Marvin Lewis reaches out to Hue Jackson to offer support

Cincinnati Bengals coach Marvin Lewis said he offered some encouragement to Cleveland Browns coach Hue Jackson after Cleveland dropped its 12th game of the season.

Jackson, the Bengals former offensive coordinator, was emotional after Cleveland lost to the New York Giants 27-13.

As he spoke at the podium after the Browns endured their 12th loss in 12 games, coach Hue Jackson turned emotional before composing himself and said going winless is “the hardest thing ever.”
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“Being 0-12 is probably … the hardest thing ever,” Jackson said Sunday.

Jackson and Lewis are very close and have maintained regular contact in the form of texts or phone calls since Jackson left Cincinnati to take the Browns job, except during weeks they play each other. Lewis made sure to give Jackson a call after hearing about the press conference.

“I was told about it and just reached out and encouraged him,” Lewis said.

The two likely won’t be talking much next week when the Bengals travel to Cleveland to face the Browns for the second time. Cincinnati’s last win this season came against the Browns in October.

And then came the hateful Twitter messages from people telling him to “do your time and quit being a criminal,” Allen recalled.

Allen tried not to panic but admits he was devastated. The whole ordeal felt like a “gut kick,” he said. His stomach was uneasy. He didn’t know what to say. Eventually, he prayed for guidance.

Hollis Thompson Authentic Jersey “That’s what makes it so difficult — to question my character,” Allen, 34, told ESPN.

The man who pleaded guilty to federal fraud, conspiracy and money laundering charges is Will D. Allen, the 2001 first-round pick of the New York Giants who also played for the Miami Dolphins and New England Patriots. The non-criminal Allen was drafted in the fourth round in 2004 by the Tampa Bay Bucs and also played for the Dallas Cowboys and — most recently — the Pittsburgh Steelers from 2013 to ’15.

Adrian Peterson’s agent involved in ‘heated exchange’ with Vikings executive, per report

The drama between the Minnesota Vikings and running back Adrian Peterson shows no signs of letting up. In the latest report, Peterson’s agent, Ben Dogra, got into a “heated verbal altercation” with a front office executive about the veteran back and his status with the team, according to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports.

Dogra reportedly got into Mike Pouncey Authentic Womens Jersey a fiery argument at the NFL Combine with Rob Brzezinski, Minnesota’s vice president of football operation, and “made it clear that Peterson would never play there again.” According to the report, it was a very public altercation and had to be broken up by former Tampa Bay Buccaneers general manager Mark Dominik.

The report comes less than a week after Vikings general manager Rick Spielman praised Peterson and stated the team wanted him to return. However, just two days later, the All-Pro running back said that he’s “still uneasy” about returning to the Vikings because he felt a lack of support from the organization during his 2014 suspension.

Peterson was indicted for child abuse and later pleaded no contest to charges of reckless injury to his 4-year-old son. He played one game before being suspended for the rest of the season. Peterson still hasn’t been reinstated, and is currently not eligible to do so until April 15. He, along with the NFLPA, are engaged in a battle with the NFL over the discipline taken.

It’s a murky situation, especially given that Peterson’s NFL future was in doubt around the time of his suspension and he has a rather burdensome contract. Peterson still has three years on his deal and a total of $48 million coming his way if he plays out the full term.

Hopkins, 22, had a torn ligament in the wrist and needed a pin and rod to be inserted to Nat Moore Authentic Womens Jersey repair the damage. The Texans wide receiver said that the procedure was minor and he should be able to resume normal activities soon. Hopkins finished 2014 with 76 receptions for 1.210 yards and six touchdowns, although he managed just five yards in Week 17 while dealing with his wrist injury.

Even without Draymond Green, Warriors still look like themselves

With Draymond Green out with a left ankle contusion, the Golden State Warriors still managed to beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 115-102 on Saturday night. Even when lacking an All-Star, this superteam can roll. Such is the luxury of this much talent, but victories also require role players to step up in different situations.

Not a even a week ago, it KeiVarae Russell Authentic Womens Jersey seemed as if young Kevon Looney was fading from the rotation. Suddenly, with Green out, the 20-year-old big man was thrust into the starting lineup. After revealing as much in pregame, Warriors coach Steve Kerr prompted a minor shock when he confirmed that Looney would indeed start off guarding the incredible Karl-Anthony Towns. “Yes,” Kerr said flatly of the assignment. “What else would you like to know?”

While Kerr would prefer not to play undermanned, he also relishes the opportunity to use guys who rarely play. “I’m actually really excited for tonight’s game,” he said before facing the Wolves. “I think it’s a great challenge for us.”

Remember our encylopedia-length Weekend Dimes back in the day? On Fridays, whenever the schedule allows, we like to try to recapture the spirit of the WD thing with a mini Son of Weekend Dime … because you know what nostalgic saps we are here at Stein Line Live.

Omri Casspi: You undoubtedly want to know if Sacramento is going to trade DeMarcus Cousins or Rudy Gay between now and the Feb. 23 deadline. The answer remains: Too soon to say. The closest thing to a trade lock in the California capital is the exit of the popular Casspi, whose representatives have been blessed by the Kings to search out potential deals now that the versatile swingman — coming off the best year of his career — has been exiled from the rotation by new coach Dave Joerger.

Brandon Knight: Suns general manager Ryan McDonough recently went on the Kenneth Acker Authentic Womens Jersey Burns & Gambo radio show in Phoenix and proclaimed (A) that he isn’t actively trying to trade Knight and (B) that he’d prefer to take at least two months to evaluate his team before seriously considering trades. None of that, however, has stopped interested rivals from believing that the struggling Knight — who started two games this week with TJ Warren out but mostly comes off the bench for the Suns — will be made available.

Red Sox first base coach Ruben Amaro Jr. was the Phillies’ assistant general manager in 2007

A year later, they played starring roles in a World Series championship.

“I think it was very important for us to go through that,” Victorino said by phone. “It was a wake-up call. We went on that miraculous run to win the division, and we ran into a team that was Rodney Hudson Authentic Jersey that much better and that much hotter. It was definitely a stepping-stone for the next year.”

Red Sox first base coach Ruben Amaro Jr. was the Phillies’ assistant general manager in 2007 and recalls the coaching staff preparing the players for their first postseason by trying to duplicate the atmosphere of the regular season, especially late September, when they were pushing to win the division title. Farrell and his coaches attempted to do the same with the youngest Red Sox players before the Division Series opened in Cleveland.

That never happened with Branca. Even as his career fizzled after 1951, he handled his moment in history with good sport. He and Thomson became friends, and in retirement often appeared together at card shows or on talk shows. He became a successful financial executive after his baseball career and he ran the Baseball Assistance Team organization for 17 years, helping those who faced financial difficulties in their post-baseball lives. One of his daughters married Bobby Valentine.

One of the greatest guys to ever throw a pitch or sing a song is longer with us. Ralph Branca Passed this morning.

My colleague Jayson Stark wrote on Monday that this blueprint could even spill over into Ronnie Lott Authentic Jersey the regular season:

Frankly, when we’ve surveyed veteran relievers about this trend, many have expressed great skepticism that anyone could make it through a season healthy while assuming a workload remotely similar to Miller’s postseason role.

But they should know that, in their very own front offices, the folks who are gazing into baseball’s future aren’t so sure of that. Not anymore.

rookies Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott have blossomed into Rookie of the Year favorites

For one thing, rookies Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott have blossomed into Rookie of the Year favorites, and maybe even MVP candidates, while sparking Dallas (9-1) to the NFL’s best record.

Washington (6-3-1) has lost Jay Bruce Authentic Womens Jersey just once in its past eight games. Washington was 0-2 after the loss to Dallas and Cousins was catching heat after one of the final two drives ended with him missing a fourth-down throw to Pierre Garcon.

Now he’s the quarterback, playing under a $19.53 million franchise tag, they can’t let get away in the offseason.

“It’s a long season,” Cousins told USA TODAY Sports, recalling the mind-set of 0-2. “You’ve got to stay the course and keep playing.”

It was the familiar chant from the stands, screamed repeatedly over Joe Morgan Authentic Womens Jersey the years.

We want Dallas!

“I noticed that,” Washington’s big-money cornerback said on Tuesday.

He laughed when sharing his initial thought.

“Okay, go out there and take ‘em on,” Norman wanted to tell the fans.

Surely, a legion of burgundy-and-gold enthusiasts would relish the opportunity. Some would probably dress in battle fatigues like John Riggins and Co. did for the trip to Big D for one classic chapter during the 1980s. But Norman realizes it’s up to him and his teammates to represent on this particular mission, which plays out on the grand stage that is football on Thanksgiving.

Still, there’s nothing like a reminder about the temperature of one of the NFL’s most storied rivalries – with intensity that ebbs and flows depending on the won-loss relevance at any given time.

Drake’s fake beef with the Warriors is the most Drake thing

You may be shocked to hear this, but Drake made the Raptors’ annual Drake Night all about Drake. It’s in the name, after all — can you blame him?

Durant and Drake may be friends on other nights, but not on Drake night. He doesn’t even give a damn about Drake night, you hear him?

Other Warriors piled on Dennis Rodman Authentic Womens Jersey after the game.

“He’s been talking junk for a couple of weeks now, talking about how they were going to beat us and that it’s ‘Drake Night,’” Draymond Green told the San Francisco Chronicle. “He may be a little disappointed.”

Thibs: We gotta straighten it out and straighten it out fast. … The commitment to improve and to learn, that has to change.

— Jon Krawczynski (@APkrawczynski) November 16, 2016
Andrew Wiggins, the team’s star small forward, has his own theory behind Minnesota’s third-quarter woes. To Wiggins, the team is just getting too comfortable.

“I feel like we get too cool. Like we come out too cool, we see the score, we see we’re up, so we think we have a cushion,” Wiggins said, via Jace Frederick of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. “But any good team is going to make that run in the third. We can either make that run and push the lead to 20 and make the game over, or they can make that run.”

Ricky Rubio, Minnesota’s veteran point guard, knows the team’s roster Derrick Rose Authentic Womens Jersey has enough talent. For Rubio, however, the lack of improvement is a major concern.

“I’ve been here five years, and this is my sixth, and this is the best team I’ve ever been around, and I get mad thinking that we’re wasting time,” Rubio said. “We’re not learning. It’s time to change it.”

The third-quarter struggles are bizarre when considering Thibodeau’s efficient coaching history. He’s won nearly 64 percent of his career games, which ranks 16th all-time and one spot ahead of Pat Riley. In 2014-15, his last season with the Chicago Bulls, the team ranked fourth in the NBA in third-quarter net rating, according to NBA.com.

The Matt Ryan resurgence is one thing

Kirk Cousins is playing just well enough for Washington to bring him back on a long-term deal, which is a reasonable achievement given that it was hardly out of the question to think he might regress to his prior self this year. More so than Cousins, really, Washington is piecing together a deep roster under Scot McCloughan. Players such as Jamison Crowder and Robert Kelley are in meaningful roles, in part by excelling thanks to injuries elsewhere. The offensive line is coming together. They suddenly have a deep pass rush, with Trent Darryl Tapp Authentic Womens Jersey Murphy up to seven sacks and Preston Smith adding 3.5 sacks over the past four games to complement Ryan Kerrigan. This is a team in transition, but there’s a lot of promise for the future.

The Matt Ryan resurgence is one thing. It’s another to see the rest of this team begin to blossom around him. They have a pass rush now! Vic Beasley had one sack through the first four weeks, then broke out with 3.5 sacks in Week 5. He’s up to 8.5 in his past six games now, although his ratio of sacks to knockdowns (9.5 to 10) suggest that he has been a little lucky. And the addition of Alex Mack at center has both put Ryan at ease and helped create a running game; Kyle Shanahan’s offense is seventh in rushing DVOA and leads the league in overall offensive DVOA, which isn’t bad for a guy who was probably on the hot seat heading into the season. Now, it might be tougher for the Falcons to keep him in town altogether.

The Dolphins have been hit by short-term injuries to players such as Reshad Jones, but after an ugly loss on national television to the Bengals, they’ve gone 4-1, including wins over the Steelers and Bills. They’re sixth in DVOA after beating the Chargers last week, although FPI has them at 19th. Adam Gase hasn’t made huge inroads into fixing Ryan Tannehill as of yet, with the perennially-on-the-cusp starter mixing good games with ugly ones, but the offensive line has improved dramatically with the addition of Laremy Tunsil in the first round. And after flirting with C.J. Anderson and signing Arian Foster this offseason, the Dolphins have stumbled on a No. 1 back in Jay Ajayi, which gives an offense that has been pass-happy under different coordinators for years some semblance of balance.

Tyrod Taylor’s ability to make plays with his arm or feet has pushed DeAndre Levy Authentic Womens Jersey him into the top 10 in QBR for the second straight season.

The Bills also have managed to coax excellent seasons on defense out of the likes of Lorenzo Alexander and Zach Brown, castoffs who were injury replacements for Buffalo’s first two 2016 draft picks, Shaq Lawson and Reggie Ragland. The Bills are still on the outside looking in this year, given that FPI leaves them with a 20.3 percent shot at making the postseason, but Taylor reupping his credentials as a starter and Ryan reminding us of his defensive bona fides augurs some hope for the future.

Seager’s own unique concoction of baseball ideas pushed him to the second-most hits in the NL

Seager’s own unique concoction of baseball ideas pushed him to the second-most hits in the NL (193) and the fourth-most total bases (321). Again, the totals were not just compared with NL rookies but all NL players. Seager was fifth in runs in the NL (105) and seventh in doubles (40), extra-base hits (71) and batting average.

The hope for the Dodgers is Authentic Austin Seferian-Jenkins Jersey that Seager’s first-year numbers are just a baseline from which to move forward. And while it sounds like an extremely high bar to set from the start, there is one person who knows that the youngster has the tools to make it happen.

“All three of my boys, it all clicked into them very early to work very hard,” Jeff Seager said. “We always talk about, ‘[It’s] the work when nobody is looking that counts, right?’ And they do. I don’t worry about them thinking, ‘I can’t get better. There’s nothing more I can do to improve. I’m tapped out.’

Celtics fans need only rewind to the 2011-12 Authentic Ben Ijalana Jersey season. Horford tore his left pectoral muscle and underwent surgery in mid-January. After three months of rehab, he initially declared himself out for the opening round of the postseason, before being given the OK by his operating doctor to return as early as Atlanta’s regular-season finale. Horford still waited an additional 10 days, until Game 4 of the Eastern Conference first-round playoff series against the Celtics, to make his postseason debut (this after the Hawks lost an overtime thriller to fall behind 2-1 in the series).

When Horford tore his right pectoral muscle in late December 2013, he sat out the rest of the 2013-14 season. Despite being 10 months removed from the injury at the start of Atlanta’s training camp in October 2014, he still elected to sit out the Hawks’ first two preseason games. He then eased himself back with an 11-minute stint in Atlanta’s third preseason tilt.

The encouraging news for Celtics fans: Horford went on to re-establish himself as an All-Star in that 2014-15 season, while appearing in 76 regular-season games. In fact, if you take away the two seasons in which he had pectoral injuries, Horford appeared in 93.7 percent of Atlanta’s games in the other seven seasons.

Horford traveled with the Celtics on a two-game road trip last week with the goal of playing but returned to Boston early. The Celtics were not scheduled to engage in full-throttle practice activity on either of their practice days this week.

“They knew I was kind of struggling a little bit in the beginning, and we kind of had some conversations to calm down, stay within yourself, all the different stuff,” Seager said about chats with various members of the coaching staff. “As it turned around a little bit, you talk to them more and more and more, and it just made the comfort level greater and greater, and it kind of translated into that.”

Injuries ended Silatolu’s career early and Kalil is nearing the end of his career

They’ve invested a second-round pick on a lineman only twice in the past 10 drafts, center Kalil in 2007 and guard Amini Silatolu in 2012.

Injuries ended Silatolu’s career early and Kalil is nearing the end of his career.

By comparison, the Dallas Cowboys — with an NFL-best 8-1 record — drafted an offensive lineman in the first round in 2014, 2013 and 2011. They Mike Wallace Youth Jersey also committed a first-round pick to running back Ezekiel Elliott this year.

Carolina hasn’t spent a top-three pick on a running back since selecting Jonathan Stewart in the first round in 2008.

That Dallas is second in the NFL in rushing (1,449 yards) and Elliott leads the league with 1,005 yards has allowed the Cowboys to prosper with rookie quarterback Dak Prescott after Tony Romo was injured.

Robert Griffin III should be back from injury this season, according to Browns VP of football operations Sashi Brown.

Griffin, though, has not been cleared to play Morgan Cox Youth Jersey a in game and won’t play Sunday when the Browns face the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Though Griffin might be ready to practice in some form, he could be limited and would have to work his way back before practicing fully.

Before he could return to practice, Griffin must be “designated to return” from injured reserve by the team. Once he begins practicing, he can practice for up to 21 days before the Browns have to make a decision on returning him to the active roster.

The club must determine whether it’s worth starting the 21-day clock this week, or waiting.

Earlier this season Josh McCown was cleared to practice as he recovered from a broken left collarbone. He was not ready to play a game for two or three more weeks, though. That is where the Browns are with Griffin, who broke a coracoid bone in his left shoulder in the season opener.

Like it or not, Ravens earned right to be in sole possession of first in AFC North

The Baltimore Ravens took sole possession of first place in the AFC North, and some will want to put an asterisk next to their name.

The Ravens sit atop the division, but they did so by crushing the winless Cleveland Browns 28-7 on Thursday night. Baltimore is the only team in the AFC North with a winning record, but its win over the Pittsburgh Steelers last Sunday came with Ben Roethlisberger at less than full strength.

It’s time to hold off on the “but …”

Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco threw Marshawn Lynch Authentic Jersey three touchdown passes against the Browns but was intercepted twice. Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
The Ravens (5-4) did what they had to do to turn around their season. Sure, Baltimore might not look like a playoff team in all phases of its game. The Ravens, though, might be the best team in a bad AFC North.

“What we are is what we are,” wide receiver Steve Smith Sr. said. “We have to accept that, and we have to keep working hard. What are we? 5-4. We could be 4-5 or we could be 0-9. You have to appreciate where you are and not take anything for granted.”

Two reporters in Boston, Tom Curran of CSN New England and Steve Burton of WBZ-TV, tweeted Tuesday morning that Belichick wrote a letter to Trump and that the words Trump read aloud were his words.

As for Brady, his wife Gisele Bundchen implied to Michael Bennett Authentic Jersey a fan that neither she nor Brady would vote for Trump. Asked on Instagram if it is true that the pair supported the Republican candidate, Bundchen – who rarely responds to Instagram comments – replied with an emphatic, “NO!”

While Brady told radio station WEEI early Monday morning that he hadn’t voted yet, he did vote later, submitting an absentee ballot in Brookline, Mass., where he lives.

Sherman subsequently dove at the ball and took out the legs of kicker Dan Carpenter, which should have been called unnecessary roughness. Many called it a dirty play, saying Sherman wasn’t going for the ball.

Well, he responded on Tuesday morning with one simple picture that sums up his defense of the play.

The ball wasn’t thrown in his direction, nor was it going to be with Taylor rolling away from the play. Sherman recognized the opportunity to take out one of Taylor’s targets and used it to his advantage – legally.