- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner15 hrs ago
The NFL wasted no time admitting a mistake in penalizing Chiefs safety Husain Abdullah, who went to the ground in Muslim prayer after scoring a touchdown against the Patriots.
Abdullah's touchdown, celebration and ensuing 15-yard penalty happened on Monday night, and by Tuesday morning the NFL was making sure the controversy didn't spread any further than it has, releasing a statement that the penalty was a mistake. Players are not allowed to go to the ground to celebrate, but NFL spokesman Michael Signora told USA Today's Tom Pelissero that religious expression is not included in that rule.
"Husain Abdullah should not have been penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct following his fourth quarter touchdown," Signora said in an email to USA Today.
Let's be serious for a moment here. And I have to kick the really over-the-top crazy Dallas Cowboys fans out of the room now so we can have a real conversation.
OK, good. Now ... what in the heck is going on in Dallas?
Look, you didn't see this coming, I didn't see this coming, nobody did. But now there's no getting around it: The Dallas Cowboys look good. They look great. Had Tony Romo not made some big Week 1 mistakes against the 49ers, they might be 4-0 with some quality wins. I just don't know how we got here.
The Cowboys didn't add much in the offseason, and the defense lost Jason Hatcher, DeMarcus Ware and Sean Lee. Romo was coming off back surgery. They've been the epitome of mediocre for years. All of a sudden, they're good. Logically, it makes little sense.Sun, Sep 28New Orleans17 - 38DallasGame Recap
The game situation was totally different for Jimmy Garoppolo, of course, but it was impossible not to notice what happened at the end of Monday night's game.
Garoppolo, the Patriots' second-round pick this year, came in and gave a dead offense some life. He took a team that couldn't move the ball and immediately drove the Patriots for a touchdown.
And as that was happening it was impossible to also not think about Tom Brady in the past tense. To wonder if we're just never going to see one of the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history be great anymore. It was also worth wondering if the Patriots' incredible dynasty died at Arrowhead Stadium, too. That's how bad the 41-14 loss was. The Patriots have never looked this incompetent in the Belichick-Brady era.
Maybe the Patriots and Brady are fooling us and by the end of the year they'll wear the "AFC East Champions" hats with yet another double-digit win season and look back on this game at Kansas City and laugh. But the Patriots' embarrassment was so thorough and complete that you have to wonder if that team is ever coming back.Mon, Sep 29New England14 - 41Kansas CityGame Recap
When Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher shot and killed his girlfriend Kasandra Perkins , then went to Arrowhead Stadium and killed himself on Dec. 1, 2012, he was probably suffering from a neurological condition known as chronic traumatic encephalopathy, better known as CTE.
The signs of CTE, which has been detected in other former NFL players whose brains were studied after their deaths and is linked to concussions, were found during tests of Belcher's brain, news that was first reported by Sam Mellinger of the Kansas City Star.
While this should come as little surprise, given that CTE has been found in the brains of former players like Junior Seau who have acted erratically before killing themselves, it's more evidence for the negative effects of concussions and brain injuries for current and former players. The news also comes at a time when the NFL has been fighting negative publicity about domestic violence in the league. Belcher shot Perkins nine times. His blood-alcohol level was more than twice the legal limit when he killed her.
Colts safety LaRon Landry, who is known for his otherworldly physique, was suspended four games for a violation of the NFL's performance-enhancing drug policy.
The news, which was announced by the Colts and the NFL, brought about a number of sarcastic tweets remembering a viral photo of Landry in which he looks unrealistically huge.
Suffice it to say, most people didn't express much surprise at the suspension news.
Landry had his own comment on social media. " Sometimes things aren't what they appear to be," he posted on his Twitter and Instagram accounts with one of those photos where a misplaced foot behind a man appears between his legs and looks like ... something other than a foot. That post was deleted. We'll see if he has an excuse for the suspension, which probably won't go unnoticed on social media.
The list of which NFL jerseys are the best-sellers in each state is mostly intuitive.
Seattle owns the Pacific Northwest, the Patriots are the most popular in New England, the Vikings win Minnesota and the neighboring Dakotas too. Everyone could have guessed that. But what about the states that have no NFL team or nobody particularly close? Which team's jersey sells best in Montana? What about Hawaii and Alaska? Which team owns states with more than one NFL team like Florida and California?
Dick's Sporting Goods has a fun interactive site that ranks and lists NFL jersey sales through their stores, with a map of which team's jersey is the top seller in each state (you can find that map at the bottom of this post). Here are the strangest takeaways from which states prefer which teams (based on 2014 season jersey sales through Week 3):
The Packers are Idaho's team
To become an NFL head coach, you have to be sharp. But it doesn't mean you can't make an obvious error.
Being involved so deeply in the day-to-day workings of a team gives you a lot of time to overthink situations, even one that seems as simple as "play your best players." That certainly seems to be what happened when Jacksonville, Minnesota and Tampa Bay picked their Week 1 quarterbacks.
Minnesota and Tampa Bay were forced to start their young quarterbacks in Week 4 because of injuries. Chad Henne's terrible play forced Jacksonville to play its young quarterback. And now it just looks like there was a lot of wasted time for those teams the first three weeks because those teams all look reborn.
Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater's first career start was going just great, before he was carted off to the locker room with an ankle injury.
Bridgewater appeared to have his ankle rolled up on by Falcons defensive end Kroy Biermann at the end of a fourth-quarter run. As the Vikings were taking over with a little less than seven minutes remaining, leading 35-28, Bridgewater got back on a cart to get X-rays in the locker room. Christian Ponder came in to take his place. Matt Cassel, who was the starter at the beginning of the season, is on injured reserve due to a foot injury.
Vikings coach Mike Zimmer said after the game that Bridgewater's X-ray is negative, although he'll go for an MRI. He wasn't sure of Bridgewater's status for Thursday night's game against Green Bay.
Bridgewater did very well before that. he had 319 passing yards and 27 rushing yards and a touchdown. The offense, without former NFL MVP running back Adrian Peterson, was moving the ball up and down the field on the Falcons defense.
Fair or not, the adversarial fan-player relationship will always be one sided. The fans can unload their frustrations, but the player will never be given a pass for doing the same to a fan.
Geno Smith will be finding that out the hard way.
Smith, the second-year New York Jets quarterback who struggled again in a loss to the Detroit Lions, was booed and had to hear fans chanting for his backup, Michael Vick. And when Smith left the field on Sunday he made it much worse, yelling "[Expletive] you" to a fan as he left the field. WCBS in New York had video of Smith swearing at the fan, Gary Myers of the New York Daily News said.
Smith apologized for the incident before he took a question at his postgame news conference, according to multiple reports from Jets beat writers. He knows that no matter what the situation, he better apologize for it before it gets any worse.
Smith will be under even more heat now that he lost his cool after another poor performance. Jets receiver Eric Decker had Smith's back, however, in quotes to Kimberley Martin of Newsday:Sun, Sep 28Detroit24 - 17NY JetsGame Recap
An injury finally forced Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach Lovie Smith to give up on an inexcusable mistake. And the quarterback Smith didn't want to start is one of the main reasons Smith got his first win as Buccaneers coach.
Mike Glennon went into Pittsburgh and led a 27-24 victory over the Steelers, rallying the team with a last-seconds drive that ended with Glennon hitting Vincent jackson for a toucdhown with seven seconds to go.
Glennon, an all-rookie quarterback last year, showed that the experience that Smith desperately needed at quarterback might be overrated.
A team that looked moribund with Josh McCown at quarterback for three weeks looked a lot more capable Sunday with Glennon, who started because McCown is out with a thmb injury. Glennon, who had 302 yards, hit Louis Murphy for a 41-yard pass to Pittsburgh's 5-yard line. Jackson made a diving catch in the end zone for the winning score.
Glennon started that drive at Pittsburgh's 46-yard line with 33 seconds and no timeouts. He was poised on that drive, like he was the entire game.Sun, Sep 28Tampa Bay27 - 24PittsburghGame Recap