Webster was declared out for the game because of a concussion.

The Dolphins again can’t take advantage of solid starting field possession. Miami commits a holding penalty on first down and it never recovers. The Raiders will take over inside their 20 following a punt.

Kayvon Webster, CB, Los Angeles Rams: Webster was declared out for the game because of a concussion.

Shawn Lauvao, OG, Washington Redskins: Lauvao exited the game in the second quarter with a stinger and was originally declared questionable to return before being downgraded to out.

And as the team has learned to live with the Elliott case, it has started to hit its stride on the field, with three straight double-digit wins to improve to 5-3 entering Week 10. Elliott is managing to have another excellent season, ranking second in the league in rushing, with 783 yards, after leading the NFL in his rookie year. His yards per carry average is down a full yard, as defenses have been keying on him, but his reception total is up this season.

Josh Doctson, WR, Washington Redskins (28.1 percent): My colleague and the unparalleled Matthew Berry has been on Doctson for quite some time, touting his skills and potential upside in the Washington offense. Doctson is an unquestionable talent who had 81 yards on seven targets in Week 11. His role should blossom even further, and this is a talent-based evaluation: This dude can play. He’s a smart addition to any roster in 12-team or larger leagues.

Through Wednesday night, per play-by-play data on Basketball-Reference.com, players had made about 80 percent of their free throws (80.3 percent, to be exact). That’s better than the league average of 76.9 percent (which is slightly down from last season’s 77.2 percent mark, the best free throw percentage in a season the NBA has ever seen), but that’s not the right comparison since teams get to choose who shoots their technical fouls.
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Ezekiel Elliott powers Cowboys past Redskins in rain

Was it raining down the entire East Coast of the United States on Sunday? It was pouring in Philadelphia during the Eagles’ win over the 49ers, in New York during the Falcons’ win over the Jets, and again in Landover. It made for a trio of soggy, mistake-filled games. Fumbles seemed only a moment away on almost every play, and for Washington, the wet conditions caused two of their own.

Once he worked through the sarcasm, Kerr reflected on the almost natural inclination of repeat NBA champions to find themselves sleepwalking through the early season. He relayed Warriors assistant Ron Adams’ recently citing an aphorism from the late Chuck Daly, coach of the Detroit Pistons’ Bad Boys: “Sometimes you have to wait on a championship team.”

A single win over a team Golden State has dominated in recent years doesn’t necessarily mean the wait is over. But if Monday night was a pulse check for the Warriors, there were strong signs of consciousness.

“It takes games like that the last two weeks to create a belief, and we were able to do that. We are on track. We’re doing some really good things, but we’ve got a lot of ball left.”

“It’s not the final goal; it’s not that we’ve achieved exactly what we set out for this season. There’s more ahead; there’s a lot of ball ahead, but we had to get to this point in this program over the last two and half seasons that we’ve been together, and to be able to reach this point in the month of October was a huge stride.
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Patriots send Falcons into a tailspin they might not be able to pull out of

Graziano: Kareem Hunt, RB, Chiefs. The Broncos are allowing a league-low 3.0 rushing yards per attempt and a second-best 71.8 rushing yards per game. You’re starting Hunt, the league’s rushing leader, no matter what. But don’t be surprised if this is the week he gets passed at the top of that list by Le’Veon Bell.

Schatz: Derek Carr, QB and Amari Cooper, WR, Raiders. Buffalo has one of the best pass defenses in the league this season, even after giving up 27 points to Tampa Bay, and the Raiders will be playing one of those 10 a.m. Pacific Time starts on the East Coast. I would shy away from both Carr and Cooper.

The Raiders play at the Buffalo Bills on Sunday and will fly to Florida after the game and spend the week practicing at the IMG Academy in Bradenton before playing the Miami Dolphins on Nov. 5.

Head coach Jack Del Rio did not speak Thursday, but he was asked Wednesday about when and how Lynch would rejoin the Raiders.

“We’ve got people that will handle that part,” Del Rio said. “Right now, we’re just focusing on Buffalo.”

Lynch has rushed for 266 yards and two touchdowns on 72 carries for a career-low 3.7 yards per rush.

Cleveland Browns left tackle Joe Thomas will miss the rest of the season due to a torn triceps he suffered in a Week 7 loss against the Tennessee Titans, the team announced Monday. Heading into Week 7, Thomas, 32, has never missed a game or snap in his career. In fact, he played in 10,363 consecutive snaps in his career before the injury.49ers_211_0fffeb26c4b77934-150x150

Colts host 49ers, look to avoid getting swept by NFC West

The Indianapolis Colts will try not to not get swept by the NFC West when they host the San Francisco 49ers at Lucas Oil Stadium on Sunday.

Because of a bizarre schedule, Indianapolis (1-3) will complete its games versus the division in Week 5. The Colts lost to the Los Angeles Rams on the road in Week 1, fell at home to the Arizona Cardinals in Week 2 and were crushed by the Seahawks at Seattle in Week 4.

The Colts, without injured quarterback Andrew Luck, handed the reins to Jacoby Brissett. The backup was 14 of 20 passing for 142 yards with a touchdown to wide receiver Donte Moncrief against Seattle and an interception that was returned for a TD.

In an atrocious second half, Brissett was 2 of 9 for 15 yards.

I feel like I’m ready, Trubisky said to reporters this week. I’m excited. I’m just going to take it day by day and prepare as hard as I possibly can for every single look and situation we can get on Monday. I’m going to be dependent on my teammates a lot. My job is to get the ball to the playmakers and just be a distributor and manage the offense and do the best I can.

The Vikings offer a difficult challenge to any quarterback, let alone an untested rookie. Minnesota ranks No. 1 in the league in third-down defense (25.6 percent conversion rate) and tied for eighth in scoring defense (19 points per game).

Vikings defensive end Everson Griffen paces the team with five sacks in the first four games. Safety Andrew Sendejo also has emerged as a leader with 32 tackles and an interception.

Bears coach John Fox said the team’s 11-day break between games allowed time to make the switch from Glennon to Trubisky. Look for Fox to try to ease Trubisky’s workload by simplifying the playbook and relying heavily on running backs Jordan Howard and Tarik Cohen.

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McShay’s updated Top 32: Ranking 2018 NFL draft prospects

With at least four games under most teams’ belts, let’s take a look at how the top 32 prospects in the nation are performing. This board isn’t that different from the previous version two weeks ago, but a new quarterback joins, along with a rise for the best running back Andrew Franks Jersey in college football.

Darnold has made some questionable decisions throwing the football Authentic Terry Bradshaw Jersey this season (at least one interception in each game so far), but it hasn’t changed my evaluation of him. His delivery still needs to be cleaned up, but his accuracy is phenomenal. He is the most complete quarterback in college football and a potential franchise signal-caller.

What has gone right: Considering he didn’t join the team until the end of the preseason, Jacoby Brissett has provided competent quarterback play while trying to become acclimated with the Colts’ offense. With interceptions in three straight games, safety Malik Hooker is making the impact Indianapolis hoped he would when it made him a 2017 first-round draft pick.

What has gone wrong: Not having Andrew Luck (shoulder) is crippling the Colts’ offense. The franchise decision-makers also made a bad one when they thought Scott Tolzein could serve as an effective short-term replacement for Luck.

What’s next: The Colts aren’t going anywhere until Luck returns. There is media speculation that Luck will begin practicing this week, but there is no known target date for him getting back under center.

Cowboys’ David Irving apologizes for PED use: ‘I thought I was hitting a second puberty’

David Irving said Monday he didn’t realize the fitness supplement he was taking contained a banned substance, but he took responsibility for violating the NFL’s PED policy.

In late June, the NFL hit the Cowboys defensive lineman with a four-game suspension he’ll serve to start the coming season. In a session with reporters Monday, Irving said he initially thought the league had made a mistake.

“I was pretty upset,” Irving said (via the DallasNews.com). “As soon as I got the letter I called right away, like, ‘What the [expletive]! This has to be a mistake.’ But it wasn’t. I made the mistake.”

“LeBron and I have always been about finding companies that we truly believe in and putting real money into them,” James’ business partner Maverick Carter said, via ESPN. “We’re not talking putting in $15,000 or $20,000. It’s real money plus the expertise, understanding and knowledge that we bring, as well as bringing LeBron’s name and likeness to the product.”

James and Carter turned another investment into nearly $30 million when Beats by Dre sold to Apple for $3 billion in 2014. Surprisingly, James might be able to double his Beats by Dre profit as Blaze Pizza has a goal of opening 1,000 stores and $1 billion in sales by 2022.

“We don’t typically advocate for our clients to invest in food businesses,” James’ financial adviser Paul Wachter said. “The risk-reward equation is not generally that great, and there’s a lot of grinding and blocking and tackling and it takes a while for a concept to go global.”

With just over 200 stores created in four years, Blaze Pizza was recently valued at $250 million.
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Wilson stumbled into his own end zone after getting stepped on by backup guard Rees Odhiambo

Devin Hester, who spent the 2014 and 2015 seasons with the Falcons, set up Seattle’s field goal with a 50-yard kickoff return. He nearly put the Seahawks in position to score again after Matt Bosher’s punt, but his 80-yard return was nullified by a holding call. Instead of having the ball at the Falcons 7-yard line, the Seahawks were backed up at their own 7. Two plays later, Wilson stumbled into his own end zone after getting stepped on by backup guard Rees Odhiambo. Atlanta guard Ben Garland, who was in as an extra defensive lineman, fell on Wilson for a game-shifting safety.

Atlanta closed the half with a field goal and touchdown pass to a wide-open Tevin Coleman to take a 19-10 halftime lead.

Coleman had 57 rushing yards to go with three catches for 22 yards, but Atlanta’s other running back Devonta Freeman had a huge game with 45 rushing yards and a touchdown and four receptions for 80 yards, including a back-breaking 53-yard reception late in the third quarter.

The Falcons poured it on in the second half, especially after the Seahawks lost cornerback DeShawn Shead to a non-contact knee injury early in the third quarter.

We executed really well across the board, Ryan told Fox Sports following the game. We weren’t perfect by any means, but consistency throughout the day, I’m really proud of the way we played.

After the Super Bowl, SMW’s Weekend Ratings Predictions will move from Sporting News to Sports Media Watch. Starting the weekend of Feb. 3-4, they can be found each week at this link.

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Alex Smith knows the Chiefs are replacing him

nike_chargers_223When the Kansas City Chiefs traded up to No. 10 to select Pat Mahomes II in the 2017 draft, it felt familiar to Alex Smith. It was clear the Chiefs were preparing to move on from Smith, much like the 49ers did with Colin Kaepernick back in 2012.

“There is a little similarity,” Smith said while speaking at a community event on Wednesday. “I’m an older quarterback, and they drafted a kid that’s coming in young and they’re looking to develop.”

Roger Goodell insists that Thursday night games are better than other games, “almost by every barometer.

“On safety, and we’ve been tracking this every year, there has not been any, any indication or facts or anything else that would indicate the level of injuries are up on Thursday night,” Goodell said in January on The Herd with Colin Cowherd.

But players don’t agree. Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman said the turnaround for Thursday night games is “terrible.”

“We played, got home at like 1 o’clock in the morning something like that on Monday, and then you got to play again,” Sherman said. “I mean, congratulations NFL, you did it again. But they’ve been doing it all season so I guess we’re the last ones to get the middle finger.”

If the modified overtime rule does pass, as it is expected to, there will be more ties. But it’s unlikely to have any measurable positive impact on player health and safety.

Barnett is also fast enough laterally to bring down ball carriers in space

His power and speed around the edge are what made him a Volunteer record setter and one of the fastest-rising prospects leading up to the 2017 draft. Barnett explodes off the line with the kind of first step that gives offensive tackles the jitters. The majority of his big plays start with him leaning into and driving past his blocker, collapsing the pocket from a quarterback’s blind side, and creating chaos behind the line of scrimmage.

Barnett is also fast enough laterally to bring down ball carriers in space, frequently using his ability to identify screen plays and disrupt blockers. That athleticism, at 6’3 and 259 pounds, brings versatility as he can drop into coverage should the occasion arise. While he was a 4-3 defensive end throughout college, with some polish he could also transition as a 3-4 outside linebacker.

“Not only was Barnett a consistent threat with at least 10 sacks in all three of his years in orange, he did excellent work against Tennessee’s stiffest competition. As a freshman he benefited greatly from Curt Maggitt’s presence, but he was the primary focus of opposing offensive lines the last two years and it didn’t slow him down at all.” — Read More at Rocky Top Talk

His pass-rushing abilities made him a first-round prospect, but there are still several questions he’ll have to answer as a pro. His game is predicated on his athleticism, but an average showing at the NFL Combine suggests he could struggle against a better class of offensive linemen in the pros. NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah may have said it best when it comes to Barnett’s future.nike_ravens_304-223x223

Bengals’ Adam ‘Pacman’ Jones yells at reporter asking about arrest

Adam “Pacman” Jones was arrested earlier this year, but he did not want to talk about it Monday during the Bengals’ voluntary offseason workouts.

He briefly addressed the incident by expressing his “gratitude” to team owner Mike Brown and Bengals coaches for staying with him throughout the process. But he was asked about it again a few minutes later, and according to My Dayton Daily News, he became “irate.”

“Didn’t I just tell you don’t ask me that?” Jones said. “You out the (interview). Turn around. Go back that way. See you. Next question. That’s his last interview for the year.”

Asked whether he believes this will be the case, Freeman said, “That’s what I anticipate.”

“We will address this,” Dimitroff said at the annual league meeting in Phoenix. “When you look at our history, we address these situations going into training camp. I’m throwing that out there as a general timeline. I don’t know when that exactly will be, but I’m confident that something can get wrapped up and he’s going to be part of us for years to come.

“He represents our style of running — urgency, competitive and passionate. It’s fun to watch him as it is (running back) Tevin Coleman.”

As for Freeman, he’s having fun preparing for Monday’s start of offseason workouts with more than 40 Falcons players who traveled to South Florida for the sessions and the off-field camaraderie that comes with it.

“It’s so good for (team) chemistry,” Freeman said.

The next step will be the Falcons making good by giving Freeman a new deal.

Alex Marvez’s story on Devonta Freeman discussing Super Bowl 51, his career and his South Florida roots will appear Thursday at SportingNews.com. Alex can be heard from 7 p.m. ET to 11 p.m. ET Wednesday and Thursday on SiriusXM NFL Radio.
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