- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner1 hr ago
Michael Sam did all he could to make the St. Louis Rams' 53-man roster, but it wasn't enough. At least not now.
Sam was released by the Rams, the team announced, after an afternoon of suspense when it looked like he might survive Saturday's NFL cutdown day. Sam, a defensive end, is hoping to become the NFL's first openly gay player.
That dream, at least in the technical sense of appearing in a regular-season game, will wait. He is likely to land on the Rams' practice squad, unless some team claims him off waivers.
Sam, who was a seventh-round pick by the Rams in May, played well in the preseason. Sam had a sack against Green Bay, and then two more against the Browns. He led the Rams with six tackles in the final preseason game. He had a tough road to make the Rams, however, especially when undrafted end Ethan Westbrooks also had a great preseason. The Rams are one of the NFL's deepest teams on the defensive line, and Sam faced a lot of competition to earn a spot on the roster.Thu, Aug 28St. Louis13 - 14MiamiGame Recap
- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner6 hrs ago
Outside linebacker James Harrison was passed over in the 2002 draft coming out of Kent State. He spent the rest of his career making every other team pay for that.
The longtime Steelers linebacker was 2008 NFL defensive player of the year, and his 100-yard interception return for a touchdown on the final play of the first half of Super Bowl XLIII will go down as one of the greatest plays in NFL history.
But at age 36, he had enough. Harrison met with the Arizona Cardinals this week, but both sides couldn't work out a deal. So on Saturday, Harrison announced he was retiring on his Facebook page, and cited family reasons:Thu, Aug 28Carolina10 - 0PittsburghGame Recap
- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner6 hrs ago
Quarterback Kyle Orton must have really, really hated retirement because it didn't last long.
He likely never wanted to retire, of course. But through his threats, he convinced the Dallas Cowboys he did. There was a standoff all offseason as Orton refused to show up to camp, but also refused to pay back the prorated part of his signing bonus if he retired, a little more than $3 million. The Cowboys gave up the fight and released him in July.
And voila, Orton was free to sign with any team. He did the veteran thing, skipped training camp and preseason, and has agreed to a one-year deal with a one-year player option with the Buffalo Bills to back up EJ Manuel, Tim Graham of the Buffalo News reported.Thu, Aug 28Denver27 - 3DallasGame Recap
The NFL took a proper and strong first step toward rectifying its mistake on Ray Rice’s domestic violence case, in which the Baltimore Ravens running back was suspended just two games and the public outrage was fierce, by strengthening its policy on domestic violence.
The first domestic violence offense will bring a six-game suspension ("m itigating circumstances will be considered," the league added) and the second will be an indefinite ban with the chance to apply for reinstatement after a year, with "no assurance that the petition will be granted."
How the NFL applies the policy will be interesting to watch because there’s a lot of gray area that will have to be considered when there’s a case brought before commissioner Roger Goodell (much like, if a player's previous domestic violence history will be taken into account or how Carolina defensive end Greg Hardy, who was convicted in July but is appealing, will be handled).
After the NFL admitted it went too light on Baltimore running back Ray Rice with its punishment, you didn't want to be the next major name up for suspension from commissioner Roger Goodell.
Stinks for you, Aldon Smith.
Smith, the 49ers' outside linebacker and best pass rusher, was given a harsh nine-game suspension for violating the NFL's personal conduct policy and its substance abuse policy, a big blow that will affect a San Francisco team with Super Bowl hopes. It's possible the 49ers could be without All-Pro players Smith and inside linebacker NaVorro Bowman, who is coming back from a serious knee injury, for the first half of the season.
Smith isn't eligible to return until Nov. 10.
Jets coach Rex Ryan managed to make the fourth preseason game meaningful for Michael Vick, and for an Eagles fan base that turned out to show their appreciation for their former quarterback.
On a night when most teams didn’t play their starters, or even their second-string players, Vick surprisingly was in the game for the Jets’ first offensive play against the Eagles. He was announced as the starting quarterback, and the fans gave a nice cheer. Vick handed the ball off, then Ryan called a time-out.
Backup quarterback Matt Simms ran out Vick’s visor to him – humorously presenting it like it was on a platter to him – and the fans got to cheer again as Vick waved to the crowd as he left the field. Vick’s five-year Eagles stint wasn’t perfect, but he rehabilitated his image and revitalized his career there. He came very close to winning the 2010 NFL MVP award with what was probably his best all-around season as a pro. He also became a leader of that team, which was a surprising development after his rocky Atlanta career, which ended with his conviction for his role in a dog-fighting operation.
- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner2 days ago
At the beginning of the preseason, you could have gotten tremendous odds betting on "Peyton Manning fined for taunting."
Manning was penalized for taunting Houston safety D.J. Swearinger after a touchdown pass last week, and the NFL didn't let him slide because it's the first time anyone can remember such a penalty for the Broncos quarterback. Manning was fined a little more than $8,200 for the penalty, according to ESPN's Chris Mortensen, which is typical in the league's fine schedule.
Oh no, where will Manning find that kind of money?!?
- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner2 days ago
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Apparently, the stadium builders in the mid-1990s didn't know how to build a place that could last for more than a couple decades.
MLB's Atlanta Braves have plans to ditch Turner Field, which was built in conjunction with the 1996 Summer Olympics. Now Redskins owner Daniel Snyder is excited about moving from his stadium, which was opened in 1997. He told CSN Washington in an exclusive interview that the process of designing a new stadium has already started.
Hey FexEd Field, it has been a good run of nearly 20 years. But they don't make 'em like Lambeau anymore.
“I'd like to see it sooner than later, but we love FedEx Field,” Snyder told CSN Washington. “It's a great place to feature our home games, but it's 17 years old now. I think it's time for us to start looking and we're doing it."
It's 17 years old now? OK, then.Thu, Aug 28Washington24 - 10Tampa BayGame Recap
- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner3 days ago
The report came down in early May that Cleveland Browns receiver Josh Gordon faced a one-year suspension from the NFL for violating its substance-abuse policy. Almost four months and one appeal hearing later, the NFL's decision never changed.
Gordon, the NFL's leader in receiving yardage last year and an NFL first-team All-Pro, will be banned for a year. The suspension is for a calendar year but it can be reevaluated after the season, the NFL said.
“I’d like to apologize to my teammates, coaches, the Cleveland Browns organization and our fans," Gordon said in a statement through the NFLPA. "I am very disappointed that the NFL and its hearing officer didn’t exercise better discretion and judgment in my case.
"I would like to sincerely thank the people who have been incredibly supportive of me during this challenging time, including my family, my agent, my union, my legal team, and the Cleveland Browns staff.”
The decision also included that Gordon can't be at team functions.
Gordon has tested positive for marijuana multiple times, which is what triggered the year-long suspension for the latest positive test.Thu, Aug 28Chicago13 - 33ClevelandGame Recap
- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner4 days ago
Tuesday's trade between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and New England Patriots probably sent folks scurrying to see if there's anything wrong with guard Logan Mankins. Or, perhaps, worry there's something wrong with Rob Gronkowski.
The Patriots have agreed to trade Mankins, who has made six of the past seven Pro Bowls, to Tampa Bay for tight end Tim Wright and a draft pick. The deal was first reported by Fox Sports' Jay Glazer, while ESPN's Adam Schefter reports the pick as a fourth-rounder. Usually when the Patriots move on from a player, there's a good reason. Mankins is 32 years old but still a solid player. He finished 18th among guards in Pro Football Focus' 2013 grades and is 10th in their preseason grades this year. He surely represents an enormous upgrade for the Buccaneers, whose offensive line play this preseason has been frightening, especially at guard.
So maybe this is more about Gronkowski than Mankins?Thu, Aug 28New England13 - 16NY GiantsGame Recap