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November 29

Jeff Saturday defends clock management at end of Colts' loss

INDIANAPOLIS -- Colts interim coach Jeff Saturday defended his clock management in the final minutes of Monday night's loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, saying he decided against taking a timeout until 30 seconds remained because he "didn't feel like time was really of the essence at that moment." The Colts, trailing by seven, were in a bit of a frantic situation, facing fourth-and-3 from the Pittsburgh 37-yard line at the two-minute warning. After converting, Indianapolis quarterback Matt Ryan was sacked for a 7-yard loss on first down then scrambled for 14 yards on second down. The second-down play was snapped with 59 seconds remaining, but the Colts elected not to call a timeout despite possessing all three of their timeouts. They instead used a slow approach, snapping the ball late into the play clock then handing the ball to running back Jonathan Taylor, who was stopped for no gain on a third-and-3. The Colts finally called timeout after the...
November 29
November 28

Simmons (knee) day-to-day after leaving Nets' win over Magic

NEW YORK -- Brooklyn Nets swingman Ben Simmons exited Monday night's 109-102 win over the Orlando Magic with left knee soreness and did not return. Simmons, who has missed six games already this season because of the same injury, exited in the second quarter. Nets coach Jacque Vaughn said Simmons was having some discomfort in the knee and asked to come out. He doesn't think Simmons will need another MRI but the team will see how he's feeling on Tuesday and is listing him as day-to-day for now. "We'll check him day by day, see how he responds with a little treatment," he said, "see what it looks like (Tuesday)." Vaughn does not think Simmons' latest knee setback is related to his back surgery over the summer. "No, I think more so than anything the accumulation of games," Vaughn said. "He hasn't had this amount of accumulation of games over a period of a long time. Talked to the performance team about that. We were warned about that just as these...
November 28
November 28

Sources: Optimism Karl-Anthony Towns might have avoided substantial injury

Minnesota Timberwolves All-Star forward Karl-Anthony Towns will undergo an MRI on his right calf on Tuesday, but there is early optimism that he might have avoided a substantial injury to his lower right leg, sources told ESPN on Monday night. Towns suffered a noncontact injury turning to run down the floor on Monday night in Washington, reaching back to grab at his calf and leaving uncertainty about whether he had suffered an Achilles injury. Towns needed help to leave the court for the locker room, but an initial examination suggested that Towns' imaging upon returning to Minnesota would be unlikely to reveal severe damage. The Timberwolves initially described the injury as a calf strain and ruled Towns out for the rest of the game. Minnesota lost 142-127 to the Wizards, dropping to 10-11 on the season. Towns, 27, has averaged 21.4 points, 8.5 rebounds and 5.2 assists in 20 games for the Timberwolves. In eight NBA seasons, he has averaged 23.1 points and 11.2...
November 28
November 28

Ben Simmons (knee) leaves Nets' game, listed as day-to-day

NEW YORK -- Brooklyn Nets swingman Ben Simmons exited Monday night's 109-102 win over the Orlando Magic because of left knee soreness and did not return. Simmons, who has missed six games already this season because of the same injury, exited in the second quarter. Nets coach Jacque Vaughn said Simmons was having some discomfort in the knee and asked to come out. He doesn't think Simmons will need another MRI but the team will see how he's feeling on Tuesday and are listing Simmons as day-to-day for now.  Since returning to the floor after missing a Nov. 13 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers, Simmons has played his best basketball of the season -- averaging 10.5 points, 7 rebounds and 5.2 assists during the month of November. Simmons finished Monday's game with zero points, four rebounds and three assists in 12 minutes. The Nets are already playing without big man Yuta Watanabe, who remains out because of a right hamstring strain. Nets coach...
November 28
November 28

Ben Simmons (knee) leaves Nets' game vs. Magic in first half

NEW YORK -- Brooklyn Nets swingman Ben Simmons is out for the rest of Monday night's game against the Orlando Magic because of left knee soreness. Simmons, who has missed six games already this season because of the same injury, exited in the second quarter. Since returning to the floor after missing a Nov. 13 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers, Simmons has played his best basketball of the season -- averaging 10.5 points, 7 rebounds and 5.2 assists during the month of November. Simmons finished Monday's game with zero points, four rebounds and three assists in 12 minutes. The Nets are already playing without big man Yuta Watanabe, who remains out because of a right hamstring strain. Nets coach Jacque Vaughn said before the game that Watanabe had another MRI on his hamstring on Monday but that the results haven't returned yet. Brooklyn entered the game having won four of its previous six games.
November 28
November 28

Timberwolves' Karl-Anthony Towns helped off with strained calf

WASHINGTON -- Minnesota Timberwolves star Karl-Anthony Towns had to be helped off the court in the third quarter of Monday night's 142-127 loss at the  Washington Wizards. The team quickly ruled him out, citing a right calf strain. Towns will undergo an MRI on Tuesday, but there is some early optimism that he might have avoided a substantial injury to his lower right leg, sources told ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. Towns was well behind the play during a Wizards break and grabbed his knee area. After a 3-pointer by Kyle Kuzma, play stopped with Towns down on the floor near midcourt. He was immediately helped toward the locker room, not putting any weight on his right leg. Towns has started all 21 games for Minnesota this season, and he entered Monday averaging 21.4 points. He had eight points, two rebounds and four assists before his exit. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
November 28
November 28

Brett Favre files motion to dismiss Mississippi lawsuit

Hall of Fame quarterback Brett Favre, one of 38 defendants being sued by the Mississippi Department of Human Services (MDHS), filed a motion through his lawyers Monday in Mississippi judicial court to dismiss the complaint against himself and Favre Enterprises. "It is apparent that MDHS has sued Favre, a Mississippi and national celebrity, in an effort to deflect responsibility for its own egregious wrongdoing," the motion read in part. According to a Mississippi state audit, at least $77 million in Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) funds, which originated from MDHS before flowing to nonprofits, were diverted from the poorest people in America's poorest state toward rich and powerful Mississippians. Six people have been arrested in the case, five of whom have pleaded guilty to state charges. Favre has not been charged criminally but was named in the civil suit on May 9. "[MDHS]'s lawsuit is nothing more than a baseless attempt to blame Brett Favre for its own failure...
November 28
November 28

Auburn hires 'the best fit,' chooses Hugh Freeze as next coach

Hugh Freeze has agreed to a deal to become Auburn's next head football coach, the school announced Monday. Auburn administrators, including athletic director John Cohen, met with football staff members earlier in the day to tell them about the hiring of Freeze, who arrived on campus later Monday night. "After a thoughtful, thorough, and well-vetted search, we ended where we started, with Hugh Freeze," Cohen said in a news release. "Of all the candidates we considered, Hugh was the best fit. Fit has several meanings, but the most important factors were student-athlete development, football strategy, recruiting and SEC experience." Freeze's contract with Auburn is six years at an average of $6.5 million annually, sources told ESPN's Pete Thamel. Freeze has spent the past four seasons at  Liberty, where he took the Flames to unprecedented heights. He is widely regarded as one of the top offensive minds in the game. This will be Freeze's second head-coaching stint in...
November 28
November 28

Packers QB Rodgers will start Sunday if he can, LaFleur says

GREEN BAY, Wis. -- The Green Bay Packers are not Jordan Love's team quite yet. A day after Love's productive performance in Sunday's 40-33 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles, Packers coach Matt LaFleur made it clear that Aaron Rodgers will start on Sunday against the Chicago Bears if his rib injury allows it. Rodgers, who left the game against the Eagles in the third quarter because of pain and trouble breathing, underwent additional tests on Monday. However, LaFleur was vague about the results. "Sometimes there's stuff that doesn't show up on all the scans," LaFleur said. "All I can tell you is he's feeling a little bit better." Rodgers also has played with a broken right thumb for the past seven weeks, yet LaFleur said they won't go with Love unless it's an injury-related move even if the third-year backup is in better shape physically than Rodgers. "I don't think that's what we're arguing here," LaFleur said. "It's just, we've got...
November 28
November 28

Melvin Gordon says he's signing on to Chiefs' practice squad

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Running back Melvin Gordon, recently released by the Denver Broncos after a rash of fumbles, soon could be playing against his former team. Gordon was signed to the practice squad of the Kansas City Chiefs on Monday, he told ESPN's Jeremy Fowler. The Chiefs and Broncos meet twice this season, in Week 14 in Denver and Week 17 in Kansas City.   Gordon, 29, is a two-time Pro Bowler in his eighth NFL season. He played five seasons for the Chargers and the last 2½ with the Broncos. He has rushed for 6,462 yards and 55 touchdowns and caught 309 passes with 14 touchdowns over his career, with his best year in 2017 with the Chargers. This season, he rushed for 318 yards and caught 25 passes in 10 games. But he fumbled five times and the Broncos released him after his final one in Week 11 against the Raiders. Rookie Isiah Pacheco leads the Chiefs with 455 rushing yards. Another running back, Jerick McKinnon, is fourth on...
November 28
November 28

Melvin Gordon says he's signing with Chiefs practice squad

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Running back Melvin Gordon, recently released by the Denver Broncos after a rash of fumbles, could soon be playing against his former team. Gordon was signed to the practice squad of the Kansas City Chiefs on Monday, he told ESPN's Jeremy Fowler. The Chiefs and Broncos meet twice, in Week 14 in Denver and Week 17 in Kansas City.   Gordon, 29, is a two-time Pro Bowler in his eighth NFL season. He played five seasons for the Chargers and the last 2½ with the Broncos. He has rushed for 6,462 yards and 55 touchdowns and caught 309 passes with 14 touchdowns over his career, with his best year in 2017 with the Chargers. This season, he rushed for 318 yards and caught 25 passes in 10 games. But he fumbled five times and the Broncos released him after his final one in Week 11 against the Raiders. Rookie Isiah Pacheco leads the Chiefs with 455 rushing yards. Another running back, Jerick McKinnon, is fourth on the team with...
November 28
November 28

Freeze agrees to be next coach at Auburn, sources say

Hugh Freeze has agreed to a deal to become Auburn's next head football coach, sources told ESPN. An official announcement is expected later Monday. Auburn administrators, including athletic director John Cohen, met with football staff members earlier in the day to tell them about Freeze's hiring. They were set to meet with the players at 6 p.m. ET, and Freeze was scheduled to arrive on campus later Monday evening, sources told ESPN. Freeze's contract with Auburn is six years at an average of $6.5 million per year, sources told ESPN's Pete Thamel. Freeze has spent the past four seasons at Liberty, where he took the Flames to unprecedented heights. He's widely regarded as one of the top offensive minds in the game. This will be Freeze's second head-coaching stint in the SEC, with him having led Ole Miss' program from 2012 to 2016. He beat Alabama and Nick Saban in back-to-back seasons in 2014 and 2015 and capped the 2015 season with the Rebels' first Sugar Bowl victory since...
November 28
November 28

Top NFL draft prospect Olu Fashanu will return to Penn State

Penn State left tackle  Olu Fashanu told ESPN he's returning to school next year, a surprising move in NFL circles considering he is projected as the top offensive line prospect in the 2023 NFL draft. Fashanu, 19, is a redshirt sophomore who is in his first full season as a starter at Penn State. Fashanu is 6-foot-6 and 310 pounds and played high school football at Gonzaga College High in Washington, D.C. Fashanu established himself as one of the top offensive linemen in the country this season, with some scouts projecting him as likely a top-10 draft pick. Fashanu said he rarely looks at social media and had no idea about his rising draft stock until teammates showed him a mock draft this season. Fashanu told ESPN that he felt as if he has "unfinished business" at Penn State and that he's returning primarily to help the Nittany Lions accomplish bigger goals, specifically naming the Big Ten championship and a national title as two things he'd like to achieve in 2023. He...
November 28
November 28

Harbaugh, Lamar Jackson met after 'out of character' tweet

OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh said Monday that Lamar Jackson's vulgar response to a critic on social media was "out of character" for the Pro Bowl quarterback, suggesting Jackson got "trapped" by someone baiting him. Harbaugh said he spoke to Jackson on Monday morning about the social media exchange. "[I] just beg guys to not to get into the Twitter world right after the game, especially after a loss," Harbaugh said. "It's never going to be positive. It's not going be a nice place, you know? That's kind of reflected in Lamar's response because ... that's not the way he speaks. It's not the way he talks. It's not the words he ever uses. I've never heard him say things like that before." After Baltimore's 28-27 loss at the  Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday, a Twitter used tagged Jackson in a tweet that read: "someone asking for over $250 million guaranteed like [Jackson] ... games like this should not come down to [kicker] ...
November 28
November 28

Tiger Woods out of Hero World Challenge with plantar fasciitis

Tiger Woods has withdrawn from this week's Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas because of plantar fasciitis in his right foot, he announced on Twitter on Monday. The tournament, which benefits the Woods' charity, TGR Foundation, was supposed to be his first start since he missed the cut in the 150th Open Championship at St. Andrews in July. "In preparation and practice for this week's Hero World Challenge, I've developed plantar fasciitis in my right foot, which is making it difficult to walk," Woods wrote in a statement. "After consulting with my doctors and trainers, I have decided to withdraw this week and focus on my hosting duties. My plan is still to compete in The Match and PNC Championship." Woods, 46, competed in just nine rounds in three majors this past season, his first starts since he was seriously injured in a car wreck outside Los Angeles in February 2021. He finished 47th at the Masters in April and withdrew after 54 holes at the PGA Championship in...
November 28
November 28

Big Ten disciplines Michigan St., Michigan for tunnel incident

The Big Ten conference released a statement Monday outlining disciplinary measures for both Michigan and Michigan State stemming from the attack in the Michigan Stadium tunnel after the two teams played Oct. 29. After the game, Michigan defensive backs Gemon Green and Ja'Den McBurrows were assaulted in the tunnel leading up to Michigan's locker room. Michigan State defensive back Khary Crump struck Green with his helmet and has since been charged with felonious assault by the Washtenaw County prosecutor's office. Itayvion Brown, Angelo Grose, Justin White, Brandon Wright and Zion Young were all charged with aggravated assault, a misdemeanor, and Jacoby Windmon was charged with assault and battery for their participation in the fight. The conference has fined Michigan State $100,000 and has suspended Crump for four games from the incident date, plus the first eight games of the 2023 season. The other...
November 28
November 28

Source: Astros land slugger Jose Abreu with 3-year deal

First baseman José Abreu and the Houston Astros are in agreement on a three-year contract, a source told ESPN, adding another run-producing bat to the World Series champions' lineup that's already filled with them. Abreu, who turns 36 in January, won the American League MVP award in 2020 and is second in baseball with 863 RBIs since his first season in the major leagues, 2014. He hit .304/.378/.446 this year with the Chicago White Sox, for whom he had played all nine of his big league seasons after defecting from Cuba.  Following a dreadful first five weeks, Abreu was one of the best hitters in baseball over the final three-quarters of the season, batting .335/.405/.479, though his 15 home runs over the entire year were a career low. He joins an Astros lineup with fellow Cuban Yordan Álvarez, Jose Altuve, Kyle Tucker, Alex Bregman and World Series MVP Jeremy Peña. Abreu will replace Yuli Gurriel, a longtime...
November 28
November 28

Browns activate Deshaun Watson after ban, waive Joshua Dobbs

BEREA, Ohio -- Cleveland officially added Deshaun Watson to its 53-man roster Monday, clearing the way for his Browns debut Sunday against his former team, the Houston Texans. The Browns waived quarterback Joshua Dobbs in a corresponding move. Watson served an 11-game suspension for violating the league's personal conduct policy by committing sexual assault, as defined by the NFL, on massage therapists. He was also fined $5 million and has had to undergo a mandatory treatment program. Watson's return Sunday will mark exactly 700 days since he last played in a regular-season game (with the Texans on Jan. 3, 2021). Watson has been accused by more than two dozen women of sexual assault and other inappropriate sexual misconduct during massage sessions. Over the summer, he agreed to settle 23 of the 24 lawsuits against him. A 25th lawsuit was dropped by the plaintiff when the judge ruled that her petition had to be amended with her name. Two other...
November 28
November 28

Michigan QB Cade McNamara enters transfer portal

Michigan quarterback Cade McNamara has entered the transfer portal as a graduate transfer. McNamara was the No. 253 prospect in the 2019 class, who originally committed to Notre Dame before flipping to Michigan. He didn't see any game action in his first year with Shea Patterson as the starter, but he played in four of 10 games in 2020 after replacing starter  Joe Milton III. McNamara threw for 425 yards and five touchdowns with no interceptions in a season that was interrupted by restrictions from COVID-19. He held on to the starting job for 2021 despite the addition of ESPN 300 quarterback J.J. McCarthy. Last year, McNamara led the Wolverines to their first Big Ten title under Jim Harbaugh and a berth in the College Football Playoff. In 14 games, he threw for 2,576 yards and 15 touchdowns with six interceptions. Prior to the 2022 season, Harbaugh announced there would be a quarterback competition between McNamara and McCarthy and it would lead into the...
November 28
November 28

Rory McIlroy says he gave Tiger Woods COVID before The Open

Rory McIlroy had a season to remember, but there's at least one thing he regrets. "I'm like, 'F---ing hell, I've just given Tiger COVID!'" In an interview with the Sunday Independent, McIlroy recounted the circumstances that he says led to him and Tiger Woods both getting COVID-19 ahead of The Open. McIlroy said he first felt symptoms while playing in Ireland at the JP McManus Pro-Am a week and a half before The Open at St Andrews. The field for the two-day, 36-hole event at Adare Manor featured nine of the top 10 players in the world at the time, as well as Woods, and, McIlroy said, "everyone had COVID." After playing Monday and Tuesday, "Tiger needed a rest on Wednesday. We had played two days of golf at Adare, and the plan was to play Ballybunion on Thursday," McIlroy said. "I woke up that morning feeling a bit achy but didn't really think anything of it. JP [McManus] gave us his chopper, and we went down with (my manager) Sean [O'Flaherty] and Tiger's...
November 28
November 28

Source: Bucs' Tristan Wirfs (high ankle sprain) out weeks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers right tackle Tristan Wirfs is expected to miss multiple weeks, a source told ESPN's Jeremy Fowler, after suffering a high ankle sprain. Wirfs has some ligament damage but should be able to avoid surgery unless a second opinion reveals more, the source said. The hope, according to the source, is that Wirfs will be out only three to four weeks. Bucs coach Todd Bowles disclosed Monday that Wirfs' injury is a high ankle sprain and said he expects the lineman will miss the Week 13 game against the New Orleans Saints on Monday, Dec. 5. The injury happened in overtime of Sunday's 23-17 loss to the Cleveland Browns. On a second-and-9 play, Wirfs was pass-blocking defensive end Jadeveon Clowney, with outside linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah attempting to hurdle running back Ke'Shawn Vaughn, who inadvertently pushed Owusu-Koramoah into the back of Wirfs' legs. The loss of Wirfs, just the ninth offensive lineman since...
November 28
November 28

Source: Bucs RT Tristan Wirfs (ankle/foot) to be out weeks

Tampa Bay Buccaneers right tackle Tristan Wirfs is expected to miss multiple weeks with an ankle/foot injury, a source told ESPN's Jeremy Fowler. Wirfs has some ligament damage but should be able to avoid surgery unless a second opinion reveals more, the source said. The hope, according to the source, is that Wirfs will be out only three to four weeks. The injury happened in overtime of Sunday's 23-17 loss to the Cleveland Browns. On a second-and-9 play, Wirfs was pass-blocking defensive end Jadeveon Clowney, with outside linebacker Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah attempting to hurdle running back Ke'Shawn Vaughn, who inadvertently pushed Owusu-Koramoah into the back of Wirfs' legs. The loss of Wirfs, just the ninth offensive lineman since 1990 to be named a first-team All-Pro in his first two seasons, is the latest blow to the Bucs' offensive line. Tampa Bay has already lost Pro Bowl center Ryan Jensen in training camp, Pro Bowl left...
November 28
November 28

Cleaning MLB's dirty laundry

Shocking news, huh? Mark McGwire admitted he used steroids. Who would have thunk? We can only hope that McGwire's bout of contrition spreads so other people in baseball will come clean with other "revelations.'' Pete Rose: "All right, all right. I admit it. I didn't bet on the Reds to win all the time. Sometimes I bet on the Reds to tie. There! Are you finally satisfied? Now can I manage again?" Joe Jackson: "Yeah, I helped throw the 1919 World Series. People say I was illiterate and dumb, but c'mon, you don't have to be a rocket scientist to lose a game. (By the way, what's a rocket?) Anyway, I was in on the whole thing. Took the money and dumped the games, though I was smart enough to play well in the games we won to make my stats look good. But I never showed up in no cornfield and I never told any farmer to plow under his crop, so don't blame me when the bankers come foreclosing on his farm. A voice told him that if he built a ballfield, a...
November 28
November 28

Sources: Mavericks to sign Kemba Walker to boost backcourt

The Dallas Mavericks intend to sign veteran guard Kemba Walker to address their glaring need for another creator in Luka Doncic's supporting cast, sources confirmed to ESPN. Dallas will waive reserve point guard Facundo Campazzo, whose contract is nonguaranteed, to create an open roster spot for Walker, sources said. Walker, 32, a four-time All-Star whose career has been derailed by knee issues, has been a free agent since being waived by the Detroit Pistons in mid-October. He averaged 11.6 points and 3.5 assists in 37 games last season for the New York Knicks, who traded him to the Pistons on draft night in a cost-cutting move that helped create the salary-cap space for New York to sign former Mavericks guard Jalen Brunson in free agency. Dallas, which fell to 9-10 after an 0-3 road trip that wrapped up with Sunday's loss to the Milwaukee Bucks, has missed the scoring and playmaking provided by Brunson during last season's...
November 28
November 28

Bethune-Cookman 66, N. Carolina A&amp,T 65

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- C.J. Reed's short jumper with 4 seconds to play lifted Bethune-Cookman over North Carolina A&T 66-65 on Monday night. The winning basket came after Dwane Joshua nailed a 3-pointer with 26 seconds left to give Aggies their only lead during the final 11 minutes at 65-64. The Wildcats (10-6, 3-0 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference), won their third straight and ninth in their last 12. The Aggies (5-11, 1-2) have lost six of seven and their last 13 games in Daytona. The Wildcats' Albert Abrahams led all scorers with 19 points, with Reed adding 15. Joshua's 15 points paced the Aggies, with Tavarus Alston scoring 13 and Thomas Coleman 10. The Wildcats, who trailed 38-37 at halftime, started the second half with a 14-4 run to go up by nine, 51-42, with 14:08 to go. But the Aggies fought back behind Joshua and Alston to tie it at 59-all with 5:33 left.
November 28
November 28

Packers QB Aaron Rodgers exits loss to Eagles with rib injury

PHILADELPHIA -- An  Aaron Rodgers rib injury, infinitesimal playoff hopes and the Jordan Love factor. The Green Bay Packers were left to deal with it all on their way out of town Sunday night. Rodgers exited Green Bay's 40-33 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in the third quarter with what the quarterback said afterward was a rib injury and an initial fear of a punctured lung. He was in enough pain after the game -- the Packers' seventh loss in their past eight -- that a team staff member carried Rodgers' suitcase out of the visitors locker room at Lincoln Financial Field.  That left Love to finish the game -- and nearly rally the Packers to victory almost 15 years to the day that Rodgers filled in for an injured Brett Favre on Nov. 29, 2007, at Dallas and almost did the same thing. Both backup quarterbacks fell short, with Love never getting a shot at a tying drive because the Packers' defense couldn't get a stop in the final minute. While...
November 28
November 28

Packers QB Aaron Rodgers exits loss to Eagles with rib injury

PHILADELPHIA -- An  Aaron Rodgers rib injury, infinitesimal playoff hopes and the Jordan Love factor. The Green Bay Packers were left to deal with it all on their way out of town Sunday night. Rodgers left Sunday night's 40-33 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in the third quarter with what the quarterback said afterward was a rib injury and an initial fear of a punctured lung. He was in enough pain after the game -- the Packers' seventh loss in their last eight -- that a team staff member carried Rodgers' suitcase out of the visitor's locker at Lincoln Financial Field.  That left Love to finish the game -- and nearly rally the Packers to victory almost 15 years to the day that Rodgers filled in for an injured Brett Favre on Nov. 29, 2007, at Dallas and almost did the same thing. Both backup quarterbacks fell short, with Love never getting a shot at a game-tying drive because the Packers' defense couldn't get a stop in the final minute....
November 28
November 28

Packers QB Rodgers (ribs) exits loss to Eagles in 3rd quarter

PHILADELPHIA -- An  Aaron Rodgers rib injury, infinitesimal playoff hopes and the Jordan Love factor. The Green Bay Packers were left to deal with it all on their way out of town Sunday night. Rodgers left Sunday night's 40-33 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in the third quarter with what the quarterback said afterward was a rib injury and an initial fear of a punctured lung. He was in enough pain after the game -- the Packers' seventh loss in their last eight -- that a team staff member carried Rodgers' suitcase out of the visitor's locker at Lincoln Financial Field.  That left Love to finish the game -- and nearly rally the Packers to victory almost 15 years to the day that Rodgers filled in for an injured Brett Favre on Nov. 29, 2007, at Dallas and almost did the same thing. Both backup quarterbacks fell short, with Love never getting a shot at a game-tying drive because the Packers' defense couldn't get a stop in the final minute....
November 28
November 28

Packers QB Rodgers exits loss to Eagles in third quarter

PHILADELPHIA --  Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers left Sunday night's 40-33 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in the third quarter with what the team called an oblique injury, though Rodgers clarified after the game that the injury is actually to his ribs.  Rodgers, 38, noted it was "hard to tell on the X-ray" whether he has broken ribs, but said he does not have a punctured lung. Rodgers had just led a drive that culminated in a Packers field goal to cut the Eagles' lead to 34-23 with 2:03 remaining in the third quarter. He appeared to be in some discomfort on the drive and subsequently jogged to the locker room with several members of the team's medical staff. Rodgers explained after the game that he was "having a hard time breathing and rotating my upper body." Earlier this week, Rodgers revealed that the thumb injury he has been playing with since Week 5 is actually a broken bone. But he had no sign of any injury to his midsection...
November 28
November 27

Packers QB Rodgers exits game vs. Eagles in third quarter

PHILADELPHIA -- Aaron Rodgers left Sunday night's loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in the third quarter with what the Green Bay Packers called an oblique injury. The 38-year-old quarterback appeared to be in some discomfort on the drive just before he jogged to the locker room with several members of the team's medical staff. Rodgers had just led a drive that finished with a field goal to cut the Eagles' lead to 34-23 with 2:03 left in the third quarter. Earlier this week, Rodgers revealed that the thumb injury he has been playing with since Week 5 is actually a broken bone. But he had no sign of any injury to his midsection until the second half Sunday. To that point, the Eagles had five quarterback hits on Rodgers, including three sacks. The third sack came on the opening drive of the third quarter. Rodgers played one more series before he went to the locker room for an examination. Rodgers had completed 11 of 16 passes for 140 yards with two touchdowns...
November 27
November 27

Raiders' Josh Jacobs caps 300-yard game with walk-off TD in OT

SEATTLE -- Josh Jacobs wasn't sure he'd play Sunday until about two hours before kickoff. The Las Vegas Raiders' fourth-year running back had to test out the left calf he tweaked in a noncontact drill in Friday practice. And after he aggravated it late in regulation on the Lumen Field artificial turf -- "It doesn't give," he said -- the Raiders' coaching staff wanted to sit him for the remainder of the game. "I kind of convinced them I could go," Jacobs said. "And, you know, the biggest play of the game happened after that." Jacobs burst through a big hole on the right side of the line and was gone, untouched, for a walk-off 86-yard touchdown run with 4 minutes, 20 seconds to play in the extra period to give the Raiders a 40-34 overtime win against the Seattle Seahawks. As such, Jacobs finished with franchise single-game records for all-purpose yards (303) and rushing (229). He also became just the fourth player in the Super Bowl era to finish with...
November 27
November 27

QB Mike White gives Jets' offense needed spark in romp

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- On Saturday night, in a final piece of advice to his new starting quarterback, New York Jets coach Robert Saleh told Mike White to be himself and not to worry about doing something extraordinary in his season debut. "We didn't need to turn into The Greatest Show on Turf," Saleh told reporters Sunday. As it turned out, White delivered a performance worthy of the turn-of-the-century St. Louis Rams, passing for three touchdowns and 315 yards in the Jets' 31-10 victory over the Chicago Bears in a steady rain at MetLife Stadium. Replacing the demoted Zach Wilson, who watched from the sideline as the third/inactive quarterback, White completed his first five attempts and never lost his rhythm. He parted the raindrops, completing 22 of 28 passes and connecting with 10 different receivers in one of the best passing performances in franchise history. It was a much-needed spark for the Jets (7-4), who endured a...
November 27
November 27

Draymond Green calls late tech 'crazy'; Stephen Curry picks up one in solidarity

MINNEAPOLIS -- Warriors forward Draymond Green was not happy when he got slapped with a technical foul in the waning seconds of Golden State's 137-114 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Sunday evening. Green, who finished the game with 19 points and 11 assists for his first double-double of the season, was given a technical foul with 1:19 left in the fourth quarter after Jordan Poole drove to the hoop and finished with a floating layup. Green, who was on the bench, mimicked Poole's motion as he hopped up and down, moving slightly onto the court. This was Green's seventh technical foul of the season. If a player reaches 16 techs, he will be suspended for one game. "It's crazy. I probably got four techs this year that are questionable," Green said after the game. "They told me I was at the lane line, but I thought I was standing in the corner. So I don't know. It sucks, though." Less than one minute later, Stephen Curry got called for a...
November 27
November 27

Rams WR Allen Robinson needs foot surgery, will miss rest of season

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The injuries keep coming for the Los Angeles Rams, who will be without wide receiver  Allen Robinson for the rest of the season as he needs foot surgery. According to Rams coach Sean McVay, Robinson was having "some soreness in his foot" during the week. After an injection to "see if he could push through," a CT scan revealed a stress fracture on the navicular bone in one foot. Robinson made the trip to Kansas City for Sunday's game against the Chiefs but was inactive in the 26-10 loss. "It's unfortunate, but we didn't find that out until Friday after practice when he ended up getting that CT scan," McVay said following Sunday's game. "And that's another tough loss for us." Robinson, who signed a three-year, $46.5 million contract with the Rams in March, has 33 catches for 339 yards and three touchdowns this season. The Rams were already without wide receiver Cooper Kupp, who is on injured reserve with a high ankle...
November 27
November 27

'Frustration' fuels Denver Broncos' sideline blowup in loss

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- In a season in which the only thing the Denver Broncos can consistently do, it seems, is raise their own frustration level with one loss after another, a brief sideline blowup between defensive tackle Mike Purcell and quarterback Russell Wilson was caught on camera Sunday. It came early in the fourth quarter of the Broncos' eighth loss of the season. And while both players were quick to dismiss the incident after the Carolina Panthers' 23-10 victory, it was clear the team's seventh loss in the past eight games had taken a toll. "Frustration,'' Purcell said of the incident. "We all want to spark on something. We are all in this together, period. That's the quarterback of our offense, they're about to take the field. ... Obviously, [the defense wasn't] doing our job, but got to get a spark somewhere. They're about to take the field, that's all it was.''   Purcell had just been flagged for an unnecessary roughness...
November 27
November 27

Jacoby Brissett leads Browns to OT win in likely last start

CLEVELAND -- In what was likely his final start with the Cleveland Browns, quarterback Jacoby Brissett went out a winner. On fourth down Sunday, Brissett tossed the game-tying touchdown pass near the end of regulation. Then late in overtime, he engineered the game-winning touchdown drive, as the Browns rallied to knock off the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, 23-17. "No disrespect, but in the words of Tom Brady," Brissett said afterward, "that was f---ing awesome. F---ing awesome." This week, Deshaun Watson will take over for Brissett as Cleveland's starter. Watson served an 11-game suspension for violating the league's personal conduct policy by committing sexual assault, as defined by the NFL, on massage therapists. Watson was also fined $5 million and has had to undergo a mandatory treatment program.   Shortly after giving the Houston Texans three first-round picks to trade for Watson this past offseason, the Browns signed...
November 27
November 27

QB Mike White gives Jets offense needed spark in romp

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- On Saturday night, in a final piece of advice to his new starting quarterback, New York Jets coach Robert Saleh told Mike White to be himself and not to worry about doing something extraordinary in his season debut. "We didn't need to turn into The Greatest Show on Turf," Saleh told reporters Sunday. As it turned out, White delivered a performance worthy of the turn-of-the-century St. Louis Rams, passing for three touchdowns and 315 yards in the Jets' 31-10 victory over the Chicago Bears in a steady rain at MetLife Stadium. Replacing the demoted Zach Wilson, who watched from the sideline as the third/inactive quarterback, White completed his first five attempts and never lost his rhythm. He parted the raindrops, completing 22 of 28 passes and connecting with 10 different receivers in one of the best passing performances in franchise history. It was a much-needed spark for the Jets (7-4), who endured a...
November 27
November 27

Wisconsin brings in Cincinnati's Luke Fickell as coach

Wisconsin has hired Luke Fickell as its next football coach, athletic director Chris McIntosh announced Sunday. Fickell led Cincinnati to the College Football Playoff last season and had gone 57-18 in his six years there. His 2021 Bearcats team went 13-0 before losing to Alabama in the playoff semifinals as the first Group of 5 team to reach the CFP. The hiring of Fickell marks one of the most eye-opening moves of the college football carousel, with Wisconsin luring the country's top Group of 5 coach who brings vast experience in the Big Ten's Midwestern footprint. "This is a destination job at a program that I have admired from afar for years," Fickell said in a statement. "I am in total alignment with Chris McIntosh's vision for this program. There is a tremendous foundation here that I can't wait to build upon. This world-class university, athletic department and passionately loyal fan base all have a strong commitment to success and I can't wait to be a part of...
November 27
November 27

Purdue QB Aidan O'Connell says oldest brother recently died

Purdue starting quarterback Aidan O'Connell announced Sunday that his oldest brother, Sean, recently died. O'Connell became very emotional on the sideline toward the end of Saturday's 30-16 win over  Indiana, where Purdue clinched its first Big Ten West title and a spot in the league championship game against Michigan. After the game, coach Jeff Brohm said O'Connell has "got a lot going on right now," but didn't elaborate. In a statement, O'Connell expressed his gratitude for the support he has received. No information has been provided on how Sean O'Connell died. "Sean was not only one of Purdue football's biggest fans, but he was a better son, brother and friend," Aidan O'Connell's statement read. "He lit up any room he walked in and all that knew him testify to his contagious joy. We trust the lord to provide strength and hope, and we appreciate your thoughts and prayers during this time." O'Connell, a sixth-year senior from Long Grove, Illinois, is in...
November 27
November 27

Harbaugh 'all good' with Wolverines planting flag at OSU

After Michigan defeated Ohio State 45-23 on Saturday, linebacker  Michael Barrett grabbed a giant Michigan flag and ran the width of the end zone, waving it in front of the remaining Wolverines fans at the stadium. The Michigan players then ran up the field with the giant flag flapping behind them, only to land at midfield, where they planted the flag on the block "O" emblem at the 50-yard line. It was reminiscent of  Baker Mayfield planting the Oklahoma flag after the Sooners beat Ohio State 31-16 early in the 2017 season. The move by Mayfield caused a stir and irritation from the Ohio State players, so Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh was asked how he felt after his players did the same. "I want to get that flag and put it in our museum," Harbaugh said. He didn't articulate how it actually made him feel or if he thought it was a bad idea, but he mentioned that anything goes in this historic rivalry. "I think there's already plenty of...
November 27
November 27

Odell Beckham Jr. taken off plane after health concern, initial refusal

Odell Beckham Jr. was removed from a flight at Miami International Airport on Sunday after police said the free agent wide receiver was "in and out of consciousness" and refused to leave the airplane when asked. Beckham's attorney, Daniel Davillier, disputed that account, saying his client had been sleeping and that the incident was the result of an "overzealous flight attendant." According to a statement from the Miami-Dade Police Department, officers were called to the airport for a medical emergency after the flight crew expressed concern that Beckham was seriously ill. "The flight crew was concerned for a passenger [Mr. Odell Beckham], as they tried to wake him to fasten his seat belt, he appeared to be coming in and out of consciousness, prior to their departure," the police statement said. "Fearing that Mr. Beckham was seriously ill, and that his condition would worsen through the expected 5 hour flight, the attendants called for police and fire rescue. Upon the officers...
November 27
November 27

Mike Clevinger agrees to deal with White Sox, sources say

CHICAGO -- Free agent pitcher Mike Clevinger is in agreement with the Chicago White Sox on a contract for the 2023 season, sources told ESPN on Sunday. Clevinger, 31, was 7-7 with a 4.33 ERA last season pitching for the San Diego Padres. He also threw 2⅔ innings in the playoffs, giving up seven earned runs, but he was dealing with a knee issue toward the end of the season. He missed all of 2021 after Tommy John surgery. The right-hander fits into the middle to back end of the White Sox rotation, as veteran Johnny Cueto isn't likely to return to the team. The Sox already employ righty starters Dylan Cease, Lance Lynn, Michael Kopech and Lucas Giolito. Clevinger is a six-year veteran with a career 51-30 mark and 3.39 ERA. His best seasons came between 2017 and 2019 with Cleveland, where he won 38 games in that time frame. The agreement is pending a physical. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
November 27
November 27

Dolphins LT Terron Armstead ruled out with pectoral injury

MIAMI -- Dolphins left tackle Terron Armstead was ruled out of Miami's 30-15 victory over the Houston Texans after suffering a pectoral injury in the first half. Armstead left the field and walked to the locker room shortly before halftime with the Dolphins up 30-0 and did not return for the beginning of the third quarter. Brandon Shell entered the game in his stead. Dolphins coach Mike McDaniel said after the game that the team will know more about Armstead's injury on Monday. He added that the injury was not one that Armstead could have returned to the game with, regardless of the score.  Armstead, a team captain, has started all but one game this season, playing through a toe injury that he suffered in Week 1. He missed the Dolphins' game against the Minnesota Vikings in Week 6 after seeing a specialist about the injury. Armstead was Miami's marquee free agent signing this offseason and ESPN's top-ranked free agent in last...
November 27
November 27

Lindsay Whalen, Carolyn Peck top women's hoops HOF class

Former Minnesota Lynx star Lindsay Whalen and ESPN analyst Carolyn Peck, the first Black head coach to win the NCAA women's basketball tournament, are among five women who will be inducted next year into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame, it was announced Sunday. The induction will be April 29 at the hall in Knoxville, Tennessee. Whalen, who was inducted into the Naismith Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts, in September, led Minnesota to the 2004 women's Final Four and is now head women's basketball coach at her alma mater. She won two Olympic gold medals with Team USA. Whalen helped lead the Lynx to four WNBA titles and also led the Connecticut Sun to the 2004 and 2005 WNBA Finals. Peck led Purdue to the 1999 NCAA title, a breakthrough achievement for Black head coaches in the women's game. Peck, who played collegiately at  Vanderbilt, also has been a head coach in the WNBA and for the Florida Gators, along with being a...
November 27
November 27

Bears safety Eddie Jackson suffers noncontact foot injury

Chicago Bears safety Eddie Jackson was ruled out for the remainder of Chicago's 31-10 loss to the New York Jets ahead of halftime Sunday. Jackson went down with a noncontact injury while defending  Mike White's 54-yard touchdown pass to Garrett Wilson with 5 minutes, 9 seconds remaining in the second quarter. The Bears had single-high coverage with Jackson back deep. The safety went down at Chicago's 30-yard line while backpedaling before planting his left foot in the turf. Jackson could not bear weight on the foot and needed to be helped off the field by members of the Bears' athletic training staff. He immediately went into the medical tent for evaluation and was ruled out shortly thereafter. Jackson was later carted back to the locker room. The 29-year-old safety has four interceptions through 12 games, which is tied for the third most in the NFL. Jackson had two tackles and a pass defended against the Jets at the time of his injury. He...
November 27
November 27

Bears QB Trevor Siemian starts vs. Jets despite oblique injury

There's twists and turns. And then there's the Chicago Bears' backup quarterback situation. After Justin Fields separated his left, non-throwing shoulder in Atlanta against the Falcons last Sunday and was declared inactive for Chicago's game against the New York Jets, veteran QB Trevor Siemian is making his first start since Week 12 of the 2021 season, when he was with the New Orleans Saints. After Siemian injured an oblique muscle during pregame warm-ups at MetLife Stadium, the team announced before the game that he would serve as the backup to quarterback Nathan Peterman, who the Bears promoted from the practice squad to the active roster on Saturday. Despite that announcement, Siemian still started Sunday's game, with Peterman serving as his backup. With a diminished depth chart at quarterback, the Bears also have running back David Montgomery available as an emergency option. "He's kind of that extra green dot...
November 27
November 27

Sources: Wisconsin finalizing deal to hire Luke Fickell

Wisconsin is finalizing a deal to make Luke Fickell the school's next football coach, sources told ESPN. While there a few steps remaining -- including a regents meeting Sunday afternoon that's been formally announced -- a deal is expected to be formalized to make Fickell the next Badgers coach within the next 24 hours. Fickell has informed his Cincinnati Bearcats team that he is leaving for the Wisconsin job, sources told ESPN's Adam Rittenberg. Special teams coach Kerry Coombs will serve as the Bearcats' interim coach, sources told ESPN. Sources told ESPN that all the candidates for the Wisconsin position, including interim coach Jim Leonhard, have been informed that they're not getting the job. That sets the stage for one of the most eye-opening moves of the college football carousel, Wisconsin luring the country's top Group of 5 coach who brings vast experience in the Big Ten's Midwestern footprint. Fickell led Cincinnati to the College Football Playoff last season...
November 27
November 27

Sources - Wisconsin finalizing deal to hire Luke Fickell

Wisconsin is finalizing a deal to make Luke Fickell the school's next head coach, sources told ESPN. While there a few steps remaining -- including a Regents meeting this afternoon that's been formally announced -- a deal is expected to become formalized to make Fickell the next Badgers coach within the next 24 hours. Sources told ESPN that all the candidates for the job, including interim coach Jim Leonhard, have been informed that they're not getting the job. That sets the stage for one of the most eye-opening moves in the college football carousel this offseason, Wisconsin luring the country's top Group of Five coach who brings vast experience in the Big Ten's Midwestern footprint. Fickell led Cincinnati to the College Football Playoff last season and has gone 57-18 in his six years there. Fickell's 2021 Bearcats team went 13-0 before losing to Alabama in the College Football Playoff, becoming the first Group of 5 team to reach the CFP. Fickell has strong roots...
November 27
November 27

Bears to start Nathan Peterman after Trevor Siemian hurt in warm-ups

There's twists and turns. And then there's the Chicago Bears' backup quarterback situation. After Justin Fields separated his left, non-throwing shoulder in Atlanta against the Atlanta Falcons last Sunday and was declared inactive for Chicago's game against the New York Jets, veteran QB Trevor Siemian was in line to start his first game since Week 12 of the 2021 season, when he was with the New Orleans Saints. Siemian, however, injured an oblique muscle during pregame warm-ups at MetLife Stadium and will serve as the backup to quarterback Nathan Peterman, who the Bears promoted from the practice squad to the active roster on Saturday. This will be Peterman's first start since Week 9 of the 2018 season, when he was with the Buffalo Bills. In that game, Peterman went 31-of-49 for 188 yards and three interceptions in Buffalo's 41-9 loss to Chicago. He last threw a pass in a regular-season game in 2020, when he was with...
November 27
November 27

Sources: Wisconsin making push to hire Luke Fickell as coach

Wisconsin has targeted Luke Fickell to be the school's next head coach, sources told ESPN. No deal is signed, but there's a strong push by the Badgers to try and land Fickell in the next 48 hours. Fickell led Cincinnati to the College Football Playoff last season and has gone 57-18 in his six years there. Fickell's 2021 Bearcats team went 13-0 before losing to Alabama in the College Football Playoff, becoming the first Group of 5 team to reach the CFP. Fickell has strong roots in the Big Ten, as he was a longtime assistant coach and coordinator at Ohio State and played there collegiately. He'd been picky about jobs over the years as Cincinnati rose to the top of the Group of 5, being selective about the Midwestern footprint. Fickell would replace Paul Chryst, who was fired in the middle of the season after going 67-26 in eight seasons there. He'd been replaced by Jim Leonhard, who had been the defensive coordinator and was considered a candidate for the...
November 27

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