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Los Angeles Rams

Steelers rookie QB Mason Rudolph believes he and Ben Roethlisberger are ‘going to be friends’

The Buccaneers drafted former Purdue offensive lineman Kevin Pamphile in the fifth round back in 201Pamphile became a starter in 2016 and started 29 games at guard for the Buccaneers over the last two seasons. The Tennessee Titans brought him in this offseason to provide depth.

Come get me, Thomas said to Cowboys coach Jason Garrett last season, per Jon Machota of the Dallas Morning News.

If he no longer feels wanted by the Seahawks, he may try to force his way there by holding out and requesting his release. Seattle would save $8.5 million by releasing him.

A lot would have to fall into place before the Seahawks would release Thomas—they’d certainly seek a trade first—but it is a possibility, and he would undoubtedly be the most talented Seahawk released if it happened.

Martinez’s solo shot just over the glove of a leaping Aaron Judge proved to be the difference in a 5-4 Red Sox win over the Yankees on Thursday at Yankee Stadium.

LB DeMarcus Ware: In his nine seasons as a Cowboy, he was a Pro Bowler seven times and racked up a team record 117 sacks.

TE Jason Witten: His list of accomplishments are long and distinguished. Those 1,152 receptions for 12,448 yards are club records. Witten’s 11 Pro Bowls are tied for most among Cowboys players, and none can match his 239 games played.

WR Michael Irvin: Widely credited as the heart and soul of the ’90s dynasty, the fiery Hall of Famer was also highly productive. His 750 catches for 11,904 yards trail only Witten on the club leaderboard.

Raiders (from Browns via Bills and Ravens) — Brandon Parker, OT, North Carolina A&T: Appears Jon Gruden has selected his tackle tandem for the next few years after UCLA’s Kolton Miller arrived in Round 1. Oakland appears set inside, but 2018 may be it for Donald Penn and Breno Giacomini outside. 

Ryan Shazier’s anticipated return will have to wait until 2019 at the earliest.
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Murray’s prowess at the plate has actually been generating anxiety in the Sooner State about his pro prospects.

Brown: “I know Brad was saying just guard the 3-point line but switch on the flares. We’re thinking screens are coming. He shoots it from the hash mark with 0.5 seconds left. That’s a hell of a shot. Take my hat off to him.”

Joe Prunty, Bucks interim head coach: “At the end of the day, we had a couple of things in mind that we needed to look at because of what their defenses are. We went with what we thought was the best. Khris ended up popping to an area that he ended up getting a wide-open look. Great shot by him. Good poise by Giannis to be able to inbound the ball.”

His struggles against Texas aside, Depending on what happens in this summer’s MLB draft, it could ultimately derail Oklahoma’s lofty plans for him at quarterback.

One baseball scout who was in Norman to watch Murray, among others, Saturday told ESPN.com that Murray “is definitely on the list” of MLB teams and, without speculating on which round he might get drafted, added that Murray “could have a tough decision to make” this summer.

College baseball analyst Kyle Peterson was even more direct during ESPNU’s broadcast of the Red River game.

Hischier had 52 points in 82 regular-season games for the Devils this season, including 19 of his 20 goals at even strength. Sure, he had a zone-start disparity to the tune of 60 percent in the offensive zone, but that’s a function of playing with Taylor Hall. (And yeah, playing with Hall for the foreseeable future is a nice benefit as well.)

Hischier is only going to get better — and hopefully bigger, as he adds a bit more to that 19-year-old frame. Brock Boeser might score more goals. Mathew Barzal might have more points. Charlie McAvoy might continue his trajectory to become the next great Bruins defenseman. But Hischier has all the tools to become one of those two-way, 200-foot top line centers to whom Selke Trophies are handed.

Chris Peters, NHL prospects columnist: Without taking anything away from Barzal’s sensational rookie season, and while also acknowledging the heightened expectations I have for his career, I think Clayton Keller of the Arizona Coyotes has the biggest boom potential of any of this year’s rookies. Boeser, McAvoy, Hischier et al obviously have a great opportunity to do something special in their careers. But I think Keller has the most potential to be his team’s offensive focal point, which is why — when all is said and done — he will be the real gem of this rookie class.orioles_054

NFL Draft 2018: Saquon Barkley’s jersey reportedly best-selling in draft history through first round

It didn’t take long for Saquon Barkley’s NFL jersey to fly off the shelves.

The running back, selected second overall by the Giants on Thursday, generated more jersey sales on draft night than any other player in its history, a Fanatics official told ESPN. The previous top-seller was Johnny Manziel in 2014.

Cubs: Maddon said Bryant has been checked by doctors and could return Thursday night when the Cubs begin a four-game series against the Milwaukee Brewers at Wrigley Field. “He’s fine,” Maddon said. “I’d be surprised if it took a turn in the other direction.”

Indians: LHP Ryan Merritt (sprained left knee) will make one more start at extended spring training before starting a minor league rehab assignment.

Cubs: RHP Kyle Hendricks will start the opener of a four-game series against Milwaukee at Wrigley Field on Thursday.

Indians: RHP Mike Clevinger, who allowed two hits in his first career complete-game shutout against Baltimore in his last start, goes against Seattle on Thursday.

The 36-year-old McCown released the news Friday through his agent, Mike McCartney, noting, “it’s bittersweet to leave the game I love and the craft I’ve worked at since the 2nd grade.”

McCown appeared in 62 NFL games for five different NFL teams, but made only 10 starts in a career that began in 2004. He appeared in 40 of those games and made one start with the Saints. His other NFL games came with the Browns (who drafted him in the fourth round), Buccaneers, Jaguars and Falcons.

Given McCown’s reputation as a career backup, Verizon signed him to do a 2015 commercial touting the network’s system of backup generators. With McCown dressed in uniform and old-style Western music playing in the background, the QB gazed at a backup generator and deadpanned, “I wonder why they save those backups and not just put them in the regular rotation. I bet if they just had the chance, some of those backups would really shine.”

The 22-year-old Lauer made a mistake in the second with a fastball that Story took deep to left to give the Rockies a 7-0 lead. Story’s other grand slam was April 21, 2017, against San Francisco.

Story is on a roll over his last eight games, hitting .423 with three homers.

“Just trying to put my best swing on it and not try to do too much,” Story said.steelers_050

Rob Gronkowski reportedly in no rush to return to Patriots, enjoying offseason

Over the weekend, Rob Gronkowski seemingly gave his strongest hint of the offseason that he is planning to play football in 2018. That does not mean he is in any rush to resume working out with the New England Patriots, however.

Gronkowski was at Gillette Stadium on Saturday to announce a partnership with Monster Energy Supercross. He managed to dodge most questions from reporters about his playing future, but he may have tipped his hand when asked specifically if he has any message for fans who want answers.

Bergeron: Honestly, I haven’t really thought about it. You guys just reminded me of it. It’s great memories, for sure, something you’ll never forget. That being said, it’s a new challenge, it’s a new year. It’s been a while. It’s two different teams facing each other. Can’t put too much emphasis on that.

Morgan Rielly, Maple Leafs defenseman: I feel like I have an out because I didn’t play on that team. It actually doesn’t hang over the locker room in my opinion. There are so many new faces in here. We talked about it the other day, just a few of us, because it was being talked about in the media. We discussed it for two minutes, and then we never brought it up again. We were like, “That sucked, so let’s win this time.”

This is what the Giants must consider when analyzing Sam Darnold, Josh Rosen, Josh Allen and Baker Mayfield. They are all intriguing, but will there be that conviction on any of them?

Accorsi said he believes the criteria Gettleman established for the No. 2 pick — you must be able to project the player as a future Hall of Famer and that he must be deemed worthy of the second-overall selection in any draft — are sound. Accorsi has watched the quarterback prospects in this draft but has not studied them the way the Giants have and continue to do.

“You can’t draft by the curve at quarterback,’’ Accorsi said. “If it happens to be one of those drafts where there’s only one great player, you can’t invent one if you’re picking 2. There may be a draft you do have that worry. This draft I don’t think you have that worry.

“Dave’s got more options than I had. He’s got a bunch of options. He can go a lot of different directions.’’海鹰53

Gregg Popovich says Kawhi Leonard still not cleared by his medical team

Gregg Popovich reiterated that Kawhi Leonard’s continued absence from the San Antonio Spurs during their run in the Western Conference playoffs stems from the lack of clearance from the star forward’s medical team for a return to the court.

A league source said the club doesn’t expect Leonard back at any point during the postseason, and has harbored that belief since the week after the All-Star break.

Leonard briefly returned to the team from his rehabilitation stint in New York in March, but decided in April to head back East to focus on the rehab process.

Pelton: Philadelphia 76ers. With Kyrie Irving injured and the Boston Celtics no longer so formidable as a second-round matchup, the Sixers clearly have the easiest path to the conference finals. And since almost any opponent there is going to be difficult, I guess I’d say that also means Philadelphia has the easiest path to the NBA Finals.

Ogwumike: The Cavs have had nine lives so far this season. Add the playoff bracket to the count. Not as blatantly obvious as last year, Cleveland’s late losses this season have positioned the Cavaliers best for postseason success.

Schneider, who seemed to hurt his groin in a collision with Lightning defenseman Ryan McDonagh midway through the final period, survived a late power play to nail down the win.

It was Schneider’s first playoff win since 2012, when he was with the Vancouver Canucks, and his first win with the Devils since Dec. 27. Schneider had gone 0-10-2 in his final 12 games for the Devils this season.

After the game, Devils forward Blake Coleman said, “[Brian] Boyle and I looked at each other halfway through the game and said to each other, ‘This is the Cory that we know.’ ”

Devils coach John Hynes decided to make the switch in goal with New Jersey trailing 2-0 in the best-of-seven series.

Game 4 will be Wednesday night at the Prudential Center.
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Ravens holding onto Brandon Carr

The Ravens are set to move on without right tackle Austin Howard and running back Danny Woodhead, but they are going to hold onto cornerback Brandon Carr.

Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun reports that the team will pick up Carr’s option for the 2018 season.

Of course, the same could be said of English metal bands formed nearly 50 years ago and still going strong.

Roddy White The connection makes sense with former Falcons WRs coach Robiskie coordinating the offense Tennessee, but White reportedly refused to accept the minimum salary.One penalty compared to 14 last week is a good improvement.They’re big pieces to this team but it also gives other guys opportunities to step up and fill their role this is their chance.

Chiderah Uzowuru finished with 19 points and 12 rebounds to lead the Tigers OEC home game.A dashing lawyer who redefined fearlessness and broke Crow’s back.With dedication to his craft, could emerge as a quality starter the NFL.Lynch has control over trades and contracts, so it’s not like’s head coach has complete control over’s future.Politics, perhaps

According to, the Medical Board of California is seeking a meeting to discuss revoking or permanently suspending Chao’s license as a result of his treatment of deceased Hall of Famer Seau.The injured reserve designation means that there is no set number of that he be required to miss, but it does clear a roster spot for a player to come up to replace him.The Orange Bowl seats 75.

Scheduling Notes: On Feb.After Seattle scored late the fourth and Atlanta blocked the PAT, the Falcons tried to add more points on their 24 lead with 4 left.For instance, when needed someone to step up’s absence, Phillips came through with 5 sacks and some critical performances.Very strong, stocky, powerful runner with the instincts, contact balance and toughness to a heavy workload.

Watkins didn’t live up to expectations in Buffalo after the Bills packaged two first-round picks to move up and draft him. But with the Rams last year he ed well in a supporting role, and now the Chiefs will hope he can be their No. 1 wide receiver.49ers_210

Dolphins reportedly interested in RB DeMarco Murray

By moving up from No. 6 to No. 3 in the 2018 NFL Draft in a blockbuster deal with the Colts, the Jets are making loud and clear their intentions to find and select their next franchise quarterback. If the Browns, as widely expected, take Sam Darnold with the first-overall pick, the Jets are assured of getting whoever they like best among Josh Rosen, Josh Allen or even Baker Mayfield — as long as the Giants at No. 2 do not take him.

The Colts, who held the No. 3 pick, have Andrew Luck and did not need a quarterback. The Jets can sit tight at No. 3 — as long some other team does not trade with the Giants to get up to No. 2 to land a quarterback. If the Giants are taking a quarterback, they are staying put at No. 2 and taking him.

Here is where Giants general manager Dave Gettleman can have some fun. If he wants to make the Jets believe he is open for business on a trade-down, he should rent out three billboards outside East Rutherford, N.J., advertising that intention. If the Jets take the bait, perhaps they will be inclined to make a trade with the Giants, moving up one spot, to get to No. 2 to ensure they get their guy.

The move gives the Cowboys $1.4 million in cap space and allows Scandrick an opportunity to find a new home.

Scandrick, 31, has requested his release with the Cowboys going with a youth movement in the secondary with corners such as Jourdan Lewis and Chidobe Awuzie.

And the president tweeted this shortly after midnight Saturday morning.

It’s readily apparent why getting McCabe fired might send a message Trump likes. But might it also come back to bite Trump

Trump has now, after all, cemented the enemy status of a top-ranking official at the FBI (its No. 2) and onetime acting director. He previously did that by firing McCabe’s superior, former FBI director James B. Comey, and Comey has rewarded that decision by leaking unhelpful things and testifying about Trump in a negative light. He is now set to release a book.patriots_301

EJ Manuel was the first quarterback taken in the 2013 Draft and the only one in the first round.

That’s right: To be fair, Manuel went 25-6 at Florida State and won a bowl game in each of his four years there.

19. Paul DePodesta, chief strategy officer, Browns (NR): The former Mets personnel executive and baseball GM (a fictionalized version of whom was played by Jonah Hill in the “Moneyball” movie) tries to bring analytics to football with the league’s worst franchise — and the rest of the NFL will be watching. It also sounds like a good plot for “Moneyball 2,” actually.

Forgive my amateur sense of good Super Bowl TV pregame storytelling, but what a tale this would have made for NBC.

So many significant pieces were in place, right there in Minneapolis. Cris Collinsworth, who will call the game on NBC, was on that Bengals team. Esiason is there to be the analyst on on the radio version. Theirs is a shared bizarre experience worth a half hour show.

Additonally, Solomon Wilcots, a CBS analyst, was a Cincy starting defensive back. They were all easily accessible.

Taylor was heavily involved with the starters during the Titans’ dress rehearsal against the Bears. He received two carries totaling 7 yards and was the intended recipient of a reverse from Derrick Henry, but Henry got bills_005tackled before he could make the pitch to Taylor sweeping around in the other direction.

Taylor also helped the Titans convert a third-and-31 (!!!) by catching a seam route, breaking three tackles at once, then dragging a couple more defenders for more yards at the end of the play.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, Christian Hackenberg looked not good for the Jets, serving up two pick-sixes to the Giants before giving way to Bryce Petty, who tossed two TDs. It was also a rough night for the Broncos, who saw Paxton Lynch (shoulder), Demaryius Thomas (groin), Zach Kerr (knee) and safety Will Parks (hip) leave the game against the Packers with injuries.

Dolphins (4-5): Miami gets mentioned solely because of its record in what’s shaping up to be a soft AFC wild-card bubble.

The Dolphins have lost three straight, two of them on the road by a combined score of 85-21. Miami also has the following teams remaining on its schedule: Patriots (twice), Bills (twice) and Chiefs. The outlook is bleak.

Raiders (4-5): Oakland also has a difficult slate remaining, starting with Sunday’s game against the Patriots in Mexico City and continuing with the Chiefs, Cowboys and Eagles down the line.

Ravens (4-5): Baltimore has lost 3 of 4, but the Ravens’ late bye week will have them rested up for a schedule that isn’t exactly taxing: Packers sans Aaron Rodgers, Texans, Lions, Steelers, Browns, Colts, Bengals.

Remember how Roethlisberger was carted off in the wild 2016 first-round game against Cincinnati with a shoulder injury and returned to lead the team to a victory, helped mightily by the Bengals’ discombobulation? Roethlisberger couldn’t even throw the ball down the field but managed to Willis Reed the Steelers to a win. This year, he’s healthy and has dangerous weapons.

His replacement, Tom Savage, has completed 82 of 149 passes (55 percent) for 869 yards, one touchdown and one interception for a 71.7 passer rating during his career. Any playoff hopes the Texans had went out the window as soon as Watson was ruled out for the remainder of the season.

Miami was the second-worst rushing team in the league before trading away Jay Ajayi to the Eagles. More indicative of its lackluster playoff chances: Miami’s gamble on Jay Cutler hasn’t worked out. His passer rating in a clean pocket is average (98.2) and becomes worse than average under pressure (63.6). He is ranked 26th out of 33 passers per ESPN’s QBR rating, which does not build confidence the Dolphins can outperform their projected win total of 7.2.

I can’t take it anymore. I don’t really know. I can’t pinpoint why right now. Part of it is the handling of the [Kirk] Cousins situation. I mean, I think he’s good enough to keep around, when you look around the league and see what you could have otherwise. I think he’s way, way, way better than many other options. And it just seems like if we’re not going to [keep him], then what’s this all about?

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Two teams promoted their own offensive coordinators: the New York Giants with Ben McAdoo and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers with Dirk Koetter.

Three hired someone else’s offensive coordinator: the Cleveland Browns with Cincinnati’s Hue Jackson, the Dolphins with Chicago’s Adam Gase and the Philadelphia Eagles with Kansas City’s Doug Pederson. The 49ers hired Chip Kelly, the offensive-minded head coach fired by the Eagles. The Tennessee Titans made their former offensive assistant turned interim coach, Mike Mularkey, their full-time coach.

This time, facing a tough third-and-17, USC opts to run the ball in effort to not lose any extra yards before they punt. Foster spots something he must have recognized from film study, because he quickly swaps position with his fellow linebacker before charging down to the line of scrimmage. Foster bursts through the line of scrimmage, forcing the pulling right guard to try to pick him up. The guard does his best to run Foster past the back, but Foster works around the guard and grabs on to the back, making the tackle for a loss.

The Titans’ schedule isn’t all that much harder. After Thursday night’s game in Pittsburgh, Tennessee gets a four-game stretch featuring the Colts, Texans, Cardinals and 49ers. At this point it’s safe to say that the Jacksonville-Tennessee division loser will claim one of the AFC’s wild-card spots, leaving the Bills and just about everyone else in the AFC to battle for the last one.

Frankly, the only team that we can probably eliminate from the AFC playoff race is winless Cleveland. Everyone else is within 2 1/2 games of the Bills, currently holding down the final wild-card spot. But these three are closest.

The Washington Redskins have the 17th overall pick, and nine other picks — a second-round selection, (49th) a third (81st), two fourth-rounders (114, 123), one fifth (154), two sixth-rounders (201, 209) and two seventh-round picks (220, 235).

How should the Redskins use those picks? Do they have to go defense? Should they add another running back, or a quarterback for the future? We hash it all out here in our final draft debate. Master, if you’re sitting there at 17, what’s your call?cowboys_030

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