the other special protections afforded to a passer in the pocket, as well as the regular unnecessary roughness rules applicable to all position players. If the passer stops behind the line and clearly establishes a passing posture, he will then be covered by all of the special protections for passers.

To add insult to injury, it’s not even like the Browns kept a hold on the top draft spot. The 49ers are also sitting at 0-5, but their schedule is weaker. That tiebreaker let San Francisco slide into the top draft position after the 49ers’ loss to the Colts.

Other teams were dealt injury blows, too. The Bills, already dangerously low on healthy receivers, lost their leading pass catcher, tight end Charles Clay, for a month. The Chiefs’ do-it-all tight end Travis Kelce is in concussion protocol, while wide receiver Chris Conley is out for the season with a ruptured Achilles.

Aaron Rodgers has had the Cowboys’ number over the past few years. In 2015, Dez Bryant’s infamous no-catch allowed the Packers to advance to the NFC Championship. In 2017, the Packers held off the Cowboys’ comeback attempt in the NFC Divisional Round to advance to another NFC Championship.

In Week 5, Dak Prescott and the Cowboys gave Rodgers 1:13 to work with, and Rodgers made the most of it in a way that only he could execute.

The Green Bay drive appeared to be in danger, when Rodgers narrowly escaped David Irving for a first down.

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it was almost like a protection spell had been cast to ward off the Bengals from stepping foot in the end zone.

The Panthers have gotten over the proverbial Super Bowl hangover that plagued them throughout their 6-10 2016 season. Carolina is 4-1 and sitting on top of the division once again, and all but one of those wins is over a team that’s over .500. The Panthers are playing good football right now, and Cam Newton is coming off one of the best games of his career.

However, the Falcons are more recently coming off of a Super Bowl, and so far, have shown no signs of a hangover. Even in their one loss, they still almost managed to beat the Bills in Week 4, despite injuries to Courtney Upshaw, Vic Beasley, Julio Jones, and Mohamed Sanu.

The NFC South is always up for grabs year in and year out, but if the Panthers and Falcons keep going at this rate, the race is going to be as entertaining as it’s ever been. There’s only been one repeat winner of the division, and that’s when Carolina won it in three consecutive seasons from 2013-2015.

In the first two weeks of the season, it was almost like a protection spell had been cast to ward off the Bengals from stepping foot in the end zone. Even when it looked like they had scored, nope, that’s not a touchdown:

After two weeks of winless, touchdown-free football, the Bengals fired offensive coordinator Ken Zampese and replaced him with quarterbacks coach Bill Lazor. Since then, the offense has looked revived, especially quarterback Andy Dalton:

We should find out if the offense has truly rebounded on Sunday, when the 1-3 Bengals host the surprising 3-1 Bills. Through the first month of the season, the Buffalo defense ranks No. 1 in DVOA. No team in the league has given up fewer points, either. In their only loss so far this season a 9-3 field goal fest against the Panthers the Bills didn’t surrender any touchdowns. They’ve allowed just four all season.

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The Eagles had the best group touchdown celebration in the NFL this week (VIDEO)

The Philadelphia Eagles played a complete game on Sunday in their 34-7 win over the Arizona Cardinals. Even the touchdown celebrations were top notch!

The fact that he’s not definitely out, that’s obviously good news, said Koetter, adding that Winston won’t attempt to throw until later in the week, if he throws at all.

There was a lot of focus on how surprisingly great a night that was for the Giants, but wasn’t it also just an inexcusably terrible loss for the Broncos? At home, coming off a bye against an 0-5 team that was down its top three wide receivers, its starting center, its best pass-rusher and one of its top two cornerbacks? And your top two division rivals had already lost, like, an hour before? How do you come out flat in a game like that? Should be a wake-up call for a Broncos team that has mainly played angry after missing the playoffs in 2016.

With Aaron Rodgers out, possibly for the season, due to a broken collarbone, Packers coach McCarthy has been adamant about going with third-year backup Brett Hundley and not looking for outside help. Hundley is well-regarded in some scouting circles, and part of the reason people around the league are intrigued by him is that they’d be intrigued by any quarterback who had spent three years in McCarthy’s program.

There’s no way Hundley has Rodgers’ gifts for accuracy, for manipulating the pocket, for game-winning throws on the run — no one does. But Hundley, who is signed on a cheap deal through 2018, has some talent, and McCarthy now gets more than half a season to figure out how to maximize that talent and minimize his weaknesses. If he succeeds, the Packers could have one of next offseason’s more compelling trade chips on their hands.

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Aaron Rodgers could be out for the season.

The Cowboys could be without Ezekiel Elliott. And the Patriots barely beat the Jets. Is it time to panic?

The Browns have followed a 1-15 season with an 0-6 start, and have looked more inept this season than they did in 2016. The complicating factor: There is no easy answer to turn this around from the roster as it’s built. Instead, the Browns are staring at a winless season. — Pat McManamon

Delton, a redshirt sophomore, started his first career game against TCU and could not get untracked. He was 11 of 29 for 146 yards and no touchdowns. A run-first quarterback, he ran for 39 yards on 19 carries.

Alex really struggled, but he had a lot of help in that respect, Snyder said. It wasn’t all his fault.

The Eagles could receive a boost against Washington with the potential return of right tackle Lane Johnson and running back Wendell Smallwood. Both players practiced Tuesday as Johnson cleared concussion protocol and the swelling subsided in Smallwood’s knee.

Second-year quarterback Carson Wentz continued his stellar play against Carolina and improved his season numbers — 126 of 207 for 1,584 yards with 13 touchdowns and three interceptions. Those statistics have vaulted him into the early conversation for the league’s Most Valuable Player award.

(They’re) a very well-coached team. You know what you’re gonna get with Kansas State. You get it every single time. It’s always a challenge, certainly going up there is. So we’re expecting a four-quarter fight with them, and that’s something we’ve got to be ready for.

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