Bears’ Trubisky will be in crosshairs of Panthers’ Peppers


Chicago Bears coach John Fox knows exactly how tough it is for offensive linemen to block Carolina Panthers defensive end Julius Peppers.

Apparently leading the NFL in yards per carry through a sizable sample of games is beginning to earn Collins more trust from the Baltimore staff. Early-season ball security issues slowed his ascent, but Collins led the team in rushes in Week 6 and has averaged 73.25 yards from scrimmage on just 11.25 touches per game in the past four outings. The Vikings claim an undeniably stout front seven, but given the landscape’s eroded and shallow running back market, Collins’ elite per-touch efficiency merits interest as a flex play with notable upside. — McCormick

The Chiefs remain undefeated. They’re the only team in the NFL that has yet to lose this season.

Here are the biggest winners and losers from the Chiefs’ big win over the Texans.

Bennett and several other Seattle defensive linemen sat before the team’s game in Week 4, then all the Seahawks stood the following week, which defensive end Frank Clark said was in honor of the victims of the Las Vegas mass shooting.

They’re trying to bring awareness to issues that people who look like me don’t understand. And I hope people will give the owners the benefit of the doubt that it takes time to get up to speed on these issues. We aren’t there yet, but we are getting there.

Are you ready for a fantastic Thursday Night Football matchup? I know I am, and we get a treat this week — the NFC East-leading Philadelphia Eagles, 4-1, at the NFC South-leading Carolina Panthers, 4-1.

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NFL Panic Index 2017, Week 5: The Seahawks can’t hang onto a good running back


The Seattle offense had a slow start against the Colts, but when things started rolling in the second half, the Seahawks blew the game wide open. But just when the team was putting the finishing touches on a 46-18 win, rookie running back Chris Carson fractured his leg.

The seventh-round pick climbed to the starting spot in Seattle, but now they’ll have to go to the next man up, which isn’t anything to the Seahawks because they have the worst running back luck ever.

Sunday Night Football has a fascinating matchup between the Texans and Chiefs. The Chiefs are the last unbeaten team left in the NFL, with Andy Reid pulling out all the stops to help his team get there. Meanwhile, the Texans suddenly look like a legitimate contender with Deshaun Watson playing phenomenal football as a rookie. Is he for real, or just riding a hot streak? We’re about to find out when he faces KC’s imposing defense.

It’s hard to decide which was the worst part of the team’s blowout loss to the Jaguars.

Ben Roethlisberger’s career-high five interceptions were pretty awful. Inexplicably abandoning the running game with Le’Veon Bell and struggling to stop Leonard Fournette were also bad.

Maybe the worst were Roethlisberger’s postgame hints at retirement being on the horizon while the team is in the middle of the AFC North race. Get your head in the game, Ben.

I know, I know. Here’s my thinking. New England’s defense is the worst in the league right now, ranked 32nd in defensive DVOA by Football Outsiders. Also, left tackle Nate Solder missed some practice early in the week. He’s going to play, but he’s been a massive liability for Tom Brady, who’s been sacked 16 times already.

No, I’m not buying that the Jets will win the AFC East or even win this week, but things are lined up well for them to cover a big spread. Plus, the Patriots are 1-6-1 in their last eight against the Jets.

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Eli Manning missed another chance to beat the Chargers, 13 years after demanding they trade him


In Eli Manning’s 14 seasons with the New York Giants, he’s defeated every NFL team at least once, except the Colts and the Chargers.

With a matchup between the Giants and Colts slated for the 2018 season and the next meeting with Los Angeles not on the schedule until 2021, there’s a good chance the Chargers could end up being the only team undefeated against Manning.

The Giants fell, 27-22, to the Chargers on Sunday. It was the fourth time Manning has faced the Chargers. In losses in 2005, 2009 and 2013, he combined for five touchdowns and two interceptions, but the Giants’ defense has struggled to slow the Chargers.

On Sunday, Elli finished with 225 passing yards, two touchdowns, one pick, and one fumble and he lost four receivers to injury, including Odell Beckham Jr.

It’s an odd statistic that Manning is 0-4 against the team. After all, Manning, the first pick in the 2004 NFL draft, began his time in the NFL by demanding a trade from the Chargers.

He, too, released a statement via the team’s website. He announced his resignation, and accepted full responsibility for his actions, confirming it was him in the video:

I am resigning from my position with the Miami Dolphins and accept full responsibility for my actions. I want to apologize to the organization and my sole focus is on getting the help that I need with the support of my family and medical professionals.

This is the second time the Dolphins have had an offensive line coach exit due to controversy. In 2014, they fired Jim Turner after the Jonathan Martin bullying scandal.

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Butler is in a rare place for a fourth-year player


No matter how often Butler tells reporters 2017 is all about his team, his performance will resonate in next year’s free-agent talks. By breaking onto the scene with a Super Bowl-winning interception, clinching another title two years later in the greatest NFL game of all time, and earning All-Pro and Pro Bowl honors, Butler is in a rare place for a fourth-year player; the only person he’s got to prove himself to is himself.

The one thing that has eluded the still-growing defender in his budding career is a big paycheck. Earning that means one more dynamic season with New England — a move that, ironically, could be the key that marks his departure from the franchise that developed him from a Division II free agent to a top cornerback.

You know what? I’d go so far as to assert that I’d 100 percent say yes if someone proposed to me at a Dolphins preseason game. I don’t know how they’d get me there in the first place (eh, I do: Lure me with the promise of enough hot dogs and I’ll go anywhere), but if they did … I mean, even if the person were a total stranger and presented me with a ring I’d probably find it so funny that I’d say yes.

Anyway, congrats to the happy couple. The world feels pretty bleak Cheap Authentic NBA Jerseys these days, and this was a delightful ray of sunshine cutting through the stormy clouds.

Which is why I have a plea to the rest of you in serious relationships: Please, for the love of god, will you propose at NFL preseason games? Ideally it should be a matchup between shitty teams, but at this point, I’ll take anything. We need more of this. I want to laugh and be happy for Cheap Dri Fit Jerseys people who think they’ve found their everlasting love.

Vince Wilfork entered the NFL at an interesting time.


Vince Wilfork retires as the best run defender of his generation, but what are his chances at the Hall of Fame?

After the New England Patriots dispatched Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts in the 2003-04 playoffs, the league decided to pay special attention to the contact made by defensive backs on opposing wide receivers. This opened up passing attacks around the league and marked a clear shift in offensive tendencies.

With his positional value low and questions about his health abounding after a hamstring injury sidelined him through San Francisco’s dismal 2016, the 49ers cut bait on the 25-year-old wideout. One day later, the Jets did as well.

That winding road led him to Houston, where he put up a four-catch, 93-yard performance, hauling in 80 percent of his targets while matching up against the Patriots’ first-team defense in his first game with the team. Meanwhile, the 49ers and Jets active receiving corps look like this:

It’s early, and there’s no telling whether Ellington can stay healthy and consistent enough to have an impact in the regular season. He failed to have a noticeable impact in Cheap Dream Team Jerseys San Francisco’s Cheap Authentic MLB Jerseys passing game while healthy, and those 49ers had many of the same quarterback concerns the Texans have now. Even so, waiving the young wideout could be a regretful mistake for two moribund franchises this fall.

Two of the league’s top teams will meet in a potential Super Bowl preview Sunday afternoon when the Falcons travel to Heinz Field for a preseason date with the Steelers. It probably won’t look anything like a Super Bowl preview, though.

Colon was an All-Star as recently as last year


The Beavers got started early, with Trevor Larnach knocking in Steven Kwan from second on a classic single up the middle. Oregon State pitcher Bryce Fehmel then blanked LSU in the bottom of the frame after tagging Tigers big bat Greg Deichmann out at second on a steal attempt.

Neither club could cross a run in the second, but in the top of the third, LSU starter Eric Walker suddenly got pulled after a trainer visited the mound. He’d apparently experienced forearm soreness during a simulation game before the team left for Omaha, and his exit was an unwelcome loss for a team that suddenly needed to deal with an arm missing from the rotation.

In any case, Walker’s departure ushered in Caleb Gilbert, a capable replacement, and he immediately struck out the first two batters he faced, then forced a groundout to the shortstop for the third out. Gilbert kept dealing after that, stranding two Beavers runners in the top of the fourth.

It almost all worked out. All of it except for Bartolo Colon, whose ERA ballooned to 8.14 after allowing six runs in four innings against the Padres on Wednesday night. The Braves designated Colon for assignment, and it’s hard to see where he fits on another team.

Colon was an All-Star as recently as last year, and he was one of baseball’s all-time greatest comeback stories. There are three stages to his career:

Stage 1 was the fireballer, the affable youngster who was remarkable in an unremarkably traditional way. He was an excellent young pitcher, similar to the hundreds of excellent Cheap Authentic Jerseys From China young pitchers who had come before him.

This was a very fun pitcher, but not in a way that was Cheap Donegal Gaa Jerseys unique to Colon. He signed a big contract with the Angels, and rewarded them with a Cy Young.

Newman got blasted right out of the park


Pitcher No. 3 was done. 1/3 innings pitched, no hits, one earned run, one strikeout, and three batters faced.

Peterson fell apart in a hell of a hurry. He walked two batters to start, then crossed a run on a sac grounder. Still, he accounted for the first two runs of the inning, but that couldn’t keep him in the game. Next up: Hunter Newman. Poor, poor Hunter Newman.

Pitcher No. 4 was done. 2/3 innings pitched, no hits, two earned runs, no strikeouts, and two batters faced.

Newman is a big-time arm. He owns a 2.73 ERA for the season and can routinely throw heat in the high 80s and low 90s. This game should have done better by him.

As it turned out, though, Newman got blasted right out of the park, inheriting two runners from Peterson then walking Larnach on four straight pitches to load the bases

No. 7 Louisville and Texas A&M kicked off the early session on Sunday, and the Cardinals wasted little time in getting up on the Aggies in the second. Thanks to a flurry of five singles in the bottom of the frame, Louisville plated five runs there and things looked to be getting out of hand for A&M.

But the Aggies found an answer in the form of a fourth inning two spot, then a sixth inning dash for two runs that ended lefty Brendan McKay’s outing. That brought on bridge man Sam Bordner, who managed to stop the bleeding and get out of the jam. Bordner in fact pitched out the rest of the game, surrendering no more runs in the process.

Cason Sherrod took the hill for A&M in the bottom of the Cheap Dolphins Jerseys sixth, but Cheap Authentic Jerseys he must not have seen the Aggies’ offensive fireworks, because he got himself into a bases-loaded jam with just one out. Then, a throw-and-catch blunder at second on a chopper to the right gap pulled him off the bag so that he failed to complete the tag. That moved everyone forward one base and crossed Louisville’s sixth run of the day.

Cameron Artis-Payne has had a pretty solid day for the Panthers.


Titans fullback Jalston Fowler was injured on a kickoff return in the third quarter and needed to be helped to the bench. A cart came out to help him, but he chose to get to the locker room under his own power. Losing him would be a blow for a team that wants to run downhill with Henry, but the Titans broadcast said it’s just a thigh bruise.

On just five carries, he’s racked up 70 yards and a touchdown.

The Panthers kicked a game-tying field goal with less than four minutes left in the fourth quarter. Everybody knows overtime in preseason is to be avoided at all costs. Panthers. Please.

Tennessee linebacker Aaron Wallace saved the day with a sack in the final two minutes.

Watson started getting into a groove, driving the Texans down into the red zone. Unfortunately, the Texans couldn’t find the end zone and the offensive line routinely gave up pressure, forcing Watson into constant scrambles and throwing the ball away. A 25-yard field goal cut the Panthers’ lead to seven.

Things went from bad to worse for the Buy Cheap Jerseys Online Texans when tight end Evan Baylis coughed up the ball deep in Panthers territory. Graham Gano hit the 45-yard field goal to put his team up 10 points.

The second game will see the Bucs playing the Bengals, who were snakebitten by injuries last season. Cincinnati revamped its offense with the additions of rookies Joe Mixon and John Ross, although Ross will probably sit this one out after missing the offseason program with shoulder surgery. Mixon will be aiming to beat out Jeremy Hill and Giovani Bernard for the starting RB job. A.J. Green might also be limited after a torn hamstring ended his 2016 season early. The Bucs don’t have any big injury concerns at the moment, though the backfield is one to watch with Doug Martin suspended for the first three games.

Marcus Mariota is an awfully easy guy to root for.


Despite his checkered history in media reports, it’s easy to see why Winston is beloved by teammates; he projects an easy and magnetic leadership in every scene. Before the Bucs’ first preseason game, Winston goes to each of his teammates in the locker room and tells him, I got your back. It sounds small on the page, but his passion was apparent as he said it again and again and again.

He brought that warmth and enthusiasm throughout the episode, but the cutthroat business of football is clear to him. In the quarterbacks room, Winston gently broke a hard reality to undrafted rookie free agent Sefo Liufau (below), who displayed na?veté about when players could be cut. Winston: You can get cut any time. They don’t care.

Just a few days ago Peake was trying to convince everyone that the Jets have at least one 1,000-yard receiver on the roster. That’s still really, really ambitious, but that’s a good way to start preseason and look less crazy.

Marcus Mariota is an awfully easy guy to root for. The Titans posted video of him having a special moment with a few fans before the game.

After the touchdown, Rush has completed all eight of his pass attempts for 99 yards. These rookie quarterbacks, man.

Luke McCown finished off the game for Dallas, but completed six of 13 passes for 31 yards and fumbled twice. It’s safe to say Rush got the better of him in the quarterback battle tonight.

The Cardinals are giving quarterbacks coach Byron Leftwich a Cheap Authentic Baseball Jerseys chance to call plays. That first drive was a good way to show he has some coaching Cheap Dodgers Jerseys chops.

Looks like we won’t be seeing Derek Carr or Marshawn Lynch tonight. The Raiders opened the game with EJ Manuel at quarterback and DeAndre Washington at running back.

More plays like this from Robert Nkemdiche will help the Cardinals get over the loss of Calais Campbell.

Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson remain Adorable Receiver Buds


Like all teams, the Bucs will have to trim their roster from 90 players to 53. But I’m not sure how many firings — like Aguayo’s — we’ll have to endure. Previous seasons of Hard Knocks seemed especially targeted to build the audience’s connection with fringe players, only to break our hearts when they inevitably got cut. This season’s crop, by comparison, feels further from the chopping block.

Third-string linebacker Riley Joe Dirt Bullough is way down the depth chart, but his fire and leadership may help him stick as a special teamer. Running back Jeremy McNichols is guaranteed nothing as a fifth-rounder, but his skill set mimics Doug Martin’s; he seems useful. Veteran corner Robert McClain looked more likely to make the team after playing well following Brent Grimes’ leg laceration. Look, Miko took a picture!

Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson remain Adorable Receiver Buds, but their discussion on where Kobe Bryant stands among NBA greats … WOOF. Evans generously ranked Bryant the fourth-best player of all time, behind LeBron James at two. Jackson, playing on his third NFL team, countered Cheap Discount Jerseys that he didn’t like how LeBron had to leave in order to win his championships.

The Seahawks’ first-team offense came out for another drive, this time with Chris Carson replacing Lacy in the backfield.

Baldwin got Seattle across midfield with a 37-yard catch-and-run, but that’s Cheap Atlanta Braves Jerseys as far as the drive got as the offensive line allowed a Wilson sack and forced the first punt of the game.

Much like Philip Rivers did last week, Sam Bradford spent his first drive picking on rookie cornerback Shaq Griffin. He took advantage of busted coverage to hit Stefon Diggs for a 39-yard play down to the Seahawks’ 12-yard line. However, two false starts led to the drive stalling out and the Vikings settling for a field goal.