Carson Wentz, Marshon Lattimore among biggest risers in ‘Madden NFL 18’ ratings

Carson Wentz was the frontrunner for NFL MVP entering Week 11 of the 2017 season, and the Eagles quarterback’s impressive play this year has been mirrored in “Madden NFL 18.”

Two other quarterbacks also have tumbled this season. The Steelers’ Ben Roethlisberger (-5 to 86 Overall) and the Panthers’ Cam Newton (-5 to 83 Overall) have struggled at times.

Only a few NFL players have seen their “Madden” ratings plummet dramatically this season. Among those are Ravens safety Eric Weddle (-9 to 84 Overall), Patriots safety Devin McCourty (-9 to 83 Overall) and Raiders linebacker NaVorro Bowman (-10 to 78 Overall).

Thursday, the Giants rallied around their embattled coach, with several calling the players who made those anonymously sourced remarks “cowards,” and one saying they’ll eventually find out who talked.

“But point blank, whoever said that is a coward.”

Linebacker Jonathan Casillas said it’s like having a “rat in the locker room.”

“It sucks that something like that was said,” Casillas told SNY.tv. “Everything is supposed to be in-house, and for something like that to be said is бн I don’t know, it’s like a rat in the locker room. I feel like we’ve got a close-knit group, and I don’t know how something like that could’ve been said. It’s cowardly to do something like that.”

“I have a responsibility to do what’s best for our football team. Although this wasn’t an easy decision, we needed to make this change. We have to play a more efficient brand of football offensively as we begin the final stretch of our season. Mike is an outstanding coach and a great person. He had a lot of opportunities this offseason, and he chose us. I have the utmost respect for Mike and wish him all the best in the future.”broncos_090-500x500

His home runs have sparked the Astros’ offense in Games 3 and 5.

Mick and Linda DeKeyser hail from the area too. He spent four decades employed by Ford; Linda works at an engineering company that designs automobile safety systems. When he was a kid, Mick saw games at Detroit Olympia, predecessor to the Joe, “but that only means I’m old.” Together they would chaperone Danny and his youth hockey teammates to Red Wings games in Detroit, or even on the road if both squads happened to be in the city.

“I mainly tried to focus on the three teams that—if they scored—changed the entire equation,” Cantor said in an email. “We had decided in pre-production that if two games had implications, we would show those.

His gesture ridiculing Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Yu Darvish also gave offense, and for that he will be punished. But not nearly as badly as his father was.

Read Peter King’s MMQB for a full recap of Week 8 … Player and ?teams that protested the National Anthem … The Texans would be much better if Bill O’Brien wasn’t their coach … The kicker the Jets cut in training camp aggressively reminded Gang Green of their mistake … Bills fans continue to have more fun than any other fanbase … JuJu Smith-Schuster’s locked-bike celebration cracked me up … Batman (or a kid dressed up like him) stormed the field during Jets-Falcons … Travis Benjamin had one of the worst punt returns in NFL history … Maybe DeAndre Hopkins should skip practice more often … The Steelers had another amazing touchdown celebration.

Actor Anthony Rapp claims that Kevin Spacey made a sexual advance toward him when Rapp was just 14, to which Spacey responded with an apology and declaration that he now chooses to “live life as a gay man.” That apology did not go over well and was promptly ripped apart by everyone.canadiens_007_270f928ec377d556-180x180

Zach Miller and the Bears got screwed by the NFL’s confusing catch rule

Zach Miller’s tragic exit could’ve been heroic, but instead it will be remembered with frustration for the Chicago Bears, who dropped to 3-5 with a 20-12 loss to the New Orleans Saints in Week 8.

The Bears tight end dislocated his knee making what was originally ruled a touchdown by officials. But a replay review overturned the play and called it incomplete.

“The key is did he maintain control of the ball when he hit the ground?” Blandino said in a video on FoxSports.com. “The process of the catch lasts until he maintains control all the way to the ground. It looked like to us that he maintained control, he rolled over, and then as a result of the injury, he let the ball go.”

Former major league outfielder Gabe Kapler was hired Monday, completing a search that lasted one month.

“I’m equal parts honored, humbled and excited by the opportunity with the Phillies, an elite franchise in a city rich in history, tradition, sports excellence and with amazingly passionate fans,” Kapler said in a statement. “I believe there is no better place to build a winning environment, and I take that task very seriously.”

Kapler, the Los Angeles Dodgers’ director of player development, was one of three finalists for the position. The two others were former Boston Red Sox manager John Farrell and Dusty Wathan, the manager of Philadelphia’s Triple-A affiliate, Lehigh Valley.

Kapler batted .268 with 82 homers and 386 RBIs over 12 seasons with six teams between 1998-2010. He had no previous ties to the Phillies.

“Gabe has a track record of leadership, winning, progressive thinking and working with young players, and we fully believe that he is the right person to guide this organization into the future,” general manager Matt Klentak said.
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Results, highlights, injuries from Week 6 games

Week 6 in the NFL provides a number of important matchups around the league. Alex Smith and the Kansas City Chiefs are the last undefeated team left, and they face the struggling Pittsburgh Steelers this Sunday.

The Jacksonville Jaguars have been one of the league’s biggest surprise, and the Jags’ league-leading defense takes on the talented offense of the Rams. The search for the first win of the season for the Giants is no easier this week, as the Giants face the Broncos in primetime Sunday night.

“We’re proud to be able to work with our players to highlight these issues to really put focus on the issue and to put focus on how we believe the NFL and the game and our players bring communities together at a time when we are divided.”

Goodell and NFL staff will present a plan Tuesday to “use the platform the NFL enjoys to raise awareness” on many social issues and to make progress.

Peterson, 32, had 27 carries for 81 yards — an average of 3.0 yards per carry — in four games during his first season with the Saints (2-2). His longest run was 11 yards.

Peterson’s addition comes 10 years after the Cardinals passed over him in the 2007 draft to select tackle Levi Brown with the fifth pick. The Minnesota Vikings drafted Peterson at No. 7, and he went on to rush for a franchise-best 11,747 yards.

Cardinals CB Patrick Peterson tweeted a welcome, while Saints safety Rafael Bush and wide receiver Michael Thomas wished Peterson well in Arizona.

Ramirez, who was on the bench to start Game 1, drove in two more runs with a seventh-inning double before Bradley’s homer bounced off Reddick’s glove and into the stands behind the Pesky Pole.steelers_004

That was fine by the Dodgers.

dip there after clinching the NL West in 2013, but for this party, police officers on horses waited at the warning track to keep the Dodgers away.

The others: Mickey Mantle, Andruw Jones, Miguel Cabrera, Manny Machado and Bryce Harper.

Red Sox manager John Farrell has been ejected from Game 4 of the ALDS after leaving the dugout to argue a called third strike on Dustin Pedroia.
Farrell was ejected in the second inning of Monday’s game for defending second baseman Dustin Pedroia during an argument of a called third strike. After the game, Farrell said he’s “confident” that he’s the right man to continue doing the job. But he also wasn’t willing to engage in a discussion about his future.

Pittsburgh picks up three first downs on its first drive. But, Kansas City sacks Ben Roethlisberger for a 7-yard loss on a third-down play, pushing the Steelers out of field goal range and forcing a punt. The Chiefs will start their first drive at their own 16.

Here we go. Steelers receive the game’s opening kickoff and they’ll start their drive at the 25-yard line following a touchback.

The Steelers take two knees and run out the clock as they hold on for the victory in Kansas City.

Smith’s fourth down pass falls incomplete and it appears as if Kansas City’s comeback bid is going to come up short.

Pittsburgh sacks Alex Smith on third down and Kansas City will face a crucial fourth-and-18 near midfield with 58 seconds to play.
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The on-field fate of the Panthers has to be put aside now.

Now there’s another connection between Kuechly and Watt — Watt’s former Wisconsin teammate Chris Borland. As a 49ers rookie in 2014, Borland looked like he would succeed Patrick Willis in San Francisco as a premier inside linebacker and was often mentioned in the same breath as Kuechly.

Borland then famously walked away from the game after only one NFL season, before the accolades, before the millions. Kuechly, like Watt, has been well-compensated, and well-honored. Given how repeated concussions have felled many great players in a most brutal sport, Kuechly has given — and received — enough to ease the difficulty of walking away.

As much as that hurts for Kuechly, the difficult decision may end up being the only decision.

With their much-talked about trip to the White House out of the way, the Pittsburgh Penguins will turn their focus back to hockey Wednesday night when they visit the Washington Capitals.

The Stanley Cup winners visited President Donald Trump on Tuesday, but beyond the White House, the Penguins are not very welcome in Washington. The last time they came to town, in May, they ended Washington’s season in the Eastern Conference semifinals for the second straight year, both coming after the Capitals had won the Presidents’ Trophy.

Jones said he understands the social concerns surrounding the issue, adding that he has “always had our players’ backs on issues I’ve been criticized for.” But he said he won’t compromise when it comes to the anthem
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Mike Pence bailing on Colts-49ers looked like nothing more than a PR stunt

The vice president of the United States says he attended Sunday’s game between the Colts and 49ers to help honor Peyton Manning.

Mike Pence sure had a funny way of showing it.

No matter the outcome, the retirement of Manning’s No. 18 jersey coming on the heels of Saturday’s statue unveiling outside Lucas Oil Stadium was going to be something this game would always be remembered for more than the final score. Not anymore.

The Steelers should inspire confidence that they’re back on track after that domination of the Ravens last week, except that the loss to the Bears sticks out like a sore thumb. The Jaguars ought to be furious that they let the Jets beat them; it takes a lot of the air out of the start the defense and Leonard Fournette generated. Don’t expect the Steelers to breeze through this.

The Jay Cutler honeymoon ended faster than anyone expected, as did the notion that knowing Adam Gase’s system after that one year in Chicago would make this a seamless fit. The quarterback situation is far more problematic on the other sideline, though, with Marcus Mariota’s hamstring and that his backup is … Matt Cassel. Yes, you’re spared the obvious and deserved quarterback-depth lecture.x (17)

He was photographed wearing a suit during the national anthem Sunday.

A former governor of Indiana, Pence had been in Indianapolis as part of the celebration of Peyton Manning and his jersey retirement and induction into the Colts’ Ring of Honor during Sunday’s game.

Pence had tweeted a photo of him and his wife, Karen Pence, saying they were looking forward to cheering for the Colts and honoring Manning. But the Indianapolis Star noted that the photo appeared to be from 2014.

The photo the vice president tweeted showed him wearing a Colts polo shirt.

Leonard Fournette, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars: For the fifth consecutive game to begin his NFL career, Fournette found the end zone, helping him join a group of only four other players since 1950 with a touchdown streak of at least five games to begin an NFL career (see the chart below). He managed the first 30-point fantasy performance — PPR or non-PPR — of his young career, finishing with the best non-PPR score of the 1 p.m. ET block (30.4) and the second best in PPR (31.4). With that, Fournette now has 95.4 non-PPR and 108.4 PPR fantasy points in his five-game career.

The Lions made the playoffs in 2014, Caldwell’s first season, while Martin Mayhew was still the general manager. They got there despite a shaky offense thanks to an overachieving veteran defense and a favorable schedule. Credit current GM Bob Quinn for knowing he had work to do in taking over in 2016 to take better advantage of the window with Stafford.

One clear focus of Quinn was to rebuild the offensive and defensive lines, a good place for every GM to start. In his first draft, he landed starting left tackle Taylor Decker and starting left guard Graham Glasgow. In that same class, he also got starting defensive tackle A’Shawn Robinson and stole breakout end Anthony Zettel.1 (14)

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Dolphins WR DeVante Parker believed to have ankle sprain

The Miami Dolphins believe receiver DeVante Parker suffered a sprained right ankle during Sunday’s 16-10 win over the Tennessee Titans, a source told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter.

Parker left the game in the first quarter with an ankle injury and did not return. Prior to his departure, he had one catch for 6 yards.

Miami’s leading receiver entering Sunday, Parker has 18 receptions for 230 yards and one touchdown in four games.

With Parker sidelined, Jarvis Landry led all Dolphins receivers with five catches for 44 yards and a touchdown against Tennessee.

C.J. Prosise, Seattle Seahawks, ankle, (D), 4:05 p.m. ET: Coach Pete Carroll said last week that he would be shocked if Prosise did not return in Week 5. Known for being eternally the optimist, Carroll may have spoken too soon, as the doubtful tag all but ensures Prosise will miss another week.

Ezekiel Elliott, Dallas Cowboys, chest, 4:25 p.m. ET: Very quietly, Elliott has been on the practice injury report with a chest injury throughout the week. Perhaps since he was a full participant daily, combined with coach Jason Garrett’s lack of concern that the injury was going to limit Elliott in any way, there hasn’t been much worry in Dallas. Elliott’s removal from the pregame injury report confirms he will be healthy enough to play when the Cowboys host the Packers Sunday.

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Redskins’ Rob Kelley (rib) unlikely, Jordan Reed (rib) game-time call

Washington Redskins running back Rob Kelley is expected to miss Sunday night’s game against the Oakland Raiders, and tight end Jordan Reed will be a game-time decision but also is unlikely to play, a source told ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Both suffered rib injuries in last Sunday’s 27-20 win over the Los Angeles Rams.

Brissett completed a 50-yard pass to Donte Moncrief on his first series, about the only positive play the Colts mustered in Los Angeles. Now that the 23-year-old has had another week of reps in the system after his trade from the Patriots on Sept. 2, Pagano and Co. can have a bit more confidence in handing him the reins, but the situation remains less than ideal.

Andrew Luck (shoulder) remains sidelined for the foreseeable future, and the team’s failure to shore up the position until a week before the opener looks even worse after Tolzein’s performance in Week 1.

Brissett shined at times while filling in for Tom Brady early last season and has plenty of room to grow, but he’ll be stepping into a rough situation with his still-new team.

Most unusually, Lewis was targeted three times in the red zone, his most in a game since 2011 Week 12 (also three), harkening back to his 2010 season when he managed 14 red zone targets resulting in a career-best seven of his 10 touchdowns. Was this a new trend, or a one-game aberration? The latter is the wiser guess, but the red zone usage makes Lewis a name to track in the coming weeks.
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