Tom Brady calls James White one of best teammates he’s ever played with in New England

Tom Brady is the type of quarterback who makes his teammates better. But every once in awhile he acknowledges someone special that helps him on the field, too.

After dismantling the Saints 36-20 Sunday in New Orleans, Brady spoke candidly about running back James White.

“I’ve played with a lot of great teammates, and James (White) is right up there with the best,” Brady said, via The Boston Sports Journal.

White, who finished Sunday’s game with eight receptions for 85 yards, and two carries for 11 yards, played a pivotal role with New England suffering through a depleted receiving corps.

Brady threw for 447 yards and three touchdowns against New Orleans’ shambolic defense, and White served as his safety valve just like he did in last season’s Super Bowl win over the Falcons.

Jacoby Brissett, QB, Indianapolis Colts: Thanks largely to a pair of rushing touchdowns, Brissett managed a career-best 27.76 fantasy points, just 4.50 shy of his total in his previous three NFL starts combined (32.26). It was, however, still likely more of a statement about the Cleveland Browns’ defense than Brissett himself. FYI: The Seattle Seahawks are next up on Brissett’s schedule.

Todd Gurley, RB, Rams: Though his was a Thursday night performance, it’s one that shouldn’t be overlooked among “winners.” Gurley’s 37.9 PPR fantasy points were the 10th most by any running back in a Thursday game since at least 1950, and they were the third most at the position since Thursday Night Football began in 2006, trailing only Kareem Hunt’s 45.6 in 2017 Week 1 and Brian Westbrook’s 40.0 in 2008 Week 13. They also gave Gurley a new career high, as did his 32.9 non-PPR fantasy points. He continues to look like a borderline RB1 thanks to his role as the team’s clear goal-line back, though his 3.8 yards-per-carry average through three games should serve as a reminder not to get overzealous with your expectations from him.
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The NFL has appealed Judge Mazzant’s ruling to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals.

The NFL has also filed a motion in Mazzant’s federal court in Texas to change the jurisdiction to a New York City federal court that has historically leaned toward the league’s perspective.

The appeals process and the federal lawsuit aren’t trying to establish guilt or innocence. Carolina Panthers was never charged with a crime. These processes simply seek to establish whether or not the NFL acted in a manner that is consistent with its personal conduct policy. Mazzant doesn’t believe it did.

“The NFL’s actions demonstrate that from the very beginning of the decision-making process, a cloud of fundamental unfairness followed Elliott,” Mazzant wrote in his decision. “Unfortunately, this cloud followed Elliott into the arbitration proceedings.”

It’s difficult to project how the appeals court will rule, but the NFL will file an emergency stay with the appeals court if Mazzant declines the appeal or does not deliver a rule by Thursday.

The league is seeking a quick decision for a process that often takes months:

Elliott’s legal team issued a response shortly thereafter, via NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.

“The NFL’s latest maneuvering appears to be indicative of a league with an agenda: trying to navigate a public relations crisis rather than focus on fairness and fact finding,” the statement read.

What happened? Elliott was handed the suspension following an investigation into domestic violence allegations made against him in July 2016. The investigation lasted more than a year, and Elliott immediately appealed the disciplinary ruling.

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NFL Panic Index 2017, Week 2: The Giants can’t win without Odell Beckham Jr.

Last season, the Giants had the Cowboys’ number. Until the Dallas starters all got the final week of the season off against the Eagles, the Giants had been the only team to hand them a loss — and they did it twice.

One week into the new season, 2017 is already different. Not only did the Cowboys dominate the Week 1 matchup, but the Giants looked completely lifeless on offense. A 46-yard drive in garbage time got the offense above the 200-yard mark, and if not for a field goal in the third quarter, they would have been shut out.

Then again, the Giants were missing their most valuable weapon on offense: Odell Beckham Jr. The dynamic wide receiver missed just his second game since 2015, and just like the first time, the Giants couldn’t get much going on offense. Eli Manning especially missed his top receiver. Manning threw for just 220 yards and was picked off once Sunday night. Two seasons ago against the Vikings, he totaled just 234 yards without Beckham in a 49-17 blowout loss.

And the Bills are sitting at No. 2, and the Patriots are third after losing to the Chiefs in Week 1 and beating the Saints in Week 2, which is a dubious honor. Nobody’s surprised that the Jets are bring up the rear here.

Perhaps my love stems from the fact that I grew up a soccer player, an undersized one at that (what up, late puberty!), and the only way I could have any type of participatory fantasy regarding the NFL was to imagine myself a kicker. Other kids my age dreamed of being Joe Montana, tossing that perfect spiral to the end zone. Others saw themselves as Lawrence Taylor, bursting into the backfield and laying down a bone-crunching hit.
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Cowboys vs. Broncos 2017 live stream: Start time, TV channel, and how to watch online

The Dallas Cowboys and Denver Broncos had very different games to launch their 2017-18 campaigns in Week 1, but both have wins going into their Sunday matchup. They’ll meet at Sports Authority Field at Mile High Stadium in Denver on Sunday, beginning at 4:25 p.m. ET on FOX (live streaming at Fox Sports GO).

UPDATE: Sunday’s game was delayed in the first quarter due to severe weather in the Denver area.

Dallas, despite an offseason of distractions primarily centered around running back Ezekiel Elliott and his six-game suspension for domestic abuse, looked great against the NFC East rival New York Giants in Week 1. Of course, Elliott was active for that game due to his ongoing court battle with the NFL over the aforementioned suspension.

Elliott rushed 24 times for 104 yards and caught five passes for 36 yards in a 19-3 win over the Giants. Second-year quarterback Dak Prescott also looked good, completing 24-of-39 passes for 268 yards with a touchdown and no interceptions. Once again, the offensive line looked incredible and will be the primary focus of the Broncos in Week 2.

Von Miller, the top pass rusher in the NFL, will have his hands full against an elite Cowboys offensive line. Denver’s offensive line will be looking to Dallas for a model after Trevor Siemian was sacked four times for a loss of 38 yards against the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 1.

The Broncos only managed to sack Philip Rivers once in that game. They survived thanks to a blocked field goal late in the game, moving to 1-0 in a division where the Oakland Raiders have consistently been the favorite to win.

Below, you can find all the information you need to watch the game as well as news, odds and predictions for the Week 2 matchup.
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In wake of new research, brain expert says he doesn’t think children should play tackle football

A study released Tuesday suggests that children exposed to tackle football before age 12 are at greater risk for incurring later-life brain issues than those who started playing after that — prompting one of the lead authors to say in an interview he now doesn’t “think there should be youth tackle football.”

San Francisco running back Carlos Hyde has been impressive in each of the team’s first two games and he will be a focal point against the Rams. Hyde is fourth in the league in rushing with 169 yards. What is more impressive is the fact he is averaging 7.0 yards a carry. The only issue with the 49ers’ ground game is the lack of touchdowns by Hyde. He enters the Thursday night game with no rushing scores.

“I’ve been pleased with Carlos in both games,” Shanahan said Monday after having a chance to look at the game film. “He came to compete (Sunday), and it showed.”

The Rams’ defense was poor against the Redskins in Week 2 and will need to shore up its tackling while matching up against an improving offensive line. San Francisco guard Laken Tomlinson, who spent the preseason with the Lions but was acquired in a trade, started in Week 2 and made a noticeable impact on the interior run game. This week he will be facing one of the best interior defensive linemen in the NFL, Aaron Donald. Donald did not play in Week 1 after a training camp holdout and looked sluggish in Week 2 against the Redskins. He finished with just one tackle and an assist.
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Bears to put WR Kevin White on IR with fractured shoulder blade

Chicago Bears wide receiver Kevin White will be placed on injured reserve with a fractured shoulder blade, coach John Fox announced on Monday.

According to Fox, White’s latest injury could require surgery, but the Bears haven’t yet ruled out White coming back later in the year. Each NFL team is allowed to designate two players to return off of injured reserve after Week 8.

One week into the season, the Bears are already without their top two receivers, and now will have to find someone to step up and fill the void.
White exited Sunday’s 23-17 loss to the Atlanta Falcons at the 9 minute, 43 second mark of the fourth quarter after catching a short pass for no gain. The former first-round pick immediately walked off the field following the play and went into the Bears’ sideline injury tent for further examination. White was later taken to the locker room and officially ruled out.

While Peterson wouldn’t mind beating his former team in the regular-season opener on Monday night, his wrath isn’t limited to just the Vikings.

“I want to stick it to every team,” he said. “I [hope to] have a great performance against all our opponents this season, so that comment wouldn’t be anything different than I would say about Green Bay when we played those guys. The only thing that’s going to be different is playing my first game with a new team back in my old home, and that’s going to be the only difference.”

Peterson, 32, has led the NFL in rushing three times and was the 2012 MVP, but his production has declined recently due to his age and a number of knee injuries. He was limited to just 72 rushing yards in three games in his final year with the Vikings last season.
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Packers rally in second half to beat Seahawks

Aaron Rodgers and the Packers fought through a poor first half Sunday to earn a 17-9 win over the Seahawks at Lambeau Field.

Rodgers completed 28 of 42 passes for 311 yards and a touchdown, but he was not sharp against Seattle’s dominant secondary throughout most of the game. Rodgers threw an interception in the first quarter, and his only touchdown pass occurred when the Seahawks were caught out of position with too many men on the field.

Jordy Nelson, who finished the game with seven receptions for 79 yards and a touchdown, hauled in Rodgers’ heads-up play.

Even though these acts were done in front of the ref, Roethlisberger went unpunished. The play was scrutinized by fans, and the Browns weren’t happy about it. Monday morning, fellow Browns defensive lineman Danny Shelton voiced his thoughts on Twitter by criticizing the NFL.

His “QBsLeague” hashtag is a fair point, because the league has a lot of rules in place to protect quarterbacks. Several years ago the “Brady rule” was put in place. It says: “A rushing defender is prohibited from forcibly hitting in the knee area or below a passer who has one or both feet on the ground, even if the initial contact is above the knee.”

He tied Ed “Too Tall” Jones’ record for most games in Cowboys history (224) Sunday and will set the mark next week at the Denver Broncos.

From 1988-99, Irvin caught 750 passes for 11,904 yards and 65 touchdowns. He was a five-time Pro Bowl pick and one of the Cowboys’ catalysts to three Super Bowl wins in the 1990s. In 2007, he was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
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Andy Dalton is in playoff form

We’ll give Andy Dalton the benefit of the doubt, for this week anyway. Being a game manager isn’t as easy as it sounds, and the Bengals have all kinds of problems. But quarterback problems overshadow everything, and Dalton’s been ruinous against the Ravens.

He threw three interceptions in the first half. He lost a fumble in the red zone too. He added a fourth pick in the fourth quarter.

It’s not unusual to see trainers tell players to move away from an injured player, and this is a perfect example of why.

We’re not talking about minimal contact or anything. Look at this:

Our own Adam Stites wrote during the preseason about how the Jaguars needed to find a better quarterback sooner rather than later. Part of that was because of previous performances, part of that was things like throwing five interceptions in a single training camp practice.

There’s no way anybody could have predicted he’d be slapping injured knees, though. That’s just brutal.

That’s because odds are they won’t be getting second chances somewhere else if fired.

Almost 85 percent of the top personnel decision-makers for NFL teams are holding their positions for the first time — and what will likely be their only time — wielding such power, per OPTA research commissioned by Sporting News. The exceptions are New England’s Bill Belichick, Washington’s Bruce Allen, Jacksonville’s Tom Coughlin, Minnesota’s Rick Spielman and Carolina’s Marty Hurney, who was re-hired as general manager in July on an interim basis.
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the Kansas City Chiefs faced their own crisis with starting running back Spencer Ware getting carted off.

He was instantly ruled out of the game by the team, with his injury being a potential season-ender, as well. The Chiefs reportedly believe that Ware suffered a PCL injury, and his ACL is fine. He’ll have an MRI on Saturday.

We got a similar scare last week when Odell Beckham Jr. was injured on a dangerously low tackle to the legs. He escaped with a simple ankle sprain, but the takes were hot and flowing after that incident. Now Edelman and Ware are out, forcing two playoff contenders to make do without pivotal offensive contributors.

“I said, ‘We feel like it’s important to study long-term impacts: What are the long-term consequences of subconcussive impacts'” on the brain, Stitzel recalled in an interview. “And the answer was: ‘That’s not in the scope of what we are trying to evaluate.'”

The NFL’s approach to head trauma was already comical before Thursday’s report. It had conveniently left out more than 100 concussions from a database it used to downplay the frequency of head injuries. It relied on faulty data to claim that its Heads Up Football program worked, when in truth there was no correlation between the program and fewer concussions. And it relies on a concussion protocol that is woefully inadequate for the job it is tasked to do.

The fact that the first study conducted by the NFL into concussions is about jockeys is telling. The NFL has claimed it was simply bumbling before. Now it is even more clear that it simply doesn’t give a shit about its sport or the people who play it.
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