Three questions with new Texans RB Andre Ellington

Andre Ellington is excited to once again be teammates with his cousin, Bruce.

Commissioner Rob Manfred and other MLB officials have been giving the Ohtani case extraordinary scrutiny, with repeated warnings of bans and penalties for anyone found in violation.

MLB, after finalizing its agreement with the Nippon Baseball League on Dec. 1 that allowed bidding to begin, issued a memo to all teams and baseball executives that contained paragraphs again warning against any form of cheating.

Teams were told, again, that they could attempt to persuade the two-way pitching and hitting star from Japan to join their team based on the merits of their respective organizations and their cities, but they were warned against discussing future contracts and business relationships, and against third-party machinations — paying off someone who might have influence with Ohtani, for example, or making quid-pro-quo promises outside of the rules.

“I also have quickly realized how passionate Jimmy and Dee are about bringing a winning team to the city and would have not taken the job if I didn’t think the right ownership was in place. I am eager to work with Hue, his staff, and our personnel department and help bring us the success these fans so deserve.”

“We’ve gotta learn how to put teams away,” Beal said. “We’ve gotta learn how to put our foot on the gas,” he added. “These are important games and games that we need to win and should have won.”

The Nets are returning after spending the last week on the road, though they were the home team for games against Oklahoma City and Miami in Mexico City.

Brooklyn will be adding Okafor and Stauskas to the roster after acquiring the former first-round picks from Philadelphia on Thursday.

Neither player has played much this season, so it’s unlikely they’ll get big minutes Tuesday.panthers_004

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Tarasenko looked good out there, too.

The Falcons fail to corral a short kickoff by the Seahawks, who recover to regain possession. Seattle will start its drive inside the Atlanta 15 with 8:08 to play in the half.

Seattle nearly picks off a Matt Ryan pass near the goal line, but it can’t secure the ball and it falls incomplete.

Turnover, Seahawks. Seattle fails to take advantage of Lockett’s return as Russell Wilson’s second pass of the game is picked off by Desmond Trufant, who returns it 43 yards to the Seahawks’ 35.

Redskins running back Rob Kelley left Sunday’s 38-30 loss to the Vikings with knee and ankle injuries and did not return.

Saints running back Daniel Lasco was taken off the field by ambulance after suffering a spine injury on a second-quarter kickoff. Saints coach Sean Payton said following the game that all signs were positive with Lasco.

Brayden Schenn also had two goals and two assists, and Jake Allen stopped 26 shots for the NHL-leading Blues (16-5-1).

Tarasenko’s fight came in the second period. In just the third scrap of his six-year career, the skilled forward tangled with Matt Benning and landed a solid right hand much to the crowd’s delight.

It sure sounds like the perfect time to let Jimmy Garoppolo make his San Francisco debut when the 49ers return to action Nov. 26 against Seattle.

It’s also not that simple.

“The more we Hall of Famers talk about this — and we talk about it a lot — we realize we can no longer sit silent,” Morgan wrote. “Many of us have come to think that silence will be considered complicity. nike_steelers_2529

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Miami decides to go for it on a fourth-and-1 on its 48.

In addition, the Braves were banned from signing Robert Puason, a 14-year-old Dominican shortstop with whom they had reached a verbal agreement, when he becomes eligible for a contract on July 2, 2019. MLB said Puason agreed to sign with the Braves because the team agreed with his agent to deals with six other players for “inflated” signing bonuses.

Olive Sagapolu, DT, Wisconsin — The massive 6-2, 346-pound Samoan had a great all-around game against Iowa. Sagapolu helped the Badgers hold Iowa to 25 rushing yards and added a sack that was nearly a safety late in the first half of Wisconsin’s 38-14 win.

Touchdown, Carolina. The Panthers are pulling away from Miami and now lead 31-7. Cameron Artis-Payne takes a handoff, runs through an arm tackle at the line of scrimmage and goes into the end zone for the 12-yard score.

Damien Williams is brought down behind the line of scrimmage by Luke Kuechly and the Dolphins turn it over on downs.

Touchdown, Carolina. Two plays after Samuel’s drop, the Panthers punch it in and take a 24-7 lead. Newton throws a screen pass to Devin Funchess, who avoids Miami’s tacklers for a 28-yard touchdown.

“That was good… but I feel as if we’re still scratching the surface with our potential and things we can do as a whole in this offense,” Newton said. “We left a lot of plays out there.

“There’s nothing saying we hit our pinnacle yet and there’s nothing saying we can’t get better. That’s the thing we’ve just got to be optimistic about.”

With less than two minutes left, the Jaguars led 13-7 and those on Cleveland +7 were seconds away from winning their bet. Then, for the third time in three possessions, DeShone Kizer turned the ball over, this time fumbling it away on a sack that resulted in a Telvin Smith touchdown. That score gave Jacksonville a 19-7 lead, which would stand as the final score after a backdoor cover attempt by the Browns came up short.nike_steelers_716

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Either way, watch both guys play. They’re a pleasure to see in action.

Matthews is the main attraction, however, and probably the biggest reason I find myself eagerly watching what Toronto does. Everyone loves goals and Matthews scores a lot of them, but what makes him seemingly different is the way he scores them.

While Darnold may need some more seasoning, we’re splitting hairs here. Both quarterbacks have NFL potential, but it appears Rosen will be better out of the gate.That’s not a shot at Darnold, it’s just a compliment to Rosen.

Either way, watch both guys play. They’re a pleasure to see in action.

In a conference where the Patriots, Steelers and Chiefs rule, the Titans have yet to prove they’re up to the same passing pop. Given that their constant pass defense woes leave them prone to getting into higher-scoring affairs than they would like, Mariota has to go from solid to spectacular. That’s not an easy ask.

Thompson, meanwhile, averaged 4.6 yards per carry as the third-down back and rushed for two scores. He is tied for the team lead with 39 catches, good for 510 yards and four touchdowns. Starting running back Rob Kelley is already on IR.

Onwuasor and his Ravens are now sitting in a wild card spot and in the AFC with several inconsistent teams fighting for the wild card spots, the Ravens and their 6th-ranked defense are sitting pretty for now.

How it works, also per SkyCam’s site: “Skyview interprets the operator’s joystick commands into positional coordinates, tracks the location of the SkyCam, and synchronizes the movement of each reel setting the Skycam in motion. Each of the four suspension lines goes over a precision pulley and is attached to a computer-controlled spooling mechanism.
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Three questions with Dolphins running back Kenyan Drake

The Buccaneers (3-6) and Dolphins (4-5) were supposed to play in Miami on Sept. 10 in the 2017 regular-season opener. Instead the two teams are playing in Week 11 after Hurricane Irma robbed both teams of their bye week this season.

The go-ahead goal came after New York defenseman Johnny Boychuk tied the game with the Islanders on a two-man advantage. Boychuk finished off a passing play at 7:13 of the middle period with his third goal of the season, assisted by Bailey and John Tavares.

The 20-year-old Barzal — a first-round draft pick by the Islanders in 2015 — has 20 points overall.

According to the NFL Network, a person with knowledge of the situation said Smith will be unable to play with a groin injury and Byron Bell will start at left tackle for Dallas instead.

Smith missed practice again Thursday, meaning he hasn’t practiced all week.

Chaz Green started at left tackle for the Cowboys Sunday, but he was benched due to his ineffectiveness. Green allowed five sacks to Falcons defensive end Adrian Clayborn before he was taken out of the game in favor of Bell.

Derek Carr is still picking up stats — 1,954 yards with 13 touchdowns to seven interceptions while completing 65.2 percent of his passes — but there’s just something missing. He, and the entire Raiders team, got “shook” at Washington in Week 3 and they have been trying to get their legs under them ever since. Carr often doesn’t look comfortable in the pocket and gets rid of the ball too soon, before a play can develop. He also seems to be putting too much touch, or air, on his passes at times. Is last year’s broken leg still on his mind? Is the broken bone in his back, suffered in Week 4, still an issue? Carr was supposed to be an MVP candidate for a Super Bowl contender this season. Instead, something just looks, well, off. — Paul Gutierrez
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Lewis sees one aspect of his team’s game that is a factor in its declining offense.

The Redskins have suffered a number of injuries this season, but Thompson’s could arguably be the biggest because of his productivity and the fact that he’ll be difficult to replace. Marshall offers quickness and played some receiver in college, but Thompson’s ability to pass protect has made him invaluable.

After joining fellow owners in May in unanimously authorizing the compensation committee to work on a contract extension with Goodell, Jones last month at owners meetings in New York called Goodell’s proposed new contract “the most one-sided deal ever,” according to OTL, which noted that Goodell has earned more than $200 million since he was elected commissioner in August 2006.

Lockhart on Thursday said he expects Goodell’s contract extension to be wrapped up soon but couldn’t give an exact timeline.

James needed stitches in the third quarter to close a gash above his lip that drew blood. He punched back at the Nets in the fourth and finished with 33 points.

With the Cavs up 100-99, James began his one-man show with a pair of free throws. He dropped in a couple left-handed shots and then drained two 3-pointers — the last a step-back with 55 seconds left to give Cleveland a 118-107 lead.

James’ solo performance enabled the Cavs to avenge a 112-107 loss in Brooklyn last month.

“There was more structure in our game at the beginning of the season,” Lewis said. “We have to go home and regroup.”nike_patriots_3215

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Sunday Night Football: Three takeaways from Eagles’ win over rival Cowboys

The Eagles all but wrapped up the NFC East Sunday night in Dallas with a 37-9 win over the Cowboys.

The Cowboys desperately needed a win but were also shorthanded against the NFL-leading Eagles. Not only was Ezekiel Elliott suspended, but starting left tackle Tyron Smith and linebacker Sean Lee were also ruled out.

The team’s star power was reduced to Dez Bryant, who had a solid game with eighth grabs for 63 yards. After allowing six sacks to Adrian Clayborn against the Falcons, Prescott was sacked four more times exposing a problem the Cowboys need to address.

“The thing I like most about Case is he’s got big balls,” Zimmer said. “He’s not afraid, he’s going to pull the trigger and he’s going to play like that. That’s a good thing.”

With a play that Zimmer said had “a good ending” after the game, Keenum reaffirmed his belief in the benefit of taking risks and the results they often yield.

“You want to give your guys a chance,” Keenum said. “Some chances are better than others, some risks are better than others. Take that third down we threw it deep to Adam last week. Pretty well covered by Lamarcus Joyner. Had a chance, but you might check it down at that point and get a first down. There’s a lot of give and take and a lot of ways you can look at it.”

One of his biggest throws of the game came in the second quarter when Keenum zipped a 15-yard pass to Kyle Rudolph, who juked Samson Ebukam at the line of scrimmage and caught the ball over Alec Ogletree.
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Colin Kaepernick’s camp, NFL argue over Roger Goodell meeting invitation

Colin Kaepernick’s attorney on Tuesday refuted the NFL’s claim that the former 49ers quarterback didn’t respond to an invitation to meet individually with commissioner Roger Goodell, Yahoo Sports reported.

The day showed just how fraught the two sides’ ongoing dealings are against a backdrop of Kaepernick’s labor grievance, accusing NFL owners of collusion, and players’ social-issue concerns and the league’s response to them.

Kaepernick remains open to meeting with Goodell individually, the player’s camp told Yahoo Sports on Tuesday, but only to discuss social-justice issues. Lockhart also says Goodell is willing to meet one-on-one to talk about social activism but won’t agree to a mediator being present.

Notes Yahoo Sports: “The back and forth between Kaepernick’s camp and the NFL has provided a window into the frustration that is developing between the league and players in recent weeks.”

The highlight of Sunday’s slate of late games was Cowboys vs. Falcons in Atlanta, where Dallas was forced to operate without running back Ezekiel Elliott for the first time this season. The Falcons were able to use the timing of Zeke’s NFL-imposed suspension as an advantage, beat the Cowboys and keep pace in the NFC wild-card race.

Sunday’s night cap was game that would have been more appealing had the Broncos held up their end of the deal. Denver, playing off a four-game (now five) losing streak and sitting at the bottom of the AFC West, lost to New England, which recently has looked more like the team many expected to see in 2017.

“I’ve had tough games before,” Peterman said following the loss. “I’m going to learn a lot from this and make sure it never happens again.”

Despite the awful performance by Peterman, McDermott wasn’t ready to commit to Taylor for the remainder of the season. broncos_092-500x500

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Matt Cain pitched his last major league game on Saturday afternoon.

It’s been a while since he was the perfect-game twirling twentysomething who led the Giants to two championships and missed the third after elbow surgery. He was the most important person in the organization for a while. He was just 17 when San Francisco took him with the 25th pick of the 2002 draft, and he helped carry the franchise out of the Barry Bonds era, through four straight losing seasons and to its first title on the West Coast.

Cain’s recent decline has also accompanied his team’s; it will pick first or second in next year’s draft and try to begin a new cycle of greatness.

“The guy has been doing this long enough where it shouldn’t happen,” Elliott said. “What he did was unnecessary. … There’s no reason for that. He knows the deal. He knows how this race works. He knows how Martinsville is.

“He didn’t even try to move me out of the way. He just shoved me and wrecked me.”

When the Golden Knights arrived, he had also just received a dose of morphine. “You could definitely see they were in shock a little bit, that this happened, just to see one of the people affected by it,” Anthony Robone says. “They had that look in their face, that it was something they’ve never seen before. But when the conversation got rolling, they were super cool.”

The Rams are off to one of their best starts in years, but they need to cut down on turnovers in order to keep winning. They’ve fumbled 15 times this season (lost eight of them), which is tied for fourth-most in the NFL, and have a turnover margin of zero.

Chicken-or-egg situation: Watson hasn’t faced a defense as formidable as the Seahawks, who are ranked first in the NFL this week, but the Seahawks have built that record against some wretched offenses, like the Giants last week.flames_082

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You might be able to change the manner in which that looks

A fun sleeper candidate now thriving on the glass for the Hawks, Collins is tied with Myles Turner and just ahead of Kevin Durant with 14 rebounding chances (within 3.5 feet of an available board) per game. With some defensive upside complementing a steady rebounding pattern, Collins is worth owning in all but shallow fantasy formats.

Among the league leaders in minutes played over the last several seasons in Detroit, Morris should see plenty of minutes and touches on a Boston frontcourt reliant on youth at the moment. Morris should also be afforded additional freedom to extend his shot in Boston, adding to what could be a high-floor fantasy profile upon his impending return from an injury.

Whatever you think about Cleveland stockpiling picks vs. going for a potentially special talent, thinking Watson and Wentz would be doing what they are doing this season if they were in Cleveland is futile and misguided.

Not only would that level of harmony stand out in today’s world, it would be unprecedented in the modern NFL; the league and the players’ association have long been at odds.

Players and owners have squabbled over playing football on Thursdays, over the league’s drug policy and its appeals process, and over issues of dollars and cents. Now, the league wants the players to compromise on an issue that has inflamed emotions across the political gamut. And, notably, the players seemingly have the power for once. “You can threaten to do whatever you want to do, that’s not going to deter players from doing what’s right, or doing what they believe is right,” Eagles safety Malcolm Jenkins said on Tuesday. “You might be able to change the manner in which that looks, but I don’t see players stopping their pursuit for justice or equality.”canadiens_1403_2394ea0d48c5245e-180x180

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