Shutdown Corner

  • Luke Kuechly not cleared in concussion protocol and ruled out for Sunday

    Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner 15 hrs ago

    It seems like the Carolina Panthers might not have a choice in whether to shut down linebacker Luke Kuechly or play him the remainder of the season.

    Despite returning to practice this week, Kuechly was not cleared to play and ruled out of Sunday’s game against the San Diego Chargers. Kuechly is still in the concussion protocol, the team said.

    Luke Kuechly has been ruled out for Sunday’s game and remains in the NFL’s concussion protocol. Coleman & Worley have cleared the protocol.

    — Carolina Panthers (@Panthers) December 10, 2016

    Kuechly’s concussion is scary, not just because of his emotional response when he suffered it, but because this is the second time in two years he has missed multiple games due to a concussion. He missed three last season. This Sunday will mark his third missed game with his latest concussion.

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  • Greg Cosell's Look Ahead: The issues that Carson Wentz and the Eagles need to fix

    Greg Cosell at Shutdown Corner 16 hrs ago

    Carson Wentz should not be dropping back to pass more than 60 times in a game. As a rookie, he should never drop back more than 35 times in a game.

    But there he was last week, attempting 60 passes in the Philadelphia Eagles’ loss to the Cincinnati Bengals. Wentz’s rookie season has seen some ups and downs, which is normal for a rookie. Don’t forget, until about a week before the regular season started, Sam Bradford was supposed to start for the Eagles while Wentz sat and learned. Because Wentz has been asked to do so much for the offense, his issues – again, many of which are normal for a rookie – are magnified.

    People want to compare Wentz to Dallas Cowboys rookie quarterback Dak Prescott, but that’s not even worth the conversation. The situations are not comparable. The foundation of the offenses are different. The supporting casts are far different. The offensive approach is different too.

    [Charles Robinson: The flaw NFL evaluators have found in Carson Wentz’s game]

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  • Odell Beckham fined for inappropriate comments to officials in Sunday's game

    Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner 1 day ago

    New York Giants receiver Odell Beckham practically begged the NFL to fine him for his behavior and words toward the officials in last Sunday’s 24-14 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers. And the NFL did just that.

    The NFL handed down a $12,154 fine to Beckham for verbal abuse/excessive profanity toward a game official, according to USA Today’s Tom Pelissero. Beckham was upset about some calls that went against him, most notably an offensive pass interference call he thought should have gone the other way. He criticized the officials after the game, and doubled down this week when he said “even Stevie Wonder”could have seen the calls that the officials missed.

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  • Andy Reid and Jack Del Rio downplay Del Rio's evil postgame staredown of Reid

    Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner 1 day ago

    Did you see that staredown by Oakland Raiders coach Jack Del Rio at Kansas City Chiefs coach Andy Reid after Thursday night’s game? Oh man.

    Hey, cutting up a two-second clip doesn’t exactly tell the whole story pretty much ever, but Del Rio looked like he was ready to settle things right there on the frozen turf at Arrowhead Stadium after the Chiefs’ 21-13 win.

    All we needed was for JDR to hit Reid in the back with a chair as Reid flexed for the crowd in some “Hulk Hogan is the third man!” type drama.

    Reid thought the whole ordeal was funny, and honestly it’s really disappointing that this didn’t end in a new NFL feud.

    “Not at all, not at all,” Reid said with a laugh when asked if there was any bad blood, according to Terez Paylor of the Kansas City Star. “Jack and I are actually good friends, and I know people don’t like to hear that because it’s the Raiders, but not at all. There was nothing there, no.”

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  • Broncos investigating racist, threatening letter sent to Brandon Marshall

    Shalise Manza Young at Shutdown Corner 1 day ago

    Not everyone agrees with the NFL players taking a knee during the playing of the national anthem, and there is certainly a respectful, reasonable way to express one’s disappointment or disagreement with the protest.

    But one individual went disgustingly too far in a handwritten letter sent to Denver Broncos linebacker Brandon Marshall. Marshall, who kneeled for the first eight games of the season, posted photos of the letter, sent to him at the Broncos’ facility, on his Instagram feed on Friday. Its author likely doesn’t understand that taking the time to write out such hateful filth actually makes Marshall’s point about racial injustice and racist attitudes.

    (WARNING: Vulgar language.)

    The hatred by some against people of color is one of the reasons we are where we're at in the world today, and they wonder why we feel the way we do and take the stances that we take. I received this letter at work.

    A photo posted by Brandon Marshall (@bmarshh54) on Dec 9, 2016 at 9:54am PST

    Part 2

    A photo posted by Brandon Marshall (@bmarshh54) on Dec 9, 2016 at 9:53am PST

  • Troubled Tyreek Hill helping add Super Bowl dimension to emerging Chiefs

    Eric Edholm at Shutdown Corner 1 day ago

    Fifth-round picks typically stir big debates as the draft enters the weekend. Those selections usually don’t transform Super Bowl contenders as rookies. This season has been an exception for both.

    Meet Tyreek Hill, the Kansas City Chiefs’ controversial and skilled runner/receiver/return man who came to town with more baggage than the closest Trump Tower. Anyone who watched Hill in his one year of Division I football at Oklahoma State came away with one thought about his ability as a player: electric. And yet anyone who read the reports of Hill choking and punching his pregnant girlfriend in December 2014 should have come away with another feeling: disgust.

    Hill was kicked off the Cowboys’ team and pleaded guilty to domestic abuse by strangulation. In return for his plea, he received three months’ probation, which felt like a light sentence. “I did something I shouldn’t have done,” Hill told associate district Judge Stephen Kistler, per The Oklahoman. “I let my feelings take control of me.”

    In short, Hill had a lot to prove — and perhaps a shorter leash than the other rookies trying to make the team.

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  • Tom Brady, Matt Cassel and the Patriots' Great Prank War of 2006

    Shalise Manza Young at Shutdown Corner 1 day ago

    In 2006, I was with the Providence Journal and in my first year covering the New England Patriots. I remember walking into the locker room for player access one day and being confused – and amused – at the sight of three large tires in front of Matt Cassel’s locker.

    Turns out, they were the tires off Cassel’s car, and Tom Brady had paid someone to remove the tires, put Cassel’s car on blocks, and move three of the tires (notice I didn’t say four) in front of the Cassel’s locker.

    It was the escalation, and, as it turns out, winning move in a prank war between Brady and Cassel.

    [Join the $100K Baller for Week 14 | Tips for your Daily lineup]

    How did it get to that point? Cassel tells the tale in a video called “The Rookie Handbook” posted on NFL.com:

    As for the fourth tire, Brady had it hidden, and Cassel had to chase it down before he had a full set of wheels once again.

  • Normally private, Niners coach Chip Kelly opens up about his late father

    Shalise Manza Young at Shutdown Corner 1 day ago

    When the San Francisco 49ers played the Chicago Bears last Sunday, head coach Chip Kelly was on the sidelines with a heavy heart: his father, Paul, had died just two days earlier. Kelly told reporters after the loss that he coached the game because his mother wanted him to.

    This week, after returning home from his father’s funeral in Portland, Maine, the notoriously private Kelly opened up a bit to reporters about his father, a former trial lawyer who had studied in a seminary and lived in Japan for three years before going to law school.

    [Join the $100K Baller for Week 14 | Tips for your Daily lineup]

    “My dad’s loyal,” Kelly told reporters. “He knew where his son was.”

  • NFL against the spread picks: If the Steelers are for real, now is the time to show it

    Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner 1 day ago

    When you talk about this peculiar NFL season – pick any so-called Super Bowl contender and you’ll find a few major flaws without even digging too hard – the one team that keeps coming up is the Pittsburgh Steelers.

    Everyone thinks the Steelers can be very dangerous in January, and there are good reasons to believe that’s true. But they’re also tough to trust because they’ve been so inconsistent.

    The Steelers have won three in a row, though two of those games were against the Cleveland Browns and an Indianapolis Colts team without Andrew Luck. Last week’s win over the New York Giants was impressive though.

    This week the Steelers have a game that should let us know which direction they’re headed. They play Sunday at a Buffalo Bills team that is 6-6 and is probably out of the playoff race for good with their next loss. They’ll be getting the Bills’ best shot.

    Here are the Week 14 against-the-spread picks:

    SUPERCONTEST

    Here are the rest of the picks for the week:

    More NFL coverage on Yahoo Sports:

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  • Did Derek Carr's missed bomb to Amari Cooper hit NBC's Skycam cable? (Video)

    Eric Edholm at Shutdown Corner 1 day ago

    One of the stranger plays from Thursday night’s Kansas City Chiefs victory over the Oakland Raiders came with about nine minutes left and the Raiders down one score and struggling offensively.

    Once-MVP candidate Derek Carr had been having a brutal night throwing the football, and his receivers were faring just as poorly catching it. Carr’s throws were often high and off target, but when they were on the money his receivers were dropping some easy ones. This play can’t go down as a drop — but it most certainly can’t be called a bad throw, either.

    [Join the $100K Baller for Week 14 | Tips for your Daily lineup]

    But Cooper just missed the thing.

    The Raiders would punt for the eighth time in the game. They’d get the ball once more and drive to the Kansas City 14-yard line on their next possession but come up short on fourth down inside the final two minutes.

    But …

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