Eric Adelson

  • How combine star J.J. Nelson's profile has grown after $100K Adidas fiasco

    Eric Adelson at Yahoo Sports 1 day ago

    J.J. Nelson may have gotten screwed out of $100,000, but he could wind up with something even more valuable.

    The speedy wide receiver out of UAB ran an NFL scouting combine-best 4.28 40-yard dash over the weekend, and he thought he earned a six-figure bonus from Adidas for doing so. The shoe company promised $100,000 for the fastest three times, and Nelson had the top performance.

    Then the winners were named, and Nelson wasn't mentioned.

    Adidas claimed Nelson didn't sign an endorsement deal with the shoemaker before running, so he didn't get the bonus.

    Nelson, reached by phone on Wednesday, said he never got the chance. He said he signed a waiver and would have been happy to sign an endorsement, but he wasn't given one.

    "They put out that I declined the offer," he said. "I was never given the offer to sign."

    A direct message to Adidas spokesman Michael Ehrlich was not immediately returned.

    The Bessemer, Ala., native has his own theory of what happened: "I guess they [Adidas] picked people who were high-profile – people who had a great chance of going out there and running a fast time. Me being an underrated guy was a big part of it."


  • Mom, not ex-NFL lineman dad, taught top TE draft prospect Maxx Williams how to catch

    Eric Adelson at Yahoo Sports 2 days ago

    Maxx Williams is one of the best athletes in the upcoming NFL draft class. But is he the best athlete in his own family?

    "See, that's a tough question," said the tight end from the University of Minnesota. 

    If you thought the Gronkowskis had good bloodlines, wait until you meet this group. Maxx's grandfather, Robert, played quarterback for Notre Dame and was drafted by the Chicago Bears in 1959. His son, Brian, was a first-round pick by the New York Giants in 1989 and played 10 years as a center in New York. Maxx remembers sitting in the hot tub with NFL players after Giants games as a kid, while his dad hung out in the cold tub. 

    Even this past Friday, Brian Williams was at home in Minnesota waiting for word on his son's scouting combine performance not only so he could cheer for Maxx, but so he could beat him.

    "I can out-bench him still," Brian said by phone. "Oh, for sure. He knows it too. Back in college I did 505 [pounds]. I'm not even sure what it is now. If he does 225 for 20 reps, I'll have to do 22 just to beat him."

    Maxx, who went for 17 reps in Indianapolis, has accepted this. 

  • Doug Baldwin fails to fully explain reason for vulgar gesture after TD

    Eric Adelson at Yahoo Sports 25 days ago

    GLENDALE, Ariz. – What were you thinking, Doug Baldwin?

    The Seattle Seahawks receiver marred a delightful Super Bowl XLIX, won by the New England Patriots 28-24, with a vulgar celebration that made Marshawn Lynch's crotch-grabs look like Barry Sanders handing the ball to the referee.

    After his third-quarter touchdown, Baldwin appeared to mock pull down his pants and squat over the brown football.

    If you're 3 years of age or older, you get the idea.

    NBC cameras mercifully avoided the display, but of course social media was all too happy to gif it into infamy.

    But seriously, what was he thinking?

    [Super Bowl XLIX finish turns ugly after brawl]

    "That's between me and the guy it was directed at," Baldwin said.

    Asked if it was directed at New England Patriots cornerback Darrelle Revis, who he beat on the play, Baldwin said no.


  • What were Seahawks thinking on Russell Wilson's goal-line pass? Explanations make little sense

    Eric Adelson at Yahoo Sports 25 days ago

    GLENDALE, Ariz. – They had three chances to go three feet. They had 26 seconds to win a Super Bowl. They had Marshawn Lynch.

    They passed the ball.

    It was beyond stunning, inexplicable even in the split-second that it took place: Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson lined up in the shotgun and threw an interception to Malcolm Butler in the end zone and it was over. No repeat. No dynasty. No nothing. New England Patriots win, 28-24. Seahawks left with a lifetime of wondering.

    Moments after the decision, thousands of fans in green and blue meandered from their seats at University of Phoenix Stadium, eyes glazed and faces drawn.

    "Why would you pass the ball?" one yelled.

    "What the [expletive] was that?!" another yelled, even louder.

    There was no good explanation. There was no leaning on the gargantuan effort that took the Seahawks to the brink of a title.

    [Tom Brady named Super Bowl MVP after record-setting performance]

    Some of his players tried to reason it away. Some did not.

    There is none. Not really.

    They passed the ball.

  • To prevent sex trafficking from becoming Super Bowl scourge, FBI intensifies law enforcement efforts

    Eric Adelson at Yahoo Sports 26 days ago

    PHOENIX – On the Saturday before the Super Bowl, a 23-year-old on the northern edge of this sprawling city scans escort offers on the Internet. There are dozens of listings, many with photos of girls in suggestive poses and little clothing.

    This is a huge weekend for football and fanfare – an unofficial national holiday – and it is also a huge weekend for sex. That means it is also a huge weekend for sex trafficking, and this 23-year-old is working long hours on a Saturday to stop it.

    She is an agent in the Phoenix division of the FBI.

    The Super Bowl is culmination of a months-long effort by the FBI and a task force of local authorities to track down pimps and recover underage girls who are coerced into turning tricks while the world is watching Phoenix but nobody is watching them.

    "The Super Bowl, unfortunately, happens to be the largest human trafficking venue on the planet," said Cindy McCain, wife of U.S. Senator John McCain, who has been leading the push for stronger laws in Arizona and elsewhere.

    [WATCH Super Bowl XLIX LIVE on NBC Sports - Kickoff 6:30pm ET]

  • Roger Goodell strong on deflate-gate, weak on issues that matter most in protecting NFL integrity

    Eric Adelson at Yahoo Sports 27 days ago

    PHOENIX – Roger Goodell was in over his head when it came to an issue that gravely impacted real people. But something innocuous like deflate-gate? That's right in the commissioner's wheelhouse.

    The backbone Goodell lacked in dealing with domestic violence and concussions showed up instantly when he was asked in his annual state of the league news conference about the relatively trivial topic of football air pressure.

    "This is my job," he announced on Friday. "My responsibility is to protect the game."

    It was an appropriate retort to New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft's assertion that the league apologize if no chicanery is found in the NFL's investigation of deflated footballs in the AFC championship game. Goodell is right: he has nothing to apologize for. The rules are the rules, and even if no advantage was gleaned, illegal is illegal and should be punished. Even if the deflation wasn't intentional, this is worth investigating.

    "I have to pursue that aggressively," Goodell said.

    [Watch Super Bowl XLIX live here and on NBC Sports - Sunday at 6 p.m. ET]

  • Even surprise HGH test can be viewed as disrespectful to Earl Thomas, Seahawks

    Eric Adelson at Yahoo Sports 28 days ago

    PHOENIX – It wasn't so much a badge of honor as a bandage of dishonor.

    Seattle safety Earl Thomas showed up at the Seahawks' media availability on Thursday with gauze wrapped around his right arm from a league blood test he got earlier in the morning. He was happy to show off the bandage; he was not happy about why it was there.

    He tweeted:

    Yesterday I said my shoulder was a 10 ... Wake up the next morning and I have a blood test for HGH .. League office distraction

    The suggestion is that the league purposefully tested Thomas because of what he said about his shoulder on Wednesday. It's a serious charge, especially if no one else on either team was tested Thursday morning.

    Thomas sat for the better part of an hour and took several questions about the tweet, and kept referring back to it. He neither elaborated nor backed down. "What you read is what it is," he said. Asked if he felt there shouldn't be testing during Super Bowl week, he said, "I don't want to get into that." 

    [Watch the Super Bowl live on Yahoo Sports and NBC Sports - Sunday at 6 p.m. ET]

  • Deflate-gate triggers stat spat as analysts attempt to solve why Patriots don't fumble

    Eric Adelson at Yahoo Sports 29 days ago

    PHOENIX – Maybe the smoking gun isn’t in a bathroom at Gillette Stadium. Maybe it’s in the laptop of a civil engineer in Washington, D.C.

    One of the strangest twists in the already strange saga of deflate-gate is the sudden star turn of a man who runs a gambling website when he’s not doing his day job. Warren Sharp is a 36-year-old dad who loves numbers and algorithms, and decided to apply some statistics to the Patriots when he heard about the football deflation investigation. What he found sent ripples through the sports world and got a few other statisticians pretty upset.

    It also may have implications beyond Tom Brady and Bill Belichick.

    Sharp’s idea was to look at fumbles. That led him to a more refined topic: how well the Patriots held onto the ball both before and after the 2006 season, which happened to be the year Brady and Peyton Manning pushed for a rule change which allowed each team to provide their own footballs for games.

    “Something significant changed from 2006 to 2007 that allowed them to retain the football,” Sharp said by phone Tuesday, “and that continues today.”

    That’s hard to explain away.

  • Inspiration for Seahawks logo visits Seattle with assist from Patriots fan

    Eric Adelson at Yahoo Sports 1 mth ago

    For years, the mask that inspired Seattle's beloved NFL team logo sat thousands of miles away. At one point during renovation, it was even placed in storage.

    Gretchen Faulkner, director of the University of Maine's Hudson Museum, liked to show it off, leading guests away from the main halls and pointing it out. She called it "the Seahawks mask."

    But people didn't really care.

    "I wouldn't get much response," Faulkner says. "People were Patriot fans, so they were like, 'Yeah, sure.' "

    She couldn't blame them; she was a Pats fan too.

    It's possible that if not for this Pats fan and her staff, the gorgeous work of art that launched the Seahawks logo many years ago might still be in Maine, unbeknownst to the football fans who now come to see it. Instead, two curators from rival regions worked together to complete a mask's journey home from, of all places, Arizona – where the Seattle Seahawks will meet the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLIX in Glendale on Feb. 1.

    "There are certain teams in the league that can use better relations with Native people," Everson says. "I won't mention names."

  • Robert Allenby wants you to believe his kidnapping story even though he doesn't remember it himself

    Eric Adelson at Yahoo Sports 1 mth ago

    SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Robert Allenby wants you to believe what happened to him on Jan. 16 even though he doesn't remember exactly what happened to him on Jan. 16.

    So began another bizarre chapter in L'Affair Allenby.

    "The No. 1 thing that you should all remember is that my story stays exactly the same as the way I told it," he insisted Tuesday at a press conference prior to this weekend's Waste Management Phoenix Open. Allenby stridently defended himself and took the media to task for doubting his story, which goes as follows:

    After missing the cut at a tournament in Honolulu last month, Allenby said he went to a bar, had a few drinks, left the bar only to be knocked unconscious. He claimed he woke up in a park six miles away to two men kicking him. There, a homeless woman, along with a retired miltary man, chased away the assailants, told him he'd been dumped there from the trunk of a car, and helped Allenby get a cab back to his hotel.

    At some point Allenby took a selfie of his injuries, which was broadcast on the Golf Channel, and the world honed in on his story.