Jets add a tight end for the second time this week

The Jets claimed Clive Walford off of waivers on Monday and made another move to bolster their tight end group on Tuesday.

The team announced that they have signed free agent Bucky Hodges to their 90-man offseason roster. He joins Walford, Eric Tomlinson, Jordan Leggett and Neal Sterling on the depth chart at tight end.

Hodges got good marks from several draft analysts last year after catching 133 passes for 1,747 yards and 20 touchdowns over three seasons in a receiving-oriented role at Virginia Tech, but questions about his ability to play a traditional tight end role wound up leaving him for the Vikings in the sixth round.

That’s just another example of how, in the NBA schedule, what goes around comes around.

Another such example: The Nuggets played in an NBA-high six schedule alert games this season, but they also played fatigued teams who were on schedule alert five times — and the Nuggets won all of those games.

“It’s not just about going out there physically,” Malone said. “It’s ‘OK, can I fight through this fatigue?’ And I think most teams that go into three games in five nights or back-to-backs, it’s mentally where they come up short, because it’s hard.”

“He’s a great kid,” Zimmer said. “He works hard. He always has a smile on his face. We’re going to miss him.”

A lot of people were surprised that McKinnon got so much money, considering he has never been a regular starter and never even rushed for 600 yards in a season. Zimmer was not surprised.

“I knew he was going to get money,” Zimmer said. “I obviously didn’t know it was going to be that high. But he’s a good kid. He’s worth it.”

To be worth it in San Francisco, McKinnon is going to need to play a lot more — and produce a lot more — than he did in Minnesota.

“I don’t want to lead the league in schedule alert games,” Malone said.

In an effort to maximize rest, Malone said they tweaked their own schedule — scaling back practice times, shootaround times or opting for a morning walk-through at a hotel.
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Ranadive said new projects will ensure the city meets the NBA’s requirement of about 6,000 rooms in the area.

There were no obvious fade candidates to my eye on Thursday. It’s possible Curry could come out of the gates refreshed, but he hasn’t scored more than 24 points in a game since Jan. 27, and for what it’s worth his shot was still off in the All-Star Game. Considering that there are several elite fantasy scoring options with outstanding matchups on Thursday, and that Curry is still one of the highest-priced players in most DFS formats, he’s easier to fade than some of his contemporaries.

Vegas reclaimed the lead on a pair of Karlsson goals, late in the first period and 5:36 into the second. Karlsson’s two goals give him 33 for the season, third-best in the NHL behind Washington’s Alex Ovechkin (36) and Pittsburgh’s Evgeni Malkin (34).

The Golden Knights extended their lead to 5-2 on Marchessault’s 22nd goal of the season, and Tomas Nosek’s seventh of the campaign.

Sedin, who notched his 16th goal of the season when he beat Fleury top shelf with a power play goal 4:28 into the third period, said the Canucks haven’t seen a team faster than the Golden Knights all season.

But the bid will offer even more options, with up to 1,000 rooms through a partnership with Airbnb as well as two or three 300-room small luxury cruise ships in the Port of Sacramento.

Silver said he would be open to that possibility, pointing out that USA Basketball players and guests have used cruise ships for accommodations at the Olympics, including the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Thunder: Oklahoma City went 11 for 11 on free throws in the first half. . The Thunder have scored 100 or more in four consecutive games and 14 of the previous 16.

Kings: Frank Mason scored six points in his first game since Dec. 31. Mason had been sidelined with a partially torn right facscia. . De’Aaron Fox (conjunctiveitis) and Kosta Koufos (ill) were held out.jays_1164_656e6aa35a48a094-180x180

Jaguars release kicker Jason Myers after FG misses

The Jaguars released kicker Jason Myers and signed former Los Angeles Chargers kicker Josh Lambo on Tuesday.

“[Running backs coach Jim Skipper will] quiz me over the phone, and then I’ll go over everything, and he’ll tell me what to learn for the next day,” McCaffrey said in June, via Panthers.com. “You can still get the plays down and get good training when you’re home, but nothing will ever compete with actually getting the reps on the field, being with the guys.

“It is what it is. That’s the rule, and we’ll just have to deal with it.”

The NFL implemented the rule in 1990 “to protect student-athletes who have remained in school to complete their schoolwork,” rather than pressuring players to drop out of school and join their new clubs, according to NFL.com.

“That’s being discussed, whether to bring some one up [from the practice squad] or add someone,” Joseph said.

Tackle Billy Turner, who replaced an injured Menelik Watson at right tackle during the Giants game, fractured his right hand and was sent to Vail, Colorado, on Monday for surgery.

Watson had a calf injury and Turner could play with a cast on his hand; both players will be monitored through the week. Donald Stephenson, who was a game-day inactive Sunday for the first time this season, or Allen Barbre could play right tackle if both Watson and Turner are not available Sunday.

Steelers players had fun with the trade rumors in the locker room Monday. When reporters surrounded Bryant, several players started hollering, prompting a smile from Bryant.
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We’re committed to continuing to work toward building this roster and becoming a perennial playoff team

Hopes are high for Jameis Winston, who commands universal respect in the Buccaneers’ building at age 23. Adding DeSean Jackson and O.J. Howard should only help Winston and the Bucs’ offense be more dynamic, and he has the ability to help them hang in the NFC South race even with Atlanta and Carolina strong out of the gate. The question, as always, is ball security.

Cleveland has gone 2-29 in its last 31 games, the worst stretch in NFL history, and second-year coach Hue Jackson is 1-19, a mark he calls horrible. But Cleveland’s aptly-named vice president of football operations Sashi Brown is confident in his team’s rebuilding process.

We’re committed to continuing to work toward building this roster and becoming a perennial playoff team, and we’re on our way toward that, Brown said Wednesday. … We certainly have made some progress on the field. We’re seeing that with some of the young guys that are playing and making plays for us.

Rookie quarterback DeShone Kizer is part of that young nucleus, but the 21-year-old second-round pick out of Notre Dame has struggled a bit in the early going, as rookies are wont to do. He has three touchdowns passes and two touchdown runs, but also has a league-high eight interceptions.

When you are 0-4 and statistically one of the worst quarterbacks out there right now, you have to figure out where you are headed, Kizer said Wednesday. What is the path right now? What is the message? For me, it is about doing whatever I can to grow in whatever Coach (Jackson) decides needs to be the right room for growth for that week. … Obviously, this is going to be a process. Rome wasn’t built in a day.
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Packers vs. Falcons odds 2017: Atlanta small favorite in NFC championship rematch

The Atlanta Falcons are 7-0 straight up and 5-2 against the spread in their last seven games as a betting favorite. The Falcons are favored in this Sunday night’s rematch of last year’s NFC Championship Game against the Green Bay Packers.

Atlanta is a 3-point home betting favorite at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com. In the NFC Championship Game last season in Atlanta, the Falcons won 44-21, easily covering the Tobias Enstrom Womens Jersey spread as 6.5-point favorites.

Coming off a 13-6 SU and 12-7 ATS campaign in 2016, the biggest Authentic Michael Frolik Jersey concern around this year’s Falcons squad is whether or not the team can avoid a Super Bowl hangover after last year’s big collapse against New England.

Atlanta didn’t look particularly sharp in last Sunday’s 23-17 road win over Chicago, but a goal line stand in the closing moments got the Falcons’ season off on the right foot with a win. A victory over a much stronger opponent this week would be an even bigger statement.

The Falcons have enjoyed strong starts in recent seasons with a 6-1 SU and 5-2 ATS record in their last seven games played in September. Atlanta has fared particularly well in Week 2, going 7-1 SU and ATS in its last eight Week 2 games per the OddsShark NFL Database.

Brady served a four-game suspension to start the 2016 season for his role in the Deflategate controversy. The league announced Brady’s suspension on May 11, 2015, and the NFLPA filed an appeal on Brady’s behalf on May 14. The appeal was set for June 23, and Goodell announced that he would uphold the suspension on June 28.

Brady filed a federal lawsuit, and nearly a year later the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals eventually determined Goodell did have the authority to issue the suspension. Brady announced on July 15, 2016 that he would accept the suspension and not take the case to the Supreme Court.

Bill O’Brien undecided on who’ll start for Texans at quarterback

Texans coach Bill O’Brien said Monday he isn’t sure who will start at quarterback for his team Thursday against the Bengals.

Tom Savage was benched in favor of rookie Deshaun Watson during Sunday’s 29-7 loss to the Jaguars.

O’Brien said Monday the quarterback decision will be a tough one, but he will do what’s best for the team.

“One thing I said to him was, ‘Hey, let’s run this inside zone.’ And we came out, and we ran that,” Peterson said, via ESPN . “There’s no conflict. Let’s not try to spin it like there is.”

A U.S. District Court judge will make a decision Friday as to whether Elliott will be granted a temporary restraining order, which would freeze the suspension. Both the NFL and union are making other legal moves, too.

The Cowboys have been practicing the entire summer with Elliott as if he would play in Week 1. In fact, Garrett previously said Elliott will be practicing with the team until the NFL prohibits him from doing so.

The other Jaguars pass-catcher who is bound for a beefed-up role because of the Allen Robinson injury is Hurns, the former undrafted free agent standout. Hurns led the team in targets and yards in Week 1, but it’s worth noting that if Jacksonville plays offense the way it would like to this year, Blake Bortles will attempt 30 or fewer passes per game (he had just 21 in Week 1). Hurns is an add in 12-team or larger leagues.
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Valles did not survive the Bills final cutdown Saturday.

Some quick background: When Nike took over as the NFL’s uniform supplier in 2012, many people expected a wide-ranging makeover of the league’s look. That didn’t happen, but Nike did put one prominent mark on NFL jerseys: the Flywire collar. That’s the collar format with those annoying shiny bands, which have been a visual blight on the NFL landscape for five seasons now.

Flywire supposedly makes the collar area stronger or some such, but it’s really a Nike branding element — a way for Nike to say, “Hey, don’t forget that we made this jersey.” It has never been a mandatory uniform element, but 23 of the league’s 32 teams began using it in 2012, and 22 of them were still using it last season.

A practice squad player in 2016 with Buffalo Bills, Valles did not survive the Bills final cutdown Saturday.

The Daily News and ProPublica together won this year’s Pulitzer Prize in public service journalism for uncovering how authorities used an obscure law to evict hundreds of people, mostly poor minorities, from their homes. It was the Daily News’ 11th Pulitzer Prize, and the fifth during Zuckerman’s tenure.

But the paper has also contended with the troubles that have affected newspapers in general as readership and ad dollars have shifted online, without making up for the decline in print revenue. Total newspaper revenue fell 11 percent from 2012 to 2016 as average daily print circulation slipped 13 percent, according to a June report by the consulting and audit firm PwC. It added that while newspapers’ online advertising revenue has been increasing, other entities have captured much of the growth in digital ad dollars.sharks_154

Kyrie Irving sweepstakes currently has no front-runner, per report

Say what you want about Cavaliers new GM Koby Altman being under qualified for the job, every single source that will speak to his approach to the Kyrie Irving situation has been complementary.

Right now though according to a report by Basketball Insiders, there is no front-runner in the Kyrie Irving sweepstakes, and honestly, there have been no deals the Cavaliers would truly consider.

Court Club Elite ended its five-year relationship with Adidas Sunday after Adidas officials replaced the female referee with a male ref. Ball was T-d up after berating the female referee during a game Friday. She also called a technical foul on Ball during a Wednesday game and Ball unleashed a barrage of sexist remarks following Friday’s game.

“The events that led to the removal of a female official on Friday are something that shall not and will not be accepted within the officiating community,” Court Club Elite said in a statement to ESPN. “Adidas and their leadership acted in a manner that does not parallel our views on integrity or professionalism, and neither should be compromised as they were in this situation.

“It was clear that the actions of the official in enforcing and addressing unsporting behavior were defendable and fitting of the behavior displayed; however, the agenda and lack of courage to do the right thing by Adidas leadership sent a clear message that the game and those chosen to protect the integrity were not of priority.

“[The officials’] days consisted of several hours of classroom and video breakdown sessions in addition to games worked,” the organization’s statement said. “Forfeiting those opportunities would have allowed one man’s unreasonable request, and the acceptance of that request by those who lack courage, to overshadow the greater purpose for our group in a highly effective learning environment.”dolphins_101

Could Khalil Mack get 30 sacks? Raiders QB Derek Carr thinks so

There isn’t just an argument out there that Khalil Mack should have been taken before Jadeveon Clowney in the 2014 NFL Draft, it’s pretty much an accepted fact that Mack has been the better player so far.

In three seasons with the Raiders, Mack has 30 career sacks with a season-high 15 in 2015 and 11 last season. While that’s a high bar, it’s far from what his quarterback thinks Mack can do.

“If he doesn’t get held… If they start calling the holdings, if they start calling them like they should — I’m saying 30,” Derek Carr, now highest paid player in the NFL, said in an interview with Sirius XM NFL Radio (via FanRag Sports).

Right on Brady’s heels this year, though, is Aaron Rodgers, who will begin the year rated 98 Overall. Rodgers finished “Madden NFL 17” rated higher than Brady but has surrendered the spot over the offseason. Rodgers’ Throw on the Run rating (97) is the best in the NFL.

Last year’s NFL MVP Matt Ryan comes in third with a rating of 96 Overall. Ryan was one of the biggest risers in ratings in “Madden NFL 17,” in which he began at 84 and finished at 95.

Drew Brees makes a jump into the fourth slot with a 92 Overall rating and matches Brady’s 99 in Awareness. Ben Roethlisberger is fifth at 91 Overall and is the most difficult QB in the league to take down thanks to his 82 Strength rating.

Tied at 90 Overall are the two star quarterbacks from the 2012 draft, Russell Wilson and Andrew Luck.

Other notable QBs include Derek Carr (89 Overall), Cam Newton (88 Overall), Matthew Stafford (87 Overall) and Dak Prescott (86 Overall).

Ratings for “Madden NFL 18” are up across the board for QBs from the end of last season. Brady is +3, Rodgers +1, Ryan +1, Brees +3, Roethlisberger (no change), Wilson +2, Luck +3, Carr +1, Newton +4, Stafford +2, and Prescott +1.t_rangers_020-115x115

Man gets duct-taped to sign after losing Warriors/Rockets bet

A Houston man learned the hard way that betting against the Warriors right now is a bad idea.

The man agreed to be duct-taped to a sign at the end of a busy street in Houston, if the Rockets lost to Golden State on Tuesday.

Adebayo has seemingly turned a corner over the last few weeks, averaging 15 points, 10 rebounds and 1.6 blocks over his last seven games. He’s becoming the powerhouse that Kentucky was expecting this year, plus still retaining the athleticism that allows him to be an effective defender both inside and in switches on the outside.

Interest in him is still relatively tepid around the league, though, likely owing to his slow start. A great NCAA Tournament run could help to keep him fresh in their minds.

Harden has a great chance to be named the MVP this season. In Mike D’Antoni’s point guard-friendly system, he’s resurrected his career while driving the Rockets to an unexpected top-three finish in the Western Conference.

Harden already has finished second in one MVP race (2015) and would be the third Rocket to win the MVP award. Hakeem Olajuwon, the 1994 MVP, has a bronze monument. Dream led Houston to its only two titles. So they might have to waive that as a requirement for Harden to get a similar bronze structure in 2040.

Another way the Celtics get Thomas open when he doesn’t have the ball in his hands is with a set out of their “Flex Thunder” series. It’s almost what you’d expect to see from Stephen Curry — the Celtics use the threat of Thomas to free up his teammates for scoring opportunities by using him as the screener.steelers_004