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Seattle Seahawks

Bills to retire Thurman Thomas’s number 34

Thurman Thomas will become just the third player in the history of the Buffalo Bills to have his number retired.

The Bills announced today that Thomas’s No. 34 jersey will be hung in the rafters during the Bills’ Monday Night Football game against the Patriots on October 29.

Wednesday’s PFT Live included an extended visit from the Pardon My Take crew, Barstool Big Cat and PFT Commenter. The first segment ready to be posted (which actually was the second segment) is posted below.

If you’re fans of the podcast that generated $750,000 in revenue each episode (I may be a few bucks off), here they are, live and on set in 30 Rock.

Police Sgt. Timothy Gauerke says the department is investigating what happened and the officers’ use of force.

Gauerke says officers contacted a man after seeing a vehicle parked across two handicapped parking spots while doing a business check at about 2 a.m. Gauerke did not say what led to the officers’ use of force and it wasn’t immediately known whether Brown was cited for anything.

Team spokesman Barry Baum said that the Bucks were “aware of the matter. We completely support Sterling and are confident that this will be resolved quickly.”

Brown is averaging 3.5 points per game and 1.8 rebounds this season.

By then, Boone changed his mind and decided against sitting starting lefty-swinging left fielder Brett Gardner for a second day in a row even though the Kansas City Royals were starting another left-hander.

By day’s end, Frazier’s day became a lot worse, as he was optioned back to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre following the Yankees’ 10-1 victory at Kauffman Stadium.

Frazier’s roster spot likely will be taken by reliever Tommy Kahnle, who is expected to be activated from the disabled list on Monday.

This move isn’t a surprise. In fact, it was expected because his call-up last week all along was meant to be very short-term.

Frazier, of course, badly wanted to stay in the big leagues and play for this loaded Yankees club. ravens_019

Cowboys expect Ezekiel Elliott more “focused” in 2018, post-suspension

Ezekiel Elliott fought the law, and the law won. The Cowboys lost.

“But from the standpoint of mentally, there is no question, I’m 100 percent sure, to not have that on your mind, to not have the ambiguity of not knowing timelines, those kinds of things, there’s no doubt in my mind it will make a significant difference in how he can focus, how he can focus not only on the next practice but the next game and the entire season. So yes, I think that I give him a big arrow [up] as to what his performance might be without the overhang of the issue he faced last year.”

Elliott averaged 4.1 yards per carry and 97.9 yards per game in the eight games he played before his suspension. He averaged 3.9 yards per carry and 100 yards per game in the two games he played in his return.

In leading the league in rushing in 2016, Elliott averaged 5.1 yards per carry and 108.7 yards per game. Of course, the Cowboys also had a better offensive line in 2016, and they believe they have helped that unit with the selection of Connor Williams in the second round. Williams, a left tackle at Texas, will play left guard with the Cowboys.

“I think you’re gonna see less of these penalties than you think,” Payton said. He also made it clear that the penalty will be called in cases where the player lowering his helmet has time to essentially line up the player who is struck with a piece of equipment that the league no longer wants players to use as a weapon.

“When we discussed the instances a year ago, it’s gonna be the obvious ones where there’s been plenty of time, if the player is approaching the tackle,” Payton said. “It’s gonna be those six or seven [incidents] from a year ago. Maybe even less than that. I don’t see that number being a tremendously high number, but we do feel like this posture, we have to remove from the game. Not the incidental portions of it but the ones where we truly can correct and teach from. It’s something that we’ll go through as a team here in our OTAs and minicamp.”

It’s still not clear whether and to what extent there will be a difference between situations where a penalty will be called and situations where an ejection will occur. Payton’s comments seem to indicate that there will be a gray area between what it takes to get flagged and what it takes to get sent to the showers.

Ex-ND DL Jay Hayes will transfer to Georgia

Months after knocking Oklahoma out of the College Football Playoff, Georgia has stolen one of the Sooners’ would-be defensive linemen. Notre Dame graduate transfer Jay Hayes announced Wednesday that he will be headed to Georgia, less than two weeks after first committing to Oklahoma.

As a grad transfer, Hayes will be eligible for the 2018 season. He started all 13 games for the Irish last year and finished with 27 tackles, three tackles for loss, one sack and one fumble recovery. He actually led Notre Dame with seven tackles in its 20-19 loss to the Bulldogs last season.

A’s RHP Sean Manaea will start Friday after no-hitting the Boston Red Sox on Saturday. The five previous Oakland pitchers who have thrown complete-game no-hitters were 1/3 with one no-decision in their next starts. Jim “Catfish” Hunter followed his May 8, 1968 perfect game vs. the Minnesota Twins by beating the Twins 13-8. Manaea will have an extra day’s rest thanks to Thursday’s off day.

Khris Davis homered for his seventh of the season and 19th in 44 career games against Texas, his most against any opponent. … Texas OF Joey Gallo matched a career high with three hits, all singles — including a bunt against the shift. … Oakland acquired RHP Wilmer Font from the Dodgers for LHP Logan Salow. … Texas recalled OF Ryan Rua from Triple-A Round Rock to replace Beltre on the roster and optioned RHP Matt Bush to Round Rock to make room for Fister.

Lonnie Chisenhall, who began the season in right field, is expected to miss another month with a strained right calf. Cabrera would likely play in right if he joins the Indians.

Cabrera, a 13-year veteran has a .286 career average, with 131 homers and 768 RBI. He was an All-Star in 2012 with San Francisco, and has also played for the Yankees, Braves and Blue Jays.

And while Chicago seems to have Milwaukee’s number this season, the Brewers will continue to rely on the solid pitching that has served them well in getting them off to such a strong start.

Junior Guerra (2-0, .056 ERA) has certainly done his part in the three starts he has made. He has allowed only one earned run and has struck out 15 while limiting opponents to 10 hits.

Guerra hopes to keep rolling Saturday against the Cubs, against whom he is 1-0 with a 1.89 ERA in six career appearances (three starts).steelers_037

Rookie Villanueva hits 3 homers, Padres get 1st win of 2018

The kid’s got power. We saw it last year, Rockies manager Bud Black said. Tonight he was locked in. He got some pitches in the middle of the plate and he’s got some pull power and he lofted the ball three times. What can you say He squared up three balls. Gotta give him credit. He got balls in the middle and he didn’t miss them.

He was good today. There’s no other way around it, Green said about Villanueva. That was an impressive day. I did throw him batting today; I don’t usually throw practice so I’ll be throwing batting practice again tomorrow. He just had really good swings all day.

Freeland allowed four runs and five hits in 5 1/3 innings. He struck out six and walked two.

Brad Hand came on with two runners on to get the last out for his first save.

When the New York Yankees acquired hulking outfielder Giancarlo Stanton, Didi Gregorius sent a tweet to new manager Aaron Boone asking if he was still the cleanup hitter.

I think everybody around the league understands what a good player he is and what a big-time money player he’s become, Boone said.

Gregorius will attempt to replicate his impressive showing while Stanton will look to rebound after striking out five times for the first time in his career.

Gregorius and Stanton will attempt to generate offense in support of Luis Severino, who makes his first appearance at Yankee Stadium since pitching well in Game 4 of the American League Division Series against the Cleveland Indians.

Rockies: Desmond (knee) returned to the lineup after leaving Saturday’s game early. … RHP Carlos Estevez (oblique) is scheduled to throw a simulated game at the team’s Arizona facility on Tuesday.

For one, pitchers rarely let loose in spring training. The epic, 300-pitch bullpens are exercises in routine, with pitchers concentrating on repeating their deliveries without concern for velocity or command. It might have been a reliance on routine, or he might have been overwhelmed by the enormity of the task at hand. The mystery will reveal itself in due time.patriots_153

Prince Amukamara likely to stay with the Bears

As the Bears look to bring in outsiders in an effort to make the team better, they’re likely keeping one of their own.

Cornerback Prince Amukamara is expected to re-sign with the team, according to Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune.

A first-round pick of the Giants in 2011, Amukamara spent 2016 with the Jaguars before joining the Bears in 2017. He appeared in 14 games with 12 starts in 2017.

That’s not to say the Ravens can’t use Grant, as their options were limited. But the market for pass-catchers has gone bananas today, with ers coming off injury or with middling statistics getting lucrative deals.

From Sammy Watkins (never caught more than 65 passes in a season) getting $16 million a year to Allen Robinson (coming off a torn ACL) getting $14 million per year, the market has skyrocketed for ers who are not necessarily stars.

Even ers in the 40-catch range are getting $8 million a year (Albert Wilson, Paul Richardson), which means the few remaining options could still do well for themselves.

I’t want to do that anymore.We’ve spent years trying to figure out Belichick, but his thinking this offseason might be a lot simpler than we’re making it out to be.He hit. 375 against the Red Sox last year’s World Series, which Boston won six. Pass to Radim Vrbata.But couldn’t say the same thing for himself.It’s a special sauce, and it’s very, very good.

The Yankees ‘ seasoned lefty starter has been in the ear of the younger one all spring with pep talks.

CC Sabathia’s words of wisdom include a phrase that Jordan Montgomery says that he hears every day, You’ve got more in the tank.

Yankees’ No. 3 catcher is a surprise … and a ‘natural’

Montgomery was a godsend to the Yankees last season when he came out of nowhere late in spring training to become a reliable fifth starter as an unheralded rookie.

The 6-foot-6, 225-pounder’s stats were impressive. He was 9-7 with a 3.88 ERA over 29 starts with 144 strikeouts in 155 1/3 innings . 49ers_210

Your favorite spring training clichés, translated and explained

Baseball tends to lend itself to more clichés than a direct-to-DVD movie, and with good reason. It starts here, in spring training.

Of course, the modern athlete is more in-tune than ever with understanding the ramifications of his or her words, meaning almost every soundbite will include at least one cliché.

Translation: “You need to calm the hell down. It’s spring training.”

It’s pretty awesome when you can hit home runs like Eric Thames, but also get on base enough and be fast enough to steal bases like Jose Altuve. Altuve was just six homers away from going 30-30 this past season, so in short, it’s awesome to be Jose Altuve.

So, can Ramirez do it? Let’s look at some historic precedent. Ramirez is going to be playing his Age 34 season this year. Nobody older than 32 has gone 30-30, which makes sense given that speed is one of the first tools to erode with age. Not even Barry Bonds, who stole quite a few bags before he became the size of a small mountain, was able to go 30-30 after his 33rd birthday. Ramirez was 24 when he had his 30-30 campaign in 2008. He last stole 20 bases in 2012, and hasn’t been in double-digits since before signing with the Red Sox. You can see where this is going.

Sources: Nationals first-round pick Seth Romero was sent home from spring training this morning. A club spokesman said Romero violated club policy. Unclear as to how long he will be gone or the specific policy violated.

The Nationals looked past those issues to make him the 25th pick in last year’s MLB Draft, projecting that he could be ready for the majors as early as this season, though he finished 2017 at short-season Single-A. He is considered among the top handful of prospects on a team that has been lacking in left-handed pitching.

According to the Post, how long Romero will be exiled isn’t clear, but as of now he isn’t taking part in spring training.

Finally, DRS uses run expectancy to determine how many runs a saved base at a position is worth: for a shortstop, this factor is around .76. To convert from bases saved to runs saved or bases allowed to runs allowed, multiply bases saved or bases allowed by that factor. In this example, Simmons is responsible for .9375 times .76 or .71 runs saved if he makes the play, or -.50 times .76 or -.38 runs if he can’t make the play, and allows the runner advance to second.

Pelicans sign Emeka Okafor to 10-day contract

The Pelicans have signed Emeka Okafor to a 10-day contract, the team announced Saturday.

New Orleans continues to fill out its roster in the wake of DeMarcus Cousins’ season-ending Achilles injury suffered in the Pelicans’ matchup with the Rockets Jan. 27.

Porter certainly flashes potential as a self creator, especially as a fluid ball-handler in big spaces where his athleticism and coordination shine. It translates less in the halfcourt, though.

But give credit to Markkanen — he has shut down the naysayers with a fantastic rookie season. He is averaging 14.9 points, 7.6 rebounds and 1.2 assists per game while shooting 34.7 percent from beyond the arc and becoming the fastest player in NBA history to reach 100 made 3-pointers. He is second among all rookies with 13 double doubles (Simmons is blowing everyone away with 23).

In any other year, Markkanen may be the frontrunner in the Rookie of the Year race. It just so happens that he has to compete with Simmons and Mitchell.

They already have Ivan Provorov and Gostisbehere at the NHL level, with Sanheim, Samuel Morin and Hagg the system.He’s a smart player that picked our system up a hurry and made some big plays for us.I know he’s very involved the Brother’s Keeper’ program and I know that that’s going to be a big thing for him his post-presidency and I wouldn’t be surprised to a lot of players involved that.It was sort of like, Woah, I just started playing safety.

“I was pleased with putting up zeroes but also to be able to throw my pitches and keep guys guessing,” the 28-year-old right-hander said. “I didn’t go late into the game because we’re only going three innings, but I finished the outing strong and came out with zeroes.”

He wound up 5-7 with a 6.70 ERA last year, when he was sidelined from mid-June until September because of a stress fracture in his scapula, which connects the arm with the collarbone.

Harvey, who is eligible for free agency after this season, threw in the mid-90 mph range against the Tigers. Not quite the level he reached in his youth, but enough to be effective.

“I think the third inning I felt better than the first two innings,” he said. “Usually it’s the other way around. That’s a good sign. I was able to get in trouble and get out of it.”

Harvey had one strikeout and one walk in a 46-pitch outing.

“He pitched with not his best stuff today,” new Mets manager Mickey Callaway said. “Throughout the season you’re going to have a handful of those. If you can get through those, that’s huge. He did a good job of throwing strike one and maybe fell behind after that, but he knew he had good stuff, made a pitch and got out of it. He can be very good for us.”

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

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

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.