- Eric Edholm at Shutdown Corner1 hr ago
In yet another odd plot twist following the death of former NFL kicker Rob Bironas, two students at Belmont University in Nashville say that Bironas threatened to kill them and crashed his SUV into their truck just minutes before he died in a one-car crash, per the Tennessean.
This comes after a woman's frantic 911 call indicates that Bironas, 36, tried to run her and her husband off the road.
Connor Fraley, the 20-year-old Belmont student who was a a passenger in a pickup truck, said that the former Tennessee Titans kicker tried to hit him and the driver during a high-speed chase after Bironas threatened them minutes before. The interaction happened after Fraley and the driver noticed a burning smell coming from Bironas' white SUV.
- Eric Edholm at Shutdown Corner2 hrs ago
Dallas Cowboys cornerback Morris Claiborne made a game-clinching interception on Sunday against the St. Louis Rams, but only after he was torched for several catches and two touchdown grabs by receivers he was assigned to cover.
This kind of performance for Claiborne has been the norm since the team traded up to make him the No. 6 pick in the 2012 draft. Cowboys owner and pick-maker Jerry Jones admitted on his radio show on KRLD-FM (via the Ft. Worth Star Telegram) that Claiborne has yet to live up to that rich billing.
“Is he what we had hoped for at this point when we drafted him with the sixth overall pick, giving up the [second-round] pick to go up to the sixth pick to get him? No,” Jones said. “But he’s going to be a good player.”Sun, Sep 21Dallas34 - 31St. LouisGame Recap
- Eric Edholm at Shutdown Corner2 hrs ago
Amid a rash of injuries on the defensive side of the ball, the Pittsburgh Steelers have called on an old friend for help.
James Harrison, who announced he was retiring last month after a workout with the Arizona Cardinals, has announced that he'll return to the Steelers, for whom he played from 2002 to 2012.
The Steelers also made the announcement official on Twitter.
And for good measure, Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin got in a selfie with Harrison — and give his once and current player a little jab.
Deebo is back. There goes the neighborhood. pic.twitter.com/Ftnch8SUYySun, Sep 21Pittsburgh37 - 19CarolinaGame Recap
- Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner4 hrs ago
Many people have Brandon Marshall on their fantasy teams. Brandon Marshall was limited by an injured ankle in Monday night's game, catching only one pass for six yards. Many people took to Twitter to complain to Marshall, during the game, that he needed to get his act in gear and score them some points.
Only problem: they were screaming at the wrong Brandon Marshall. And this Brandon Marshall had no problem giving grief right back to the fans.
Yes, there are two Brandon Marshalls, one who plays wide receiver for the Bears, and another who plays linebacker for the Broncos. Bear Marshall is one of the NFL's top receivers, a multi-time Pro Bowler who ranked high in most fantasy drafts. Bronco Marshall is a bit less heralded, a linebacker who's played only a handful of games for the Broncos and Jaguars, though he's coming off a 12-tackle performance Sunday.
- Frank Schwab at Shutdown Corner14 hrs ago
We're down to three undefeated teams after just three weeks. And the three undefeateds are far from flawless.
The Bengals are the best of the group. Their offense has been diverse, especially with quarterback Andy Dalton playing well and running back Giovani Bernard emerging as a star. They're an impressive 3-0, yet you're forgiven if you have some reservations about buying in. You remember the playoffs the last three years.
Then there are the Cardinals and Eagles.
The Cardinals have a great coaching staff led by Bruce Arians. That's the best way to explain them overcoming their massive defensive personnel losses and winning despite having to go with Drew Stanton at quarterback. Their schemes on both sides are covering up some issues. It's hard to imagine the Cardinals being a Super Bowl contender with Stanton at quarterback (or with Carson Palmer at quarterback), but 3-0 is a great start nonetheless.
- Eric Edholm at Shutdown Corner14 hrs ago
The New York Jets can — and likely should — be upset about two bad calls that went against them Monday night. But they also can point to some pretty clear self-inflicted mistakes that led to a 27-19 Chicago Bears victory.
Jets quarterback Geno Smith had some strong moments, finishing with 316 passing yards (second most in his career), but was guilty of his poorest play at the worst times — most often when the Jets were deep in Bears territory, but also once in his own zone early in the game.
Smith wanted to find Chris Johnson on a screen on the Jets’ first possession, and he should have grounded the ball when the Bears’ defense had foiled the play. Instead, Smith forced an awful interception that was run back by Bears safety Ryan Mundy 45 yards for a touchdown 30 seconds into the game.Mon, Sep 22Chicago27 - 19NY JetsGame Recap
- Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner16 hrs ago
A woman speaking to a 911 operator alleged that former Titans kicker Rob Bironas tried to run her off the road immediately prior to the wreck that claimed his life.
Bironas died late Saturday night when his white 2009 GMC Yukon Denali left the road and hit trees before coming to rest upside-down.
An observer at the scene called 911 just after 11 p.m., and soon afterward a woman who had been driving near Bironas got on the line.
"He tried to run my husband and I off the road," the woman said. "He gave us this freaky look and then he just sped on past us ... We let him go on past us and then we saw all this smoke ... He gave us this mean look. We don't even know him and he tried to run us off the road."
The full 911 call is below:
- Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner16 hrs ago
The NFL's current problems are pervasive and persistent, an ugly stain on a much-beloved game. So let's take a moment away from that messiness and enjoy this particular bit of football hilarity.
Behold the Wallkill (N.Y.) Mighty Mites, a football team made up of devoted, if a touch confused, six- and seven-year-olds. The lads were fired up for their game this weekend, and were going to run through a banner big-time football style, and, well ... you can see the results above. Memo to the mothers: bust-through signs generally aren't made of vinyl, and they're not taped together tightly enough to double as a hammock.
Best part is how each of the kids piles into the one in front of him, even the ones that in theory have enough time to see what's happening ahead of them. It's a hysterical and ridiculous display, and it's pretty much perfect all the way around.
Plus, you've got to admit — these kids are still more graceful than the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
- Jay Busbee at Shutdown Corner22 hrs ago
All of the parties involved in the Ray Rice elevator-assault scandal are being called to account for their actions, or inactions, and the Baltimore Ravens, Rice's now-former team, are now in the spotlight. Ravens owner Steve Bisciotti held a news conference on Monday breaking down the organization's role in Rice's punishment.
Bisciotti acknowledged the organization could have acted sooner in cutting Rice from the team. But he contended that the Ravens were the victim of unfair and inaccurate media reports and had expected the NFL to act before doing so themselves.
"It was 'better late than never' when we made the decision to cut Ray," Bisciotti said. "And I stand by that."
Rice was initially suspended two games this summer for a February incident in which he struck his then-fiancee Janay Palmer and knocked her unconscious. Videotape of the actual strike surfaced two weeks ago, and the Ravens immediately cut Rice. Soon afterward, the NFL suspended him for an "indefinite" period of time. Rice has appealed that suspension.Sun, Sep 21Baltimore23 - 21ClevelandGame Recap
- Ben Rohrbach at Shutdown Corner22 hrs ago
While NFL commissioner Roger Goodell maintains the league never had access to video of former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice punching his then- fiancée Janay Palmer inside an Atlantic City elevator, a slew of reports in recent days seem to suggest it would have been awfully easy for the NFL's security to get its hands on a copy before TMZ released the footage earlier this month.
After all, players were sharing the video soon after Rice's February arrest on domestic violence charges, Adam Schefter told ESPN Radio's "Mike & Mike" on Monday morning.
"There were players who were in Las Vegas a week or two after this incident and I know one player said, 'You want to see the videotape of what happened?' So there were players who could see the videotape, yet the Ravens, many of the Ravens, claim they couldn't see it."
Asked specifically about whether players had indeed seen the second TMZ video, showing Rice punch Palmer inside the elevator — and not the earlier tape depicting Rice dragging an unconscious Palmer from the elevator — Schefter confirmed to Mike Golic, "The second video, yeah."