- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner2 hrs ago
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An opportunity on the field didn't materialize for Lance Briggs this offseason, but it's not a big surprise that he had a new job waiting for him away from the game.
The popular longtime Chicago Bears linebacker has retired to join CSN Chicago's Bears coverage this season. He already had a head start — he has made appearances on CSN since 2010.
But about the retirement thing. When he appeared in the Chicago Cubs' broadcast booth on Wednesday afternoon, he did leave the door open to come back in the right situation.
- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner3 hrs ago
So the theme of the current Houston Texans "Hard Knocks" season is that coach Bill O'Brien swears like he has a quota to meet.
"My brother texted me, he thought it was awesome," O'Brien said after the first episode aired. "My mom texted me, she didn’t think it was too awesome."
Oh, there are other things going on in the HBO training camp show, but O'Brien would definitely be earning the show an "explicit" tag on iTunes. At least all the shoots and darns and effs are going to help a good cause.
At the team luncheon this week, O'Brien brought out a jar.
"We're going to call this the swear jar," he said, according to Click2Houston.com. "The Houston Texans Foundation will be happy to know that I will be making a personal donation to account for all of the swearing during 'Hard Knocks.'"
- Ben Rohrbach at Shutdown Corner3 hrs ago
The NFL is the dark overlord of the universe, or at least that's how the league is portrayed by Hollywood.
Even Sony Pictures Entertainment, one of few film companies with no major strings attached to the NFL, feared what the league's lawyers might have done had they pulled no punches in a movie about the nation's most popular sport, according to hacked emails scoured by The New York Times.
- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner5 hrs ago
Ryan Clark, the longtime NFL safety and current ESPN analyst, made some waves when he called Trent Richardson the worst running back of all time.
He relayed a story of him discussing Richardson with Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin before the 2012 draft, when Clark was worried that the division rival Cleveland Browns were going to take Richardson. Tomlin told Clark not to worry, Clark said on ESPN.
"He said, 'Because he doesn't dish out punishment, deliver punishment, he just absorbs punishment,'" Clark said. "He's like, 'He won't make it in the league.'"
Outrageous opinions are the name of the game on the show Clark was appearing on, so take his "worst of all time" for what it's worth. But with this particular opinion, there's an argument that can be made that Clark is right. And Richardson, who was cut by the Oakland Raiders this week, still has a chance to latch on with another team and improve on what has been a disappointing career. Weirder things have happened.
- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner6 hrs ago
Lawrence Phillips, once one of the biggest stars in college football and a top-10 NFL draft pick, has been charged with first-degree murder.
In April, Phillips was investigated in the death of his cellmate, 37-year-old Damion Soward, who was strangled to death at Kern Valley State Prison in California. Now Phillips has been charged with murder, according to The Associated Press. The prosecuting attorney told USA Today she will not seek the death penalty in the case.
- Ben Rohrbach at Shutdown Corner7 hrs ago
To the best of my knowledge, Buffalo Bills general manager Doug Whaley is not in "Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation," but based on a recent report about his decision to cut popular veteran Fred Jackson, he could've at least been an extra. And the way Jackson tells it, Whaley might've made a great villain.
On Monday, the Bills released running back Jackson, whose 5,646 rushing yards trail only Thurman Thomas and O.J. Simpson in franchise history, and the news wasn't just a surprise to fans. It also came as a shock to Jackson himself and perhaps even some members of the Bills organization. According to Tim Graham of The Buffalo News, Whaley "went rogue" in releasing one of the city's most beloved players.
- Ben Rohrbach at Shutdown Corner8 hrs ago
It's been almost eight months since the AFC championship game, and deflate-gate is still raging on, but in the meantime the NFL has instituted rule changes in hopes of preventing another PSI-related controversy.
According to rule changes recently announced by the league, officials will now record PSI levels of all 24 footballs submitted by each team prior to the game and will usher the balls to the field for kickoff. Much of the deflate-gate drama has centered on referee Walt Anderson's recollection of pressure gauge readings prior to the January playoff game between the New England Patriots and Indianapolis Colts as well as Patriots employee Jim McNally's pregame pit stop in a Gillette Stadium bathroom with the game balls.
- Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner20 hrs ago
Oh, Washington Redskins fans, have we got a treat for you. New Washington Post columnist Jerry Brewer joins us on the podcast, and man, does he bring the heat ... a nice, tight spiral right on its target, which is a lot more than you can say for any Redskins quarterback of the last few years. Brewer brings us details on:
• How Robert Griffin III sowed the seeds of his own failure, and why he might not have an easier time anywhere else;
• How head coach Jay Gruden is now on the hook for no matter what happens next in D.C.;
• How new QB Kirk Cousins might be the only guy to come out of this whole mess looking halfway decent;
• How owner Dan Snyder resembles a "snake in the grass," and continues to cause problems for his own team; and
• How this team might, might , just have a bit of hope in the years ahead.
- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner22 hrs ago
When the Tampa Bay Buccaneers invested in a virtual reality system to help train their players including rookie quarterback Jameis Winston, it made a lot of sense.
This generation was raised on interactive games. They learned in a different way than just sitting around and reading a textbook, then reciting it. Then they went home and played "Madden." So virtual reality is the logical next step in the teaching methods for NFL quarterbacks.
Besides, it looks pretty cool. EON Sports VR showed the SIDEKIQ simulation software to Yahoo Sports, and you can see the benefits it can have for players. The software allows players to see the Xs and Os of the play drawn out, then the play is simulated for them as they'd see it. The Dallas Cowboys have also embraced virtual reality training.