There is an excitement in these Chinese arenas each time the Warriors push the tempo.

Field goal Kansas City. It takes the Chiefs just two plays to drive into the red zone. But Smith throws three straight incompletions and Kansas City settles for three points, cutting its deficit to 19-13 with 2:17 remaining.

Touchdown Steelers. Roethlisberger’s pass is deflected, but Antonio Brown makes an incredible one-handed catch, runs down the sideline and into the end zone to increase Pittsburgh’s advantage to two possessions, 19-10, with 3:24 to play.

“The debate has been going on, both at the national level, but importantly at the state level in capitals around the country,” Lockhart said. “A key area is coming together and using the strength and the muscle of the players of the platform they have and the league has.”

Before their Sept. 25 game against the Arizona Cardinals, the Cowboys players, coaches and staff, including Jones, stood locked arm in arm and took a knee before the anthem. During the anthem, they stood arm in arm. In the past two games, the Cowboys have stood on the sideline as they had before President Trump’s initial comments.

Defensive linemen Damontre Moore and David Irving raised their fists at the end of the national anthem before Sunday’s game against the Green Bay Packers. They told Cowboys coach Jason Garrett that they did so “well after” the anthem, and the coach said they would not be disciplined.

If the NFL (as well as all professional sports leagues) is to remain a meritocracy, then principled and peaceful political protest — which the owners themselves made great theater imitating weeks ago — should not be punished and athletes should not be denied employment based on partisan political provocation by the Executive Branch of our government. Such a precedent threatens all patriotic Americans and harkens back to our darkest days as a nation. Protecting all athletes from such collusive conduct is what compelled Mr. Kaepernick to file his grievance.tigers_001

Kizer’s first turnover came in the first quarter on third-and-goal from the 3.

He audibled to an option, something the Browns had practiced all week, but Crowell did not handle the pitch and the Jets recovered.

“It was a perfect look to pitch the ball to allow Crow to go to the pylon,” said Kizer, who added, “I pitched the ball to him, and he did not catch the ball.”

The interception also came on third down, this time from the 4.

Of the other five teams, two missed the playoffs entirely, including last year’s Vikings team that started 5-0 and finished 8-8. And for what it’s worth, one of the five was the 2013 Chiefs, in Year 1 of the Andy Reid-Alex Smith era, when they started 9-0 and were neck-and-neck with the eventual AFC champion Broncos most of the season but ended up losing out on the division crown and losing their playoff opener.

Does that mean pump the brakes on the Chiefs? The 2015 season was a parade of people demanding that the brakes get pumped on the Panthers, so keep that in mind. Meanwhile, the Chiefs go for 5-0 in a great Sunday night matchup in Houston.

Not only did Adams play against Chicago last October, he scored two touchdowns and had career highs with 13 receptions and 132 yards. In both cases, the team doctors and independent neurologists who cleared Adams appeared to be vindicated by the receiver’s performance on the field.

Back in their day, long before anyone ever heard of the brain disease known as CTE, real men played through severe headaches, dizziness and nausea caused by head shots. Under those old-school terms of engagement, you didn’t get a concussion. You merely got your bell rung.x (1)

I love fake punts, don’t get me wrong.

When pulled off well at the right time, they can help change the game. There’s a time and place to do a fake punt, however, and that time is probably not deep in your own territory when you’re down 11 points on the road.

Apparently the Minnesota Vikings didn’t get the memo:

Never mind the terrible Pop Warner-style pass. That’s just a bad spot to be running a fake punt in. The Steelers scored a field goal shortly afterward, going up 17-3 and effectively putting the game away in the third quarter.

Westbrooks, whose arrest was first reported by the Southern California News Group, was booked on five felony charges: receiving stolen property, carrying a loaded firearm, carrying a stolen loaded firearm, grand theft of a firearm and possessing a high-capacity magazine.

He has an arraignment scheduled for Oct. 5.

Westbrooks wasn’t able to go into detail about the arrest because it’s a pending legal matter. The 26-year-old said he spoke to Rams coach Sean McVay about it on Monday and was told the organization will be supportive. Westbrooks simply called it “a bad situation.”

Asked if he would play Sunday, and if everything will remain normal on the field, Westbrooks said, “It’s been normal so far. As far as Sunday, I honestly can’t tell you.”

An undrafted free agent out of West Texas A&M, Westbrooks has spent the past four years with the Rams and has racked up five sacks while playing an increased role since the start of the 2015 season. The Rams recently extended Westbrooks’ contract through 2018.

Westbrooks was arrested on suspicion of domestic violence in Sacramento, California, in March but was never charged.a (1)

Giants’ Odell Beckham Jr. calls ankle sprain ‘6-to-8 week thing’

Odell Beckham Jr. may not be back in action for a few more weeks.

While speaking to reporters Thursday, the Giants wide receiver hinted that he may not return until Week 5 against the Chargers after calling his sprained left ankle “a 6-to-8-week thing.”

“I do want to go out on my terms,” he said. “I do want go out playing my best.”

While CTE and other brain injuries are a concern for NFL players, Brady just wants to focus on his task at hand right now. He will worry about his life after the NFL when it arrives.

“I don’t know what the future is going to look like, you know, and I’m not going to pretend to predict it,” Brady said. “And I’m going to do everything I can to take care of my body in advance of the hits that I’m going to take on Sunday.”

The Patriots shockingly lost their first game this season at home against the Chiefs. Brady looked out of sync most of the night, and New England’s defense was torched by Chiefs rookie running back Kareem Hunt.

Brady has always had a solid offensive line in front of him, which has allowed him to remain in the pocket longer and make precision passes. But as he gets older and slower, heavy hits could become a problem.
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The folks over at The Falcoholic took a look at the most intriguing players to watch in Sunday night’s game.

These games also tend to be nail-biters; nine of the last ten regular season meetings were decided by eight points or less, including six by three or fewer points. Much like Green Bay’s non-divisional rivalries that have developed with the likes of San Francisco, Dallas, and Seattle, fans of both sides are connected by memories of both bitterness and joy.

Just one of those players is edge rusher Takkarist McKinley:
Takk didn’t get a ton of playing time against the Bears—mainly because Chicago was so rarely lined up in a package that demanded nickel coverage from the Falcons. In his limited snaps, he showed flashes of what we saw in the preseason. Dan Quinn absolutely wants to get Takk more involved, and Sunday night’s game against Green Bay should give him plenty of opportunities to do so.

Sean McVay is the youngest coach in the NFL, and that showed on Sunday against Washington. Jay Gruden came out on top, but it wasn’t a total wash for Gruden’s former pupil.

McVay’s rookie mistakes were obvious ones, including using all of his first-half timeouts with 10 minutes left to go in the second quarter. And in a game where Washington leaned on its running game for the win, McVay’s Rams only ran the ball a total of 21 times, despite having a running back who can do this:

Despite a last-minute interception, Jared Goff continued his upward trajectory, which is a more important marker for McVay’s early tenure than wins alone. Gruden may still be the master, but his former pupil is on the right path.
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Packers vs. Falcons 2017: Start time, TV schedule for ‘Sunday Night Football’

The Green Bay Packers are hitting the road against the Atlanta Falcons in Week 2 for a rematch of the 2016 NFC Championship. The Falcons were able to best the Packers en route to a 28-3 meme that will never die, but Aaron Rodgers and Co. are looking for a different result on Sunday Night Football at 8:25 p.m. ET on NBC (live stream it on NBCSports.com).

On offense, the Packers have been one of the more consistent teams in the NFL. On defense, not so much. All that seems to have changed, if Week 1 was any indication. Green Bay’s defense was littered with injured players at the end of 2016, and with some veteran offseason pickups and a healthy roster, things are looking like they’ll be a lot different in 2017.

Though they showed promise this year with a 6-10 finish — a four-game improvement over 2014. It’s worth noting, though, that they lost their final four games of the season.

Smith admitted, after he accepted the Illinois job in March 2016, that he was a bit surprised when the Bucs informed him he was out.

This case stands to impact NFL discipline going forward. Historically, courts have generally upheld the league’s sweeping authority over disciplinary issues. Article 46 of the current CBA gives Roger Goodell complete autonomy over player discipline, and the personal conduct policy is broad, with a much lower threshold for its burden of proof than the legal system.
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