The receiver would fit well in the rough-and-tumble NFC East

The national nightmare known as the NFL’s football drought comes to a close as the calendar flips over to March — kind of. The NCAA’s best and brightest prospects will descend on Indianapolis for a full week of tests and workouts designed to put their NFL potential on a sliding scale of draftability.

Here are the full results so far for wide receivers at the 2017 NFL Combine:

Kermit Whitfield of Florida State won’t be one of those players after a mostly unproductive college career, but the track star promises to shine in Indianapolis. He has blazing speed and could post one of the fastest 40 times of the year.

Wide receivers began testing Friday with the bench press and will hit the field for timing drills Saturday. Billy Brown of Division II’s Shepherd University led the pack in the bench press with 23 reps.

Head coach Tyronn Lue: “He brings a physicality, a shot-blocking presence, a guy who can pass the ball at the 5 position and that’s what we needed.

“Once we all get together and get on the right page, we’ll be a tough team to beat.”

Deron Williams: “He’s a 7-footer that protects the rim, is very smart, knows the game, knows how to pass, he’s won a championship so he knows what it takes. I think he can bring a lot to this team.”

LeBron James: “He likes to compete and do whatever it takes to help his team win. You respect that.”

People can pick on Carson Wentz’s rookie season, but I see a phenomenal talent in the making and the kind of young quarterback Marshall would get on board with. The receiver would fit well in the rough-and-tumble NFC East and, again, would be close enough to New York to work his boob-tube side gig.

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Dwight Howard¡¯s ejection for hanging on the rim should never happen again

Authentic Womens Mike Pouncey Jersey During the Atlanta Hawks¡¯ matchup against Boston Celtics on Monday, referees assessed Dwight Howard a technical foul in the third quarter for shoving ex-Hawks big man Al Horford. It was an understandable sequence of events given Horford¡¯s hard foul on Howard¡¯s layup attempt.

Moments later, Howard was ejected after picking up his second technical foul ¡ª for hanging on the rim.

Atlanta went on to win, 114-98, and Howard had been dominant up to his ejection, posting 17 points, 12 rebounds (six offensive), and two blocks in 27 minutes. He could have enjoyed his best game of the season had he stayed in the game.

The NBA later released a statement, reading Howard¡¯s technical foul ¡°should have been deemed non-unsportsmanlike, and should not have resulted in his ejection.¡±

What if this was a playoff game?

Peterson¡¯s 11,747 rushing yards rank 16th in NFL history and first in Vikings history (by a margin of almost 5,000 yards). The seven-time Pro Bowler, seven-time All-Pro (five of those seven All-Pro designations being on the first team) is one of only 15 running backs to ever win NFL MVP and holds the NFL record for must rushing yards in a game with 296.

There¡¯s a lot of talent at the running back position in this year¡¯s draft class, and free agent options include Darren McFadden, Chris Johnson, and former Steeler LeGarrette Blount.

When healthy, Lacy has the potential to be a game-changer ¡ª but are the Packers willing to justify a big contract for a player who has raised more questions than he¡¯s answered the past two years? And if not them, then who?
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Emmanuel Sanders s the inside receiver, with the red line.

The Seahawks like to play a lot of single-high safety. Sometimes, single-high safety means they are playing a cover 3 zone where the deep safety and each corner has one third of the deep part of the zone. They also like to use a single-high safety when they play man-to-man. It can get tricky at times. Here, I circled Chancellor who will end up being the deep safety on this play. I also circled Byron Maxwell and Sherman to show the cornerbacks. Sherman is on the inside receiver and a linebacker is lined up outside of him, so it’s probably safe to assume that they’re playing man-to-man.

Demaryius Thomas is up top, lined up as the outside receiver with the yellow line extending away from him. He’s running a deep post route.

Emmanuel Sanders s the inside receiver, with the red line. He ran what is essentially a wheel route down the field. He takes off 10 yards before allowing Demaryius Thomas to cross in front of him on the post, and then he runs an out-and-up route.

Let’s start with this new, to me at least, version of a wide receiver screen that the Broncos unveiled with 6:07 left in the game, down 17-12.

Coach Lovie Smith, linebacker Brian Urlacher and defensive end Julius Peppers — all long-time Bears — are gone. Somebody has had to fill huge leadership fissures with this team.

“There are a ton of leaders here, but you have to have your quarterback be a part of that leadership in this league,” Bears cornerback Charles Tillman said. “That’s the commercial role, but it’s beyond that. He has to be a team leader. Jay is. He’s a pro.”

“Jay is not going to be too vocal,” Linebacker Lance Briggs said.” He gives two-second pep talks. He is not your Ray Lewis type. But it works for him and it works for us. He’s a one day, one game, one play and the next play type of guy.”


Ryan Tannehill reportedly at full health for Dolphins

Ryan Tannehill will be available for the entirety of the Miami Dolphins’ offseason program after missing the last three regular-season games and the postseason with a severe knee sprain.

NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported late last month that Tannehill’s partially torn ACL is no longer an issue and full reconstructive surgery will not be necessary.

Allen Bailey Elite Jersey Spielman’s vague comments mesh with coach Mike Zimmer’s assessment after the 2016 season.
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“I’m worried about Teddy getting better,” Zimmer said in January, via the Minnesota Star Tribune. “He comes in here every single day, busts his rear end and I just want him to get better right now, so we will worry about those things later.”

Zimmer added that the nature of Bridgewater’s injury adds to the uncertainty about when, or if ever, the QB could return.

“With this injury that he has, it’s different with everyone,” Zimmer said at the time. “They went back and, whoever has had this injury, they’ve studied it and the ones [who] have come back and how long it’s taken to come back, how long it hasn’t come back. But they’re all different, there’s no exact injury where they’re all the same.”

The Vikings won’t put a timeline on Bridgewater’s rehab, but it sounds more and more like a return won’t happen in 2017, if ever.

Tony Romo to The Windy City: In this scenario, look for (a) Chicago to release Jay Cutler and (b) Dallas to cut ties with Romo, making the Cowboys veteran a perfect fit for the quarterback-needy Bears. The relationship with Pace — who served as team captain at Eastern Illinois during Romo’s 1999 freshman campaign — only helps. (By the way, who knew Eastern Illinois was such an ultra-flaming hotbed of signal-calling drama?)

Utah Jazz trade rumors include ¡®testing the market¡¯ for Derrick Favors, according to report

The Utah Jazz have ¡°tested the market¡± for power forward Derrick Favors over the last several weeks, reports ESPN¡¯s Zach Lowe. His availability could shake up the NBA trade deadline after one of the league¡¯s biggest fish, DeMarcus Cousins, was dealt to the New Orleans Pelicans on Sunday.

Limited Mens Rodney Gunter Jersey Favors, 25, is one of the Jazz¡¯s most important players, but Lowe reports that the Jazz trying to plan to ensure that Gordon Hayward can sign a contract extension this year. By trading Favors, who has a $12 million salary for the 2017-18 season before becoming a free agent, the Jazz would free up extra flexibility to avoid any problems with Hayward.

Lowe says it¡¯s ¡°unclear¡± how serious the Jazz are about moving Favors now, and it¡¯s possible they¡¯re just trying to lay the groundwork for a trade around the draft in June. Utah could potentially get a better return then, when teams might be more comfortable pulling the trigger on a major deal.

Losing Favors now would also be a blow to the Jazz. His numbers are down across the board compared to a year ago, but he¡¯s still averaging 9.2 points and 6.1 rebounds in 40 games, including 32 starts, this season. That¡¯s production the team would need to replace while looking to make its first playoff appearance since 2012 and convince Hayward to stay.

“My wife keeps saying, ‘Are you sure?'” Lynch said. “I said, ‘Well, this has already started. We’re in.’ I’ve never been apart from my family, so it’s been gut-wrenching already but — sorry — that’s been tough.”
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Moore was eased toward retirement and replaced by a former quarterback of his, Scott Satterfield. And Satterfield initially bombed. The Mountaineers, having already committed to the FBS jump, went 4-8 in 2013, then began FBS life with a 1-5 record, suffering losses to a bad Southern Miss team and FCS’ Liberty.

High school junior Zion Williamson’s vicious dunks continue to be poetry in (slow) motion

Zion Williamson, a 16-year-old junior from Spartanburg Day School, has been making the rounds on social media lately, and it¡¯s all because of how athletic he is.
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As for who Menzel is rooting for in the big game, she doesn’t have a strong interest in either team. During her pre-Super Bowl press conference Thursday, Menzel said she¡¯s hoping Seattle will win, but not because she¡¯s a fan of the team, according to The Washington Post.

“Because I¡¯m a New Yorker and I cannot root for the Patriots, so I will root for Seattle.”
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She must have been happy the last two times New England was in the Super Bowl when they lost to the New York Giants both times.

Zuccarello broke the tie after Mika Zibanejad won a faceoff in the Washington zone and sent a pass to Chris Kreider. Kreider passed to Zuccarello, who beat Grubauer for his 12th of the season at 8:37. The goal was Zuccarello’s first of his career against Washington in the regular season.

The Capitals controlled the play in the second period, outshooting New York 11-4. Lundqvist made a key save on Brett Connolly. Justin Williams broke his stick on a tap-in attempt and Daniel Winnik hit the post.

Schultz, who had struggled mightily with the Oilers, filled in admirably at various times for Kris Letang and Olli Maatta, and he has continued to see his role grow exponentially with a team that should take a serious run this spring at back-to-back championships. Throw in the steadying presence of Cole, and the Pens added two smart, puck-moving defenders who meshed incredibly well with head coach Mike Sullivan’s up-tempo game plan — and without giving up any appreciable assets.

Cousins told ESPN that he’d sign the tender if he’s tagged again

Is the long-term security worth the tradeoff of earning a massive salary for at least one more year? That’s a question Cousins and his camp will have to figure out while Washington weighs its options.

But last month, Cousins told ESPN that he’d sign the tender if he’s tagged again, while conceding, “It will be hard to have a lack of security at that point.”

The one upside of the franchise tag is that it guarantees the player will be one of the highest-paid at his position for one year. Everything that happens after that year, though, is a mystery, and that uncertainty is why many players would rather avoid it altogether. And on the team’s part, general managers don’t like having such a huge part of the salary cap tied to one player, for one year, so they’re also eager to work out a more stable extension.

The tag affords more time for both sides to get something hammered out, but it’s certainly not a pleasant experience for the players, no matter how large their bank accou gets in the end.

Bauer, Cleveland’s resident deep thinker, adheres to his own program. On Wednesday, more than 30 Indians pitchers and catchers took part in a spirited endurance drill that consisted of sprinting back and forth between orange cones on a back field. Minor league pitcher Dylan Baker collapsed in exhaustion after winning the drill, and catchers Yan Gomes and Roberto Perez pushed themselves to the limit while finishing second and third. The event was strenuous enough that one pitcher vomited in the grass.

Bauer, meanwhile, was the first player to exit the race and spent the rest of the time taking it in as a spectator. It was the kind of strange interlude that spurs “Trevor being Trevor” comments from his teammates and the occasional eye roll when his name comes up in conversation.

Bauer’s self-inflicted drone wound in October was the consummate example of his approaching of baseball and life from an off-kilter vantage point. Cleveland management has no plans to curtail his fondness for high-tech flying gizmos.

North Carolina’s Mitch Trubisky and Stanford’s Solomon Thomas had huge 2016 seasons.

Figure out the right side of the offensive line. The Lions have a pair of impending free agents: right guard Larry Warford and right tackle Riley Reiff. Reiff moved over after four years on the left side once Detroit drafted Taylor Decker in the first round of last year’s draft. Reiff’s return might depend upon the market he finds in free agency. If a team values the former Iowa standout as a left tackle and is willing to pay a premium, it’s hard to envision Reiff returning. If Reiff is looking only at right tackle money, Detroit should probably be able to keep him around.

Warford’s the better lineman of the two, but his best season was arguably his rookie campaign in 2013. There’s a strong case to retain Warford, especially after 2015 first-rounder Laken Tomlinson lost his starting job at left guard for a stretch last year. If Tomlinson had played well, the Lions could have played third-round pick Graham Glasgow at right guard and allowed Warford to move on. Now, Glasgow might be needed at left guard, and Tomlinson might not be worth trusting with a starting gig.
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North Carolina’s Mitch Trubisky and Stanford’s Solomon Thomas had huge 2016 seasons. Here’s where they land in Mel Kiper’s latest ranking of the top 25 prospects for the 2017 NFL draft.

The Jets have 10 pending free agents, none of whom is remotely worthy of the franchise tag. The biggest names are quarterbacks Ryan Fitzpatrick and Geno Smith, but neither one factors into the team’s plans. The Jets addressed their No. 1 free-agent priority by re-signing right guard Brian Winters last month.
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Per ESPN’s Stats & Information research, 30 offensive linemen have been franchise tagged since 1993. And the tagged numbers are 26 for defensive ends and 24 for linebackers. On the other end, there have been four punters, nine quarterbacks and 10 running backs franchised.

Generally speaking, teams see a better economic value to leverage high-end linemen than skill position players.