The NFL is again in the news…In the third quarter of last night’s 35-14 Green Bay Packers blowout, receiver Davante Adams caught a short pass on third-and-goal. He was being held up by a Bears defender well short of the goal line. The play, for all purposes, was over. Linebacker Danny Trevathan came in and drilled Adams in the head with an unnecessary, vicious helmet-to-helmet hit. Adams was taken away from Lambeau Field in an ambulance after he was taken off the field.
Adams gave a thumbs up signal as he left the field.
It appeared Trevathan initially celebrated the hit. He was called for an unnecessary roughness penalty following the play. Why wasn’t he ejected from the game?? This seems like an easy call. The officials in the game should be reprimanded for not ejecting Trevathan, while the NFL is at it. A message needs to be sent that headhunting and trying to injure fellow players isn’t OK with the league.
Football is violent. That won’t change. For better or worse it’s part of the game. But there should be at least some basic respect and decency for fellow competitors. There was none to be seen from Trevathan on what will end up (hopefully) as the dirtiest hit of this season. Trevathan apologized for the hit after the game and said he will reach out to Adams.
The NFL continues to do everything wrong.
There are no excuses for the way Trevathan lowered his helmet and crushed Davante Adams's head. Even if Trevathan didn't intend to send Adams to the hospital, the league can't allow such brutal, needless plays to go unpunished. A 15 yard penalty isn’t the answer. Time to do the obvious right thing, time to institute the college rule of immediate ejection for targeting. A suspension is in order. This is a no brainer. Yet, the NFL has up to this point, does not see the obvious. Like so many other things.
Another day, another win. The Yankees are playing some pretty good baseball right now. They recorded a 6-1 win over the Rays on Wednesday night and have now won 18 of their last 24 games. The Yankees are a season high 20 games over .500 and their next win will be their 90th. Way better than anyone (including myself) predicted for this “re-building“ team.
The Red Sox won again, so their magic number to clinch the AL East is down to 2. The Yankees would likely need to win tonight, and sweep the 3 against the Blue Jays on top of getting a whole lot of help from those same Jays and Astros, in sweeping the Red Sox. The Yankees focus is now on the Wild Card game. While anything is possible and I’d love to see them automatically advance to the Division Series, I’m mentally preparing myself for Oct. 3 at the Stadium, with Luis Severino taking the mound against the Twins.
Clearly, making money is the point of any business venture including a baseball team. While it would be ideal to play a best of 3 series, Major league owners will never give up the income home games bring. To have a best of 3 Wild Card Series, the season would have to be shortened by a few games. (I would suggest 4 games, just 2 home games). Not going to happen! No one wants baseball mid November.
The current 1-game format boils the entire season down to which team has the better pitching ace. In 2014, despite having homefield advantage for the Wild Card game, the Pittsburg Pirates lost to the San Francisco Giants because they happened to have Madison Bumgarner who went on to have a historic postseason. Having Luis Severino pitch on Tuesday gives the Yankees a pretty good chance of repeating history. But a bad hop, or a missed strike three call could end an entire season in less than 3 hours.
Like it or not It’s going to be a one and done. Unlike 2015 against the Astros, I think the Yankees are clearly the better team here and should take down the Twins. But again, anything is possible.
Aaron Judge unleashed his 49th and 50th home runs, tying and then breaking Mark McGwire’s rookie record for home runs in the Yankees’ 11-3 wipeout of the Royals at Yankee Stadium. Both times he circled the bases with his head down. No bat flips. No wild choreographed celebrations. No embarrassing moves. Just class. Too bad a certain someone who plays in the Meadowlands didn’t take notice.
All this time after Carmelo Anthony forced his way to Madison Square Garden, he forces a trade to the Thunder, and finally gets to play for a real team again. He came to the Garden to get paid. He heads to the Thunder to win, something he could never do in New York.
So Odell Beckham once again shows off his immaturity. When Bob McAdoo was asked if he said anything to Beckham, his response was… “We keep our personal conversations personal,” when asked for his reaction to his antics, he said: “Next question.” Pretty much the same answer when asked why Erick Flowers is still starting at left tackle, and Paul Perkins is still his starting running back.
It looks like the Red Sox will hold off the Yankees for the title in the American League East. You can go back to that Sunday night at the Stadium when Rafael Devers took Aroldis Chapman out of Yankee Stadium in the top of the 9th.
The so called “Great” Giant defense was gashed for 193 rushing yards Sunday, but everyone is talking about Beckham. And that’s exactly what Odell wants.
The Reds, Mariners, Padres and Rockies all announced Thursday they plan to extend the protective netting at their ballparks for the start of the 2018 season, all spurred on by the terrible happenings at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday. Come on, Hal, it’s your turn to do the right thing.
Yesterday was an ugly day in the NFL. Stadiums across the US and outside of the US became the focus of an unprecedented show of defiance against President Donald Trump Sunday, as some NFL players locked arms or refused to stand for the national anthem, saying that they are protesting racial and social injustice.
While I’m a firm believer of Freedom of speech, you don’t make political or social statements while at work, (yesterday, players were working) and you don’t make those statements during the national anthem. You don’t disrespect our flag or those defending it. Yesterday the NFL took a gut punch.
Another cruel gut punch was delivered to the New York Giants and possibly their entire season not by the stunning 61-yard field goal that gave the Philadelphia Eagles the victory Sunday, but by the realization that they may have found their offense, even as their own lack of discipline might have already made it too late. They lost 27-24.
The Giants sputtered for 3 quarters, failing to score even a single point and then moved the ball better than they have this season only to be stopped by questionable officials' calls, third-down failures, dumb penalties, dropped passes, poor run defense and one terrible McAdoo play call at the goal line.
Even when the Giants began to score, they stumbled. Beckham's first touchdown, which pulled the Giants to 14-7, seemed to ignite the team. But then he crawled on the ground, and raised his leg as if he was a dog peeing on a hydrant. The result, was a unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. Then there were cornerback Eli Apple’s two pass interference calls that cost the Giants 51 yards.
Brad Wing, normally one of the NFL’s most dependable punters, muffed a punt that traveled a grand total of 28 yards. One 19-yard Carson Wentz pass to Alshon Jeffrey and the longest field goal in Lincoln Financial Field history later, the Giants are 0-3.
In the history of the NFL only 3 teams have made the postseason when starting 0-3. This means the Giants would need to win at least 10 of their final 13 games if history holds true. There’s nothing to indicate they’re capable of such a feat. Not with Odell continuing to be Odell, McAdoo continuing to be McAdoo and the Giants collectively finding ways to lose.
The Yankees are still in hot pursuit of the A.L. East crown, but the Red Sox’s extra-inning escapes against the Rays, Orioles and Blue Jays in recent weeks have kept the Yankees from catching up. They have gone 14-4 in their last 18 games and gained only 1.5 games on Boston. Unless the Red Sox go like 3-7, and the Yanks keep winning, they will host the American League Wild Card Game.
Therefore, it’s time to look at the two likely potential opponents for the Wild Card Game: the Los Angeles Angels and Minnesota Twins. The Yankees are 4-2 this season against the Twins and 2-4 against the Angels. While these are very different teams from past iterations of the Angels and Twins that the Yankees faced in the postseason, those records certainly mirror recent history between each franchise.
So which team is a better matchup for the Yankees in a one-game scenario? We’ve seen the case for why the Yankees would want to face the Twins this week. With Minnesota visiting the stadium, the Bombers were able to beat both of their top starters — Ervin Santana and Jose Berrios — while holding the Twins’ hot lineup at bay. Budding star Byron Buxton went 0 for 10 with a walk and was a non-factor in the series. Miguel Sano is still on the DL and he provides their biggest power source.
Perhaps the best reason to face the Twins is their bullpen. The Yankees got into the bullpen quickly against Berrios, who has significant home-road splits and therefore may not be the choice for the wild card game. Rookie Trevor Hildenberger has been their best reliever in recent weeks, but the rest of the bullpen is highly beatable. Matt Belisle is their closer and has converted just 7 of 12 save opportunities. The Yanks slapped them around in the just completed 3 game sweep.
Why would you want to face the Angels? Pitching, pitching, pitching. This team doesn’t have a clear starter for a one-game playoff, let alone a staff that you could see an easy path through nine innings. Three of their best starters — J.C. Ramirez, Matt Shoemaker and Alex Meyer — are out for the year. Their closer, Huston Street, threw four innings this year and is out for the season.
In the middle of the Angel lineup is Mike Trout and Albert Pujols. Pujols still bats in the middle of the lineup despite batting just .242 and is an enormous negative on the basepaths. Teams have begun using extreme shifts to limit him further. The more he bats in the middle of the order, the worse things go for the Angels. But, lets not forget Trout. He’s like having a right-handed hitting Mickey Mantle for a one-game playoff. The guy can dominate a game both at the plate and in the field. Scary.
My take? While Twins look to be a more complete roster, I’d rather not face Mike Trout and co. in a one-game playoff. It’s kind of irrational because one player can’t beat you unless you let him. And in a five- or seven-game series, I feel like the better overall roster is a bigger advantage. Yet in a one-game series, having the best player on either side could be magnified, particularly if that player can do what Trout does. The Bombers have the best lineup, the best starting pitcher — perhaps the top four starting pitchers — and the best bullpen of any wild-card contender. However, anything can happen in a one-game playoff.
Then there’s the outside chance that Boston stumbles in their last 10. Ready for a miracle?
What did we learn from the Giants’ 24-10 loss to the Lions on Monday night? Mostly that right now the Giants look like a bad football team. You can joke that perhaps the current Giants wanted to honor the 2007 championship team by matching their 0-2 start from that season, but nothing we saw Monday night was remotely funny. Actually, it was a disgrace.
It marks the first time in franchise history that the Giants have lost their first two games by 14 or more points. No team has won a Super Bowl after such a start, and only two of 32 to do that under the current playoff format (since 1990) even bounced back and made the playoffs.
There were many failures last night and last Sunday. The biggest failure is Eric Flowers and the offensive line. Yes, the Giants' offensive line has been bad as a whole, and yes, Flowers is not the only issue, but numero uno IS Flowers. McAdoo needs to act like a head coach and do the obvious and yank the 2015 ninth-overall pick before something disastrous happens, like quarterback Eli Manning not getting up from one of those hits he's miraculously always weathered. The Giants have made it clear there is no real "help" for Flowers in their dysfunctional offensive scheme via chipping backs or tight end assistance, so why keep pretending it's going to get better?
While most of the criticism was on the Giants' poor offensive line play, McAdoo was also critical of Eli after the game. Manning is standing behind a completely ineffectual offensive line and throwing to players that are dropping passes. At what point does the finger get pointed at the coach? Eli made a mistake, possibly one that came because he was worried about getting sacked for the nth time on a blitz he saw. He was trying to get his offense reset with the new audible and he ran out of time... terrible but somewhat understandable. The sideline could have called timeout, they didn’t. McAdoo has shown time after time that he has no clue how to manage a game, but he's gonna stand up there and rip his quarterback for botching the game and not being in tune with situational football?
Between their 0-2 record, Beckham's ankle injury, a clueless head coach and the team's lousy offensive line, it's hard to imagine how the 2017 season could've started worse for the Giants. Someone needs to buy McAdoo a mirror, then he and Reece can stand in front of it and see what we all see.
Baltimore pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez, who came in with an 11.42 ERA against the Yankees in three appearances this season, somehow turned into Corey Kluber, racking up 10 strikeouts, making the chances of the Yankees catching the Red Sox slimmer and slimmer. The Bombers missed an opportunity to gain ground on the Red Sox, who lost to the Rays, and remained 3 games behind the division leaders
With just 13 games remaining, time is running out on the Yankees. And now they need to deal with the Twins. Like the Yankees, they are ahead of schedule in a rebuilding scenario, winning just enough with a bunch of young players to turn this season into a run at the postseason. You may not know many of the names, but they can put runs on the board. They scored 13 on Sunday against the Blue Jays, and they're leading the American League with over six runs per game since Aug. 1st - despite star slugger Miguel Sano being out the last three weeks with a leg injury.
The Yankees need to win this series, to maintain their lead in the Wild Card. The reward is hosting THAT game against, you guessed it, these same Twins who currently have a 2 game lead over the Angels who have a chance if the Yankees were to sweep.
While never admitting that the goal is setting up his pitching for THAT game, Joe Giardi will not let the Twins see Luis Severino. The Yankee ace's regular turn to pitch is Wednesday, the final game of this three-game series, but Joe is pushing Severino's next turn back to Friday in Toronto, as he continues to use a six-man rotation for a second straight turn. The primary motivation is making sure Severino is lined up to pitch in the THAT game against the Twins or even the Angels.
Is it impossible to catch the Sox? Of course not, but the reality is getting ready for Oct. 3 at home in a one-and-done situation against an opponent to be determined.
While the chances of the Yankees catching the Red Sox are low with only 16 games left, the prize is big because should they win the top wild card spot and win that game, the reward would be the red hot Cleveland Indians. Winning the division gives them a series against the Astros and If I have a choice, I’m packing my bags for Texas instead of Ohio.
There’s nothing like facing Orioles pitching to keep those hopes alive. The Bombers hammered the Orioles on Thursday night, in the first game of their four-game series. The final score was 13-5, and it was only that close because some September call-up relievers made a mess of things late. Unfortunately, the Red Sox also won, but the Baby Bombers were on fire.
The Baby Bombers I’m talking about are Aaron Judge and Gary Sanchez. Judge and Sanchez went deep in consecutive at-bats in Thursday's win, and the back-to-back homers turned out to be milestone blasts, respectively, for the Yankees' homegrown young sluggers.
Judge clubbed three-run shots in the fourth and sixth innings for a career-high six RBI -- and an AL-best 43 homers for his rookie year -- with the latter eclipsing Curtis Granderson's mark for the most home runs at home by a Yankee (27) since the new Stadium opened in 2009. He now has 11 home runs, 24 RBI and a whopping 1.781 OPS in just 16 games against Baltimore this season, essentially comprising a quarter of his overall power production (43 homers, 96 RBI).
Sanchez hit his 31st of the season (85 rbi’s). That marks the most by a Yankee in one season for a player whose primary position is catcher, eclipsing the previous franchise mark shared by Yogi Berra (twice) and Jorge Posada.
Rediscovering his stroke after a prolonged second-half slump, Judge along with Sanchez give us hope that just maybe the Yankees can catch the Red Sox and send them to Texas. Too bad they don’t play the Orioles for the next 16 games.
The best possible beginning to the NFL season was the Patriots getting waxed by the Chiefs last Thursday night. Don’t you agree?
All of the problems from 2016, when the Giants offense averaged less than 20 points per game and failed to reach that mark in their last 6 contests, are still evident. Three points is an embarrassing output for any NFL team, let alone one that believes it is a Super Bowl contender.
Yankees win 3 in a row. Have to think Betances, Robertson and Green are all unavailable tonight. They're going to need Gray to go 7 and then I guess they'll turn it over to Kahnle and Chapman for the 8th & 9th. Of course, if the yanks want to win by 10, that'll be fine too.
The U.S. Open has to take a hard look at the way it schedules its night program by next year. Because the idea that three matches ending at 2 in the morning at this Open is good for business is dumber than a bag of rocks.
Eli Manning completed only four passes targeted more than 10 yards down the field on Sunday night. There were too many short throws on third down that had no hope of getting first downs, and a couple of missed opportunities due to off-target throws when the line did give him a chance. And then there was the forgotten Brandon Marshall.
Jacoby Ellsbury set the all-time MLB record last night… in drawing catcher’s interference. In the 4th inning, he swung at a full-count pitch that went foul but his bat nicked the catcher’s mitt. That, by definition, was catcher’s interference and the 30th of Ellsbury’s career. He surpassed Pete Rose’s record as the king of the category in the ML history. I’d prefer he had passed Pete’s 4,256 hits record.
A month ago, who would have predicted in September that the Indians would go more than almost 3 weeks without losing and that the Dodgers would go nearly that long without winning?
Before I start…I am a Giants fan, and yes, I picked the Cowboys to win the division. Here’s why. Either you blindly ignore the numbers and reality or accept the reality and hope a few things go in our favor.
The Cowboys went 13-3 to take the NFC East last season. All three of their regular-season losses came within the division, including both games to the 11-5 Giants. It won’t be that easy this season for both teams.
There's no doubt the Cowboys and Giants took advantage of favorable schedules last season to inflate their records, combining for 24 wins. But facing both the NFC and AFC West as well as each other, both teams will roll back a bit. Their schedule is brutal this season, with games in Oakland, Denver, Arizona and San Francisco, they will face many miles on the road.
The 2016 Giants' spending on defensive improvements paid off with a much-improved unit that went from weak to often dominant. The familiar defensive line strength returned with Damon Harrison and Olivier Vernon, and the secondary became elite with Janoris Jenkins flanking young superstar Landon Collins, and let’s not forget JPP.
But the two other things critical to recent New York rings let the team down: the power running and Eli Manning. There's hope, with Paul Perkins' promotion plus the additions of Brandon Marshall and Evan Engram, that the offense will discover the gear needed to push to the top. The Giants are bound to have some big ups, but they still will hit some similar snags. The O line is still a huge question mark (left tackle, right guard), as is the play of Eli. Then of course, there is the Odell circus. This is not to say the offense won’t be better, but there ARE question marks.
Sunday’s game is a big one. They must stop Elliot who will play because the NFL wants huge ratings on its first Sunday night game. Their defensive line has to win in the trenches against the best O line in football. Big blue has to have a running game, and Eli has to have protection and he has to spread it out, as Beckham (he WILL play) will be doubled all game long. Marshall and Engram should be the options. If the Giants win, then just maybe they can take the division, if they lose, then best case scenario is a season split which leads me to believe they finish 11-5, behind Dallas’s 12-4. Either way, I’m a Giants fan and hoping they go 16-0.
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