Monthly Archives: November 2016

Derek Carr’s deep passing game improved after pinkie injury

A lightsaber being wielded by his father had nothing to do with it, though. Rather, it was a mistimed snap between center Rodney Hudson and Carr that did the damage. Yet the Force was indeed with Carr in the Raiders’ 35-32 victory, in which they led 24-7 at halftime and trailed, 32-24, in the fourth quarter.

It was Carr’s fifth game-winning drive in the fourth quarter or overtime this season, the most by any Oakland Raiders quarterback in a single season.

Brown finished the Browns game with 603 Michael Brockers Youth Jersey catches, and a week later, he posted his first-career three-touchdown game against the Indianapolis Colts. Brown now has 608 catches since entering the league in 2010. He’s on pace for his fourth straight year of at least 110 grabs.

Roethlisberger didn’t need a lot of pass plays to make an impact because of his efficiency downfield. He went 5-of-8 with all three of his touchdowns on passes thrown at last 20 yards downfield, the second time this season he’s thrown three touchdowns on such passes in a game. No other quarterback has done that once this year. Not surprisingly, Roethlisberger had a 99.9 Total QBR and gained more than half of his EPA when targeting Brown on Thursday.

Mariota posted a career-high 98.6 Total QBR in the Titans 27-21 win over the Bears. It was Mo Alexander Youth Jersey Mariota’s NFL-leading fourth game with a QBR above 90 this season and sixth of his career.

On Sunday, Mariota was nearly perfect on third down, completing 7-of-9 passes for 74 yards and two touchdowns on third down. He also took a zone-read rush 29 yards on 3rd-and-1 to set up a field goal late in the third quarter. Mariota’s biggest third-down play was a 29-yard touchdown pass (plus-2.0 EPA) to Rishard Matthews late in the first half that gave the Titans a 21-7 lead.

Overall, Mariota added 8.5 more points to his team’s scoring margin than an average QB would have with the same number of plays, the best mark of any QB in Week 12. In the past five weeks, only Kirk Cousins and Dak Prescott have added more QB points than Mariota.

The Chiefs could give the Denver offense some problems as well

Given the seemingly lopsided nature of the matchups when the Chiefs have the ball, the burden will fall as usual on the defense if the Chiefs are going to win. The Chiefs could give the Denver offense some problems as well. But if the game is to be Cairo Santos Authentic Womens Jersey decided on a down-by-down basis, the Broncos have the advantage. The Chiefs are lugging around a consistently unproductive offense. Kansas City will have to force turnovers in big numbers or otherwise make up for offensive deficiencies with some big plays in the kicking game. Those things are difficult to predict. It’s not hard to predict offensive futility Charcandrick West Authentic Womens Jersey from the Chiefs because we’ve seen it in most of their games this season. Broncos 24, Chiefs 17

The onside kick occurred after the Redskins had closed the score to 24-19 and had all sorts of momentum with 9:22 remaining. They were finally cashing in opportunities, and the sense certainly was that Dallas would have a hard time stopping them. The Redskins entered knowing they might try an onside kick based off a certain look that they received.

“We had the look exactly the way we wanted to,” Gruden said. “We just kicked it a little hard. Twelve foot putt, we hit it 15 feet. Those are chances that, if we see something that’s there and we practice it and we like it, we’ve got to take chances to do it. It can change the course of the game. It was worth a chance.”

Hopkins added, “If that ball went 5 yards less, I give those guys a better shot. I just caught it too heavy. It was there. I just hit it too hard. Any kick like that is taking a chance, but I limited our chances in that I hit it too hard.”

The Redskins couldn’t really stop Dallas’ offense enough, either, as the Cowboys scored on five of their seven possessions (in which they weren’t killing the clock). So maybe Dallas rolls downfield anyway. The problem is the defense. One reason Gruden likely went for it was knowing that they needed to keep pushing to try to win and couldn’t rely on a three-and-out. Or any-amount-of-plays-and-out, no matter where they started.

“We joked about it,” Baldwin said. “I’m sure you guys know now we’ve been begging for that play for a couple weeks now, trying to get that done. However, I didn’t want it in the red zone. I wanted the target in the red zone.

Lions come from behind to win (again) and take control of NFC North

The Detroit Lions never make it easy on themselves this season. Not ever. Not once. Yet these are the moments quarterback Matthew Stafford lives for. These are the games the Lions are so comfortable in at this point.

Trailing in the fourth quarter? No Jim Plunkett Authentic Jersey problem. Need a big defensive play in a big moment? No problem. If you’re trying to figure out how the Lions might end up as a playoff team and as an NFC North winner, it was encapsulated in the final five minutes Thursday against the Minnesota Vikings.

Stafford drove the Lions down the field for a game-tying field goal. Darius Slay intercepted Sam Bradford deep in Vikings territory on a third down. And then Matt Prater made a field goal to give the Lions a 16-13 victory and so much more.

“I would love to be up by 14, but when you’re in that situation, if you shy away from it at all, in my experience, it’s tough to have a chance,” Stafford told ESPN earlier this week. “So you got to go out there and embrace it and make the guys out there feel as confident as you are.”

Newton’s drop statistically isn’t significant across the board. According to ESPN Stats & Information, Newton’s total quarterback rating is slightly higher (61.2) than it was after 10 games in 2015 (58.7).

But if the Panthers John Matuszak Authentic Jersey miss the playoffs, Newton will be in rarified air. The last reigning MVP quarterback to play 10-plus games and miss the playoffs was Boomer Esiason, who started 15 games for an 8-8 Cincinnati team in 1989. Esiason was 7-8 as the starter.

The last five MVP quarterbacks to miss the playoffs the following season all played eight or fewer games due to injuries.

Tom Brady was the last. He played one game in 2008 after being named the MVP the previous season.

Newton, who has missed only one game, doesn’t know why his numbers are better from Thanksgiving on. He doesn’t really care.

But despite it all, the Redskins had a chance. Just like they’ve had in other games. Make a few more plays in this game or others and the Redskins’ season looks a lot different.

“That’s just the difference in winning and losing in the NFL,” defensive end Chris Baker said. “One play here, one play there. We have to find a way to make those plays.”

This loss isn’t the end of the world, but it could have vaulted the team into a new place.

McCown picked up where he left off for the Cleveland Browns

After Kessler left the game with an injury, McCown picked up where he left off for the Cleveland Browns and posted a 25.6 Total QBR. Like Kessler, McCown was sacked four times and completed about half of his passes (14-of-27) against the Steelers. He had a costly fumble in the fourth quarter which was returned for a TD by the Steelers (negative-1.7 EPA), as it came when the Browns were within one score, and sealed the victory for Pittsburgh.

Overall, Kessler and McCown combined to post an 18.2 Total QBR on Sunday, which was the team’s worst QBR in a game in the past two seasons. The Cleveland QB roller coaster continues as the health Dwight Freeney Womens Jersey of Kessler remains a question.

They simply needed to have more wins banked by now. They were lucky to start the year 3-0 while outscoring the opposition by just 13 points, and they were subsequently unlucky to go on a four-game losing streak while being outscored by only 18 points. It’s a shame, because the Ravens do have a genuinely great defense, especially against the run, in which they were No. 1 in DVOA going into Sunday, and then held Ezekiel Elliott to 97 rushing yards on 25 carries, which is impressive given Elliott’s recent standards of ridiculousness.

The Colts have to hope that Luck, who missed nine games last season due to injuries, will be able to get through the concussion protocol before their Dec. 5 game at the New York Jets because an extended absence will severely damage their chance of catching the Texans.

“You don’t ever want to be without anybody, but we have been down this road before Grady Jarrett Womens Jersey and handled it well,” Pagano said. “Faced a bunch of adversity and obstacles just like everybody else. This team that we are playing was without theirs [quarterback Ben Roethlisberger] for a game or two, I believe. It’s a part of the National Football League. Our guys will respond and it’s a matter of everybody stepping up their game.”

Promoter Kathy Duva, right, says Kovalev has more drive to succeed

“I had been around boxers before Sergey and I knew how difficult it was for me to talk a guy into a fight,” Klimas said. “They’ve been, for example, three months at the Don Turner camp and I call [the fighter] and say, ‘Look, we’re going to have a fight in three weeks.’ You know the answer I’m getting? ‘I don’t think I’m gonna be ready.’ What? You in the freaking camp for a month and now you’re telling me you’re not going to be ready in another three weeks? This man [pointing at Kovalev] never said that. He probably doesn’t even know how to say, ‘Who is my Brad Richardson Authentic Jersey opponent?’

“Every time I called Sergey [and said], fight on Saturday, [he said], ‘Good, what weight, where?’ That’s it. Never asked me is he right-handed, is he left-handed, how many amateur fights did he have, what’s his background? He’s not making any money but he knows he needs to go to fight. How can you not believe in him?”

Since Duva first saw him she has believed in him, too.

“Obviously, our attempts are way up,” McCarthy said. “But let’s be honest with how people are playing us, what’s going on on the video. We’re being challenged aggressively as far as coverage schemes. So it’s definitely real production.

“You look at the game in Tennessee [a 47-25 loss], I understand what the final score was, but there was a point there in the third quarter — maybe about the 7-minute mark — we clearly thought we were back in the game and didn’t get it to one score. The production that we were having as an offense was a big part of that, and they didn’t back off scheme-wise. They were as aggressive in the fourth quarter as they were in the first quarter. So it’s definitely real production.”

Adams: In what has been a breakout season for the third-year receiver, Adams is on pace for 88 catches, 1,104 yards and 10 touchdowns — all career highs. Last season, he caught 50 passes for 483 yards and one touchdown. Adams already has been targeted 70 Brandon Prust Authentic Jersey times in nine games.

Cobb: Despite missing one game (and half of another) because of a hamstring injury, Cobb is on pace for 84 catches (which would be second most of his career) but only 811 yards (fourth most) and just five touchdowns (fourth most).

Tim Tebow hits .194 in Arizona Fall League, awaits next step with Mets

Former NFL quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow’s baseball career doesn’t quite measure up to NBA legend Michael Jordan’s baseball résumé — not yet, at least.

Tebow, who signed a minor-league contract with the New York Mets in September, completed the six-week Arizona Fall League season on Thursday with a .194 average (12-for-62).

Below are the trendsetters at each position, both the primary and the secondary players. These are the players who will set the market, in terms of years and dollars, for the rest of the free-agent class.

Starting pitchers

Primary: Rich Hill, LHP

Secondary: Jason Hammel, RHP, and Ivan Nova, RHP

Hill is going to set the Rhett Ellison Authentic Womens Jersey market for starting pitchers, and because he’s clearly the best starter available, he’ll do better than similar starting pitchers a year ago in terms of years and dollars. Despite being 36, he’ll likely get a third year on an upcoming deal, something John Lackey wasn’t able to get last year.

This despite the fact that his exit velocity on pulled baseballs was, at 91.3 mph, almost identical to his 2015 figure (91.6 mph). His exit velocity on pulled line drives went up, from 97.2 mph to 98.7 mph — and yet his doubles on pulled liners dropped from 16 to five, and homers from five to two. His average exit velocity on pulled fly balls went up, from 95.7 mph to 99.1, and his average distance on pulled fly balls dropped only from 346 feet Sam Bradford Authentic Womens Jersey to 344; and yet his home runs on pulled fly balls dropped in half, from 22 to 11. Sometimes the park just holds you. Sometimes the defense is just a little bit better.

Almost everything Chris Davis did this year was as good as it had been the year before. In a small sliver of his outcomes, sent to just one sliver of the field, everything he hit turned into nothing — and for no clear or convincing reason. This is one way that a season ends up in the in-between, and it’s one way that we are overeager to declare a contract sunk 14.3 percent of the way into it.

Remembering Francona’s, Roberts’ best moments on way to becoming managers of the year

Terry Francona and Dave Roberts win their respective leagues’ manager of the year awards for 2016. Francona wins his second in four seasons and Roberts wins his first in his first career season as a manager.

Francona’s best moments

Franchise-best 14-game winning streak: June 17-July 1

The Tribe won a franchise-best 14 straight Robert Woods Authentic Jersey games beginning in mid-June. The 14th and final victory of the streak was a statement win for the team that season: a 19-inning win in Toronto. They became the first team to extend a winning streak of 14 games or more by winning a game of more than 14 innings. It was the longest winning streak in the AL since the Oakland A’s won 20 straight in 2002.

Tyler Naquin walk-off inside-the-park HR: Aug. 19 (Roberto Osuna)

What did Roberts do?

Roberts becomes the second different Ronald Darby Authentic Jersey Los Angeles Dodgers manager to win the award, joining Tommy Lasorda (1983 and 1988).

He also is the sixth manager to win the award in his first season as an MLB manager. Roberts joins Jeff Bannister (2015), Matt Williams (2014), Joe Girardi (2006), Dusty Baker (1993) and Hal Lanier (1986) to win the award in his first season as manager.

In addition, he was hired by the Dodgers without any prior managerial experience.

Dave Roberts had to use 15 different starting pitchers throughout the regular season, most in MLB. Despite using so many, Dodger starters were sixth in ERA, fourth in WHIP and one of two rotations (Washington Nationals the other) to average over nine strikeouts per nine innings.

Roberts’ best moments

First managerial win: April 4 at Padres

Roberts’ first win at the helm came on Opening Day, when the Dodgers burst out for 15 runs to support seven one-hit innings from Clayton Kershaw. The victory came against a team that interviewed Roberts for its own open managerial position, too.

Derrick Rose, Courtney Lee, Carmelo Anthony and Porzingis went on a 19-6 run to start the quarter

“I am a huge fan of his game. Obviously the sky is the limit for him,” Nowitzki said. “He’s got the deep ball. He’s got the in-between game. He is working on his post-ups. He is the real deal.”

No change to starting five — yet: After a sluggish first half for the Knicks on both sides of the ball, Hornacek changed his lineup in the second half, going with Justin Holiday over Joakim Noah to start the third quarter. The lineup of Holiday, Derrick Rose, Courtney Lee, Carmelo Anthony and Porzingis went on a 19-6 run to start the quarter, which Kyle Arrington Youth Jersey allowed the Knicks to take control.

Hornacek chose to go with Holiday over Noah to improve the spacing on offense by forcing Mavs center Andrew Bogut to guard Porzingis on the perimeter. After the game, Hornacek said he’d consider using the lineup more often, but he isn’t considering a permanent change to the starting lineup.

A first-round draft pick of the Dodgers in 2012, Seager delivered on the promise that had made him one of the top prospects in baseball. He is also one of three finalists for the National League Most Valuable Player award.

The 22-year-old shortstop batted .308 with 26 home runs and 72 RBIs, and he scored 105 runs for a Dodgers team that won its fourth straight NL West title. His 193 hits were the second-most in the National League, while his 6.1 WAR was the Kyle Juszczyk Youth Jersey fourth-best in the NL.

Seager received the maximum 150 points in the NL vote, finishing well ahead of Turner (42) and Maeda (37).

“It’s obviously awesome to win it in general, but to bring it back to L.A. — it hasn’t been there for a while, and they’re known as an organization for winning all those Rookie of the Years with Tommy Lasorda and all them,” Seager said. “So it’s pretty cool to be able to be connected to all the guys that came before you.”

Seager finished the season ranked among the NL leaders in hits (193, second), runs (105, fifth), doubles (40, seventh), multihit games (57, tied for second), extra-base hits (71, seventh), total bases (321, fourth), batting average (.308, seventh) and slugging percentage (.512, 10th). According to Stats, LLC, Seager is just the fourth rookie since 1969 to rank in the NL’s top 10 in batting average and slugging percentage, joining Dusty Baker (1972, Braves), Mike Piazza (1993, Dodgers) and Albert Pujols (2001, Cardinals).

Seager indicated that accolades such as this were the farthest thing from his mind coming into the season.

“I didn’t expect to win anything,” he said. “It’s a tough game. You don’t take anything for granted. You don’t expect anything to be given to you.”

So what do we do with an individual goal such as Chapman’s?

This isn’t as clean as we’d hoped. There are enough LOLs — more than a third of the outcomes — that we have to take seriously the possibility that we shouldn’t take the player’s demands (or his agent’s demands, or the second-hand telephoning of his supposed demands) seriously. Most day-to-day human interaction depends on our faith that people Matt Kalil Authentic Jersey aren’t outright lying to us, that the waiter isn’t copying down our credit card number so he can steal our identity, that the cop is a cop, that I really did put together this spreadsheet that I keep claiming to be working off of, that our mom really does love us. If a third of these players are seeking something totally unrealistic, it causes something close to a crisis of confidence in the whole thing.

On the other hand, the majority of these asks — nearly two-thirds — are perfectly reasonable, either as legitimate targets or as honest positions in a negotiation process.

Realistically speaking, not every free agent can land in either dream scenario; after all, there are only eight field positions and five rotation spots per team. If you closely examine each player’s skill set, however, there are destinations that can maximize any free agent’s fantasy potential, even when limiting the choices to only those that have a reasonable possibility of happening.

Today, let’s have some fun predicting such dream arrangements for some of the game’s top free agents — again, only those that have a reasonable possibility of happening. You can see all of Keith Law’s top 50 free agents right here, though not every one has a preferred destination selected below.

You’ll notice that the top free-agent closers — Kenley Jansen, Aroldis Chapman and Mark Melancon — are excluded from the list. There’s a reason: They’re all highly likely to land closer roles for 2017 wherever they wind up anyway, resulting in similar fantasy value to what they enjoyed in 2016.

Edwin Encarnacion: Houston Astros.

Remaining in Baltimore might ultimately be Trumbo’s most favorable fantasy arrangement, but Toronto’s Rogers Centre is really no less friendly a power environment for a right-handed hitter. In the event that both Bautista and Encarnacion depart, Trumbo could Michael Harris Authentic Jersey find his way into enough playing time at both first base and right field to earn dual eligibility, which would be a nice little addition.

Ian Desmond: Toronto Blue Jays.

Once again, staying put might be the best arrangement for Desmond, but a move to Toronto could improve his chances at recapturing the shortstop eligibility that he lost in Texas in 2016. Should injury-prone Troy Tulowitzki miss extended time, Desmond would be a logical fill-in, and he’d likely maintain much of his counting-numbers appeal as a high-in-the-order hitter for the Blue Jays.

The Phillies are getting two Minor League pitchers return

It is only a matter of time. The holdup is the Padres-Dodgers trade, which has Kemp and millions of dollars headed to San. One of the prospects the Dodgers receive from the Padres be flipped to the Phillies, but Kemp has to take his physical first. Once that happens — assuming he checks out — the trade be announced, and one of the most influential players Phillies J’Marcus Webb Authentic Jersey and Philadelphia sports history be headed to Los. Expect that to happen this week. The Phillies are getting two Minor League pitchers return: right-hander Zach Eflin and left-hander Windle. ranked Eflin as the No. 10 prospect the Padres’ organization, while Windle ranked as the No. 7 prospect the Dodgers’ organization. Once Rollins is traded, who is next? — Clete T. Birmingham, Ala. A team could cave and finally give the Phillies the top prospect they seek for Hamels. But that is the only way Hamels is traded — if the Phils receive at least one blue-chip prospect. The Phillies are not going to hand their best player to anybody for a few second-level prospects. That caving team could be the Red Sox. They just spent a ton of money to sign Hanley Ramirez and Sandoval. They just acquired starting pitchers Miley, Justin Masterson and Porcello. They are nice pitchers, but none of them are aces. None of them can anchor a rotation. One wonders if the Red Sox ultimately say, we have to get ace into this rotation. Let’s give the Phillies the player they want. If Hamels is not traded, I think Byrd is the most likely Phillies player to move. Too teams need power, and Byrd is one of the only options available. Amaro Jr. said Ryan ‘s salary won’t determine his playing time if he is back 2015. Why the change of opinion? — S. Philadelphia It is pretty simple, really. When Amaro torpedoed Ryne Sandberg’s desire to play Ruf more at first base the second half of 2014, Amaro did it because he was trying to drive up ‘s value. Even if there was only a 10-percent they could trade the offseason, it would drop to zero if rode the bench. they hoped would play, get hot, finish the with 100 RBIs and look good enough the offseason to a team needing a first baseman designated hitter. The Phillies are willing to eat a large chunk of the $60 million owed to, but if they cannot find a match, they’re prepared to finally give others a shot. That could mean a true platoon at first base with and Ruf, or just less playing time for. Sandberg said at the Winter Meetings that if Papelbon returns 2015 and he is pitching well, he be the Phillies’ closer. Some think Giles deserves a shot, but I’m not sure why there is such a rush to make it happen. If Giles is going to be a successful closer, I’m not sure it matters that it happens next or 2016. His time is going Jarran Reed Authentic Jersey to come. Zolecki is a reporter for. This story was not subject to the approval of League Baseball or its clubs.