Category Archives: Philadelphia Eagles

Philadelphia Eagles

That activity was his modus operandi throughout Golden State’s four-game sweep.

The Thunder used Alex Abrines to screen Westbrook’s man, then had Steven Adams hold off his own defender to give Westbrook more room. Westbrook was initially cut off, but because Abrines kept moving, Westbrook was able to toss the ball back to him and get it back to attack an Eric Gordon closeout. That eventually led to a spot-up three.

More of this please, Thunder, while you still can.

Green began the play on Evan Turner, slid under the hoop to help on Maurice Harkless and Jusuf Nurkic, closed out on C.J. McCollum, and got his hand in Damian Lillard’s face on the three-pointer. For his efforts, he received no credit in the traditional box score. Yet without his roaming, no fewer than three Trail Blazers would have received high-quality open shots.

That activity was his modus operandi throughout Golden State’s four-game sweep. He tortured Portland with a devastating display of Easter Egg 25: The ability to put out any defensive fire, wherever it is. He was the enforcer roaming outside the usual defensive chain of command, a Darth Vader to Ron Adams’ Emperor Palpatine. (Though it’s hard to imagine the Warriors’ defensive guru as an evil tyrant.)

Good things came to both player and team who waited. Rodgers improved in his time as a backup, putting his rocket arm and athleticism together into the complete package when he finally got his chance.

He snuck into the No. 25 pick of the first round, but the Redskins chose to roll with Mark Brunell and Patrick Ramsey ahead of him as a rookie. In Year 2, Washington went with Brunell until it decided to promote Campbell in November.


Bobby Knight on Indiana administration that fired him: ‘I hope they’re all dead’

Bobby Knight became an infamous figure in the world of college basketball for his chair-throwing temper tantrums and reports of emotional abuse of his players. His tumultuous relationship with the Indiana administration boiled over in 2000 when video of Knight choking Neil Reed during practice three years earlier surfaced. That, coupled with an accusation by a student that the coach grabbed his arm, prompted the university to fire him and Knight has not stepped foot in Bloomington since.

On Friday morning, Knight was interviewed on The Dan Patrick Show in advance of the premier of a Showtime documentary about the Hoosiers’ legendary 1976 season that saw the team go undefeated on its way to a national championship.

Knight’s long-held bitterness toward Indiana higher-ups is well-known, with some fans and writers calling for the university to cool on its overtures to and veneration of the former coach.

“After sitting down with my mom and my coaching staff, I made a decision to enter the NBA draft,” Fultz said. “Although the season hasn’t gone as planned, it’s truly been a blessing to be here. I learned plenty of life lessons on and off the court, especially from coach [Lorenzo] Romar and the coaching staff. I’m always going to be a Husky for life. Go Dawgs.”

Fultz, currently projected to be the No. 1 pick according to Draft Express, averaged 23.3 points, 6.0 assists, and 5.9 rebounds per game. But despite Fultz’s exploits, the Huskies finished with a 9-22 record and were 2-16 in Pac-12 play. Their season ended with a 78-73 loss to USC in the first round of the Pac-12 tournament on Wednesday.

If Fultz is selected No. 1 overall, it will be the second year in a row that the top selection in the draft did not play in the NCAA tournament. Ben Simmons’ LSU team finished 19-14 and declined an invitation to participate in any postseason tournaments once it became clear they would not qualify for the NCAA tournament.12

Every episode seems to top the last, as Friday’s chaos proved yet again.

And while one of the NBA’s crown-jewel franchises was thrashed by its archrival at Staples Center, Lakers governor and president Jeanie Buss watched from her usual seat near the baseline. At one point in the third quarter, when the Boston Celtics led by 31, actress Dyan Cannon came over from her baseline seat.

The Hollywood icon placed both hands on Buss’s arms in a comforting embrace, and as she spoke, Buss nodded. Amid a painful 115-95 blowout loss, it wasn’t an uncommon scene, as Buss received many hugs and, no doubt, words of encouragement from friends as her family’s infighting continues to drag the Lakers down.

Jeanie Buss was on hand Friday to see the Lakers fall to 19-43 with a 20-point loss to Boston. AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill
But it’s hard to imagine the Lakers’ drama playing out in Cannon’s world just up the 101 freeway.

At this point, even Hollywood might think such a script strays too far from reality.

But Friday marks a fitting time to discuss Durant, specifically, with the Celtics in town. The Celtics were never considered a free-agent destination, yet as they’ve steadily risen in recent years, that notion has changed a bit. And Boston became one of a handful of teams with which Durant sat down last summer, and the Celtics ultimately reeled in All-Star forward Al Horford, the top available free agent after Durant.

The Celtics last reached the NBA Finals in 2010, when they faced the Lakers. Yet since that point, both organizations have headed in opposite directions, rapidly so. One is focused on basketball, the other on everything but.

The Lakers are reality TV, every episode more surreal than the last.

Tom Coughlin sounds noncommittal about giving Jaguars’ QB job to Blake Bortles

If Tom Coughlin is excited about the fact that Blake Bortles is Jacksonville’s starting quarterback, he definitely has an odd way of showing it.

During a news conference Friday, Coughlin was asked directly if he was “committed to [Bortles] as the starter,” and let’s just say he didn’t answer with a resounding yes.
“Well, there’s plenty of work for everybody to do, Blake included,” Coughlin said, via the Jaguars’ official website. “To raise the game to a higher level, it takes all components, though, as well. … People being in the right place at the right time, the timing, taking care of the football, which is paramount to that position.”
Bortles has been a turnover machine since 2014, when the Jaguars selected him with the third overall pick in the NFL Draft. Bortles has led the league in picks once (2015) and finished in the top four during his other two seasons.

Overall, Bortles has turned the ball over 63 times since his rookie year (51 interceptions, 12 lost fumbles), which leads the NFL over that span. The ugliest part about Bortles’ interception total is that it includes 11 pick-sixes, which means he’s basically giving free points to the opposition.
“There can be no way the ball is turned over to that extent,” Coughlin said. “I think he’d be the first one to say that he has a lot of work to do, but we all have a lot of work to do, so I’m going to put it that way.”

A source with extensive knowledge of the efforts to develop improved football technologies tells PFT that the question of where to place the chip also has vexed those trying to come up with a way to determine digitally the question of whether the ball crosses a boundary or breaks a plane.

“If we are counting on the chip to provide exact ball placement at the time the runner is ruled down that placement will oftentimes be inaccurate depending on how the ball is being carried,” the source explained. “Assume the chip is in the left tip of the ball and the runner has that end tucked in his elbow. When he’s ruled down it’s the opposite end that accurately places the ball.”

Andrés Iniesta’s struggles were the saddest part of Barcelona’s collapse against PSG

Paris Saint-Germain embarrassed Barcelona on Tuesday, 4-0. It seemed that every PSG player decided to play at their best in the same game that each Barcelona player, minus Marc-André ter Stegen, who tried his hardest to keep the scoreline respectable, and Neymar, who was a futile positive in the attack, was at their worst. There’s an abundance of disappointments in terms of players, some who can serve better as vehicles for the systematic failures of Barcelona this season than others. That’s you, André Gomes. You’re the hill that Luis Enrique wants to die on.

Gomes has played badly before. He’s tedious in movement, cowers under pressure and seems to always push the ball too far ahead of him, even with his long legs. Sergio Busquets had tough games in the first few months of the season, where he looked as he did now, like a store-brand version of the maestro that he is. Giving the ball away, late in tackles or otherwise a step too slow and overwhelmed by attacks. He’s already in the tasking position of killing attacks and counters before they start, in a Barcelona team that leaves him in a frightening amount of space, which makes the job more difficult than it already is, and his sense of timing and position more paramount. When he plays badly, it shows in the worst way possible, as it did against PSG.

For Syracuse, they used the press to rattle Virginia and cause uncharacteristic turnovers, but it took fearless and accurate shooting to quickly close the gap. Virginia Tech didn’t use the press, but they did start dictating their own offensive pace in the second half, and the points eventually followed.

Still, that oversimplifies it.

Chargers betting big on Melvin Ingram

I ain’t gonna lie, I am definitely a homer when it comes to Chargers outside linebacker Melvin Ingram. I have been a fan of his since he was playing at South Carolina. When he came out of college in 2012, I felt very strongly that he would have a very nice NFL career. The one thing nobody can ever predict with any accuracy is whether a guy with a lot of potential will end up getting injured. It is the No. 1 factor for sidetracking promising careers, and those injuries always seem to come at the worst times.

Ingram didn’t exactly set the world on fire as a rookie. He was trying to get accustomed to playing a stand-up rush linebacker position instead of putting his hand in the dirt as a defensive lineman like he did in college. He was active for all 16 games and appeared to be getting better throughout the season as he became more comfortable with the position.

Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions
The top tier of wide receivers includes Dez Bryant, Antonio Brown, Demaryius Thomas, Julio Jones, Odell Beckham Jr., Jordy Nelson, A.J. Green and Johnson, in some order. Well, of that group of eight, four — Bryant, Brown, Thomas and Nelson — have played every game the last two seasons. Odell Beckham Jr. dealt with one injury, then looked fine afterward. So the injured guys are Jones, Green and Johnson. Johnson is the oldest of that group, and has seen his numbers decline the last two seasons in a row. He’s still elite, still belongs in that top group, but he simply isn’t all-caps CALVIN JOHNSON anymore.

Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Take out a five-game season in 2010, and Vincent Jackson hadn’t dipped below seven touchdowns in a season since 2007 before his two-score year last year. The rookie Evans caught 12. If you are taking your pick of a Tampa Bay wide receiver, I think the obvious bet is Evans over Jackson (who is already one of our favorite sleeper candidates), but it seems unlikely to 12-to-two touchdown imbalance will maintain.

Ravens will start Jimmy Clausen vs. Seahawks in Week 14

The Baltimore Ravens will roll with Jimmy Clausen as the starter for Week 14’s home matchup with the Seattle Seahawks. Matt Schaub, who suffered a shoulder injury in the Ravens’ Week 13 loss to the Miami Dolphins, was limited in practice this week and will be inactive Sunday.

Clausen was Jay Cutler’s backup in Chicago prior to being waived by the Bears on Nov. 23 and has already faced the Seahawks once this season. The Bears lost 26-0, with Clausen going 9 of 16 for 63 total yards and zero touchdowns.

In reality, Denver ended up trying a fake field Limited Youth Pat Tillman Jersey goal that did not go well.

Ford ended up beating Stephenson for one more pressure late in the third quarter and he used the same long arm to a swat move again. I guess he figured if it ain’t broke don’t fix it, and I’m not mad at him. That time Siemian had to throw the Chris Ivory Authentic Jersey ball away in Cody Latimer’s direction to avoid the sack on third-and-4, which forced Denver to punt on fourth down on the next play.

I personally felt kinda bad for Stephenson seeing as how it didn’t seem like the Broncos’ coaching staff gave him much help with Ford. Then again, they didn’t seem to account for Ford in the game plan much at all.

For instance, Ford ended up getting three more pressures on two naked bootlegs and one run/pass option where he wasn’t even blocked. Oh, and he also took down Denver running back Devontae Booker for a loss of 3 yards on a third-and-1 in the second quarter when he was unblocked as well.

This location of the linebacker, and alignment of the defense, would allow the center to slide all the way over to the left guard, knock that player over, and then the left guard can help the left tackle. However, the Chiefs and most systems, keep the center of the pocket clean first, with no help for the tackles.

The next clip is basically the same idea. The linebacker who they are working too is WAY outside the box, but the guys upfront treat it like that’s not true.

Danny Amendola active for Sunday night vs. Texans

New England Patriots wide receiver Danny Amendola will play against the Houston Texans on Sunday. Amendola is dealing with a knee injury and was listed as questionable on the official injury report.

Amendola didn’t get much playing time earlier in the season, but with injuries to Julian Edelman and other Patriots offensive players, Amendola took on an expanded role over the past few weeks. Amendola had nine catches for 117 yards against the Buffalo Bills in Week 11.

Edelman was declared inactive for Sunday’s game.

But Amendola had to miss the Week 12 game against the Denver Broncos, an overtime loss for the Patriots. That was due to the same knee injury that had him questionable in the team’s last game against the Philadelphia Eagles, also a close loss. Amendola did manage to play in that game though, and there have been no reports of a setback.

Amendola caught seven passes for 62 yards and a touchdown against the Eagles. On the year, Amendola has caught 56 passes for 582 yards and three touchdowns. New England’s depleted group of receivers has had players like Keshawn Martin and Matthew Slater getting playing time.

Derek Carr was one of the league’s best quarterbacks before a broken leg ended his season. His passer rating of 96.7, 3,933 passing yards, and a 28:6 TD:INT ratio ranked him among the NFL’s top 10 alongside future Hall of Famers like Drew Brees, Tom Brady, and Aaron Rodgers.

McGloin, meanwhile, has shown up on an NFL leaderboard just once in his career — for falling on his own fumbles three times in six starts (10th in 2013). His all-time passer rating makes him the rough equivalent of 2016 Case Keenum. He’s 1-5 as a starter.

It’s difficult to translate’s McGloin’s past work with a hapless 4-12 Raiders team to his future with a dynamic 12-3 club. He’ll have all the tools he needs to succeed, but there aren’t any easy games on the schedule to allow for a tuneup. He won’t have to be Carr to help Oakland win, but he can’t be Keenum if the Raiders are going to make this rare trip to the postseason last.

Panic index: The second important player in the Raiders’ postseason equation is Khalil Mack, and he can do just about everything. If McGloin reverts to his 2013 form, why not let the uber-athletic pass rusher see how things look on the other side of the ball?

Or see what you’ve got with Big Ten champion Connor Cook, I guess. Yeah, that’s probably better.

In general, the balance between Anthony, Porzingis and Rose has worked well in the past three games

Carlisle on Nowitzki’s health:

“This is a guy who’s given everything to this franchise and right now, as tough as it is for us, we’ve got to be mindful of the big picture. We’ve got to make sure that Dirk’s last year or two or three, or whatever it is, come down the right way. I want him to be able to play in his last game, whenever that is. You don’t want to see a situation where a great warrior like him, who’s close to 30,000 Tyreek Hill Authentic Womens Jersey points and is possible to get to top five in all-time scoring, can’t get through the last few games of his career. That’s not what you want to see.”

Forget the rebounding differential or the free throw disparity, a highly entertaining Black Friday matinee between the Boston Celtics and San Antonio Spurs essentially boiled down to this: On maybe the game’s most crucial possession, the veteran Spurs confidently ran a simple action that generated a wide-open look, while the young Celtics endured a monster communication lapse that spelled their demise.

He’s 26-for-56 (46.4 percent) from beyond the arc when sharing the floor with Anthony and 8-for-29 (27.6 percent) when he’s on the court without him.

In general, the balance between Anthony, Porzingis and Rose has worked well in the past three games. The Knicks have beaten three teams (Portland, Atlanta, Charlotte) that entered the week with a combined record of 23-10. And Rose, Anthony and Porzingis have all played prominent roles.

Nerlens Noel: Nothing has changed here. Noel has yet to appear in a game this season after Zach Fulton Authentic Womens Jersey electing to undergo arthroscopic knee surgery last month, but word is he’d still prefer to be shipped to a new address with so many big men to battle for playing time in Philly. Count on the Sixers to accommodate him eventually.

Donatas Motiejunas: This isn’t a trade story, but it counts nonetheless as one of those aforementioned ?fascinating situations. Our story from late Wednesday night, co-scribed here with Calvin Watkins, details all the latest twists and turns, but here’s an important footnote: One source close to the talks expressed confidence that Motiejunas isn’t as far away from advertised when it comes to landing a contract.

A quick follow-up to our recent note about the NBA Development League and its expected salary jump into the range of $50,000 to $75,000.

The case for (and against) the Cubs bringing back Dexter Fowler

Only the Chicago Cubs could potentially let a catalyst like center fielder Dexter Fowler leave via free agency and still be considered a favorite to repeat as world champions.

That’s a testament to how deep they’ve Derek Anderson Authentic Jersey become now that Albert Almora Jr. and Willson Contreras have taken the next steps in their careers, not to mention the improvement of co-NLCS MVP Javier Baez. “Freaky” is how one longtime National League Central scout labeled the Cubs’ depth.

But that doesn’t mean that if Fowler left, it wouldn’t be a tough loss to stomach at the top of Chicago’s lineup.

“One might assume.” One might assume that, if Martin Perez’s WARs are 1.8, 1.8 and 1.9 (as they were in 2016), that Martin Perez is a 1.8- or 1.9-win pitcher. But we’ve already seen, with Ray, that one model of WAR can be wildly misleading. We’ve seen, in fact, that two can be. It’s not much of a leap to think even three could be, all at once, and in all the same ways, especially for unique players such as Zach Britton or Yadier Molina or David Ross or for players on the extremes.

Last week, Justin Verlander finished second in the AL Cy Young voting, as he was left off two five-person ballots entirely. I would’ve voted for him. His WARs were fairly tightly bunched, all at or near the top of his league: 6.8, 6.6 and 5.2 wins. The internet did what it does: It went after the two voters, tweeting at them that they were classless, clueless, hacks, morons, should have their voting privileges taken away, etc. It threw around slurs. “I hope you and everyone you love dies,” one person, predictably, tweeted (now deleted) at one of the voters. If you ever want an argument Devin Funchess Authentic Jersey against certainty, pick any well-traveled tweet and read the replies.

Those WARs for Verlander are compelling, and WAR as a framework is clearly the best, most comprehensive, most objective way for most of us to assess players. But baseball is not something we’ve cracked, and Robbie Ray is a good reminder that, until we do, we’re all still staggering, out of the darkness but blinded by too many lights. It isn’t a matter of whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing; it’s just a thing. Be grateful you aren’t the general manager of a team that has to make hundred-million-dollar decisions in this era.