Sean Payton: Brandin Cooks with zero targets was ‘unusual’

Coach Sean Payton said he is “not concerned” about receiver Brandin Cooks’ apparent frustration with his role in the New Orleans Saints’ offense.

Cooks wasn’t targeted despite playing 45 snaps in the Saints’ 49-21 victory over the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday. Cooks then made reference on Instagram to needing to become a “businessman,” and sources told ESPN that he has expressed growing frustration throughout this season — mostly over being used as a clear-out receiver instead of a primary option.

“Listen, Cooks is a real good football player, and we work extremely hard on these game plans,” Payton said Wednesday. “I’d say it’s a little unusual that we have a game where all of a sudden he’s not targeted. But the first play of the game is supposed to be his play, and we don’t get the right coverage look. We’ll keep working at finding those opportunities for him to get those touches.
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Lewis is going through struggles of his own this year with the Bengals potentially heading toward one of their worst records in his 14-season tenure (he went 4-11-1 in 2008 and 4-12 in 2010).

“I think coaches work harder, turn over more stones, they become better coaches, better people when … you’re a touch off,” he said.

“When you’re winning, you’re doing the same thing, you’re just not questioned by the masses here. It doesn’t change your outlook on things. I think the players have a hard time wondering why you’re climbing up their butt when you’re winning. Now they won’t have to question that right now. That’s part of it. It’s what we are in professional sports.”

That’s all I can tell you. And then the next year after that, and the next year after that, some of those things that seem so insurmountable that first season, you realize you’re going to get through, things are going to work out and you’re going to find a way and it’s going to work well for you. I think that’s important in a tough season we all go through.”

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The Vikings could save $13 million in cash and against the salary cap in 2015 by releasing him

Hopefully that goes over well. It’s still exciting.”

He also seemed prepared for the Reshad Jones Authentic Womens Jersey idea of not wearing a New England uniform in 2015, though he admitted that scenario was the last thing on his mind while the Patriots were making their Super Bowl run last month.

At one point a Cleveland Browns beat writer asked him about Johnny Manziel and how last year’s must-see rookie quarterback’s first-year struggles will impact him. Winston waved it off, for one of the more refreshing moments of the 10-minute melee. He wasn’t worried about it, and reminded the audience that he was “not Johnny Manziel.” At least he wasn’t asked to “talk about” it.

The highlight of the whole affair came with just a few questions left on the clock when he reminded the huddle masses of pleated khakis about his weight.

“A lot of people thought I was fat, but I’m proving everybody wrong. I look good and I know it.”

The Vikings could save $13 million in cash and against the salary cap in 2015 by Ryan Tannehill Authentic Womens Jersey releasing him. Despite rumors over the weekend that the Vikings asked him to take a pay cut and that Peterson was seeking a trade to the Dallas Cowboys, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported that neither was true.

In 2014, there wasn’t a defensive or offensive starter that ranked among the top-14 players in special teams snap counts, per Demovsky.

He’s dealt with multiple injuries that have slowed him down and he wound up being the No. 4 receiver on a middling Dolphins team in 2014. He caught just 29 passes for 295 yards and a touchdown last season, but should be able to find a backup job somewhere in the league at 27 years old.

The advanced metrics also gave him high marks, with Pro Football Focus rating him as the eighth-best safety in the league and giving him strong grades in coverage and against the run.

NBA shopping season is starting to warm up as Dec. 15 draws near

The passage of Thanksgiving does not typically spark a shopping frenzy in the NBA.

You’ll realistically have to wait another three weeks for that, until Dec. 15 hits and nearly 130 players who signed new contracts in the offseason become eligible to be stuffed into deals.

Yet there is a hint Laurent Duvernay-Tardif Authentic Womens Jersey of trade chatter in the air as November dribbles to a close. You wouldn’t describe it as anything super saucy yet, but there are players and situations to monitor. Such as:

Greg Monroe: Seven, zero, two and eight. Those are the minute totals Monroe logged in Milwaukee’s four games leading into Thanksgiving. The esteemed Zach Lowe and I had a good discussion on the Lowe Post podcast this week about the challenges in trading big men in the current market — specifically big men who are defensively challenged. The Bucks have explored the possibility of trading Monroe since last season’s deadline in February, which illustrates how hard it can be, but the limited role he has in Brewtown these days is akin to screaming that the 26-year-old is available.

Maybe it’s because Kerr lived on the periphery of so many rosters, and maybe it’s just best practices, but Kerr does intend to use everybody, even if it drives some fans crazy. It’s good for overall morale, and it’s insurance for when things go wrong and an understudy must step up.

Stephen Curry delivered a smooth, 34-point night after a rougher outing Len Dawson Authentic Womens Jersey Friday in Los Angeles. Again, Durant was casually excellent, this time to the tune of 28 points on 17 shots. Klay Thompson pitched in with 23 points on 17 shots. The trio did as they needed in Green’s absence, demonstrating how this superteam might differ from others: The Warriors can be down an All-Star and still look like the Warriors.

It requires everyone else to do their jobs, as happened on Saturday night, but it’s perhaps a unique advantage. The Warriors are better off having everyone, but they have so much and use so many, they can weather the moments when they don’t.

Huston Street and Jonathan Papelbon also ranked in the top 10

Those results and Chapman’s inconsistency in the postseason point to the bigger picture: One reason relievers are so dominant these days — there were 51 relievers who pitched at least 50 innings with Seth Roberts Authentic Jersey an ERA below 3.00 in 2016 and 61 in 2015 — is precisely because they do pitch so few innings. Would Britton go 47-for-47 in save opportunities if he pitched 110 innings instead of 67? Would Chapman average 14 K’s per nine innings if he had to pitch two innings on Tuesday, two innings on Thursday and then again on Saturday? It may be smarter for managers to shift more innings to their best relievers and away from their sixth and seventh guys, but they do so at the risk of the best guys not being as effective.

Some things worth remembering:

In just about any complex negotiation, there is disagreement. There are fights. There are arguments. There are threats. There is middle ground that needs to be identified. It’s part of the process.

The labor agreement expires on Dec. 1, but it’s a very soft deadline, because there are no games being played; there are no player payrolls being met. There aren’t hard dollars at risk at the moment, only theoretical dollars. It really can’t be classified as a serious situation until one side or the other interrupts spring training, and that’s about 75 days away.

The two sides are making incredible money, dollars that their predecessors could have Shilique Calhoun Authentic Jersey only dreamed of. MLB executives rightly tout the growth in the industry, with its revenues now somewhere in the range of $10 billion.

In the postseason, I think the trend of shorter stints for starters may continue, although keep in mind that eight of the 29 starts this postseason of fewer than five innings belonged to the Indians and their somewhat unusual circumstance. Still, the overriding lesson that Francona understood is to manage with urgency in the postseason.

Bill Belichick: Josh McDaniels worthy of consideration for head-coaching job

Bill Belichick knows what it’s like to be a longtime NFL assistant coach in hopes of landing a head-coaching opportunity, and that seemed to be the impetus for him to tout three of his top staffers for that type of opportunity during his Tuesday conference call.

Specifically, Belichick was asked about a report on NBC’s “Football Night in America,” which was detailed by Pro Football Talk, that said offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels was not included on an NFL Ken Griffey Authentic Womens Jersey preliminary list of head-coaching candidates for 2017. The list, which includes Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia, is put together by the NFL’s Career Development Advisory Panel, according to PFT.

The Raiders emerged from Monday night’s victory against the Texans in Mexico City relatively healthy, though middle linebacker Perry Riley Jr. appeared to be suffering from a hamstring issue during the game. The problem from a team standpoint is that, because Riley wears the green dot communication helmet, adjustments have to be made quickly when he comes out of the game, and usually Malcolm Smith assumes the green dot helmet in Riley’s absence. Rookie Cory James and Ben Heeney, who’s on injured reserve, have also worn the green dot thus far this season.

The Chargers should get some players back after the bye week, with wide receiver Travis Benjamin (knee), safety Jahleel Addae (clavicle) and inside linebacker Denzel Perryman (hamstring) all on target to play on Sunday against the Texans. The addition of Addae, who missed nine games this season, will provide a boost to a San Diego pass defense ranked No. 28 in the league. “He has the most experience out of Michael Lorenzen Authentic Womens Jersey everybody in the room,” safety Dwight Lowery said about Addae. “So to bring his energy, physicality, passion and also knowledge of the defense is going to help us tremendously.”

Left tackle Taylor Lewan has a sprained left knee and is day-to-day after suffering the injury late in the Titans’ loss in Indianapolis. If he can’t go, the Titans are likely to play Dennis Kelly in his place. Kelly replaced Lewan after he was ejected early in Tennessee’s big Nov. 13 win over Green Bay. He plays as tackle-eligible in three-tight end sets. The Titans could bring in Brian Schwenke at left guard and move left guard Quinton Spain to left tackle on plays in which they want Kelly in that role.