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Chicago Bears

The weather conditions, specifically heavy winds

The Lions are probably looking at a 9-7 season, but that might not be enough to get them into the postseason. Detroit lost to playoff contenders Atlanta, Carolina and New Orleans and won’t play another NFC contender outside of the division again this season. The Lions would still have to overtake the Falcons (4-4), Redskins (4-4), Cardinals (4-4), Seahawks (5-3) and Cowboys (5-3) just to get the sixth seed.

So while Florida State cruised to a 77-6 win, the game was determined as a “no contest” in the betting world since games aren’t official until 55 minutes are played. It wasn’t a loss for those who laid the 52 points, but it wasn’t a win either. Now at 0-9-1 ATS this season, the Seminoles are in danger of becoming just the second FBS team in 25 seasons to go winless against the number.

But if the Titans really want to vie for the division, they’ll need Marcus Mariota to take over more games. The QB has a good Pro Football Focus grade despite not putting up big numbers, ranking No. 8 at the position to match his jersey number. With rookie first-rounder Corey Davis back at wideout, Mariota is up to a full complement of receivers. Coach Mike Mularkey also has been committed to letting Mariota take off and run more often to spark the offense.

The weather conditions, specifically heavy winds, contributed to this game’s low over/under of 42. It certainly looked like those bettors on the over were going to breeze to a win as LSU led 30-10 late in the third quarter. Needing just three more points to be scored, Tennessee reached the LSU 7-yard line before eventually turning it over on downs.nike_steelers_720

Jared Goff was a four-star prospect coming out of high school

Jared Goff was a four-star prospect coming out of high school, ranked No. 218 in the 247Sports Composite. Sonny Dykes saw a strong-armed player perfectly suited for his “Bear Raid” passing attack, naming Goff the first true freshman to start a season opener in school history. Goff set handfuls of school records (that he went on to break later in his career), but a 1-11 record made that first year a struggle.

Rosen, on the other hand, was as blue-chip as they come, a five-star prospect ranked as the No. 1 pro-style quarterback and No. 12 overall coming out of St. John Bosco in Bellflower, California. Like Goff, he enrolled early and was named the starter for the season opener as a freshman.

“Is that a good thing?” he asked.

“He’s a real football guy, like Tom [Brady], like Peyton [Manning], guys like that. They’re deep, deep into it.”

At this point in the fall, most NFL evaluators have finished scouting their primary schools and are now cross-checking certain positions around the country or checking out pop-up players (scouting slang for late-bloomer prospects that emerge during the fall).

With that in mind, I reached out to five executives and asked them this question: Who is the most underrated QB in college football? Here are their answers.

“I’d say Justin Herbert at Oregon. Dude can sling it and the Ducks really fell off after he went down (with an injury).”

“Rosier has stepped in for (Brad) Kaaya and the team hasn’t missed a beat. In fact, his mobility has probably improved them at the position. He shows the arm talent to develop into a next-level prospect with another year under (coach Mark) Richt.”
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Carson Wentz, Tyreek Hill would make fine ‘Madden’ upgrades

Carson Wentz, Tyreek Hill would make fine ‘Madden’ upgrades

The first EA Major of the 2018 season happened this weekend in Burbank, California, and congratulations to Michael Skimbo who bested Raidel “Joke” Brito in the finals to take home the belt. Well, the belt I kept trying to steal as host of the “Player’s Lounge” on the EA stream. It had been a few years since I was this immersed in the championship run and I’m more impressed at ever at the level of play by all of the competitors. It was cool to see some familiar faces, along with a new crop of gamers who are going to take this sport to the next level.

Skimbo is closing in on Eric “Problem” Wright for the title of best Madden player on the planet.

I think the ‘Hawks will keep winning. As for the Eagles, well they are looking great. But at the same time, that Jason Peters injury is going to loom large. Jordan Hicks’ season-ender doesn’t help, either. The Eagles might very well capture the top seed in the playoffs. And many strides will be made for a championship run — but not until next year.

“I practiced some and never got it, but my grandpa called one day and said, ‘Your cousin Drew has learned it, can you do it yet?’ ” Goedert recalled. “I said, ‘Oh, yeah, I learned it, too,’ even though I really hadn’t. Well, then, I had to learn it.”

He learned it alright, well enough to ride one with a 6-foot seat, so tall Goedert had to mount it from the side of Phillips’ pickup truck. And it’s not something he left behind in childhood; he rode it as recently as the summer of 2016 at the Lake City Fourth of July parade, a 20-minute ride from Britton down Highway 10.

“If I called him right now and asked him to do another parade, he’d do it in a second,” said Goedert’s mother, Mary.
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Cam Newton Jersey skipped his mandatory press conference altogether.

Mike Mulvihill, a Fox Sports vice president, told SBJ that the problem isn’t that there is too much NFL on TV, but that there is too much football all the way around — including college.

“The rise in football availability is pretty dramatic,” Mulvihill said. “This is what drives fragmentation in every area of television. … You can argue whether there’s greater or lesser interest in the game of football than there was ten years ago. But clearly, whatever that interest is, it’s being spread out over quite a few more windows than it was ten years ago.”

For his part, Mark Lazarus, chairman of NBC Broadcasting and Sports, worried that there is football fatigue by every Sunday of the week and noted that the biggest ratings fall is among viewers aged 18 to 34 years.

“Cam didn’t intend to be discourteous toward any specific media member,” the team said, via NFL.com. “In his mind, after answering questions for nine minutes, he had fulfilled his obligations.”
But because it’s Newton and because Newton has a bad history with press conferences, this will almost definitely create noise. After losing Super Bowl 50 to the Broncos, Newton walked out of his press conference after just a couple minutes. And earlier this season, Newton made a sexist comment to Charlotte Observer reporter Jourdan Rodrigue.

“It’s funny to hear a female talk about routes like that,” Newton said after being asked about route running. “It’s funny.”

Newton later apologized. Last week, Cam Newton Jersey skipped his mandatory press conference altogether.

It’s been a turbulent season for the Panthers, who are 4-3 after a loss to the Bears in which they scored three points while the Bears defense scored 14 points off two costly Panthers’ turnovers. Newton hasn’t been at his best after working his back from a shoulder injury this offseason. He’s thrown more interceptions (10) than touchdowns (9) and has generated an 80.9 passer rating. Still, Newton and the Panthers are only half a game back of the Saints in the NFC South.

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49ers’ Marquise Goodwin pays tribute to wife’s strength after loss of son

San Francisco 49ers wide receiver Marquise Goodwin paid tribute to his wife, Morgan, after a heartbreaking 48 hours in the couple’s lives.

“So that’s what’s so cool about the situation is, my wife, how supportive she is and how encouraging she is, all these great things that she does for me to help me go out there and play the way that I did. I think it speaks more about her character than mine because here she is, she could be holding me back, she could make me feel guilty about having to go and play football, which is just a game, in the grand scheme of things, and what we dealt with was a real-life situation, a death. Not only a death but a death to our infant child. So, situations like that, you only make it through that with your faith in God.”

John Wall had 31 points and 11 assists, and Bradley Beal added 22 points for the Wizards.

The Hornets battled back behind the gritty play of Walker. He made a driving layup with 17 seconds left and then added two free throws with 2 seconds remaining to tie it.

Howard blocked Beal’s baseline jumper at the end of regulation to send the game into overtime.

Charlotte carried the momentum into the extra period with Walker knocking down a leaning 3-pointer from the top of the key after a scramble for a loose ball. Lamb followed with a block and a coast-to-coast layup for a 5-point lead.

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist added a driving layup and Lamb buried a jumper from just beyond the foul line to push the lead to six with 1:24 remaining. But the big basket came when Lamb shot an air-ball on a 3-pointer and Howard grabbed the ball out of the air and laid it in to beat the shot clock.broncos_097-500x500

There’s not much unsustainable about what the Jaguars have done so far on the field.

Germany has become the latest country to be hit by the growing anti-semitic football problem after stickers of Anne Frank wearing a Schalke shirt were handed out.

The Sun showed images of the German-born Jew kitted out in the white and blue jersey of the Gelsenkirchen-based club as vile German football fans took inspiration from Lazio’s ultras division following last week’s much-criticised anti-Jewish stance.

It is unknown just which rival football supporters are behind this latest attack, but it is certain that Germany’s authorities – both football and police – will investigate the incident as soon as possible.

Despite snippets from Frank’s diary being ready out at matches across Serie A, the club stating its desire to send fans to Auschwitz to educate them over the issue and Lazio’s players wearing t-shirts with “No to anti-semitism” on them, some Italian football fans continued to defy the authorities.

Lazio supporters sung “Me ne frego” – “I don’t care” – a well fascist song and made Nazi salutes just hours after their side’s match with Bologna.

Stewart’s counterclaim states that the Liability Policy includes a segment titled “Commercial General Coverage Part” with a primary-layer coverage of $1 million “per occurrence” for claims covered under it. That, according to Stewart’s counterclaim, provides coverage for, among other things, “Bodily Injury and Property Damage Liability” and “Participant Legal Liability – Motorsports.”

They’re not an average unit relying on ridiculous performances in the red zone or on third down. The Jags have recovered six of 11 fumbles on defense, essentially league average.

The Basics: A quirky bar with games throughout (there’s a row of arcade games and ping pong tables) complete with board games and a comic book collection as well. So if you need something to take your mind off baseball afterward, you’ve certainly got plenty of options. blues-022

Browns tried to trade for AJ McCarron but didn’t call it in on time

Nor is he Jimmy Garoppolo, who was traded to the 49ers by the Patriots on Monday night, and a player the Browns reportedly didn’t want to overpay for earlier in the year. But he is a veteran with some starting experience. McCarron played in seven games for the Bengals in 2015 and finished with 854 yards, six touchdowns, and two picks.

Jackson and McCarron have an existing relationship, and McCarron should be familiar with the Browns’ offensive scheme. Jackson was McCarron’s offensive coordinator in Cincinnati in 2014 and 2015 before being hired as the Browns’ head coach.

DeShone Kizer won the starting job in Cleveland this preseason, but costly red-zone turnovers have landed him on the bench twice in a three-game span. Jackson has tried both Kevin Hogan and Cody Kessler in the starting role, but neither has been able to pry it away from Kizer permanently.

According to Schefter, the Bengals notified the league of the proposed trade at 3:55 p.m. ET, and the Browns notified the league shortly after 4 p.m. ET. Because the Browns were late, the league denied the trade. Cleveland protested with the league asking that the trade be approved. The NFL rejected the Browns’ protest.

The proposed compensation for McCarron would have been a second- and third-round pick in 2018, a source confirmed to Schefter. The Cincinnati Enquirer first reported the compensation.

McCarron has been the subject of trade rumors since the 2016 offseason after he filled in for an injured Andy Dalton and almost led the Bengals to their first playoff win under coach Marvin Lewis. McCarron completed 66.4 percent of his passes in seven appearances during the 2015 regular season, throwing for six touchdowns and two interceptions. In his lone playoff start, he completed 23-of-41 passes for 212 yards, one touchdown and one interception.

Browns rookie defensive end Myles Garrett self-reported a concussion saying, “I can’t play around with my brain.”blues-014

Jerrell Freeman gets 10-game ban for second PED suspension

Chicago Bears linebacker Jerrell Freeman has been suspended without pay for the next 10 games for a second violation of the league’s policy on performance-enhancing substances.

Freeman, 31, played four seasons in Indianapolis before he signed a three-year deal with Chicago in 2016. Freeman is under contract through 2018 and scheduled to earn $3.5 million, but he is out of guaranteed money.

According to coach Barry Trotz, the bar for Ovechkin is most always set at 50, while the man himself knows all he needs is the chance to reach those loft expectations.

”I’m a goal-scorer, and my job is to score goals,” Ovechkin said before the season started. ”The more goals, more points I’m gonna get is gonna be much better.”

Just five games into the 2017-18 season, Ovechkin is almost 20% of the way to that goal, having begun the season with a goal bonanza, racking up an NHL-leading nine goals and 10 points. He earned First Star of the Week honors after scoring three goals on opening night for the Caps and the following four-goal performance in their second game, making him the fourth player in league history to open the season with back-to-back hat tricks. Singular tallies came against Pittsburgh and New Jersey, again putting Ovechkin in the history books alongside Mike Bossy, Mario Lemieux and Patrick Marleau as the only players to score nine times in the first five games of a season.

“The way he’s able to create space for himself, to jump in holes and his release is second to none,” Capitals forward T.J. Oshie told the Washington Post. “Am I surprised on O’s production? I don’t think so. Am I impressed? Very.”
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Indeed the amount of football on TV has exploded in the last decade.

Going forward, the Raiders have matchups against the Bills, Dolphins, Giants and Broncos in the coming weeks. Together, those four teams allow a 4.0 percent touchdown rate to wideouts, well below the league average of 4.6. That makes Coopers’ potential production going forward inconsistent at best, so move him while he’s at his peak value.

A slim majority, 51 percent, of Americans believes pro sports leagues should not require athletes to stand, while 47 percent believe athletes should stand. This is a reversal of the same question from September 2016, when 52 percent indicated that players should stand, while 43 percent said they should not be required to stand.

he has good size. What makes those guys special is his demeanor. งาง฿ I think that’s what allowed Jared to win the job as a freshman.”

After taking the college football world by storm during his freshman season, Rosen was shut down in 2016 because of injury. His value to the Bruins is evident in the record (1-5 the rest of the season) and through seven games this season, it’s clear that Rosen, like Goff during his third year as a starter at Cal, carries the offense with his highly-touted arm.

“Ten years ago, the NFL had 32 game windows through week six,” SBJ reported. “This year, it is up to 39, a 22 percent increase. It’s even more crowded in college, where the 2007 windows to this point added up to 105. This year, it’s at 179, up a whopping 71 percent.”

That number has spiked to 46.1 percent with Trubisky under center. Yet Howard’s ability to gain yards after defenders close in on him (defender within one yard) has increased from 3.81 without Trubisky to 4.2 with Trubisky. tigers_050-115x115

I don’t think he played in a complicated system in high school

In his senior year, his football team traveled an hour and a half to play Milbank High near the Minnesota border. In attendance was former SDSU offensive line coach Carl Larson, who at the time was the minister at American Lutheran Church in Milbank. He saw something in Goedert worthy of a phone call to his former boss in Brookings.

“He started out playing inside linebacker on defense. He ended up playing quarterback, receiver, tight end and running back on offense. He was the whole team,” Larson said. “I called coach Stig and told him, ‘This guy’s a player.’ That spring, he was back in Milbank with the track team. The best (discus) throwers there were throwing it maybe 120, 125 (feet). He came up and whipped it 156. So I called coach again.”

“I think they’re really similar,” former Cal coach Sonny Dykes said in 2015 prior to the only meeting between Goff and Rosen (a 40-24 UCLA win). “I think Josh has a big arm like Jared. Josh is pretty far along developed, physically. He’s a strong kid.

Later that afternoon, Goedert shows he’s come a long way, not only physically but mentally as well. After the entire offense watches film with offensive coordinator Eric Eidsness, Goedert and three other SDSU tight ends break off into a position meeting. Tight ends coach Luke Schleusner goes through a series of run and pass plays that make up the game plan for UNI, and it’s loaded with all kinds of terminology and hot reads. The fifth-year senior listens intently and absorbs it all, at one point interpreting an assignment to one of his fellow tight ends.

“His first year, his football IQ wasn’t too high,” Schleusner said. “I don’t think he played in a complicated system in high school. It was a challenge to get him lined up right, let alone execute a play. Now he’s got an incredible football IQ. We line him up all over the field, use him in a number of different ways, and he grasps it all very quickly.”tigers_049-115x115