Browse Month: February 2018

Kevin Hart posts video chronicling descent into extreme drunkenness at Super Bowl

Kevin Hart had fun at the Super Bowl. Maybe a little too much fun, but who are we to judge? The comedian and Philadelphia native tried to storm the stage post-game after having too many drinks, and now he’s shared a video on Instagram of how he reached that point.

Hart is about to embark on his aptly-named Irresponsible tour, so getting hammered at the Super Bowl and needing to be stopped by security seems like a rather appropriate way to kick it all off.

It’s unlikely that protesting will be widespread inside U.S. Bank Stadium, the game venue. But the activism encouraged by quarterback Colin Kaepernick has been on display outside the Super Bowl all week.

Steele: The four-game league suspension imposed in June 2016, for violating the NFL’s substance-abuse policy, was completed in October 2016, and he was reinstated. In November 2017, authorities in Dallas announced that a 2016 domestic violence misdemeanor involving his former girlfriend, Colleen Crowley, had been dismissed.

McDaniels’ first stint as a head coach came with the Denver Broncos from 2009 through 2010. He jumped out to a 6-0 start in his first season, but then lost 12 of his next 17 games, and the Broncos moved on from him. During that brief span, McDaniels managed to alienate Jay Cutler, drew a $50,000 fine for the team for illegally videotaping a 49ers’ walkthrough, and used a first-round draft pick on Tim Tebow.

Chris Blystone at Stampede Blue, SB Nation’s Colts blog, writes it’s not all on McDaniels’ shoulders.

This was a major mistake by the Broncos. No first-time head coach should have that kind of power in an organization until they prove they can do the primary job they are hired to do. Coaches and general managers both fill different roles and allowing one person control over all aspects removes needed perspective for any coach, especially a young one. Add to that the fact that GM Brian Xanders was a rookie in his position as well, and you have a recipe for issues.

The Ducks made the Coyotes’ season even more painful with the way they won the first two matchups.jaguars_092-223x223

Marshon Lattimore wins 2017 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year, completing a Saints sweep

Marshon Lattimore was the first cornerback taken off the board in the 2017 NFL draft, and rightfully so. The New Orleans Saints needed a stud defensive back who could bolster their defensive backfield, and the Ohio State product didn’t disappoint in his rookie season.

Lattimore only surrendered a 45.3 passer rating — the third-best rating in the NFL. And none of the receivers who lined up on his side scored touchdowns. Lattimore also made his presence felt in the run game by chipping in with 52 tackles.

He received a Pro Bowl nod for his fantastic rookie season and could transform into one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL for years to come.

Timberlake, 36, is one of the more accomplished singers in American history. In the early stages of his singing career, he was the lead singer in *NSYNC. But he skyrocketed to the top of the music industry after he decided to go solo. Timberlake is a 10-time Grammy Award-winner and a four-time Emmy Award-winner. He has tons of hits, like “Cry me a River”, “Can’t Stop the Feeling!”, and “Rock Your Body.”

It might be a little surprising Timberlake is back at the Super Bowl at all. During the Super Bowl XXXVIII halftime show, he performed “Rock Your Body” with Jackson. While singing the final line of the song, “Bet I’ll have you naked by the end of this song”, Timberlake ripped off a part of Jackson’s outfit, which exposed her nipple.

But that took place years ago, and the NFL has clearly moved on from it. Now, Timberlake can focus on entertaining football fans. His fifth album, Man of the Woods, will be released Feb. 2. He may perform some of those songs during his halftime performance, but you’ll have to watch it to find out.

Undoubtedly there will be at least one special guest on the stage with him, but like with many Super Bowl halftime shows, this one is being kept under wraps until the Big Game to make it as big of a surprise as possible.
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Dickerson missed all of last season, undergoing back surgery in June after rehab was ineffective.

Margot, a prized piece of the deal that sent Craig Kimbrel to Boston in November 2015, slashed .267/.323/.426 with 13 homers and 13 stolen bases primarily from the leadoff spot last year.

My expectation is that he competes to win a Gold Glove in center field … and anchors the outfield and continues to go about his work with a 100-runs-scored mentality, Green said.

He had 10 homers in 84 games as a rookie in 2016.

But that hadn’t really manifested itself in the league until recent years. In 2015 when the game first started, there were 101 internationally born players from 37 different countries on opening day rosters around the NBA. In the 2000-01 season, that number was only 45.

And, at that time, there was so much international talent being picked prominently around the league. Andrew Wiggins, Joel Embiid, and Dante Exum were three of the top five picks in the 2014 draft as international players. It made sense to format the game that way.

The league’s talent pool has expanded and we’ve seen the game benefit from that in recent years. We’ve gotten introductions to lots of international talent and the league has put that talent on the biggest stage.

Assistant football coach and security monitor Aaron Feis, cross country coach Scott Beigel and athletic director Chris Hixon were among those killed in a shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Wednesday.

To be very clear, I did not say the word ‘gun’ one time. Anyone out there who wrote I’m calling for gun control is very irresponsible. I did not say that once. I don’t know enough about it. I don’t know what needs to be done, but some type of change needs to happen for the better.

Rizzo, 28, is a graduate of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where Nikolas Cruz is accused of fatally shooting 17 people last Wednesday. Rizzo’s ties to the community run deep, and he knew some of those who were killed, including a football coach and the niece of his agent.

He’s a true hero, Rizzo said of assistant football coach Aaron Feis. He has this monster coming in, shooting up the school, and he jumps in front of kids and saves their lives.
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Which teams could blow past their poor preseason projections?

I’m going to talk about three teams I think could be major surprises — in a good way, relative to the projections. Before I get there, I’d like to provide some prior examples. I have a sheet of preseason team projections stretching all the way back to 2005. Over 13 years, several teams, of course, have been projected to be below average or worse. Many of those teams were below average. But some were very successful. Among my favorites:

Mourinho has been accused in the past of playing his men outside of their true position, but the glaring mismanagement of Pogba’s role is unacceptable. In the last two weeks, six points that should have been awarded to United now sit comfortably on their opponent’s tally.

When Mourinho places Pogba in a midfield three role, he is unstoppable. Not only is the Frenchman free to move about the pitch without a sense of urgency both directions, his form is unparalleled. Much of the hesitation from adopting that lineup must derive from the lack of a holding midfielder on the roster, which would completely relieve Pogba the burden of constantly reverting to a defensive post. While the signing of Alexis Sánchez was world class, as my fellow Busby Babe contributor Garrett Burgon argued, United’s January transfer demands should have really included a midfielder.

Souza came to the Diamondbacks on Tuesday in a three-team trade that sent infielder Brandon Drury from Arizona to the New York Yankees and left-hander Anthony Banda, a top Arizona pitching prospect, to Tampa Bay.

Every player’s goal is to ultimately win a world championship, Hosmer said. To be able do that in Kansas City was amazing. To have that taste and understand what it means to a city and how much joy and excitement it brings to the people out there, it’s an experience I can sit here and talk about all day. It’s something that drives you as a player — to try to bring back as many as you can.

You see how San Diego as a city is begging for a sports team to go in there and bring some excitement and some energy. I saw the direction the organization was going, and I saw the people at the top of the mountain who were leading the organization, and I bought into what they’re trying to do here.

Hosmer wore No. 35 in Kansas City, but the Padres retired that jersey number in 1997 in honor of pitcher Randy Jones. He will wear No. 30 in San Diego as a tribute to his former Royals teammate Yordano Ventura, who died in a car crash in the Dominican Republic last year. Third-base coach Glenn Hoffman agreed to relinquish the number so Hosmer could have it.royals_035

EA Sports’ “Madden NFL” has long been recognized for its above-average accuracy in predicting Super Bowl results.

Going back to 2004, “Madden” is 10-for-14 in picking the Super Bowl winner. On multiple occasions, it has done so with the precise margin of victory or even the exact final score.

The spread for Super Bowl 52 as of Tuesday was Patriots -4.5, giving New England the equivalent of a 64 percent chance to beat Philadelphia on Sunday. “Madden NFL 18” agrees with that result but sees the game being much closer to a toss-up.

Jay Ajayi was most often the top performer for the Eagles, receiving the MVP award 54 percent of the time the Eagles won. Behind him were Nick Foles and Zach Ertz.

And yet don’t expect much to change for the Patriots, who were denied a sixth Super Bowl title but are favorites to be back next season. Despite the consistent turnover on his staff, Belichick is the one constant.

Without Brady, Belichick might not have had the same success — and vice versa. Despite Sunday’s loss to the Eagles, neither has anything left to prove after winning five Super Bowls together in eight appearances over the last 18 years.

“The guy is literally what everyone is striving to be when it comes to longevity,” Redskins quarterback Alex Smith told NFL Network.

As for Brady, who will turn 41 a month before beginning his 19th NFL season, history is not on his side. He takes care of his body better than most NFL players and says he wants to play until he’s 45, but Father Time is undefeated.

The Steelers thanked the doctors and staff at the UC Health Center for the “excellent care” Shazier received at the facility.

He was in “good spirits” on Wednesday and several of his teammates, including quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, said they’ve been sending their thoughts and prayers to him while preparing to face the Ravens on Sunday. bills_031

You better believe one of the worst free-agent flameouts in league history is worth watching.

45. Tony Romo, quarterback, Cowboys (39): Will he finally hang them up? That and whether he can go more than two games without a catastrophic injury have become synonymous with the Dallas quarterback, especially now that a potential star (Dak Prescott) is waiting in the wings.

Rams quarterback Jared Goff, who likes to spread the ball around, said he “definitely’’ wants to “try to get’’ Watkins “more involved,” adding, “But by no means are we, or am I, going to change the approach, play in and play out. I’ll go through the reads and hopefully he gets more touches.”

32. DeMarco Murray, running back, Titans (26): The 2014 NFL Offensive MVP was a total disaster with the Eagles last year, averaging just 3.6 yards a carry and compiling 1,100 fewer rushing yards than he did the year before in Dallas. Now he tries to put his career back together in Tennessee while splitting time with impressive rookie Derrick Henry. Good luck with that.

“He’s not 22 anymore, but he still pours it up in there and is very exciting,” Arians said.

The last time we saw the Falcons, they were blowing a 28-3 lead in Super Bowl LI, and there’s a good chance that Falcons fans started to have some deja vu toward the end of this game. The Falcons almost blew a 20-10 fourth quarter lead, but they were able to avoid the upset thanks to a huge sack from Brooks Reed that came on a fourth-and-goal play with the Bears only five yards from the end zone.

Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford had previously lobbied to keep Cooter on staff following Caldwell’s firing, saying he hoped the team would maintain continuity on offense after offensive line coach Ron Prince was also fired.

“Jim Bob and I have a great relationship and ever since he’s had the opportunity to take the reins, this offense has moved in the right direction in my opinion,” Stafford said last month. “I feel like I’m playing some of the best football of my career, so I would love to have the opportunity to keep working with him. He’s been good for us and good for me.”

Stafford has completed 66.3 percent of his passes for 73 touchdowns and 24 interceptions in 41 games since Cooter was promoted to offensive coordinator during the 2015 season after initially joining the staff in 2014. Prior to Cooter taking over, Stafford had completed 60.1 percent of his passes.
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So you’re not really positive that you’re done with the Redskins?

Following through on his promise to make “adjustments” to his game, Oklahoma freshman Trae Young, who leads the nation in scoring and assists, finished the first half of the Sooners’ 85-80 win over Kansas on Tuesday with four shots and zero 3-point attempts.

It was Young’s lowest field goal tally in the first half this season, according to ESPN Stats & Information.

But he recorded two crucial assists in crunch time, on Christian James’ go-ahead 3-pointer with nearly a minute to play and Brady Manek’s late 3 to preserve the lead.

I just can’t take any more Redskins right now. It’s the time of the year. They’re done; I’m done. Unfollowing their Twitter feed, it was literally just like, “I don’t want to look at that crap anymore. I just can’t take it. I need a break.” Maybe I still love the girl, but I need a break.

And that would make me look like a jackass. I don’t know. It’s hard to quit after 40-plus years. I don’t really know. But I can tell you: I think Dan Snyder’s not been good for the Redskins, and to continue to support him makes it hard.

Golden State (37-10), owner of the best record in the league, now holds a 3?-game lead on Houston (32-12). After the game in the locker room, players were dismissing the narrative that they dropped a significant game.

“It’s game 40-what? Seven, eight?” Draymond Green asked during the media scrum. “Who we play on Tuesday? We just got to get ready for [New York]. Home court will take care of itself down the road.”

Kaepernick was voted by his 49ers teammates in 2016 to receive an annual award for the player who most embodied “inspirational and courageous” qualities, but he parted ways with San Francisco in March and has since filed a grievance with the NFL over what he claims is collusion by owners to keep him out of the league. Kaepernick has recently received Sports Illustrated’s Muhammad Ali Legacy award, GQ’s ‘Citizen of the Year’ award and the ACLU’s Eason Monroe Courageous Advocate award.jaguars_008

Kelly has gone 8-23 in his last two seasons as an NFL head coach after going 20-12 in his first two.

He landed in San Francisco, where chief executive officer Jed York and General Manager Trent Baalke had failed to make things work with Jim Harbaugh and then had given Harbaugh’s curiously chosen successor, Jim Tomsula, only one season. There was no franchise quarterback in sight. So it shouldn’t surprise anyone that Kelly and the Niners were a mismatch, with York cleaning house by getting rid of both Baalke and Kelly following a 2-14 season.

If he never gets another NFL head coaching chance, he clearly will be remembered as a failure at this level. His NFL legacy will be all about the craziness of the final season in Philadelphia, about Lurie saying his next coach needed to have emotional intelligence, about the one-and-done stint in San Francisco.

He turned his life around with the guidance of his guardians and served a two-year LDS Church mission in Colorado. Once back from his mission, he wanted to play more football, on defense, as he did in high school. The coaches at Snow College thought differently and made him an offensive tackle. Consequently, that decision helped make him a first-round prospect.

Teammates said that Savage seemed fine and coherent, but concussions can be difficult to assess because symptoms can develop later. As Savage showed, NFL players can be their worst enemies. They do not want to come out of games. Ever.

After Savage was pulled, he tried to go on to the field and had to be forced back to the sideline and be ushered to the locker room. He said last week there’s no way he’s coming off the field on his own. Obviously, he wasn’t happy, but the Texans made the correct decision.

And much respect to our runner-up this week, the Detroit Lions, who came close to securing the hardware after their Rockettes homage Saturday afternoon:

Ultimately, a lot of what we’re discussing in these MVP debates is how to weigh various measures of value, statistical and otherwise. To your point, the answers to those questions sometimes change depending on which measure supports which player — an example of what’s known as “motivated reasoning” — and adopting a standard could potentially create more consistency.

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The Packers’ game against the Bengals kicks off at 4:25 p.m. in Green Bay.

In the lead-up to the first NFL Sunday since President Trump’s divisive comments about national anthem protests and the league at large, players released statements and taken to social media to indicate how they plan to demonstrate (or not demonstrate) prior to their teams’ games.

The day started with the Ravens and Jaguars facing off in London, and players on both sidelines knelt or linked arms during the national anthem. Jaguars owner Shahid Khan also participated, linking arms with his players. There is expected to be an increase in national anthem protests after a Trump tweet to urging fans to boycott the sport until owners “fire or suspend” players who protest during the national anthem.

In the NBA, the Golden State Warriors popularized the concept of positionless basketball, employing five players with skill-sets varied enough to capitalize on any opponent’s weakness or mitigate any strength. This NFL season has seen some offenses attempting to play positionless football.

The New England Patriots are part of the vanguard. This offseason, they added Rex Burkhead, a powerful runner who had once played slot receiver for the Bengals, in free agency. They combined him with James White and Dion Lewis, and Tom Brady has targeted them a combined 111 times. The Patriots could motion any of White, Lewis or Burkhead out of the backfield, or just line them up as a receiver. The Patriots often employ two on the same play, bedeviling defenses that must decide which personnel to match them with.

The beneficiaries of McVay’s success could be a pair of 39-year-old offensive assistants, Eagles quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo and Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator Matt Nagy. Both are forging reputations as rising stars within the coaching ranks. Under normal circumstances, they would be at least a few years away from receiving serious consideration to be head coaches. But in this environment, perhaps that timeline has changed.

DeFilippo is scheduled to interview for the head coaching jobs of the Arizona Cardinals and Chicago Bears. Nagy is expected to interview with the Bears and Indianapolis Colts.

I’ve really been a fan for pretty much my whole life, I guess. I grew up in the Hampton Roads area, and my grandfather was a big Redskins fan — and lots of other people in the family — and I’ve been watching for years. When I moved up to Fairfax and lived there for a couple of years, I had season tickets until I realized it was no fun going.
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It has distanced the brand from the league by removing the NFL shield or “official sponsor” designation on certain TV spots.

Between Sam Darnold, Josh Rosen, Josh Allen, Baker Mayfleld, Lamar Jackson and Mason Rudolph, there are up to six quarterback prospects who could go in a very busy first round for the position in April. There’s a good chance more than one of those guys will slip to the Bills, who have back-to-back at picks No. 21 and No. 22 overall.

The second first-rounder, acquired from Kansas City in the Pat Mahomes deal, gives Buffalo the luxury of still addressing defense for coach Sean McDermott early, too. With no consensus on the “best” future NFL QB in this class, landing Jackson or Rudolph would by no means be settling for a consolation prize. The key for the Bills with any young QB is pushing to get him better offensive-line and skill-player support.

Greg Olsen, TE, Panthers: We recommended grabbing Olsen in last week’s write-up as he was available in nearly half of ESPN leagues as he was preparing to come off the injured reserve list. All signs point to him playing in Week 12 so get him in the lineup.

How could there be shakiness found in Brady, the reigning Super Bowl MVP, the heavy favorite to be named MVP this season, the lodestone of a dynasty creeping toward the completion of its second decade? His team went 13-3, claimed the AFC’s top seed and scored the second-most points in the NFL, even as his favorite target, Julian Edelman, missed the entire season with a torn knee ligament.

Still, doubts have begun to bubble. Brady’s uncharacteristic unevenness down the stretch, coupled with the revelation tucked in an ESPN blockbuster on tensions within the Patriots that his own coaches have seen “slippage” in Brady this season, has prompted the latest round of questions about whether age has finally started to leech Brady’s brilliance.

Peter Collins, a Papa John’s spokesman, told The Washington Post the company has not pulled back on its NFL advertising. The company also plans to focus more of its future advertising on digital media, he said, because more than 60 percent of its domestic sales come from digital channels.
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