Source: Quarterback Blake Barnett transferring from Arizona State

Arizona State quarterback Blake Barnett is transferring from the program, a source confirmed to ESPN on Wednesday. Barnett will be a grad transfer and will have two more seasons of eligibility to finish his career.

According to a source, Barnett will visit USF this weekend and is still gauging interest from other programs.

Initially a five-star prospect out of high school in the 2015 class, ranked No. 14 overall, Barnett committed to Notre Dame, decommitted and eventually signed with Alabama. Barnett transferred from Alabama in 2016 after quarterback Jalen Hurts took over as starter for the Tide.

Following the game, Westbrook did not want to discuss how he guarded Rubio.

“It wasn’t about me or him,” he said. “Let’s get past that. We done with that.”

Mitchell set a postseason rookie scoring record for the Jazz, passing Karl Malone, who had 31 points on April 20, 1986, against the Mavericks. Mitchell is the first rookie to have a 30-point playoff game since Brandon Jennings did it in 2010. Mitchell is just the third rookie in the last 50 years to score 110-plus points in his first four playoff games, joining Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Michael Jordan.

“It’s definitely an honor to have a record like that,” Mitchell said. “Definitely an honor. No doubt about that, but we have one more game, so I’m focused on that.”
The tweets cited by Yahoo! Sports were sent in 2012 and 2013, when Allen was in high school.

Allen told Smith that some of the tweets made reference to rap lyrics and television, including a saying that was part of an episode from the sitcom “Modern Family.”

On ESPN’s First Take on Thursday, NFL Insider Adam Schefter reported that his sources indicated Allen’s Twitter account was vetted in January and that the offensive tweets were removed then.

Allen is ranked as the top quarterback in the draft, according to ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr., and is projected by many to be selected by the Cleveland Browns with the first overall pick.

A team with a top-five draft pick told ESPN’s Adam Schefter that it knew nothing about the tweets and that it had “never heard anything but positives” about Allen.

Ray was disappointed he wasn’t able to earn the victory, especially since he felt like he had his pitches working.

“I’m frustrated from the results, not the execution,” he said. “Definitely something to build on.”

Lovullo wanted to get Ray through the fifth, but ultimately long innings prevented that from happening.

“Those are hard situations to walk through for me,” Lovullo said.dolphins_076

Jets host Travis Swanson

The Jets announced center Travis Swanson visited Friday.

Swanson, 27, played his first four seasons in Detroit after they made him a third-round pick. He played 11 games last season before going on injured reserve with what the Lions said was a concussion.

However, Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press has reported that Swanson’s representatives have a medical report that shows he had a reaction to medicine used to treat a concussion. His symptoms subsided after he got off the medicine.

The Blackhawks and Jets both wore the name “BRONCOS” instead of their nameplates for their game Saturday in Winnipeg.

Prior to Saturday’s Division I hockey national title game between Minnesota Duluth and Notre Dame at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, Minnesota, the public address announcer called for a moment of silence to honor the victims of the Humboldt crash. It lasted nearly 10 seconds.

Although thousands had come for the championship matchup, the pregame buzz centered on the tragedy and its collective impact in a tightknit hockey community.

Strongly emphasizing, per King, the word “fit” as it relates to the Cleveland comments, Mora praised his former pupil: “Josh, I think, without a doubt, is the number one quarterback in the draft. He’s a franchise-changer. He’s got the ability to have an immediate impact. His arm talent, intelligence, and his ability to see the game and diagnose the game is rare. He’d come to the sidelines after a play and it was uncanny — he could right away say exactly why he made every decision.”

So what’s the issue as it relates to Rosen and the team that holds the No. 1 overall pick?

“He needs to be challenged intellectually so he doesn’t get bored,” Mora said. “He’s a millennial. He wants to know why. Millennials, once they know why, they’re good. Josh has a lot of interests in life. If you can hold his concentration level and focus only on football for a few years, he will set the world on fire. He has so much ability, and he’s a really good kid.”

Here’s my two cents, which may be worth a little less than that: Rosen doesn’t want to play for the Browns, Mora knows it, and Mora’s comments were his way of saying it without saying it.buccaneers_042

New York Jets acquire No. 3 pick in 2018 NFL draft from Indianapolis Colts

he New York Jets announced the team has completed a trade with the Indianapolis Colts for the No. 3 pick in the first round of the 2018 NFL draft.

In return, the Jets will give the Colts the No. 6 overall pick and three second-round picks – the 37th and 49th overall picks in this year’s draft and one in 2019.

Graham can’t block a lick. He’s a glorified big receiver. In his final season in New Orleans in 2014, according to Pro Football Focus, he lined up at receiver on 197 snaps and in the slot 304. But in three years with the Seahawks, he didn’t top even 100 snaps for a season at receiver until last year. Same for 200 snaps in the slot.

Maybe Nelson will prove otherwise in Oakland, but this looks like an upgrade for the Packers.

Still, you wonder just how big an improvement it will be. In the last few weeks, I talked to two NFL scouts who work in the NFC West, where Graham played the last three seasons, and they had contrasting takes on him.

One still likes him as a threat to stretch the middle of the field and in the red zone.

“He’s good. He’s not slowed down much,” the scout said.

The Packers were $30 million under the cap after releasing Nelson, but they have since added free agents Jimmy Graham and Muhammad Wilkerson. The combined salary-cap cost of those two could be around $15 million, which means the Packers would be down to about $15 million under.

The Bears came into free agency with $66 million in salary-cap space.

They have since signed a slew of free agents, including wide receiver Allen Robinson, linebacker Aaron Lynch, tight end Trey Burton, wide receiver Taylor Gabriel and quarterback Chase Daniel.

The Packers have watched as cornerback after cornerback has flown off the shelves in free agency, perhaps taken by surprise at the amount of money being thrown at the position. Among the corners who signed deals in the first two days of free agency were Johnson (Jets), Butler (Titans), Patrick Robinson (Saints), Morris Claiborne (Jets), T.J. Carrie (Browns) and Aaron Colvin (Texans).
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The Falcons have regrouped with three straight wins.

They are clearly the league’s best third-place team, which just might be enough to get them into the playoffs. But their schedule gets difficult down the stretch. Atlanta hosts the Vikings on Sunday, and still must face the Saints twice and the Panthers once.

The once-fearsome secondary is decimated and there’s little reason to believe that the Seahawks remain a major threat in the top-heavy NFC. Sunday night’s matchup at home with the Eagles should be telling in that regard.

This will be Timberlake’s third time performing on the Super Bowl Halftime stage, giving him the distinction of having the most appearances by an individual entertainer. He previously performed at Super Bowls XXXV and XXXVII.

The Super Bowl halftime show is the most-watched musical event of the year. Last year’s show, headlined by Lady Gaga, was the most-watched musical event of all time across all platforms and the most-watched Super Bowl halftime performance in history through broadcast and digital channels. Super Bowl 52 marks Pepsi’s sixth year as title sponsor of the Super Bowl halftime show.

The Nittany Lions needed receivers and tight ends in this class, and they were able to fill the future holes on the depth chart. At tight end, the staff is losing both Mike Gesicki and Tom Pancoast but was able to land ESPN 300 prospects Zack Kuntz and Patrick Freiermuth, as well as three-star Judge Culpepper. At wide receiver, Penn State has five-star Justin Shorter signed as well as ESPN 300 receivers Jahan Dotson, Daniel George and Shaquon Anderson-Butts. — VanHaaren

Chargers tight end Antonio Gates is unquestionably one of the greatest players every to play his position, and on Sunday, he did something no tight end has ever done: catch 112 touchdowns in his career.

Gates broke a tie with Tony Gonzalez by nabbing a touchdown from Philip Rivers in the second half of Sunday’s game against the Dolphins. You can check out the play and the reaction from his teammates here.

Redskins running back Chris Thompson is the team’s biggest passing-game factor out of the backfield, but on Sunday, he showed his jets on a draw play to score a 61-yard touchdown.
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Dolphins release Rey Maualuga after arrest for battery

Rey Maualuga was released by the Dolphins shortly after being arrested on battery chargers in Miami-Dade County early Saturday morning, the team announced.

It’s been a tumultuous season for the 4-5 Dolphins. They lost quarterback Ryan Tannehill to a season-ending knee injury in training camp. Their city was impacted by Hurricane Irma, causing their scheduled Week 1 game against the Bucs to be moved to this Sunday. Linebacker Lawrence Timmons was suspended for a game for going AWOL. Offensive line coach Chris Foerster was fired after video of him snorting what appeared to be cocaine was made public and star running back Jay Ajayi was jettisoned in a trade to the Eagles.

Fournette was listed as questionable on Jacksonville’s injury report after being held out of practice Friday, though he did participate in workouts on a limited basis Wednesday and Thursday.

“I think we’re just being precautious,” Jaguars coach Doug Marrone said Friday. “You saw what happened on Sunday. He was playing, and then all of sudden he rolled it and then he came back and practiced, and we’re just trying to be smart.”

Fournette suffered a sprained right ankle in the Jaguars’ Week 6 loss to the Rams and missed the team’s Week 7 win over the Colts before Jacksonville’s bye in Week 8. He was then inactive in Week 9 for what Marrone called “an infraction of a team rule” and apologized for his continued absence.

Upon his return in last week’s victory over the Chargers, Fournette suffered yet another injury to the ankle. He sat out briefly in the fourth quarter before returning in overtime.

Fournette, 23, was selected by Jacksonville with the No. 4 overall pick in this year’s draft. He has 629 yards on 147 carries for six touchdowns in seven games this season.
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Best and worst wide receiver matchups for fantasy football Week 8

The Titans did everything they could to hand host Cleveland its first win of the season Sunday. Browns coach Hue Jackson did everything in his power to flush the opportunity.

It’s not all L’s for Washington. The resurgence of the career of the 33-year-old tight end has been a boost for the team since 2016 and it continued Monday with four receptions for 67 yards.

It seems like Davis manages to escape and run wild for a long play at least once a game for Washington, and he did it again against Philadelphia with a 31-yard pass play.

He averages nearly 20 yards per reception — a crazy number for a tight end — and has been a reliable target for Cousins at least a few times per game.

The since-deleted comment read: “JuJu is no where near better than me, fool. All they need to do is give me what I want and y’all can have JuJu and whoever else.”

Bryant later refined his remarks and commented on the same post: “JuJu is the future and got great talent and is going to be one of the best to play this game. I want him to get his. I just want mines, period, point-blank.”

Bryant has 18 catches this season for 234 yards and one touchdown. He was suspended all of 2016 for multiple violations of the league’s substance abuse policy.

Reggie Bush has spent the past 11 seasons on NFL rosters after being the No. 2 overall pick in the 2006 draft by New Orleans. This year, though, he hasn’t been on a team at all. Despite that, the running back said on Tuesday he would still like to play.

“I still want to play, but if it doesn’t happen this year, then I’m going to retire,” Bush told ESPN in a phone interview. “I’m not going to miss a whole year and then try to come back for another season at 33 years old, it doesn’t make sense.”

“I don’t want to go back in a situation just to go back and play. Obviously want to be in a situation where I can obviously be used the right way, be effective, all those different things.”

Aaron Rodgers got saved the embarrassment of a big man pick-six thanks to a penalty

Normally a “welcome to the NFL” moment for a rookie is something that woefully embarrasses them, but Nazair Jones of the Seahawks made a different kind of impression — and it’s a darn shame it didn’t count.

Jones didn’t just pick off an opposing quarterback or score a pick-six, he did it against Aaron Rodgers. That’s amazing on its own, and then you factor in that it was a big man touchdown and well — it’s just incredible. Check out that speed too! He really had some jets on this one.

Haden racked up six total tackles, had a sack (only the third of his career) and a pass deflection in his first regular-season appearance in black and gold. And it all came against the team that drafted him seventh overall in 2010. He was released by Cleveland on Aug. 30 and signed with Pittsburgh the following day.

His season couldn’t have started on a more positive note.

“I am where I am now,” Haden said. “I’m excited to be a Steeler and try to do my part to help them win. It wasn’t about proving anything to the Browns; it’s just showing the Steelers I could play.”

The Browns haven’t won a season opener since the 2004 season. Pittsburgh, on the flip side, is 10-4 in Week 1 games over that time frame.
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National anthem protests: Michael Bennett sits; did Marshawn Lynch lie to his coach?

Seahawks defensive end Michael Bennett sat on the team’s bench with a towel over his head during the national anthem before Seattle’s preseason game against the L.A. Chargers at StubHub Center on Sunday night, ESPN.com reports.

Bennett often speaks out on social issues and supports Colin Kaepernick, who knelt during the national anthem before every 49ers game last season in protest of what he perceives as the oppression of black people in this country.

Bennett plans to sit during the national anthem for the entire seaosn, ESPN’s Jim Trotter reported on SportsCenter.

Aguayo missed an extra point and a field goal in the Bucs’ 23-12 loss. Tampa Bay put in backup Nick Folk, who made a 45-yard field goal in the third quarter Friday.

The Bucs felt pressure to keep Aguayo last year after they took him in the second round in the 2016 NFL Draft. However, he made only 22 of his 31 field goal attempts last year.

Connor Barth, who is currently the Bears starting kicker, converted 18 of 23 field goals in 2016.

T.J., the Steelers’ first-round pick (No. 30 overall) out of Wisconsin, ended his debut with those two sacks, five tackles and three quarterback hits.

“I think just getting out there in general, having a play on (special) teams and then having the sack as I did, it calmed the nerves a little bit,” Watt told reporters ( via ESPN ). “At the same time I felt like I belong here. I came into this game with a certain amount of confidence because of the work I put in.”

The 22-year-old linebacker is currently penciled in as the backup to James Harrison at one of the outside linebacker spots, but coach Mike Tomlin told reporters he liked what he saw from the rookie Friday night.

And for what it’s worth, so did big brother, one of the best defensive players in NFL history.dolphins_073

Falcons rookie LB Duke Riley pulled an SUV by himself like it was nothing

Atlanta Falcons rookie linebacker Duke Riley is one strong man.

On Wednesday, he posted a video of himself pulling a GMC Denali that was connected by two ropes. The Denali is around 5,500 pounds, which is like pulling 24 Duke Rileys if you round up on the math.

“Yeah, it was worth a little bit,” Jones told Atlanta’s NBC affiliate, 11 Alive.

Jones often wears small diamond hoops or studs, but at least he didn’t lose both earrings, which would have presumably run him about $200,000.

Not surprisingly, Jones hired scuba divers to try to find the missing jewelry. It won’t be easy. Lake Lanier, which is near the Falcons’ training facility in Flowery Branch, is almost 58 square miles and as deep as 160 feet in some spots. It’s about 65 feet deep in the area where Jones lost the earring.

Jones has made about $52 million so far over the course of his career. If the divers can’t track down his missing earring, he can probably just buy another. But shelling out $100,000 to replace a lost earring seems painful, even for Jones.

Julio Jones: He’s just like us, except his earrings are a lot more expensive.

This is one of many picks the Rams got from Washington in the Robert Griffin III trade. Should be a can’t-miss spot, right? Well, about that. Robinson played left guard his rookie year, where he was kinda decent. But he’s been one of the worst left tackles in football the past couple years.

The Rams admitted their mistake this offseason, signing Andrew Whitworth to play left tackle. Robinson will have one last chance to save his career at guard or right tackle next year.
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Russell Westbrook passes Wilt Chamberlain for second-most triple-doubles in a season

Russell Westbrook’s historic triple-double chase continued Saturday.

With his 32nd triple-double against the Jazz, the Thunder guard passed Wilt Chamberlain for the second-most triple-doubles in a single season. Oscar Robertson holds the NBA record for triple-doubles in a single season (41 in 1961-62).

Allen started the season quite poorly, but has finished strong and put himself right back in contention to be selected in the lottery if he chooses to come out. From Jan. 11 onward, Allen averaged 15.6 points, 9.1 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game. Allen morphed into the offensive glass-crashing, pick-and-roll diving big that everyone expected offensively coming into his freshman year.

Allen is apparently keeping his options open and has yet to make a decision on his draft status. But if he was to come out, it’s difficult to see him falling out of the first round.

Patton had an inconsistent finish to the season after point guard Maurice Watson tore his ACL. After getting into double figures in 13 straight games, four of Patton’s final 11 saw him only reach single digits in scoring.

The package of skills is still extremely interesting as a 7-foot big man who is athletic when rolling to the basket, can step away for an outside shot and is an solid passer. Just a small drop here to account for inconsistency.

The team announced it will waive Matt Barnes in its release confirming the trade.) Sacramento will also need to waive one other player prior to making the deal official in order to be roster compliant.
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