Former NFL running back Andy Johnson dies at 65

Former Patriots running back Andy Johnson died early Wednesday morning after a long illness. He was 65.

The Patriots made him a fifth-round pick in 1974 out of Georgia. He spent eight seasons with New England before finishing his pro career with the USFL’s Boston Breakers in 1983.

Johnson rushed for 2,017 yards and 13 touchdowns on 491 carries in his Patriots’ career. He also caught 161 passes for 1,807 yards and nine touchdowns.

According to ESPN Stats & Information tracking, the Warriors pushed the ball up the court via a run out or outlet only three times in the fourth quarter after doing so 22 times in the first three quarters.

Of course, Houston could say the same thing. The Rockets played only seven men Tuesday night, and the seventh man in that rotation, Gerald Green, logged just 12 minutes.

Aaron Carey, who attended St. Vincent/St. Mary six years after James graduated, has organized a GoFundMe account and hopes to raise $1 million to commission a life-size statue of James.

“First of all, thank you,” James said at Cavs shootaround Monday morning when informed of the planned statue. “It would be cool, not only for myself, but for my family and all the people that had anything to do with this journey thus far. I’m appreciative even of the thought.”

Carey has already reached out to artist Omri Amrany, who designed and built several of the bronze statues outside Staples Center in Los Angeles honoring former Lakers.

Amrany rendered a design of a high-school-age James in his signature headband and No. 23 high school jersey midflight on a hammer dunk with one tweak — he’s wearing his first signature Nike shoe, the Air Zoom Generation, which weren’t released until James was in the NBA.

James was asked what pose he would want for the statue.ravens_123

It was humbling to hear — and, frankly, Paul Martin didn’t want to listen.

The San Jose Sharks defenseman had undergone surgery over the summer to repair ligaments in his ankle. Three games into the season, he aggravated the injury and was sidelined for two months. He injured his back at the gym, setting him back even further. Finally, on Dec. 7, he returned to the Sharks’ lineup against the Carolina Hurricanes. After the game, his coaches delivered some tough love: He still wasn’t ready for prime time.

Martin, who had signed a four-year, $19.4 million contract with San Jose in 2015, coached himself into some own tough love: he was determined to make the most of his situation. On the first road trip to Tucson, he treated the team to a steak dinner. He made it a point to get to know his teammates and share tips he had learned, and took 22-year-old Mike Brodzinski, a fellow University of Minnesota product, under his wing. The team wholeheartedly embraced its new big brother.

The Redskins covet both Minkah Fitzpatrick and Vea. Expect a team to move up for Fitzpatrick if he falls past No. 11, but the Redskins would be happy with either of the two.

Calvin Ridley, WR, Alabama: Arizona might have to wait until a later round to pull the trigger on a quarterback. Instead, Ridley would add another dimension as a deep threat to a potentially explosive offense and provide a needed option beyond Larry Fitzgerald.

Marcus Davenport, DE, Texas-San Antonio: Facing his last draft in Baltimore, Ozzie Newsome might be inclined to find Terrell Suggs’ successor with the massive Davenport, who would be well-served by some pass rushing classes at Ball So Hard University.

Leighton Vander Esch, LB, Boise State: No team gave up more yards per carry (4.9) last season than the Bolts. Vander Esch’s lateral speed and battering-ram hits would be a salve, especially if he shows more restraint in his pursuit.

He hasn’t done much with them, going 6-for-32 with just two RBI and 13 strikeouts, but a 10th start may help him catch the often walk-happy Ross with a little less zip, following his Friday gem that taxed him for 127 pitches.canucks_666

Patriots acquire OT Trent Brown from 49ers

The San Francisco 49ers have traded offensive tackle Trent Brown and the No. 143 pick to the New England Patriots in exchange for the No. 95 pick.

Brown, who is coming off season-ending shoulder surgery, flew to Foxborough on Thursday to undergo a physical Friday. When healthy, he is regarded as one of the premier pass-blocking offensive tackles in the league.

Brown’s contract will expire after this season, and the 49ers were looking for a more physical run-blocking tackle, which is why Brown became expendable in San Francisco. On Thursday night, the 49ers used the ninth pick in the 2018 first round on Notre Dame offensive tackle Mike McGlinchey, who is expected to take over as the starter at right tackle.

After using their top 2018 NFL draft choice on Georgia offensive lineman Isaiah Wynn, the Patriots have added two players who project to contribute along the offensive line this season.

In the third, the Bruins scored two 4-on-4 goals after matching penalties opened up the ice. Krug made it 4-4 on a slapper from the point just 1:10 in, and then DeBrusk put the Bruins ahead.

“I think that we’re all just pretty excited right now to have a chance to continue playing together and take on Tampa,” DeBrusk said. “We’re going to enjoy this one tonight, but then go back to the drawing board.”

Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy, in his first full season on the Boston bench, was named a finalist for the Jack Adams Award as the NHL’s coach of the year. … Celtics Hall of Famer Tommy Heinsohn was the honorary fan banner captain, getting the crowd riled up before the game. … The Bruins are 14-12 in Game 7s and Toronto is 12-11. … Boston’s Kevan Miller had two assists for his first multi-point playoff game.

Kershaw surrendered three runs on five hits in five innings against the Marlins on Wednesday and fell to 1-4 on the season.

Overall, though, betting on the three-time Cy Young Award winner has been profitable. If you bet $100 on the Dodgers in each of Kershaw’s starts since 2008, you’re up more than $1,500.

Antonio Senzatela entered for injured starter Tyler Anderson, hit an RBI double and allowed one hit over 3 2/3 innings to lift the Colorado Rockies over the Miami Marlins 1-0 Friday night.

Senzatela (2-1) entered with one out and one on in the second after Anderson appeared to hurt his left side. Senzatela struck out four and walked one, departing after 62 pitches.

Anderson initially showed discomfort when warming up before the second inning but persuaded manager Bud Black to leave him in the game.dolphins_077

Manager Aaron Boone let Severino throw a 112 pitches — a season high by a wide margin.

“My groin’s good. My knee’s good. I’m feeling healthy ,” Haden said, via ESPN. “I was able to get a full offseason workout. My last two offseasons I haven’t been able to train like I wanted to. This year, I got after training like I never have before.”

At 29 years old, Haden is entering the last portion of his prime, if he hasn’t left it already. Once a top-10 corner, his multiple injuries have hampered both his play and his availability. He avoided the worst of such issues in 2017, appearing in 11 games and recording seven passes defensed to go with one interception, but his numbers also resembled his final campaign in Cleveland (13 games, 11 passes defensed, three interceptions).

“I felt I did everything I could there, so it’s pretty hard not to feel slighted, not to feel a little disappointed with the way everything shook out,” said Hall, who played 381 games with the Oilers from 2010 to 2016 without a single playoff appearance.

In his first season with New Jersey, Hall played fine. He had 20 goals. He had 33 assists. He played 19:20 per game and instantly made a moribund lineup more dangerous offensively.

But Shero didn’t acquire him for “fine.”

“He’s capable of more,” said Shero at the start of this season, “And he knows that. We met at the end of the year for a long time. That conversation [concerned] what I was about, what he was about and what I saw. I want to make these guys better. Unless I’m honest with him, as to what I see, I’m not going to make him better.”

His previous high was 94. Severino struck out six, walked two and allowed three hits, including Teoscar Hernandez’s sixth-inning solo shot to left field. It was the first bomb Severino had given up in his initial five starts.

Ex-Yankee Jaime Garcia, the Blue Jays’ starting pitcher, went 5 1/3 innings, coughing up four runs.

The Yankees separated themselves for good from the Blue Jays with a two-run second inning. After Gary Sanchez’s leadoff walk and Tyler Austin’s strikeout, Andujar rocked a double down the third-base line. Sanchez scored to make it 2-0. With two outs, Austin Romine hit his own double, a liner to right field to bring home Andujar. seahawks_057

This is what is called tough love.

Pat Shurmur, the new Giants head coach, met Ereck Flowers over the phone, calling him the day the Giants signed Nate Solder in a major free-agent splash.

“I embraced him by saying he’s a tough guy,” Shurmur said this week at the NFL owners’ meetings, “but I also told him we brought in a guy that’s gonna play left tackle, and we want him to move over to right to compete to be a player there and that we’re hopeful he’s gonna be one of our best five.”

This was quite the how-do-you-do. Flowers, the No. 9 pick in the 2015 draft, has exclusively been the starting left tackle in his three years with the Giants. He was a left tackle in college at Miami. The Giants, though, gave Solder a $62 million deal, and he is not switching sides.

Shurmur said Flowers was respectful and did not say much over the phone when informed of his moving to the right side. The Giants want Flowers to earn his spot at right tackle and have not guaranteed him a starting job. If this fails, a move inside to guard could be an option, but not a good one.

“Possibly, he’s a good enough athlete,’’ Shurmur said. “Sometimes out of necessity you’ll take a tackle and put him at guard because your third tackle can’t play guard. The intention is for him to play right tackle.”

“The longer Gronkowski goes without saying he’s all in, the chances of him being traded increases, the source said.”

Following the Patriots’ 41-33 loss to the Eagles in Super Bowl LII last month, Gronkowski, 28, did not commit to playing another year in New England.

“I’ll sit down in the next couple of weeks and see where I’m at,” the five-time Pro Bowler said.

Rumors later surfaced that Gronkowski considered hanging up his cleats permanently following a tense mini camp over the summer.

“He didn’t enjoy himself in 2017,” NBC Sports Boston’s Tom E. Curran said in late February. “[Gronkowski] did not have a good time despite the fact his body was in a better situation than it’s been in a long time — ever maybe. Despite the fact that he’s one of the most dominant players at any skill position, it’s starting to wear on him physically, mentally, the atmosphere in New England.”
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Report: Seahawks have offered Sheldon Richardson $11 million per year

I’ve been the West Coast, pro-style offense.I’m not sold on that.LSU is a different animal.But we still need to find a way to score.Havlicek’s legend was born Boston, and it grew to the level of all-time great.

Charles Robinson of Yahoo Sports spotted Kaepernick going through a workout at a field in Houston (though clearly not for the Texans, Lord, we all know that wouldn’t happen).

It’s unclear why he was in Houston, or whether there’s any immediate plan for him to actively pursue work in the league.

He’s been out of work since his kneeling during the national anthem in 2016 became a national conversation, with President Donald Trump stoking a fire by referring to wanting to fire any “son of a bitch” who kneeled during the song. Kaepernick has filed a collusion grievance against the league regarding his lack of employment for any rational football reason.

The 6 forward was highly touted coming into 2014 Draft, and Atlanta selected him No.Adeyemi, the 6-foot-4-pound defensive end, started 23 his final two seasons, registering 28 tackles and two sacks last year a where the Huskies reached a bowl game for the first time five years.I definitely this is interesting point that you buy a lot of the conversation begins it’s definitely something that our wave and skiing.NFL officials say was evaluated for a concussion and was taken to a nearby hospital to have his spine checked.

Word on Tuesday morning was that the Saints and quarterback Drew Brees were closing in on a new deal.

According to a report from NFL Media, that deal is now done. Brees is set to sign a two-year deal worth $50 million. The deal includes $27 million in guaranteed money.

Acevedo said?that if the police see Bennett on the street prior to him turning himself in, they will arrest him. The charge of injury to the elderly carries a maximum 10-year prison sentence and a $10,000 fine, according to the district attorney’s office.?

The move has paid immediate dividends with Belt reaching base five times and scoring twice the two since the lineup shift.26czqV8ltV Tony Lombardi.He wouldn’t be perfect next to James Harden, for example — although the Houston Rockets might score a gazillion points with that pairing — but a team like the Utah Jazz would be ridiculously fun with at the point.bring it on.MAKING HIS had his breakout 2005.
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In surprise move, Colts cut last year’s prized free agent Johnathan Hankins

The Indianapolis Colts have released their biggest free-agent signing from 2017 one year into his deal.

For the Colts, the move was not financially-driven, but it does save them some cash. The Colts will reap an immediate $8.468 million in salary-cap savings. Because of the structure of Hankins’ deal, the Colts will carry no dead money on their salary cap. Hankins’ $10.5 million in compensation for 2017 all hit the Colts’ cap last year.

It’s not clear whether the Colts tried to trade Hankins. But that effort likely would have been undermined by a trigger in his contract that would have guaranteed $4.5 million of his 2018 base salary if he was still on the roster by Sunday. Because other teams knew the Colts were facing a deadline to make a decision on Hankins, they would have had little leverage in any trade talks because Hankins being cut was the likeliest outcome.

The Colts do have a number of interior defensive linemen on the roster, but none with Hankins’ ability. The position likely will need to be considered in the draft and throughout the remainder of free agency.

Among those remaining are nose tackle Al Woods and defensive tackles Hassan Ridgeway and Grover Stewart.

The Bears put the transition tag on Fuller before the start of free agency, which meant he could negotiate with the rest of the NFL but the Bears would have right of first refusal. A source confirmed a report from the Chicago Tribune that Fuller had signed an offer sheet with the Packers on Friday, the terms of which weren’t immediately known.

Several hours later, NFL Network reported that the Bears had matched the offer, which was reported to be four years, $56 million, including $18 million guaranteed.

The one-year transition tag comes with a one-year salary of $12.971 million, which means the Bears only had to pay $5 million more in guaranteed money to get Fuller signed to a long-term deal.

There may be details of the contract that affect how much Fuller receives, such as a very large base salary or roster bonus in 2018. But it wouldn’t have made sense for the Packers to do such a contract because if the Bears didn’t match they would have been stuck with a huge salary-cap number, which they can’t afford.patriots_086

Rockets ‘shocked’ Clippers stars avoided discipline

The Rockets and Clippers provided some fireworks Monday night, with both teams getting into extra-curriculars late in the game.

Houston believes Blake Griffin intentionally made contact with coach Mike D’Antoni, and guard Austin Rivers provoked a scene that led to Trevor Ariza and Griffin getting ejected.

After the game, Rockets forwards Ariza and Gerald Green entered the Clippers’ locker room to confront their players and have since been suspended two games. The Rockets would like to know why Clippers players weren’t suspended, too.

Both redshirt junior Mikal Bridges and junior Jalen Brunson appeared on our latest big board, ranking the top 60 prospects eligible for the 2018 NBA Draft. Bridges is a projected top-10 pick while Brunson could be a 10-year player as a backup point guard.

Bridges is the more sought after prospect. At 6-7 and 210 pounds with a 7-2 wingspan, he embodies the versatility that’s pervasive in the modern NBA. Offensively, he should be able to slot in at either wing spot and, with a bit more weight, he’ll probably be able to play some small ball power forward in the right lineups.

“If I didn’t I would be in trouble,” Frazier said after the game, per New York Daily News. “I wanted to keep the swelling down.”

Fortunately, he is not suffering from blurred vision.

If you know and trust everyone in your league, you can skip trade reviews altogether. That way, when you make a trade minutes before a game starts, you can immediately insert those new players into your lineups. However, generally speaking, it is wise to give your fellow managers a day or two to vote on whether to veto a trade. (Note: Check your league rules to see how many votes are required to veto a trade.) It’s important to note that a trade should not be vetoed simply because you feel it may be lopsided. Quite often such trades turn out to be just fine or the managers had good reasons to make the deal, even if it seems one-sided. Vetoes should be reserved for when collusion or blatant tanking is involved and will affect the integrity of the league.
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Why would a Super Bowl MVP who played with a smile plastered on his face be on this list?

Opposing quarterbacks completed 55.8 percent of passes (58 of 104 attempts) when targeting Amerson for a 62.7 passer rating, according to Pro Football Focus (PFF). Amerson regressed in 2016. PFF had 64.5 percent of passes (60 of 93 attempts) completed against him for a 101.1 passer rating.

He was one of the NFL’s best blocking receivers, but that led to some cheap shots, like the time he broke Cincinnati linebacker Keith Rivers’ jaw on a crack-back block. Ward was voted the NFL’s dirtiest player by his peers in his 2009. As far as AFC North opponents go, Ward is at or near the top of their most-hated lists.

Tatum was a hard-hitting safety known as “The Assassin,” and he became the poster child for the villainous Raiders teams of the 1970s. He was involved in two unforgettable big hits — one on the “Immaculate Reception,” and the other in a preseason game that left Patriots receiver Darryl Stingley paralyzed. Those are two plays that overshadow everything else Tatum did on those nasty defenses.

“By the reaction of our sideline I know a lot of guys felt it was a dirty hit,” said Packers coach Mike McCarthy.

“I think it was an unnecessary hit,” Rodgers said. “It’s unfortunate. If I throw a better ball that situation doesn’t happen. He’s a repeat offender, so I’m sure the league will deal with him according to that.”

The Raiders, 4-5 and struggling to stay alive in the AFC playoff chase, stayed home in Oakland to prepare and didn’t fly to Mexico until Saturday. But Oakland players, for weeks, have been riding stationary bikes while wearing an elevation masks in an effort to acclimate to the thin air conditions.

It’s impossible to know if the Bills are actually any good since they only beat the Jets, but one thing’s for sure. They know who their bread and butter player is on offense: LeSean McCoy.

Not only did McCoy rush for 110 yards, but he also tacked on 49 receiving yards, a total that includes an impressive conversion second-and-20 that you can see below.

Even though he picked up his first career win, new Bills coach Sean McDermott has probably already forgotten about this game because he had an even bigger game next week. The Bills will be traveling to Carolina, which is where McDermott spent the past six seasons before being hired by Buffalo this year.

Where is everyone going? They don’t know by now that nothing’s going to happen, that punts are followed by TV timeouts?

Ever debrief someone who just attended his or her first NFL game in years? Primary impressions include how often both teams have to loiter on the field — just standing around — awaiting the ends of commercial breaks before the game resumes.nike-youth-cardinals-070

Justin Timberlake will headline the Pepsi Super Bowl 52 halftime show on NBC at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minnesota on Sunday, Feb. 4.

Timberlake has won ten Grammys and numerous other awards. He’s been recognized for a range of performances, including Best Male Pop Vocal Performance, Best Pop Vocal Album, Best Dance Recording and Best Music Video. Timberlake was most recently nominated for an Academy Award for the song “Can’t Stop The Feeling!” from the film “Trolls,” for which he won his 10th Grammy.

The Browns struggled to generate offense after that drive though with Hogan under center. Kizer was able to return after being checked out and try to rally his team back in the fourth quarter. He had the Browns rolling in the right direction before throwing an interception in the end zone:

The Eagles and Chiefs took part in a low-scoring battle for much of Sunday’s game, but the Chiefs were finally able to break through thanks to Travis Kelce’s Michael Jordan impression:

Martavis Bryant did something Sunday that he hadn’t managed since Week 13 of the 2015 season: Haul in a regular-season touchdown reception. If you’re counting fingers and toes, that’s 651 days. Bryant missed the 2016 season because of a suspension, but came into 2017 as a key cog in what was expected to be one of the league’s best offenses.

Starter Sam Bradford tested out his injured knee Sunday morning and the team has decided not to risk his health, and will instead start backup Case Keenum, according to CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora.

The Buckeyes were able to reel in five-star defensive tackle Taron Vincent, ESPN 300 defensive tackles Tommy Togiai and Tyler Friday, ESPN 300 defensive end Tyreke Smith and three-star end Alex Williams to go with junior college tackle Antwuan Jackson to fill the depth chart for the future. — Tom VanHaaren

Let’s face it: Georgia’s offensive line overachieved last season. So it’s no wonder that Kirby Smart went heavy in the trenches by signing five O-linemen, including Cade Mays, ESPN’s No. 3 offensive tackle, and Trey Hill and Jamaree Salyer, the No. 1 and 2 guards. — Scarboroughchargers_038