Shutdown Corner

  • Farewell to the Georgia Dome, a lovely site for everyone but Atlanta's teams

    Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner 53 mins ago

    ATLANTA—Farewell, Georgia Dome. We knew you well … and you were decent enough, as domes go.

    The Georgia Dome sees its last football game this weekend, and—surprise, surprise!— it’s a game with high stakes. The NFC championship between the hometown Atlanta Falcons and the Green Bay Packers will be the final game played at the site of two Super Bowls, three Final Fours, a dozen high-stakes college bowl and playoff games, a Wrestlemania, and innumerable concert spectacles. In its 25-year existence, the Dome has also hosted everything from the Rolling Stones to Southern Baptist conventions, boxing to Beyonce. The Dome’s been many things in its day … and that’s always been its curse.

    Still, the performance of the once-and-future Chris Bridges was, in many ways, the perfect way to close off the Dome. There’s a saying in the South that the most segregated hour of the week is 11 a.m. Sunday morning. The most integrated hour of the week comes two hours later in the Dome at kickoff time. The speakers alternate bro country and southern hip-hop, meeting the Atlanta audience’s needs with targeted perfection; it’s crowd-pumping via focus group. Ludacris crosses over smoothly and neatly.

  • How much unused cap money is your team rolling over to 2017? Not as much as the Browns

    Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner 1 hr ago

    NFL teams that don’t spend all their cap space in an offseason aren’t necessarily being cheap (though, some are). They can elect to carry over what they don’t use.

    And the Cleveland Browns are carrying over enough to buy about three Brock Osweilers.

    Cleveland is carrying over $50,123,269, according to figures released by the NFLPA. That’s over $10 million more than any other team is carrying over, though three other teams are also well ahead of the pack. The Jacksonville Jaguars will carry over a little more than $39 million, the San Francisco 49ers have more than $38 million and the Tennessee Titans have about $24 million in carryover.

    And in a fairly strange coincidence, the two teams carrying over the least amount of cap savings are the two Los Angeles teams. The Rams have $304,311 to roll over, and the Chargers have just $113,693. They always say it’s super expensive to live in L.A. Here’s the NFLPA’s graphic for each team:

    – – – – – – –

  • Big Ben defends Steelers after Julian Edelman's 'how that team is run' comment

    Eric Edholm at Shutdown Corner 1 hr ago

    The now infamous Antonio Brown video has taken on new life. Yes, we soon will forget this event ever happened in our lifetimes. But the aftermath has, we ought to note, been pretty interesting.

    First, there was Bill Belichick intentionally botching the names of social-media sites (which he darned well knows the real names of) and saying he’s not “on” any of them. That was cute, but somewhat predictable.

    More notable was Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin ripping Brown for it, saying that he’ll be disciplined and hinting it could have implications on his future contract talks. Then Brown apologized for the video, and we assumed that would be that.

    What time is kickoff, amIright?

    Here’s Edelman’s full quote when asked about the Brown video:

    – – – – – – –

  • Clemson QB Deshaun Watson decides to skip the Senior Bowl

    Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner 4 hrs ago

    In the upcoming months, Clemson quarterback Deshaun Watson will probably be the most debated player of the 2017 NFL draft.

    Some love what he did in college, playing very well as he led Clemson to two straight College Football Playoff title game appearances, and one championship. Others see some flaws in his game when it comes to the NFL, like his accuracy and his relatively small frame as a mobile quarterback.

    While Watson might benefit from answering some of those questions at the Senior Bowl, he’s understandably tired. Phil Savage, the executive director of the Senior Bowl, confirmed that Watson won’t be participating in next week’s game and the all-important week of practice that leads up to it. Watson’s agent David Mulugheta told NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport that he’s focusing on preparing for the combine after a grueling season.

    – – – – – – –

  • Los Angeles Chargers won't rebrand yet, but perhaps they should

    Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner 5 hrs ago

    During the chatter about the San Diego Chargers moving to Los Angeles, there were rumors of a possible rebranding if they moved. A fresh start in a new city.

    The Chargers have moved but the rebrand won’t happen, at least yet. Michael Gehlken of the San Diego Union-Tribune reported that a Chargers official said the team will keep its same uniforms for the next two seasons, when it’s playing at the StubHub Center in Carson. The story said the possibility of at least changing uniforms for 2019, when they move in with the Los Angeles Rams in Inglewood, hasn’t been ruled out.

    The Chargers should change uniforms. And their whole identity, too.

    For the next couple years, however, they’ll be the Los Angeles Chargers. In that time, maybe they’ll see the benefit in leaving their old identity behind for a completely new start.

    – – – – – – –

  • Antonio Brown is quite sorry for the locker room video that has created a stir

    Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner 6 hrs ago

    Pittsburgh Steelers receiver Antonio Brown probably meant no harm when he turned on his phone in the locker room after Sunday night’s win, and he didn’t figure on it becoming the story of conference championship week.

    But the video, which was broadcast on Facebook and included Steelers coach Mike Tomlin calling the New England Patriots a derogatory name, has become a controversy. There have been breakdowns of locker room etiquette, an angry tongue lashing from Tomlin, a reminder that Brown violated the NFL’s postgame social media policy and now a public apology from Brown.

    Late Tuesday night, Brown sent out the apology via his social media channels (oh, the irony).

    — Antonio Brown (@AntonioBrown) January 18, 2017

    Brown has apologized, and he and the Steelers are probably ready to move on. Unless Pittsburgh loses on Sunday, at which point he’ll probably have to hear about it again.

    – – – – – – –

  • With Tom Cable out, it seems the 49ers' new head coach will be Kyle Shanahan

    Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner 21 hrs ago

    Considering Kyle Shanahan is the last San Francisco 49ers head-coaching candidate who hasn’t dropped out of the running, it’s probably safe to assume he’ll be San Francisco’s next head coach.

    Doug Hendrickson, the agent for Seattle Seahawks offensive line coach Tom Cable, said his client has withdrawnhis name from consideration for the 49ers job. New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels also withdrew his name from consideration. That leaves Shanahan, the Atlanta Falcons’ offensive coordinator who can’t officially be hired until the Falcons are eliminated from the playoffs.

    ESPN’s Adam Schefter said the 49ers, who are the last NFL team with a vacancy at head coach, are going to offer Shanahan the job and are willing to wait for him.

    It seems that’s how the 49ers will land Shanahan, one of the hottest assistants in the NFL.

    – – – – – – –

  • For one second, San Diego was on the mind of Chargers' Anthony Lynn as L.A. era kicked off

    Jackie Bamberger at Shutdown Corner 21 hrs ago

    CARSON, Calif. – New Chargers head coach Anthony Lynn began his introductory news conference by nearly referring to himself as the head coach of the San Diego Chargers.

    New #Chargers coach Anthony Lynn: "I'm so excited to be the coach of the San Diego Chargers. Oops."

    — Jackie Bamberger (@jackie_bam) January 17, 2017

    Forgive Lynn for the slip of the tongue, as when he interviewed for the position last week, that’s where the Charger franchise was based.

    Yes, the change is still fresh. It was only this past Thursday that team owner Dean Spanos announced the franchise’s move up north after San Diego taxpayers recently rejected a ballot measure that would have funded a new, $2 billion stadium.

    Likewise, Lynn felt an immediate connection following his meeting with Chargers’ brass. 

    Easier said than done.

  • Oh, snap: Madden '17 Twitter account throws some high shade at Jerry Jones, Tony Romo

    Shalise Manza Young at Shutdown Corner 1 day ago

    It’s no secret that Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and longtime franchise quarterback Tony Romo are close. So it’s likely going to be a difficult offseason with the prospect of the two parting ways; Dak Prescott showed in his rookie year that he is very likely the Cowboys’ quarterback of the future, and with Romo believing he has a couple of good years left before retiring, he won’t be spending the twilight of his career as a backup if he can be a starter elsewhere.

    On Tuesday, during his weekly radio spot with 105.3 The Fan in Dallas, Jones expressed his confidence that Romo still has some good games ahead of him:

    “I really believe that Tony Romo will play in a Super Bowl,” Jones said. “Now try that one on. I know that if he’s healthy enough, he’ll be in a Super Bowl. I strongly believe that.”

    To which EA Sports’ Madden 17, or at least the person that runs its Twitter account, had a response:

    We'll send him a copy of #Madden17


  • Roundtable: What's the worst relocation story for each league?

    Yahoo Sports Staff at Shutdown Corner 1 day ago

    The San Diego Chargers’ decision to move to Los Angeles last week sparked a lot of questions about the wisdom of the relocation. Our own Dan Wetzel had an opinion. So did Frank Schwab. They were not alone in thinking it was one of the worst moves in sports history. 

    That begged a question around the Yahoo Sports blog offices: What is the worst franchise move in the history of each sports league?  There’s certainly no shortage of options (full list here), so we had one blogger for each sport offer his opinion for this meeting-of-the-minds roundtable.

    (And before you ask the question: No, none of us hail from north of the border. Though we do love an occasional poutine.)

    NFL: San Diego Chargers to Los Angeles, 2017

    Pretty much every team that has relocated through sports history has been welcomed by its new city.