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Sports News Headlines: The Lastest NFL/NBA/NHL/MLB News

Raiders take a punter at end of fifth round

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The Raiders have filled the opening they created at punter by releasing Marquette King in late March.

Oakland used a fifth-round pick they acquired in a trade with the Cowboys to take punter Johnny Townsend.

Despite finding an upper-tier starting guard in Round 2 (Joel Bitonio), a quality three-down linebacker with speed in Round 3 (Christian Kirksey) and what, for a few years anyway, was a solid running back later in Round 3 (Terrance West), this is one of the worst drafts in recent memory, thanks to is the worst first-round in history.

“Every team can’t bring you in and do their own tests,” Hurst said. “Everyone has their own opinion. Blessed to be a Raider.”

One of the few ways that new defensive coordinator Mike Pettine differs from predecessor Dom Capers is he’s more aggressive and diverse in how safeties are deployed.

(And Capers was already in the plus column here.) This is a crucial season for the 25-year-old Clinton-Dix, who is scheduled for free agency in 2019.

Journeyman backup and trick-shot artist Alex Tanney just announced on Twitter that he was joining the Giants. He was just cut by the Titans, and has also spent time with the Chiefs, Cowboys, Browns, Buccaneers, Bills, and Colts.

He joins 2017 third-rounder Davis Webb and 2018 fourth-rounder Kyle Lauletta. Tanney threw 14 passes for Tennessee in 2015, which is 14 more than Webb and Lauletta combined.

He’s not a pliable edge-bender who will notch 12 sacks a year, but his straight-line burst and violent strength can shape an entire run defense and still demand double-teams in pass protections.

Even those who believe Khalil Mack is better than Clowney (and most do) would say the Texans have gotten a good return on that No.

That likely means that Forbath is on the way out as the Vikings’ kicker, and Carlson will get the job. Forbath is coming off a bad season in which he missed six field goals and five extra points and did not kick off well.

Carlson was the SEC special teams player of the year last season, and he made a total of 12 field goals from 50 yards and beyond in his three years as Auburn’s kicker. The Vikings would love to get that kind of production from him in the NFL.sabres_250

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Back home in Pittsburgh, a high school-aged T.J. McConnell used to be called the paper boy for his short stature.

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That was about a decade ago.
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Monday, McConnell聽checked聽in during the fourth quarter of a playoff basketball game at Wells Fargo Center聽to a standing ovation. Just before tip-off, McConnell was announced as a starter for Game 4 against the Boston Celtics, a last-ditch effort by the Sixers, their season on the brink, down 3-0 in the Eastern Conference semi-finals.

Fultz hasn’t played a minute against the Celtics this series, and McConnell is the player who saved the Sixers season, or at least extended it for one more night.

With 1:54 left in the game, McConnell drove the rim and scored in front of Celtics’ Al Horford, an All-Star and one of the NBA’s best defensive centers. The Sixers went up by 12.

As long as 37-year-old Eli Manning can play the role of a younger Eli Manning.

Elite Mens Travis Lewis Jersey Manning’s numbers tailed off as the Giants went 3-13 last season, but he made more than half of his 15 starts with a cast of backups. The Giants Sammy Watkins Jersey responded with a vote of confidence and by giving him one of the NFL’s most dynamic offenses and maybe the most dynamic of his career… on paper.

We definitely have some (talented) players, Manning said Monday night at an event for Guiding Eyes for the Blind. Paper is one thing, but you have to be able to do it on the field. You have to have everybody come together. It’s not four or five guys that make a difference. It’s all 11, and more than that sometimes. Both sides doing their part.

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Quincy Enunwa thinks he’ll be ready to go for OTAs

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Jets wide receiver Quincy Enunwa didn’t want to revisit his recent comments about dethroning the Patriots when he spoke to the media at a charity event on Tuesday, but he did provide an update on the neck injury and subsequent surgery that caused him to miss all of last season.
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Enunwa had 58 catches for 857 yards and four touchdowns for the Jets in 2016 and is coming back as part of a receiver group that includes Robby Anderson, Jermaine Kearse, Terrelle Pryor, ArDarius Stewart, Chad Hansen and Andre Roberts. That group will be thinned out at some point in the coming months and Enunwa’s ability to recapture his past form will likely play a role in determining who sticks around until September.

Engram had a good rookie season, but neither he nor wideout Sterling Shepard provided much help in the standings once Marshall joined Odell Beckham on injured reserve. The Giants went 3-13 and their offensive shortcomings led the Giants to sign left tackle Nate Solder and use the second overall pick of the draft on running back Saquon Barkley.
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Benoit Pouliot Mens Jersey Those additions have led to another round of robust predictions about what lies ahead for the Giants, but memories of last season may be playing a role in quarterback Eli Manning’s measured take on things.

For starters, the top 10 got a shake-up, as two teams jumped seven places apiece — the Blue Jays and the Cardinals, with the Jays soaring high enough to crack the top five. The Blue Jays’ arrival puts three AL East teams among the MLB’s elite top third, because the Yankees, despite dropping three spots, still cling to that distinction.

This week’s other big climb, from the Cardinals, was part of a shake-up among the NL Central’s teams, as the Cardinals and the Brett Favre Jersey Brewers gained ground while the Pirates came back to the pack. The Birds haven’t separated themselves from their division rivals just yet, but seven straight wins against the Reds in their past nine games has helped them rise to first place.

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Ravens open cap space by restructuring Tony Jefferson鈥檚 contract

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The Ravens have 12 players to sign from their 2018 draft class and they opened some cap space to help with that and any other roster-building efforts by adjusting the contract of one of their current players.
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Field Yates of ESPN reports that the Ravens have restructured safety Tony Jefferson鈥榮 deal. They took $5 million of his $6 million and converted it to a signing bonus in a move that cleared $3.33 million in cap space for the year to come.

I wasn’t worried, he says with a straight face. Seated in front of his locker after collecting his first two knocks of the season in Gwinnett’s fourth game, he doesn’t know what lies ahead. He doesn’t know that in his next five contests, he’ll go a combined 3-for-21 and that after nine games in Triple-A, he’ll be hitting an anemic .139 with 14 strikeouts in 36 at-bats.

Limited Kids Chris Kunitz Jersey A distressing downturn that had folks wondering whether baseball’s top prospect was really ready for prime time, the slump also caused Atlanta to handle the kid with kid gloves: Instead of calling up Acuna on April 15, the earliest date that would still prevent him from getting 172 days of service time this season, the Braves waited an extra 10 days. Not that Acuna was letting his struggles get to him.

Barner ran 16 times for 57 yards and a touchdown and caught five passes for 56 yards during the 2017 regular season. Barner also returned 10 kickoffs and 27 punts for the Eagles last year.

Buffalo had Brandon Tate Joffrey Lupul Youth jersey handle their return duties last year, but he became a free agent in March and has not re-signed with the team.

Chase rates have remained fairly steady, until this season. We’ll see if this trend holds up, but this year batters have chased 26.9 percent of pitches out of the zone. The 10-year rate is 28.3 percent, and it has never dropped below 27.5. This enhanced discipline could partly explain the drop in balls in play … if it was a trend that had surfaced before this season.
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No, the bigger culprit is contact rate, the biggest loser of the swing-from-the-heels epic. The 10-year rate for swinging and missing is 22.3 percent. But it has gone from 20.4 percent in 2009 to 25.4 percent so far this season.

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Giants Did Not Have Consensus On Draft’s Top QB

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The Giants were enamored with Saquon Barkley to the point they didn’t waste much time turning in their card. And the team is now prepared to enter the season without a surefire heir apparent behind Eli Manning.

It turns out, Big Blue’s brass didn’t appear to have a consensus among which of the quarterbacks they would take, with Paul Schwartz of the New York Post reporting different sects of the Giants’ decision-makers preferred three separate signal-callers. And they didn’t feel strongly enough about one of them to pull the trigger at No. 2.

Goodell is despised in Dallas after he ruled that Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott should be suspended for six games last season for violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy.

That’s what ex-Browns GM Phil Savage told Peter King for his Sports Illustrated story while being posted up in Cleveland. From King’s story:

And then there’s this postscript, shared last week by former Browns GM Phil Savage: In 2007, holding the No. 3 pick, Cleveland liked LSU quarterback JaMarcus Russell. Had the Raiders not taken Russell with the top choice, Savage says he would have drafted him. His pick instead that year: tackle Joe Thomas. Russell’s an all-time bust, Thomas an all-time great. Imagine that: Saved by Al Davis. So the team’s best draft choice of this century turned out to be part luck.

I’m just thankful to know that this whole process is over with, that an organization believed in me and trusted in me and I’m just ready to get to work. Three other players not taken in the first round, Texas tackle Connor Williams, Iowa cornerback Josh Jackson, and UCF linebacker Shaquem Griffin, did stick it out. Williams, who didn’t have far to go to be at home he’s from the Dallas area will be staying in Big D because the Cowboys chose him 50th. He could wind up at guard.

Kelly, who played his high school ball for Greg Carter at Oak Park, decided to pass up his senior year to enter the draft.

Kelly, a physical downhill runner at 5-10 and 215 pounds, opened his junior year by running for 128 yards and four TDs in a 42-41 (2OT) win over Georgia Tech.

But at the end of the day, it was all worth the wait. It was all worth it. Jackson went 45th to Green Bay, a place he could immediately be a starter even though he is not a speedster. He led FBS last year with eight interceptions. It goes back to his awareness and IQ for the game, scout Alonzo Dotson said. The speed never really worried us because he’s just so smart and he’s always in the right position to play the ball.tigers_019-115x115

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Witten’s decision also further weakens the Cowboys in the immediate future.

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Quarterback Dak Prescott will be without his top two targets from his first two seasons now that Witten is in the booth and the recently released Dez Bryant is a free agent. Bryant wanted to stay in the NFC East Division to torment the Cowboys but it doesn’t appear the interest is reciprocated.
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Elite Martin Jones Jersey Bryant, who shares an agent with Giants’ first-round pick Saquon Barkley, reportedly turned down an offer from the Ravens.

Ryan Shazier’s catastrophic injury didn’t give the Steelers pause when deciding to pick up another fifth-year option nor should it have. Dupree has been a disappointment through three seasons, earning just 14.5 total sacks. The Steelers, however, are betting the $9.232 million option that the 25-year-old has yet to reach his full potential.

No. 23 pick Shane Ray, DE, Denver Broncos: The Broncos selecting Bradley Chubb could change the outlook for Ray in Denver. NFL Network’s James Palmer reported it’s far from a sure thing the Broncos will pick up Ray’s $9.2 million option. John Elway said he would factor in the Chubb selection to his decision. Ray has earned just 13 sacks in three seasons.

For the photo shoot, at the adults-only Occidental Grand Papagayo resort on Culebra Authentic Darqueze Dennard Jersey Bay, some of the cheerleaders said they were required to be topless, though the photographs used for the calendar would not show nudity. Others wore nothing but body paint. Given the resort’s secluded setting, such revealing poses would not have been a concern for the women 鈥?except that (Washington) had invited spectators.

A contingent of sponsors and FedEx Field suite holders 鈥?all men 鈥?were granted up-close access to the photo shoots.

After the shoot, the report alleges nine of the 36 cheerleaders were chosen by male sponsors to be personal escorts at a nightclub that night:

So get back to your room and get ready, the director told them. Several of them began to cry.

Limited Michael Pierce Jersey They weren’t putting a gun to our heads, but it was mandatory for us to go, one of the cheerleaders said. We weren’t asked, we were told. Other girls were devastated because we knew exactly what she was doing.

Their participation did not involve sex, the cheerleaders said, but they felt as if the arrangement amounted to pimping us out. What bothered them was their team director’s demand that they go as sex symbols to please male sponsors, which they did not believe should be a part of their job.

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Giants’ Collins has second arm surgery Monday

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Authentic Nico Siragusa Jersey Giants safety Landon Collins confirmed earlier this month that he needed to have more surgery on the forearm he broke last season and Collins went in for that operation this week. Collins posted a picture of himself in a hospital gown to his Instagram feed Monday. Collins initially had surgery after suffering the injury in Week 16 last year, but follow-up visits to doctors showed that the injury had not healed correctly.
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To have a Derby contender with our first group of three-year-olds was a dream come true, and to have had New England Patriots star Rob Gronkowski join us on that journey made it even more exciting. But we must put the welfare of the horse first and we will look forward to the colt recovering quickly and to his future races. The Patriots tight end recently acquired a stake in the horse. He’s also been hanging out in the world of dirt bikes while the Patriots offseason program ArDarius Stewart Jersey rolls on without his participation.

Authentic Brandon Pirri Jersey The Carolina Panthers are picking up the starting linebacker’s fifth-year option, NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Monday. Thompson is now under contract through 2019.

Widely considered a no-brainer option pick-up, Thompson has logged 159 tackles and three sacks in 36 starts and 42 games played over his first three seasons in the league. Carolina selected Thompson with the 25th pick of the 2015 draft, and the Washington product has been a welcome addition to arguably the game’s best linebacker group in Thomas Davis and Luke Kuechly.

Thompson’s presence on the field will be of increased importance early on in 2018 while the veteran Davis serves a four-game suspension.

With Thompson under lock and key through the 2019 season, Carolina can instead focus on assessing and/or extending its many free-agents-to-be in the 2019 offseason: Greg Olsen, Devin Funchess and Wes Horton.

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NFL Draft 2018: Colts up front about where trade with Jets beefed up roster

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It takes a while for a Doug Williams Authentic Jersey team to cash in on a trade with a team that jumped up into the top three of the NFL Draft to get their quarterback of the future. The Jets may not have had to wait long, grabbing Sam Darnold with the third pick of the draft on Day 1 Thursday night, but the Colts and their followers needed a lot more patience.
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That clearly was fine with them. Their theme for this draft was going to be patience whether or not they made that deal with the Jets last month. Besides moving back to sixth overall and taking two second-round picks from the Jets this year, the Colts maneuvered their way into another second-rounder on Day 2, giving them four overall and five picks in the top 64.

Then they moved into the last spot in the second round, up from the third pick in the third round, to get another defensive end, Tyquan Lewis from Ohio State.
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Passing on franchise quarterbacks, even when you already have one, carries plenty of risk. The Browns are still trying to get fair value from the 2016 draft deal that packaged Carson Wentz to the Eagles at No. 2; Cleveland traded one of the picks it received to the Texans a year later, and that pick turned into Deshaun Watson.

The Titans’ haul from the Rams for the No. 1 pick that became Jared Goff turned into, among others, Jack Conklin and Derrick Henry. The jury is still out on the Bears’ move up last year to get Mitchell Trubisky.

The Colts’ picks, therefore, will be judged in part by what Darnold does with the Jets, but the Colts needed so much help in so many places in the trenches, their end of the deal will be under scrutiny even earlier.

Below are the best players available at each position as the 2018 NFL Draft moves to the second and third rounds. They’re based on player rankings from SN’s pre-draft big board of the top 100 prospects.

First of all: smart move by the Bucs to trade down. Saquon Barkley, Quenton Nelson and Bradley Chubb, the three players who could help them the most, were off the board. The Bucs got some later value by doing little more than letting the quarterback-starving cut in front of them.

Vita Vea began his high school career as a 260-pound Wildcat quarterback. Think about that for a moment: a 260-pound high school freshman playing quarterback. If I was a parent in the bleachers and saw Vea running straight downhill into a group of 15-year-olds, I would pull my kid straight off the field and sign him up for the cross-country team.

Vea remained a two-way player for his entire prep career, rushing for 578 yards and 11 touchdowns as a senior and, as this video indicates, sidestepping almost as many would-be tacklers as he obliterated.

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NFL Draft 2018: Extreme Twitter takes on first-round winners, losers

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The first round of the 2018 NFL Draft is in the books, and one of the most anticipated first rounds in recent history didn’t disappoint. There were surprises, trades, and the incredible, emotional sight of Ryan Shazier walking out to announce the Steelers’ pick.

Meanwhile, as the draft unfolded, millions of NFL fans and analysts were sharing their thoughts in the Twitterverse. Here are some extreme takes on the first round.

The Warriors congratulated the Spurs for their efforts under the difficult circumstances as Popovich mourns.

Spurs: Danny Green was 0 for 5. … San Antonio is 2-8 all-time on Golden State’s home floor in the postseason. The Spurs were swept in the Western Conference Finals by the Warriors last year. … The Spurs shot 37.2 percent, going 7 for 30 from 3-point range.

Warriors: Thompson joined Rick Barry (699) and Curry (652) as the Warriors with 600 postseason field goals. … … Durant (3,189) passed Paul Pierce (3,180) for 20th and Kevin McHale (3,182) for 19th place on the career NBA postseason scoring list. … Golden State is 18-2 in postseason Game 5s at home. … Green notched his 38th postseason game with 10 or more rebounds.

Playing in a division that includes three playoff teams from last season is a good way to start in a hole. The Buccaneers have only two other 2017 postseason teams (Eagles and Steelers) on the docket, but they still face the fourth toughest schedule in the NFL with their opponents’ combined winning percentage from last season at .531. And that’s before you factor in the improvement teams like San Francisco and Chicago have made this offseason.

Toughest tests: The Bucs finishing last in their division last season gives them the chance to play other fourth-place teams in the conference. For a team on the rise like Tampa, that should be a good thing, but it might not be the case this year. Last year’s conference losers in San Francisco and Chicago have improved on paper and easily can give Tampa Bay a run for its money in those matchups.
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Does Jarvis Landry deal affect Browns’ quarterback plans?

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Limited Kids Akiem Hicks Jersey The Browns are expected to sign Jarvis Landry to a five-year, $75 million contract that would make him one of the highest-paid wide receivers in the NFL. But who will be throwing Landry passes for the next five years?
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If it’s going to be Wyoming quarterback Josh Allen, whom many think the Browns are leaning toward taking with the first overall pick in the draft, then he’d seem to be an odd pairing with Landry.

On ESPN, Jessica Mendoza noted that had Harper continued to run hard, he’d have been safe, and the Nats would have had two on in the 10th. So much for one of those guys who comes to play hard, every day.

Wednesday, as seen on WPIX, the Yankees were up, 8-6, in Boston, a man on third no out, when Aaron Judge, on a 2-2 pitch, took strike three.

Paul O’Neill then explained/excused it: So many times, as a hitter, you’ve been walked so many times you don’t expect guys to go after you. It’s almost a surprise. You can’t pull the trigger.

Young realized his mistake and apologized to Landry via Twitter. Landry in turn, tweeted to Young that it was no big deal.

Titans veterans have an easy target if they want to coin a nickname for Landry now.

If you ever pull up Saquon Barkley on social media, all you see is workout videos and I think that’s contagious, Gilbert said. I think other guys want to be around him to work out. I think having Saquon as a prospect might help Odell want to be there and act and do the right things. I think that’s the Jordan Crawford Womens Jersey kind of impact Saquon has on people. People want to be around him.Dave Gettleman was the football coach at Spackenkill High in Poughkeepsie when then-Giants general manager George Young changed the fortunes of the franchise forever by drafting a Hall of Fame Giant who would revolutionize defense in the NFL.

New York Giants first-round selection: Lawrence Taylor, linebacker, North Carolina.
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There was a possibility I was gonna be the first player picked, but when George Rogers was the first player picked [by the Saints], I got up, went to the refrigerator, got a beer, by the time I got back, they were on No. 3 already, Taylor told The Post on Wednesday, and laughed.

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