Jay Busbee at Devil Ball Golf 15 hrs ago
EAST LAKE, Ga.—Three hundred thirty-seven miles west of Atlanta’s East Lake Golf Club, give or take a five-iron, the Georgia Bulldogs spent most of Saturday afternoon getting pummeled by Ole Miss. At the same time, about 680 miles north, an unspectacular Notre Dame team prepared to kick off against an equally uninspiring Duke squad. Like the moon shaping the tide, these two games, and others like them, have had an unseen but dramatic impact on the end of the PGA Tour season.
This ought to be a time for golf to celebrate a season that featured four first-time major winners as well as a triumphant return to the Olympics. Instead, the Tour Championship, as it always is this time of year, takes a back seat—a far back seat—to the NFL and college football. The season-ending FedEx Cup, a four-tournament showdown that concludes at the Tour Championship, awards a fat $10 million check to the winner. But even that isn’t enough to vault the tournament past football and stretch-run baseball. It’s a definite problem for the Tour, but it’s one with a visible, if tricky, solution.
Just don’t ask the players when they’d want to pick up the clubs again.
Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner 1 day ago
The New England Patriots demolished the Houston Texans Thursday night behind a patchwork offense that included a rookie quarterback, and that ought to concern the heck out of the rest of the NFL. On today’s Grandstanding podcast, we discuss just who might be able to beat the Patriots, if anyone, and run through New England’s many paths to victory yet again.
We also kick around athletes who had success after age 40, and we break down our Week 3 picks, upsets, and games we’d pay to see. It’s highly enjoyable material, and we recommend it prior to your Week 3 NFL viewing. Listen and subscribe below.
About the Grandstanding podcast: Hosted by Yahoo Sports writers Jay Busbee and Kevin Kaduk, the Grandstanding podcast is posted three times per week and features talk about the NFL, NBA, MLB and more. To receive Grandstanding on your smartphone, subscribe via your favorite podcast provider
Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Doug Baldwin has added his voice to the growing chorus of players using their standing in the public eye to draw attention to police violence against black men. Baldwin offered cursory thoughts on the San Francisco 49ers (“We know there’s new coaches, new defense, scheme, blah blah”) and then lasered in on his point: to call for further training and education of police officers across the country.
Baldwin focused on Tamir Rice, a 12-year-old boy playing with a toy pistol in Cleveland when he was shot and killed by police in 2014. “This prompted a U.S. Department of Justice investigation, which discovered, and I quote, that ‘officers did not effectively deescalate situations either because they did not know how or did not have adequate understanding of the importance of deescalation of encounters before resorting to force,’” he said. “This prompted the Ohio state attorney general to eventually call for review of police training policies.”
The Seahawks play Kaepernick’s 49ers on Sunday.
There are plenty of ways to look bad in today’s NFL. Sure, you can lose, but you can also win without distinction, or you can stumble around in the muck with teams much worse than you. All of those will land you right here on our powerless rankings. Here they are, the NFL’s Sorry Six:
Buffalo Bills Last week: Lost to the Jets 37-31. The Bills train’s a-barrelin’ toward a cliff, and who knows if them Ryan boys can stop it? Buffalo’s offense wasn’t horrible against the Jets last week, with QB Tyrod Taylor going 18 of 30 for 297 yards and three touchdowns, but when you lose ugly, someone’s gotta go. And for now, that someone isn’t Rex Ryan or bro Rob. Offensive coordinator Greg Roman got the boot, so we’ll see if Buffalo can muster up any kind of offense against the Cardinals. Good luck with that. If the Bills lose again, I wouldn’t be buying any homes–or, hell, ordering 30-minute pizza delivery–in Buffalo if I was Rex. Next up: At home vs. Arizona.
Also receiving votes: New Orleans, Chicago, Miami
The Dallas Cowboys call themselves “America’s Team,” and indeed they are, performing an important service in this divided country by giving virtually everyone a single team to despise. And now, hatred of the Cowboys has helped save a life. Isn’t that great?
Our scene: Columbia, South Carolina. Early Saturday, 3:45 a.m. A man sat on the edge of a bridge over a state highway, ready to leap to his presumed doom, when Officer Michael Blackmore struck up a conversation with him. Talk turned to football, and Blackmore realized that the man was a Washington Redskins fan. Being such, he naturally loathed all things Cowboys.
“I hate Dallas,” the man said, and Blackmore focused his talk on the Redskins.
“I’ll see you sometime next week one day and be like, ‘How ’bout those Redskins?'” Blackmore said. “I’m definitely gonna pull for them when they play Dallas because I hate Dallas.”
Of course, being a Redskins fan brings its own kind of pain. Washington didn’t hold up its end of the deal, losing to Dallas anyway, but by then the man was safe and, hopefully, under the kind of care he needs.
The city of Charlotte is now the latest flashpoint for protests and violence in response to police actions. Tear gas and gunfire scarred the city on Wednesday nightafter a police officer shot and killed Keith Lamont Scott, a black man, in Charlotte’s University City. Police officials said Scott was carrying a gun, his family said he was carrying only a book, and the resulting outrage consumed the entire city, football team included.
The Carolina Panthers play their home games just blocks from where rioters broke windows and looted shops, just blocks from where police brandishing full riot gear stared down unarmed protesters. The Panthers have become a visible and vital part of Charlotte’s downtown, and for all the complaining from fans who want their sports sacrosanct and free of politics, the truth is that the Panthers are Charlotte, and the Panthers have plenty to say about the state of their city right now.
Aaron Rodgers is not Aaron Rodgers. This is not news to any Packers fan or anyone who’s started Rodgers in their fantasy league, but it’s still the truth: one of the finest quarterbacks of his or any generation is, well, in a rut.
The Packers lost a winnable game against the Vikings on Sunday in large part because Rodgers was so ordinary. For the 14th straight game, his passer rating didn’t crack 100. His highlights were as scintillating as ever, but they were sandwiched between stretches of intense mediocrity, shots of fine bourbon surrounded by watery light beer.
Speaking during his weekly media address, Rodgers acknowledged that he accepts blame for the Packers’ current performance. “As a leader, you have to take the blame when it’s necessary, and even sometimes when it’s not your fault,” he said. “I think it’s important to let those guys know that you’re going to stick your body on the line, but also you’re going to stand up for them when you need to in the locker room, the meeting room and the media, and take your responsibility for the way you played.”
Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner 3 days ago
We get thousands of emails and comments every week. Here, we respond. Want in? Find us via email, Facebook, or Twitter. Today: Todd Gurley’s flaws, Andrew Luck’s hopes, the Giants’ prospects, the Patriots’ legacy … and, yeah, more on Kaepernick. Away we go…
Any reason to worry about Todd Gurley? Defenses are going to stack the box! -Jeff Dutch, via Facebook
Oh yeah. Two games, 36 touches, 98 yards, zero touchdowns. That’s not exactly the kind of production you want out of the guy who’s supposed to be the best running back in the game. (That 19-yard reception is literally the only highlight we have of Gurley this season, and it isn’t even a rush.) You can’t totally blame Gurley; defenses already know Case Keenum and the crew of last-kid-picked that makes up the Rams’ receiving corps aren’t going to beat them, so they can throw 11 guys and a cinder block at Gurley and dare Keenum to complete a pass.
Are the Giants the favorite to win the NFC East? -Jay Minor, via Facebook
Are the Colts gonna be a force now that Andrew Luck is back and healthy? -Clint Belt, via Facebook
Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner 3 days ago
You can’t argue with success, and you can’t argue that the Manning family has the finest football DNA in American history. The family, including father Archie and sons Eli and Peyton, is the focus of a new book by Lars Anderson entitled “The Mannings: The Rise And Fall of a Football Family.” On today’s Grandstanding podcast, we dive deep into the Manning legend.
We begin with Archie, whose tragedy shaped both his life and his style of fatherhood. He was, Anderson believes, more famous in his day than Peyton is now, the most beloved college quarterback in the nation. We discuss the way that Peyton prepared for football with more dedication than anyone could fathom, while Eli labored quietly in Peyton’s shadow. We consider what’s next for Peyton and what’s still left for Eli.
And then, the big question. Ball’s on your own 20, your team’s down by four, two minutes left in the game. Which Manning do you want under center quarterbacking your team? We have our guesses, who’s yours? Listen in below.
Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner 5 days ago
A new Yahoo Sports/YouGov survey indicates that Americans remain deeply divided about the ongoing national anthem protests in the NFL, with 44 percent of fans claiming they would actually stop watching the NFL if the protests continue.
San Francisco 49ers backup quarterback Colin Kaepernick began refusing to stand during the national anthem in the preseason, citing what he termed a longstanding pattern of racially motivated police abuse of minorities. In the season’s first week, players from at least six other teams joined in the protest, taking knees and raising fists during the anthem in signs of solidarity.
The survey of 1,128 Americans, conducted on Sept. 13 and 14, found stark differences in perception of the protests among racial and age lines.
Overall, 47 percent of Americans oppose Kaepernick’s protest, with 32 percent in support and the remaining 21 percent either neutral or declining to offer an opinion. Respondents under the age of 34 are divided, with 39 percent supporting Kaepernick and 30 percent opposing him, while 65 percent of Americans over the age of 55 oppose the protest.