Category Archives: New Orleans Saints

New Orleans Saints

Allen’s completion percentage has been a hot topic for months.

No one has made any such grand declarations about Brown or Tatum in the aftermath of Game 4, but it’s hard not to wonder about their ceilings. For Brown, it was his second 30-point performance of the postseason, making him the first player age 21 years or younger to have two such performances in a series since the Chicago Bulls’ Derrick Rose did it against the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2010.

A year later, Rose was the league’s MVP.

Analysis: The 60 percent mark is the dividing line here. Anything under is seen as troubling by NFL teams. Stafford is proof that you can be a successful quarterback even with a low college completion percentage.

Is it a red flag or a product of him not having a strong supporting cast? Mayfield was the most accurate quarterback in college football last year. That also comes with questions, though. Was it because of the offensive system he played in?

Thomas is under contract for one more season before he’s set to hit free agency. He told Henderson and Michael DiRocco in January he was considering a holdout if he and the Seahawks were unable to agree to an extension.

However, Seahawks general manager John Schneider said at a charity event in April that Thomas’ representatives had reached out to the team to say a holdout wasn’t on the table.

Seattle traded Michael Bennett to the Philadelphia Eagles and released Richard Sherman in March. The fact the Seahawks kept Thomas would seemingly indicate he’s a part of their long-term plans.

Next month will give a better indicator as to whether Thomas is prepared to hold out for a new contract. The Seahawks’ three-day mandatory minicamp starts June 12. Henderson noted Thomas would face an $84,435 fine if he skipped all three days.

It took until the 76th overall slot Friday night, 44 picks after the last one, that Oklahoma State’s Mason Rudolph was selected by Pittsburgh. The Steelers get a big, strong-armed, highly competitive QB yep, sounds a lot like incumbent Ben Roethlisberger, who is 36 and closing in on the end of his championship career. It’s not Ben’s job to teach me anything. It’s my job to learn, said Rudolph, who added he dreamed of becoming a Steeler.canucks_1160

Chiefs GM Brett Veach: Reggie Ragland ‘can be a star’

The price to gain a potential star linebacker apparently only cost the Chiefs a fourth-round pick.

In his pre-draft news conference Friday, Kansas City general manager Brett Veach gushed over Reggie Ragland, calling the player the Chiefs acquired from the Buffalo Bills last summer a possible future household name.

“I think we’re all excited about him and we think he can be a star,” Veach said, via the team’s website. “We were very fortunate to be able to execute that trade.”

There was no playing not to lose. It was all about stepping on the opponent’s throat. That kind of mentality is going to be necessary as they move forward, but it seems to be the only way they know how to play.

I still like both the Jets and Predators better on paper than the Golden Knights to advance out of the West, but I feel far less decisive about it than I did before the playoffs began. Vegas is so much more than a Cinderella story. It is a legitimate Stanley Cup threat that is going to make things difficult for whomever they play going forward.

Hmmm, tough one. Gene Sarazen?

Reader Bill Maroney: “If LaVar Ball is such a marketing genius, why didn’t he name one of this three sons ‘Basket?’ ”

Or, at the least name one of his heirs, Heir, thus Heir Ball.

Incomplete Story of the Week: In the final of Sunday’s Match Play Championship, Bubba Watson left a long, downhill eagle putt about 5 feet short. NBC’s Johnny Miller: “He can actually four-putt from there if he doesn’t watch out.”

But after opponent Kevin Kisner made bogey, he conceded, surrendering the hole without giving Watson the opportunity to three-putt what was left, let alone four-putt. Miller, as if he had never said anything, then said nothing.
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Raiders agree to terms with Leon Hall

The Raiders have agreed to terms with veteran cornerback Leon Hall, agent Doug Hendrickson tweeted.

Hall, 33, spent last season across the Bay with the 49ers, playing nine games with one start.

Oakland has seen turnover in its secondary this offseason, with the departures of David Amerson, T.J. Carrie and Sean Smith and the signings of cornerbacks Rashaan Melvin and Shareece Wright.

Peters: When it comes to who I trust the least, it’s probably Jonathan Bernier. With Semyon Varlamov ruled out for the first round against the Predators, it’s Bernier’s show for the Colorado Avalanche. He has made just one postseason start during his NHL career and has only five playoff appearances. Bernier’s .886 playoff save percentage doesn’t exactly inspire confidence, but it’s also based on only 213 minutes of action.

He also hasn’t seen the Predators yet this season, which may not mean much, but going against the league’s top team with all of your goalie experience coming from the bench is a bit of a concern. I don’t know that Varlamov would have made Colorado feel much better about its chances in this series, but you’d have to think that his postseason experience, however sporadic, would be at least a little comforting.

Weather — especially cold temperatures — continues to be an issue this season, with games in the northeastern part of the country at greater risk than usual of postponement or conditions that can adversely affect scoring. Chicago (the Cubs are home for six games, the White Sox three) and Cleveland are two cities at heightened risk of delays/postponements during Week 2, with high chances of precipitation on four of the seven days on which each has a game scheduled and temperatures generally ranging between 40 and 50 degrees all week.

Early-week games in Baltimore, Boston, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., are more likely to experience lower (high 30s to roughly 50 degrees) temperatures than precipitation, though Monday and Tuesday could be at risk in each. The good news in Washington, as well as in Cincinnati and New York, is that temperatures should rise significantly heading into the weekend for series there. The Detroit Tigers will play three weekend home games facing a slight chance of rain and 40s-50s for temperatures. The Miami Marlins are the only team to play all its games in weather-controlled environments.
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It’s hard to peg a worst-case scenario for the Miami Dolphins.

They don’t have a single player—even Ryan Tannehill—who would doom them if he went down.

However, one position group stands out as needing more depth: running back.

The Dolphins already signed Frank Gore, who gets to return to South Florida after starring at the University of Miami. However, he’s about to turn 35 and looked every bit of it last year in Indianapolis.

The previous summer, according to an ESPN The Magazine report, Davis had expressed interest in Las Vegas to an NFL official during a West Hollywood meal. He was told then that the league would oppose any such move on principal.

The outside of the nondescript building where the all-important Raiders-UNLV meeting took place in 2015. patriots_111
The most glaring principal difference between Las Vegas and other cities isn’t casino gambling — it’s sports betting, the legal kind, anyway. Forty states have casinos, according to the American Gaming Association. Only Nevada, however, can offer a legal bet on the Super Bowl. And that makes the NFL nervous — even though sports betting currently takes place in every state and every stadium via the dozens of offshore sportsbooks that serve the U.S. online.

The February 2015 meeting at the gaming research center was the first between UNLV and the Raiders. It took place a year before Davis appeared in a picture with influential billionaire casino magnate Sheldon Adelson and was kept secret for three years afterward.

Ramirez was a much-ballyhooed Boston Red Sox shortstop prospect traded to the then-Florida Marlins and he blossomed right away. He stole 51 bases in each of his first two seasons, registered a 30-homer, 30-steal campaign, hit for high average, won top NL rookie honors and just missed league MVP honors in his fourth year. Put simply, he was one of the players fantasy managers built rosters around and relied upon.

With the league gutted by players drafted into the war effort, every team could use a little help everywhere. The Red Sox in particular don’t seem to need a hitter who can play only a corner defensive position:

Hooper is, of course, the team’s best player and a definite Hale Orb Flattener in right field. He isn’t going anywhere.

Wally Schang, playing left field for you, has been almost as good a hitter as Babe over the past couple of years. Same with Amos Strunk in center field. Neither has the upside of Babe, but they’re more certain.

The NFL announced the dates and times for the wild-card round of playoff games on Saturday

Sunday’s early game will pit two teams that haven’t been to the postseason in years. The Bills are making their first postseason appearance since 1999, while the Jaguars haven’t been to the playoffs since 2007. Meanwhile, the final game of the weekend will feature bitter divisional rivals, the Panthers and Saints, that have had plenty of postseason experience in recent seasons.

The honeymoon period is running full-tilt into the phase where the coach and players tuning each other out becomes an issue. Ten years is a long time — in Baltimore, it’s a year longer than Brian Billick lasted, and Harbaugh’s predecessor won a Super Bowl, as well. Only five coaches have longer tenure than Harbaugh (ironically, two are in his division, Mike Tomlin and Marvin Lewis).

Green Bay, which ranked 22nd in total defense and 26th in points allowed this season, fired defensive coordinator Dom Capers on Monday and is expected to make more changes to the defensive coaching staff. While team president and CEO Mark Murphy announced current Packers general manager Ted Thompson is assuming a role as a senior advisor to football operations, he clarified the franchise isn’t looking for a new head coach.

“Mike is our man; he is our coach,” Murphy said. “We have obviously, kind of like Ted, the two of them together have had a great run. We have all the confidence in the world in Mike, we’re going to have great success moving forward. So yeah he will be our coach.”

McCarthy, 54, holds a regular-season record of 121-70-1 through 12 seasons in Green Bay. His tenure includes a 10-8 record in the postseason and a Super Bowl XLV win against the Steelers.

I like to check them over the course of the to if they reflect what I’m seeing or challenge it.He was hurting the most.But the Flames must climb past six clubs with 16 remaining to qualify for the playoffs.With time, he’ll become more decisive off the dribble and learn when to change pace.

Jeff Fisher and the Rams traveled across the country nearly 3 , but they could not escape controversy.

we can’t pick every game, all year.D Victor Hedman was a big reason, shadowing Kane, limiting his time and space.Aybar has been hitting .174 with a .207 OBP and .205 slugging percentage with the Braves this year , so we can’t rule out that this involved some sort of chicken sacrifice ritual and was a rally chicken attempt, a la League.Probably one of the most important things that I say to a player this process at the end of the day is that I appreciate your trust us as people, and your loyalty to the program.
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The Packers don’t want to see the Seahawks get hot to the point of taking back the division from the 9-3 Rams.

One game that could come into play nicely for the Packers is their season-opening victory over the Seahawks. Seattle had been inconsistent of late, losing two at home and winning two on the road, but got a huge win over Philadelphia on Sunday night to improve to 8-4. This scenario would require the Seahawks to finish 2-2 and finish second in the NFC West. It’s plausible given their remaining schedule: at Jaguars, vs. Rams, at Cowboys, vs. Cardinals.

That would probably mean both Seattle and Los Angeles finish 11-5, a mark Green Bay can’t reach.

George returned Monday after missing the previous two games with a calf injury to score 20 points on 7 of 14 shooting in 34 minutes, while Westbrook added 30 on 10 of 22 shooting, plus four rebounds and seven assists. Anthony finished with 11 points on 5 of 12 shooting.

According to ESPN Stats & Information, the two-man lineup of Mirotic and Portis has played 24 minutes together, combining for a 115.6 offensive rating and a 103.8 defensive rating, for an 11.8-net positive. The Bulls have scored 223 points over these last two wins, 59 of which have been while Portis and Mirotic were both on the floor, a plus-7 together on the floor.

While the two still may not be speaking off the floor, they are letting their games do the talking on it. Portis celebrated loudly after Mirotic drained a triple in the second half as the Bulls enjoyed the feeling that has eluded so often throughout the first quarter of the season — the one that goes along with winning.

Stevens ranks No. 15 nationally at 289.9 passing yards per game, and wide receiver Michael Gallup accounts for 112.1 of that. Gallup was one of three finalists for the Biletnikoff Award, given to the nation’s top wide receiver.
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The Redskins have allowed 30 or more points five times this season

The debate in Dallas is about who the team misses most: Ezekiel Elliott, Tyron Smith, Sean Lee or Dan Bailey. That all four could miss this one makes the outlook pretty bleak. The Eagles are due for a good test of how they handle success, but odds are they won’t get it in this one. Dak Prescott better brace himself.

The Chargers’ pass rush (yup, that’s Joey Bosa and Melvin Ingram with 20 sacks between them) vs. whoever might replace Tyron Smith on a short week — that’s an awful combination for the Cowboys. Honestly, there really isn’t that much more to say about this game. Without Smith, as much as without Ezekiel Elliott, the Cowboys are the Chargers, except the Chargers are a better version of the Chargers.

Against New York, Washington quarterback Kirk Cousins (2-4 as a starter) is 131 of 230 (57 percent) for 1,627 yards with six touchdowns and 12 interceptions.

The Redskins have allowed 30 or more points five times this season, including in their two consecutive losses. New York has not scored 30 points in any of McAdoo’s 27 games as head coach.

What we do know is that San Francisco considered Garoppolo a safer bet than the offseason quarterback path the 49ers were expected to follow. That’s pursing Washington’s Kirk Cousins to reunite him with Shanahan, his former offensive coordinator with the Redskins. The fall-back option would be pursuing another veteran, trying to land a top QB prospect in the 2018 draft or sticking with Beathard, who hasn’t assembled enough of a body of work to get a good feel for where his NFL career is headed.nike_steelers_2918

The Pittsburgh Steelers just seem to have Kansas City’s number

The Chiefs fell to 5-1 SU and ATS on the season with their loss to Pittsburgh, losing to the Steelers for the third straight time since the start of the 2016 season.

When the 49ers drafted him in the third round, it was a pick that was mostly laughed at.

“C.J. Beathard had mostly fifth-, sixth-round grades from the teams I spoke with,” NFL Network’s Mike Mayock said, via NFL.com. “[He’s] very smart, understands where to go with the football, better arm than expected when you really sit down and study him. I haven’t seen him live, and the people who went to his Pro Day told me he had an excellent day.”

But Beathard looked good in preseason with 401 yards, four touchdowns and one interception, as well as a 62-yard touchdown run. His revival of the San Francisco offense against Washington on Sunday is more reason to be encouraged about his NFL future.

Through four games, Newhouse has given up just one sack. He has not done well in run blocking — which has had him named a Buster twice — but neither has really any of the offensive line, especially the past two weeks.

What it comes down to is while right tackle was where 7 of the 8 sacks the offensive line gave up last season came from, thus far it is not appearing like the glaring weak area it was before. Despite paying a fraction of the cost at the position they would have for either Watson or Howard. As a result, Pro Football Focus ranked the Raiders the best pass blocking line in football right now.lakers_051

the Rams are 3-2 and tied with the Seahawks for the NFC West lead.

NFL owners, players and representatives met to discuss social issues in the wake of protests across the league, and many involved called the session a positive step.
“I think what he’s doing with Goodell and that is fantastic,” Sherman said of Baldwin, his teammate at Stanford. “He’s been doing that work for years now, meeting with police and trying to work to change, and I think that’s what gets missed sometimes with players, because they’re like, ‘Oh, stick to sports, stick to this.’ And a lot of people have used the phrase like ‘privileged athletes.’ ‘Oh, these privileged athletes, you guys are rich millionaires.’

Of course, no taste of Minnesota would be complete without a little chill. On Sunday, that means the stadium was opened up to 43 degree temperatures in advance of a noon showdown with the Green Bay Packers.

The brisk weather, which will be tapered by U.S. Bank Stadium’s massive heating system, shouldn’t be a shock to either team. The Packers and Vikings play in two of the NFL’s least-forgiving winter homes. Green Bay revels in the sub-zero temperatures of Lambeau Field. While Minnesota plays indoors now, it spent the two seasons prior to the new stadium’s opening at TCF Bank Stadium, the open-air home of the University of Minnesota.

As such, a 40-degree day shouldn’t change much for either team. Which is good, since ain’t nobody got nothing to say about a 40-degree day.

The rookie receiver was a third-round pick in April after a tremendously productive career at Eastern Washington and has been favored target for Kupp early in the season. He finished Sunday with three receptions for 44 yards, but couldn’t haul in the game-winner.

Ultimately, it was five turnovers for the Rams that doomed the team offensively, including two interceptions thrown by Goff.

With the loss, the Rams are 3-2 and tied with the Seahawks for the NFC West lead. But the drop from Kupp will be a hard one to get over.falcons_021

Red Sox beat Astros 10-3, avoid elimination in ALDS Game 3

Hanley Ramirez waved a “Believe in Boston” flag during pregame introductions, drawing cheers from a Fenway Park crowd fearful of a second straight postseason sweep.

Then he gave the Red Sox exactly what they wished for: more October baseball.

Rivera said Dickson’s production could open up other areas in the passing attack because he might have benefited from attention given to wideouts.

“It looked like they were more concerned with the outside than they were with Ed in the middle,” Rivera said of the Lions. “Our backs have been a big concern for a lot of teams as well. … If you’re throwing the ball to eight different people, now they have to account for them.”

Wentz threw for four touchdowns for the first time in his career Sunday. He seems anxious to see how he stacks up against Carolina.

Sunday afternoon also brings two important divisional matchups. The Packers can build on early dominance in the NFC North if they beat the Vikings in Minneapolis. Tom Brady and the Patriots take on the Jets in the AFC East. The 3-2 Jets are enjoying a good start to the season, but they are without star running back Bilal Powell on Sunday.

What will take place is teams owners and Goodell listening to a group of players who will speak on finding ways to work together to “move from protest to progress.”

“Those conversations have been going on an almost weekly basis,” Lockhart said Monday. “It really is the result of what has been unprecedented dialogue to see what we can do if we work together on this issue.steelers_032