The first is to sign Jones to a long-term megadeal, on par with the other elite pass-rushers in the NFL.

They also have the sort of offensive line that would be capable of protecting a talented quarterback, although they might be a left tackle away from truly ranking among the better lines in football. Chicago had the league’s eighth-lowest sack rate (4.7 percent) and its sixth-lowest pressure rate (23.4 percent) in 2016. That’s not a trick of the Bears’ scheme, either: They threw their passes 8.7 yards in the air, which is well above league average, and they took 2.52 seconds to get the ball out, which is right above the league average of 2.50.

It’s always dangerous for teams to go after a quarterback without having any support around him, given the worries about passers forming bad habits and suffering career-impacting injuries early on. The Bears have much of the infrastructure to support a quarterback, though, and given that Fox and Ryan Pace are entering their third year together at the helm with a 9-23 mark, they probably need to strike and show signs of improvement soon.
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The first is to sign Jones to a long-term megadeal, on par with the other elite pass-rushers in the NFL.

Womens Terron Armstead Jersey He has the third-most sacks over the last two seasons with 23.5 — 11 of which came last season, his first with the Cardinals. The two players with more sacks than Jones are Oakland’s Khalil Mack with 26 and Denver’s Von Miller with 24.5. Mack just finished the third year of his rookie deal, which will allow him to renegotiate with the Raiders. He’s likely in line for one of the highest-paying contracts at the position. Miller received a six-year contract worth $114.5 million with $70 million guaranteed and a $17 million signing bonus last offseason, setting the bar for other outside linebackers, especially other 3-4 outside linebackers like Jones.

Fitzpatrick just finished a polarizing two seasons with the New York Jets

Womens P.J. Hairston Jersey The Raiders’ first-round draft pick from 2013 just has not panned out. Hayden had high expectations entering his contract year last summer, with the cornerback saying he expected a pick-six or two and he was embracing the move to the slot. But for the first time in his career, Hayden did not register an interception, while his 34 tackles and six passes defended were his fewest since his rookie season.

Sure, Hayden played in 11 games, starting two — his season ended prematurely and on injured reserve because of a hamstring injury — and he became a more sure-handed tackler. But Hayden has not become a game-changer that Oakland thought it was getting when it drafted him at No. 12 overall with future Pro Bowl corners like Desmond Trufant and Xavier Rhodes still on the board. Going somewhere — to his hometown Houston Texans, perhaps? — where first-round expectations are nullified might be best for all parties.
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Josh McCown: He’s a good guy to have in a locker room. He acquitted himself well in Cleveland with toughness and he averaged 264 yards per game in eight starts in 2015. He could join the team on a reasonable one- to two-year deal.

Ryan Fitzpatrick: Fitzpatrick just finished a polarizing two seasons with the New York Jets, but he’s still less than two seasons removed from a 31-touchdown season. Fitzpatrick has a penchant for interceptions. Still, his backup quarterback resume is extensive.

Case Keenum: His two-season stint as a Rams starter unraveled in 2016, but the lack of playmakers around him was glaring. Keenum’s true identity is as a primary backup who can start a handful of games if the starter goes out.

The Islanders and Rangers steal headlines with contracts and arena drama

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Jake Rudock Womens Jersey Lace ’em up. Time for the Morning Skate.

Kevin Shattenkirk Womens Jersey While everyone took the last day of the All-Star break off, the NHL’s biggest American market (I think? there are a lot of people there, OK) took over headlines with a trio of breaking news items. How rude.

Not all of it was good, either. It sure sounds like the Islanders are getting pushed out of Barclays Center after just two years. But hey, at least they signed Thomas Greiss for the next three years. Meanwhile, their neighbors in Manhattan signed coach Alain Vigneault to a three-year deal that will keep him around until 2019-20. And why not? Vigneault may frustrate Rangers fans a lot, he¡¯s still among the best in the business.

Which begs the question: How much do the Penguins value Fleury? It¡¯s clear Rutherford feels it¡¯s hard to keep both goaltenders happy, and that moving Fleury before the deadline would be best for both sides. Fleury could fill the starting role in a playoff contender like the Stars or the Blues right away, or be a part of a young future in Winnipeg or Calgary. The Penguins would get a healthy return for Fleury and be freed of their biggest expansion draft problem.

The only downside? A trade clearly makes the Penguins a worse team, and Pittsburgh has had real injury problems at the goaltender position over the last few years. Yet, it¡¯s a choice that will have to be made given the expansion draft, should the market be willing.

Michael Floyd dismisses criticism after DUI arrest propelled his path to winning a Super Bowl

Lost in the amazing comeback that the Patriots had in Super Bowl LI against the Falcons was the story of their wide receiver Michael Floyd.

Floyd played the first four years of his career, and 13 games in 2016 with the Arizona Cardinals. On December 14, the Cardinals cut Floyd because of his arrest on suspicion of DUI. Floyd was charged with one count of obstructing a roadway and failure to obey a police officer, along with two counts of DUI.

Two days after being arrested, and one day after being released, the Patriots picked him up off of waivers.

He didn’t play in the AFC Championship or the Super Bowl, and earned more than $1.2 million for his time with the team. Floyd tweeted the following after winning the Super Bowl with the Patriots:

In the replies to the tweet, many people criticized Floyd and felt that he shouldn’t have received a ring. He was on the Patriots because of a DUI arrest, and hadn’t done much in their championship run. In the two regular season games that he did play in for New England, Floyd started one, had six targets, and four catches for 42 yard and one score.

When Floyd came to the realization that people weren’t happy for him because of how he arrived in New England, he brushed it off.

Damn I just realized ppl are really mad that I got a ring. I thought everyone would be happy for me. Oh well. I’m a champion!!

Along with last week’s release of fellow inside linebacker Brad Jones, the team has added over $7 million in cap space. Those resources will come in handy when the team negotiates with soon-to-be free agents Randall Cobb and Bryan Bulaga.

Only Hall of Famer Marshall Faulk has more catches among the top-10 career rushing leaders

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Carmelo Anthony led the Knicks with 26 points on 10-for-17 shooting Tuesday night, another strong performance that will surely further spark the trade speculation that surrounds him on a daily basis.

¡°I think in his situation, maybe he just got tired of … hearing it from that particular person.¡±

Anthony was talking about LeBron. But he just as easily could have been talking about himself. Could you blame Anthony if he has grown weary of trying to figure out what Knicks president Phil Jackson wants to do with him?

As February begins, Anthony¡¯s human side is going to be tested for the next three-plus weeks. The NBA trading deadline is Feb. 23, which means Anthony has to face more tidal waves of trade rumors and constant speculation over his future.

“LaDainian was the best pure running back I¡¯ve ever been around. And I was around Marcus Allen and Christian Okoye, guys like that,” Marty Schottenheimer told the team¡¯s website. Schottenheimer was the Chargers coach from 2002 to 2006, building his offense around Tomlinson. “It was really a treat to be involved with him. I told him from the start that he had it all and we were going to ride him.”

Known for his physical, relentless running style, Tomlinson also was a tremendous pass-catcher. He finished his career with 624 catches for 4,772 yards and 17 touchdown receptions.

Only Hall of Famer Marshall Faulk has more catches among the top-10 career rushing leaders.
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“It was almost impossible to defend him,” Hall of Fame linebacker Ray Lewis said. “Because he had hands like a receiver, he had feet like a ballet dancer and had a heart like a lion — any time that you have all of those things, you just never know what you are going to get.

¡°What made him the hardest thing to deal with was that he always kept a calm demeanor. You never could rattle him. He always stayed true to himself.”

The exodus of Malone, in particular, demonstrates Ranadive’s strengths and weaknesses

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Elite Ben Scrivens Jersey “We have a short goal and a long goal,” Divac says. “Basically if we can get to .500, that would be a successful season. We are trying to build something for the future. You can’t do it overnight, but step by step, you know, I think we are going in a good direction.”

IF THE FATAL flaw of the Kings is instability, nowhere is it more evident than in the vibrant lazy Susan of coaches. Cousins was drafted in June 2010, which means all before his prime — and without changing teams — he has already played for Paul Westphal, Keith Smart, Mike Malone, Ty Corbin, George Karl and now Dave Joerger.

The exodus of Malone, in particular, demonstrates Ranadive’s strengths and weaknesses. Ranadive was eager to refashion the Kings into a zippy squad that embraced the brand of up-and-down basketball that had been popularized in recent seasons, much like the Warriors. And his essential theory is inarguable. “Pace and space” offenses are some of the best in the league today — indeed some of the best in NBA history — and are the direction of some of the best teams, in keeping with the lessons of analytics.

“He said, ‘I want you to go in and challenge yourself to finish in three years so that if you end up leaving early to the NBA … ,” Black said Gregory told him. “I was like Top 50 and there were some talks about NBA, but I wasn’t like a superstar or anything …

“He said, ‘If you do it three years, now you’ve graduated and you don’t have to go back to school.’ And so we got my mom on board. My mom said, ‘Mr. Gregory has a great idea and you should definitely do it.’ ”

Black’s college basketball career opened strongly as he was a starter for most of his freshman year at the University of Memphis. He averaged 10.7 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks per game as a sophomore. His career with the Tigers took a step backward, however. As a junior, he only started a mere five games averaging 8.1 points and 4.8 rebounds in 20.8 minutes. Black didn’t see eye to eye with Memphis coach Josh Pastner and even walked out of one of his practices.

Ella Fitzgerald and Carol Channing sang at Super Bowl VI

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There were a few notable celebrities during the early halftimes — or at least notable at the time. Ella Fitzgerald and Carol Channing sang at Super Bowl VI, Andy Williams at Super Bowl VII, and Mickey Rooney pranced with Mickey Mouse at Super Bowl XXI. Elvis Presley never appeared, but Elvis Presto, a strange mixture of music and magic tricks, entertained at Super XXIII. Yeah, you might have wanted to go to the bathroom during that show.
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Bigger names began to hit the field in the 1990s, with New Kids on the Block at Super Bowl XXV and Gloria Estefan at XXVI. Halftime still wasn’t what it is today, though. For instance, before Estefan singing briefly at Super Bowl XXVI, U.S. Olympians Dorothy Hamill and Brian Boitano figure skated and rode on snowmobiles during a celebration of Frosty the Snowman and cold winters. (Well, the game was played in Minnesota.)

Halftime changed radically the next year when Michael Jackson sang, moon-walked and danced along with 3,500 kids at Super Bowl XXVII. Fortunately, unlike with his sister Janet, MJ merely grabbed his crotch rather than exposed anything. He was a massive hit, and while there were a few odd halftime shows the next couple of years — Indiana Jones fought snakes and villains to retrieve the Lombardi Trophy at Super Bowl XXIX — music superstars eventually took over.

It brought to mind general manager David Griffin’s message — following James’ initial outburst calling for a “f—ing playmaker” — about the real solution to Cleveland’s doldrums. “The thing we have to do the most is get better from within,” Griffin said.

The Wolves game, Cleveland’s third win in its past four, showed that that message from Griffin wasn’t just pie-in-the-sky talk. It is possible that the guys already on the Cavs roster will do much more toward getting this team on track than any addition.

“I think he realized that he had more to accomplish,” MSU teammate Larry Caper says

uring those heat-soaked days of rehab in the late spring and early summer, Bell and Bommarito rehearsed their secret weapon — they were ditching traditional running back drills for full-speed acceleration/deceleration work on a track, training the body to start and stop efficiently without overloading knee joints.

Now, at his locker, which is among the most circulated in the Steelers facility, Bell outstretches his right leg and points to various parts of his thigh and hamstring on his Steelers mesh shorts. When it comes to his command of each run with fluidity, “[the training] made all the difference,” he said.

To unwind after those workouts, Bell would often scan his social-media accounts, retweeting compliments and taking mental notes of doubters. More fuel. Looking for a blueprint for post-knee-injury success, Bell found himself watching YouTube videos of Adrian Peterson’s wildly successful comeback from a torn anterior cruciate ligament on his way to 2,097 yards in 2012.

“He won an MVP,” Bell says. “I said, ‘Why can’t I have a season like that?'”

He got close this year. But play a full season, and Bell might answer his own question. He has a plan for that, too. What’s the goal? Another 2,000? 2,500?

Another smirk, a look down at the floor and a goal quietly spoken into existence.

“I’m trying to get 3,000,” he says.

“He’s definitely about his business and handling things like a grown-up more than ever,” Caper says. “You can tell that difference. Not that he wasn’t before, but life can hit you fast, and I think he realized that he had more to accomplish.”

England and Europe fans are excited for the NFL

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Based solely on my interviews with English and European fans who have turned the Wembley games into lucrative sellout events, here’s what I can explain with some confidence to American, and European, NFL fans:

Yes, England and Europe fans are excited for the NFL. The interest in Europe is very, very real. Did the machinations of Roger Goodell’s Godless globalization conspiracy generate that? Probably? Maybe? But it worked. My advice to any American still incredulous about the NFL’s legitimacy abroad is to examine the stateside growth of soccer and American interest in the World Cup, Premiership and MLS.

Bryant fits the bill as a No. 1 receiver essentially anywhere in the league, and the 26-year-old should be expected to turn in a similar season to what he managed in 2014. His biggest concerns come from off-field issues. While Bryant hasn’t been missing time due to any league punishments, a report from Rapoport in November suggested that the Cowboys were worried about Bryant’s life outside of football and were hesitant to give him a long-term contract as a result. Those issues included six instances of police being called to Bryant’s home, though arrests were never made.

Andre Williams Jersey Alongside running back DeMarco Murray, Bryant was a big reason for the Cowboys’ success in 2014. After disappointing finishes the past few seasons, Dallas went into the playoffs with a 12-4 record and had a shot at a first-round bye as late as Week 17. The Cowboys could only franchise tag one player, and chose Bryant over Murray, who then signed with the Philadelphia Eagles in the offseason.

With the new contract that makes him the second-highest paid receiver in the league, it’s clear that the team thinks Bryant is a major key to the offense going forward.

Josh Akognon’s international experience isn’t limited to China

Akognon makes no qualms about what convinced him to go China. It was purely a business decision when he signed with Dongguan after weighing offers from European clubs in 2010.

Elite Kids Steven Stamkos Jersey “I’d never heard of the CBA, but when they told me the money, then you start looking at everything else,” Akognon said. “I realized that Marbury was playing there, so I started looking at it more. … As long as they said that money was where it was at, I was sold, and I was ready to go.”

“We’ve had these conversations all the time,” Wade said. “You got to learn a lesson. You keep taking bumps like this, you either learn the lesson and figure it out or you don’t learn it and you continue to keep doing the same thing. Keep putting your hand on the hot stove every day. We just got to figure out how not to put our hand on that hot stove and understand when we come in the kitchen, that stove hot — don’t touch it.”

Elite Mens Mika Zibanejad Jersey The Bulls keep burning their own hands, though. Aside from the lackluster effort and errors early in the game, the flaws that have been present all season remain. The late-game offense, centered around isolation sets for Wade and Jimmy Butler, remain too predictable. The Bulls’ defensive miscues allowed for Mavericks swingman Wesley Matthews to drill a wide-open, game-winning 3 with 11.7 seconds left.

“We weren’t guarding at times, we were making stuff up on the defensive end,” a frustrated Butler said. “Also on the offensive end, if you don’t do what you’re supposed to be doing that we go over every day in the scouting report and get ready for these teams, then stuff happens. You get down and then you got to claw your way back — which we were pretty good at doing that, but we’re putting ourselves in that situation.”