The most notable thing Winston did Sunday came after being yanked for injury reasons following a middling first half.

Danny Amendola, WR, New England Patriots: After teammate Gilmore went back to the locker room because of dehydration, Amendola joined him, also suffering from the effects of dehydration. Similarly, he was declared questionable to return; also similarly, he made his return in the fourth quarter.

New Orleans controlled the game from the onset by exploiting the same weaknesses — awful third-down defense, an unproductive running game and a quarterback (Jameis Winston) who simply isn’t right because of shoulder problems — that have contributed to Tampa Bay (2-6) losing five straight games.

Winston wandered onto the field from the sideline to tap the back of Saints rookie cornerback Marshon Lattimore’s helmet with his finger at the end of a third-down play. Winston later said that he was telling Lattimore “to go to the sideline.”

Like every NFL coach and player says in cliché, the only thing we can do is worry about this week, not what just happened or what’s still coming. While teams are “just trying to go 1-0” every week, we’re just hoping to be 1-0 with our pick for each game.

Here are this week’s predictions and prognostications, both against the spread and straight up. Thanks again to Bovada for the Week 10 betting lines.

It was just the 14th time in NFL history, including the postseason, that a team had six or more rushing touchdowns in a game and first since the Patriots had six rushing scores in a 2013 playoff win over the Colts. The Chiefs were the last team with a least six rushing scores in a regular-season games, scoring eight times on the ground in a 56-10 rout of the Falcons.
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Raiders player tells ref he was ‘just kidding around’ after personal foul penalty

Raiders tight end Lee Smith was handed a 15-yard personal foul penalty during Sunday’s game against the Dolphins.

Smith appeared to channel his inner little kid as he was caught on the referee’s microphone pleading his case, “I was just kidding around!”

With 10 weeks in the books for all 32 NFL teams, Carlos Hyde sits ninth among running backs in fantasy points. Hyde is averaging 4.2 yards per carry and has rushed for four touchdowns. He also has caught 42 of 58 targets for 274 yards but has yet to catch a touchdown.

Irving ranks No. 1 in the NBA in clutch-time scoring (when the score differential is five points or less in the final five minutes). He’s shooting 61.5 percent (24-of-39) in that situation. Maybe more impressive, Irving hasn’t committed a single turnover in 38 minutes of clutch time this season.

Garoppolo is set to serve as backup to rookie quarterback C.J. Beathard for the second straight week Sunday against the Giants, but could lead the team under center following the 49ers’ bye week.

Reports of Garoppolo’s potential debut comes after 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan suggested that it could be a while before the fourth-year quarterback got more involved with the team. Shanahan indicated that he wanted Garoppolo to get a better understanding of the playbook before being thrown into a situation he couldn’t handle.

“I can’t promise you guys that he’ll play this year,” Shanahan told reporters earlier this month.

Garoppolo was traded from the Patriots to the 49ers on Oct. 31 in exchange for a second-round draft pick. He started a pair of games in 2016 while Tom Brady was serving a four-game suspension, but otherwise served as the franchise quarterback’s backup since being selectd by New England in the second round of the 2014 NFL Draft.nationals_005

Week 8 NFL picks straight up: Chargers stun Patriots; 49ers, Browns stay winless

It’s one of “those” weeks on the NFL schedule … already. It’s honestly more worrisome when it happens later in the season than at the midway point, but whenever there’s a slate of games in which none pits teams with winning records against each other, it’s disheartening. If parity really is the goal, this schedule is proof it has been achieved.

That shows up on his pro tape also. Garoppolo is very good with his eyes. He understands how to manipulate the defense. Whether that is moving a linebacker to create a window underneath or freezing the safety in the deep middle to generate a lane to hit the seam, Garoppolo’s vision creates opportunities to expose coverages.

Here’s an example on Garoppolo’s touchdown pass to tight end Martellus Bennett versus the Dolphins.

The loss snapped a 10-game winning streak for the Cavs over the Knicks. Cleveland’s dry spell also saw the Cavs’ 17-game winning streak over the Magic snapped.

The Cavs are allowing 109.8 points per 100 possessions this season, making them the second-worst team in defensive efficiency in the Eastern Conference, ahead of only the Nets.

The Seahawks have been seeking upgrades to an offensive line that has lost two starters to injury. The trade for Brown marks another bold move by Seattle general manager John Schneider, who previously made deals for Marshawn Lynch in 2010, Percy Harvin in 2013 and Jimmy Graham in 2015.

The Jaguars have one of the worst run defenses in the NFL and are hoping the addition of Dareus will be enough to help them win the AFC South. Meanwhile, the Bills clear the salary of their highest-paid player off their books. The trade also reunites Dareus with Jacksonville coach Doug Marrone, who coached the Bills from 2013 to 2014.ducks-095

The Chiefs have problems on defense, but it’s too early to panic

Allowing 944 yards of total offense over a two-week span is a red flag. For a Super Bowl contender like the Kansas City Chiefs, it’s a blaring red siren that sends people running for the nearest fire extinguisher.

In the midst of one of his best performances of the season, Flacco was hit high by Alonso while sliding at the end of an impromptu run. Flacco’s helmet flew off his head, and the 10-year quarterback appeared wobbly as he struggled to his feet.

Alonso was flagged for unnecessary roughness, providing Baltimore with a first down that ultimately turned into a touchdown.

Flacco was initially placed in concussion protocol, and by halftime was ruled out.

“Joe had a concussion and a cut ear,” coach John Harbaugh said. “They were stitching it up without any anesthesia, so he’s a tough dude. That’s as much as I know.”

In a corresponding move, the Cowboys promoted tight end Blake Jarwin from their practice squad.

Colts receiver T.Y. Hilton threw some of his teammates under the bus after the team’s ugly 27-0 home loss to the Jaguars.

Explaining the Colts offensive woes, Hilton told reporters the offensive line didn’t do its job protecting quarterback Jacoby Brissett.

“The O-line’s just got to play better,” Hilton said. “We’ve got to take some pride up front and block for (Brissett). What if we put them back there to take those hits?

“You’ve got to start up front, man. Once we get the O-line going back in rhythm we’ll be fine.

T.Y. Hilton on the offensive struggles: “We gotta take some pride up front”nike_49ers_2375_23a0570cc7179cf3-150x150

Watch: Donald Penn gets out of his car, confronts heckling fans after Raiders loss

Nobody in Raider Nation is happy right now. Nobody on the Raiders team is happy right now. Judging by some of the reactions on twitter throughout the game to a couple of the sacks given up by the Raiders, a lot of outrage is being directed at Donald Penn.

Sherman, speaking to reporters Tuesday after owners, players and league and union representatives met in New York, was asked specifically if he thinks, as Kaepernick claims in a recently filed grievance, that the league and owners colluded to keep him from being signed.

“I think they had a point to make and they made it,’’ Sherman said (via the Seattle Times). “You can see what it is. They have agreed not to give him a job, and it is what it is.’’

The league, owners and players are trying to find common ground on how to highlight social issues in the wake of kneeling protests during the national anthem that have rocked the NFL this season, in part because of comments by President Donald Trump.

When Tennessee exited the tunnel to begin the second half, backup quarterback Matt Cassel started for the rest of the game. And Mariota stood on the sidelines. After the game, head coach Mike Mularkey told Jim Wyatt of titansonline.com that Mariota wanted to see if he could still play with the injury. However, Murlarkey didn’t decided not to play him.

“He came out, warmed up, and I said to him: ‘I’d like to be smart about it. There’s a lot of football still to go. We have 12 games to go, so let’s be smart about it,” Mularkey said.
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Bell went in motion to the right side.

Running back Matt Forte (turf toe), who missed last week’s game, is in danger of missing Sunday’s matchup against the Browns. There’s no reason to rush him back. Bilal Powell and rookie Eli McGuire combined for 256 rushing yards and two touchdowns last week. The Jets lose a bigger, more physical back with Forte, but they gain speed with Powell and McGuire. — Rich Cimini

On third-and-goal, McCarron scrambled for 13 seconds and headed for the end zone, where he was met by cornerback Dustin Harris, setting up fourth-and-goal from the 2-yard line.

Will Johnson: That was real tension on the sidelines … we’ve come this close to a monumental win and now it could get taken away. Energy and elation left the A&M sidelines after those two bombs and now reality was setting in. The defense is on the field, so Johnny’s not the one that can bail you out now, it has to be somebody else.

McCarron took the snap. Cooper ran high and Bell ran underneath. A&M cornerback Deshazor Everett jumped in front of Bell — avoiding the rub by Cooper — and intercepted McCarron with 1:36 left.

In Cook’s place, running back Latavius Murray will inherit the bulk of the workload. Murray is coming off ankle surgery during the offseason that still has him feeling less than 100 percent.

To be honest, I think I’m still getting to that point, said Murray, 27, who spent the previous three seasons with the Oakland Raiders. It’s not going to quite feel the same for awhile. I knew that dealing with my previous ankle procedure.

For me, it’s being well enough to be out there and being able to help the team be successful. … I feel good enough to be out there, and I’m confident in myself that I can play at a high level.
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‘NBA Live 18’ to feature ESPN’s ‘First Take’ as part of new career mode

“Embrace debate” has taken over sports television programming, and now even sports video games aren’t safe from it. ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith and Max Kellerman will appear in “First Take” segments during the new career mode built for the upcoming “NBA Live 18” called “The One.” The duo provides character background and comment on events taking place within the storyline that involves coming up through the streets and reaching the NBA.

Create your unique player identity and decide how you become a legend by mastering your chosen role on the court using unique signature abilities and traits. Embark on your quest to be the greatest basketball player on the planet in The League and The Streets with, or against other players in solo, co-op and multiplayer challenges, in dynamic LIVE Events. Dominate the hardwood or blacktop with deep customization and innovative one-on-one gameplay arming you with an arsenal of all-new moves for each position on the court.

The highest-profile move to affect a video game release took place shortly after Brett Favre appeared on the cover of “Madden NFL 09.” It was the first time publisher EA Sports had chosen a retired player for the cover of the storied franchise. Favre then unretired and forced a trade to the Jets. The deal happened too late for the company to do anything but produce a downloadable cover of him in his new uniform that fans could print out and insert into their game boxes.

The first screenshot to feature the Cavs’ new Nike uniforms and sponsor Goodyear was released Monday by 2K Sports. Irving begins the year rated 90 Overall, which is unchanged from last season. Among point guards, he’s tied for fourth with John Wall and is behind Stephen Curry, Russell Westbrook and Chris Paul.
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On Tuesday, he said it was the frustration of losing a playoff game he barely played in that pushed him to vent.

“I’ve always wanted to win a championship, and I’ve always been a part of the equation, and what happened last year is, I just wanted to win,” Hali said on Facebook Live. “I think anybody can bear with me, understand that, the frustration of losing a game in the playoff and barely playing. Being a competitor as myself, you just want to win. And that was basically what the rant was about.”

Hali also drew a parallel between the Patriots with Aaron Hernandez and Paterno’s role in the Jerry Sandusky scandal at Penn State.

After 4,727 passing yards and 39 touchdowns in 2014, he threw just nine touchdowns with 17 interceptions in 10 regular season games in 2015. The end came quick, and the reality is that it could strike just as fast for Brees.

The end hasn’t looked near, though.

“Drew is not 38,” Saints linebacker Craig Robertson told NOLA.com. “That’s just chronological right now. Drew is definitely like 26. He killed everybody in the conditioning test.”

Back in 2005, Brees’ time with the San Diego Chargers ended with a labrum tear that required surgery to repair. Miami Dolphins doctors were so nervous about the injury that they advised the team to steer clear of signing Brees. But in 11 seasons with the Saints, he’s missed only two games.

Brees dealt with minor knee problems in 2010 and 2013 and had shoulder and foot injuries in 2015, but for the most part, he’s stayed healthy. So much so, that Brees believes he could play much longer.patriots_322-180x180

Michael Vick now ‘truly sorry’ for Colin Kaepernick comments

After being pounded across TV and social media, Michael Vick has reversed himself. He said Thursday that he’s “truly sorry” for saying Colin Kaepernick’s unemployment is due to his play rather than his protest of the American flag/national anthem last season.

Vick also said he is sorry for suggesting the ex-49ers quarterback lose his afro, get a haircut and adopt a more “clean-cut” look if he wants to save his NFL career. Vick gave his controversial advice to Kaepernick during an appearance with Jason Whitlock on FS1’s “Speak for Yourself” on Tuesday.

“I mean, those things are being handled in house,” Prescott said (via the Star-Telegram). “For me, it’s just about being a good teammate. Making sure I back these guys up, being in their corner. We’re all grown men. We know what’s right and what’s wrong. It’s about staying focused and knowing what’s important, that’s what we do on this field.”

Though Prescott seems like the beacon of hope for the Cowboys amongst a sea of police reports and investigations, he had his own troubles in March 2016 when he was arrested for DUI. The charges were eventually dropped. However, Prescott is humble when discussing recent events involving fellow Cowboys.

“I mean, I’ve made probably as many bad decisions as any of these guys have, only being 23, so I’m definitely not one that can point fingers and be mad or be pissed,” Prescott said. “All I can do is give from my young experience and the things that happened to me.”

Now we wait to see if Elliott and others learned from their mistakes the same as Prescott.t_rangers_021-115x115

Arizona freshman Lauri Markkanen declares for NBA Draft

Lauri Markkanen is the latest freshman to take his skills to the pros.

The 7-foot Arizona forward has opted to forego his sophomore season and declare for the NBA Draft, the university announced Thursday.

Markkanen made the most of his lone season at Arizona, playing in every game for the Wildcats while averaging 30.8 minutes, 15.6 points and 7.2 rebounds per game. The Finland native also sunk an impressive 42.3 percent of his three-point attempts, despite his enormous size.

Markkanen, who turns 20 in May, is projected to be a top-10 pick.

The idea of Bridges as a prospect is currently much stronger than the reality of him. In theory, Bridges is a 6-7 3-and-D guy with go-go-gadget arms who can defend and knock down shots. In reality, he really doesn’t have a ton of game yet with which to work unless things go exactly his way.

He struggles to defend bigger players, as Nigel Hayes showed over the weekend, and he has no game off the bounce if teams run him off the line. These are both parts of his game that he can improve by returning to Villanova and working with assistant coaches like Ashley Howard, known as one of the better developers of guards in the country. But right now, there are a lot of parts of his game that are missing to where it would be tough for me to select him in the upcoming draft.

Due to some poor free agency decisions, they were also in a tough spot as far as improving their talent level. Davis still has three years after this one remaining on his contract, but that’s not as far off in NBA years as you’d think. Had the team continued to struggle building around him, we’re only about 18 months away from when trade rumors would have started to pop up about the 2017 All-Star Game MVP.
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