Blake Bortles’ timely interception of a thief thwarted a burglary at a Jaguars’ party

Police say Blake Bortles turned into a crime stopper Wednesday night when he and Jacksonville Jaguars teammates Chris Reed and Brandon Linder stopped a man from stealing the quarterback’s wallet, according to TMZ.

The report says surveillance video shows Bortles’ wallet being snagged by the thief, who rummaged through the quarterback’s unlocked truck at a house party at Linder’s home. The keys to the truck were also there for the taking, but the uninvited party guest was boxed in by other cars and couldn’t steal the truck.

Just to circle back to that, Bortles left both his keys and his wallet inside his unlocked truck.

Gesicki will almost certainly become Miami’s primary pass-catching tight end. At 6’6 and 247 pounds with 4.54 speed, he is the kind of mismatch Thomas was supposed to be in Miami. Since he and Smythe are both likely to make the team based on draft status, Gray could have a hard time earning the last roster spot if the Dolphins only keep three tight ends.

Gray is a good all-around tight end, but he isn’t special in any one area. Cutting him would save the Dolphins nearly $1 million in cap space.

Shayne Denn, 26, of Tewksbury, Mass., was arrested by the Franklin County (Maine) Sheriff’s Office on three charges — operating without a license, providing a false name and date of birth, and most notably, operating as a fugitive from justice. He was brought into the jail after his arrest Thursday and is being held in custody without bail. 

According to Wilmington (Mass.) Police, Denn was also suspected in connection with a crime spree that included using a pickup truck to smash through the wall of a store.

A spokesperson from the Foxborough Police Department, which initially began the burglary investigation, said it is likely Massachusetts prosecutors will seek extradition to Massachusetts for Denn to face burglary charges there.colts_125

Mayfield’s and Rosen’s totals are inflated because of how many starts they made.

Taken as the 17th defenseman off the board in drafts, it’s almost unbelievable that Keith finished 82nd among defensemen on the ESPN Player Rater despite playing all 82 games. Keith will be 35 years old next season and will justifiably be a late-round flier with value completely dependent on the Blackhawks’ power play and his role on it.

Among players drafted in fantasy leagues back in September, MacKinnon stands head and shoulders above everyone else for sleeper value. We knew the success of the Avs hinged on MacKinnon realizing his potential, but that has been true for several seasons, and MacKinnon failed to eclipse 53 points in the previous two campaigns. But with Mikko Rantanen as his sidekick and a rejuvenated Tyson Barrie aiding on the power play, MacKinnon barely trailed Malkin and Kucherov for overall fantasy value among forwards this season, despite playing four fewer games than Malkin and six fewer than Kucherov.

Analysis: Do QBs who turn it over in college continue to turn it over in the pros? Generally, yes. Palmer and Brees both had seasons where they led the NFL in interceptions. Smith and Rodgers are known as two of the least turnover-prone quarterbacks.

Darnold’s turnovers concern teams. They are studying his interceptions and trying to figure out whether the problem is a simple fix or something that will stay with him throughout his career.

Analysis: This is usually more popular with fans than teams, but sometimes the argument is made that a quarterback is “a winner.” This was a popular argument from Tim Tebow fans.

Does college winning percentage matter? It definitely can indicate a QB is playing at a high level, but there are so many other factors that go into team success. Alabama’s quarterbacks would be top prospects every year if winning truly was an indication of a good quarterback.

His 39 percent hard-contact rate finished second among catchers with 350-plus plate appearances in 2017, and at 2018’s outset, he boasts a healthy average of 9.4 barrels per plate appearance, per Statcast. Hernandez’s punch around the strike zone continues to erode, giving all White Sox bats a positive outlook.canucks_1164

Hamstring strain lands Indians reliever Andrew Miller on DL

Reliever Andrew Miller has been placed on the 10-day disabled list by the Cleveland Indians because of a strained left hamstring.

Miller grabbed the back of his leg after throwing a pitch to the Chicago Cubs’ Anthony Rizzo in the seventh inning Wednesday night and was removed from the game. Miller had an MRI on Thursday.

“The weather was warming up and I feel like I was kind of making the adjustments I had been looking to make,” he said. “It’s just unfortunate this kind of stalled what I thought was going to be a really nice run.”

A two-time All-Star, the 32-year-old left-hander was on the DL twice last season with patella tendinitis in his right knee. Miller was acquired from the New York Yankees on July 31, 2016, for four minor leaguers.

Left-hander Tyler Olson replaced Miller on Wednesday and got Rizzo to fly out before retiring two batters in the eighth.

“That was really impressive,” Francona said. “You kind of feel punched in the stomach when Andrew has to leave the game. And then if things unravel from there, it makes for a really tough night. But the way he pitched, it made it kind of fun.”

AL Central-leading Cleveland selected the contract of left-hander Jeff Beliveau from Triple-A and designated left-hander Jack Leathersich for assignment.

Bryan Shaw pitched the sixth, Jake McGee got two out and Adam Ottavino four. Wade Davis allowed Derek Dietrich’s leadoff double in the ninth, threw called third strikes past Miguel Rojas and Lewis Brinson, then walked J.B. Shuck before J.T. Realmuto hit into a game-ending forceout. Davis, who has 10 saves in 11 chances, completed a six-hitter that extended Colorado’s winning streak to three.

Gerardo Parra had two hits for the Rockies, including a one-out double in the fifth off Jose Urena (0-4). Senzatela pulled a 95 mph fastball down the left-field line for his fifth big league hit and second double in two seasons. He has six RBI.

Rockies second baseman DJ LeMahieu left after 3 1/2 innings because of right hamstring tightness. He was picked off second base in the third, when he slid into the bag with his right leg.

Miami’s Martin Prado went 0 for 4 in his season debut after missing the first 24 games with a left hamstring strain. Last-place Miami dropped to 7-18.

Urena allowed six hits in seven innings. He is 0-5 in eight starts since beating the New York Mets on Sept. 20.steelers_102

Aaron Rodgers buys minority stake in Bucks: ‘A dream come true’

Aaron Rodgers has long professed his love for the NBA game and the Milwaukee Bucks.

In fact, he has often used the hashtag #midrange because he loves that part of the game and has referred to Vlade Divac as one of his favorite players in interviews.

Now, the Green Bay Packers quarterback has a stake in the game.

Greg Wyshynski and Emily Kaplan debate which playoff teams are in the biggest amount of trouble, what the solution is to the postseason player safety issue and Snoop Dogg’s hockey tutorials. Plus, CSN Washington’s Alan May and “Catfish Guy” Jacob Waddell. Listen »

The emergence of Hall as a superstar is another tectonic shift for the franchise. The Devils have been synonymous with their star power radiating from the crease outward, whether it was Martin Brodeur as the face of the franchise playing behind Scott Stevens and Scott Niedermayer, or more recently with Schneider as the team’s top name.

Greg Wyshynski and Emily Kaplan debate which playoff teams are in the biggest amount of trouble, what the solution is to the postseason player safety issue and Snoop Dogg’s hockey tutorials. Plus, CSN Washington’s Alan May and “Catfish Guy” Jacob Waddell. Listen »

The Knights aren’t my first choice to win it all, but I can’t count them out. The question is can they win the Cup, and it’s quite evident that they can. Vegas continues to surprise, and that’s the type of team you have to watch for this time of year. But I’m still betting someone comes along and stops Sin City.

Aaron Boone was tossed from his big-league debut for whipping his helmet to the ground with the Reds in 1997. 

So though top prospect  Gleyber Torres went hitless in four at-bats in his first major league game —  a 5-1 win over the Blue Jays at  Yankee Stadium on Sunday — at least he had that over his  Yankees manager.
seahawks_175

Avs D Samuel Girard out Game 3 vs. Predators with upper-body injury

The Colorado Avalanche will be without defenseman Samuel Girard for Game 3 against Nashville with an upper-body injury.

The 19-year-old Girard made his Stanley Cup playoff debut during Game 1 in Nashville, only to sit out the second contest with the injury. The Avalanche trail the first-round series 2-0 heading into Monday night’s game at the Pepsi Center.

Arnovitz: The Utah Jazz will advance and then take the Rockets to seven games in the conference semifinals.

MacMullan: DeMar DeRozan will be an absolute stud. Having spent time in Toronto last weekend, the unease surrounding the Raptors’ fan base is palpable. They are worried about losing Game 1 (again). They are worried Kyle Lowry and DeRozan will shrink in the moment. The matchups were not set when I was there, giving them ample time to fret about every possible doomsday scenario. Enough already. DeRozan has submitted an All-NBA season, becoming a more efficient player, expanding his range to the 3-point line and finally — finally! — tuning out the naysayers. He’s also assumed the mantle as the NBA’s unofficial spokesperson for confronting mental health issues, yet another reason to root for Heir Canada.

“But more importantly, I want to show that a lot of times guys that have big arms — they have a hard time controlling it, and taking tempo off of the ball, and layering it and really controlling it. We put him in some situations today where he can really show that control and that touch.”

Allen, who transferred to Wyoming from Reedley College, in the Fresno, Calif., area, told NFL Network he was just trying to enjoy the moment.

“I was in junior college a few years ago, so to be here sitting in this spot talking to these NFL executives, it’s a dream come true. It’s something that not a lot of people saw coming,” Allen said. “It is surreal. This is the only thing I’ve ever wanted to do my entire life. Sitting here, it’s something that I’ve always dreamt of.”

The Jets contingent is traveling from Wyoming to Oklahoma for a private workout with Baker Mayfield on Saturday, according to a source.

UCLA quarterback Josh Rosen revealed before working out privately for the Giants he attended dinner with co-owner Steve Tisch and Chris Mara, John’s brother and the team’s senior vice president of player personnel.

Appearing Friday on “The Rich Eisen Show,” Rosen described the experience as “awesome,” and said the dinner came before he worked out the next morning for the Giants, who own the No. 2 pick in the NFL draft.
jets_101

Jon Gruden Says He’d Like to Eliminate Instant Replay to Improve NFL

In the clubhouse, Jansen walked over to his locker with several reporters standing nearby. But there were no questions. It was spring, he’s Kenley Jansen, he threw the ball like Kenley Jansen. Nothing happening at Camelback Ranch was going to fast-forward the Dodgers to October.

Ysla is 16-23 with 3.93 ERA in 147 games, including 44 starts. He will be assigned to Double-A Bowie.

Liranzo, 23, has not played above the Double-A level since breaking into professional baseball with the Atlanta Braves organization in 2012.

Two days later, Jansen was slated to make his official spring debut with an inning against the Royals. Roberts quipped to reporters that because Jansen’s workload had been so limited — by design and because of injury — he had enjoyed a longer offseason than any of them.

Jansen spent much of the pregame session with a pitching wedge, trying to knock golf balls into a wood-and-netting contraption called The Chipper. A couple of hours later, he walked out to the mound, hit 94 mph on the radar and tossed a perfect inning on 13 pitches.

I feel great! Jansen pronounced afterward.

The lack of excitement is why this particular day carried with it a whiff of anticipation: Kenley Jansen and Corey Seager were playing. It was just a B game, but neither Dodgers cornerstone had been playing in games. Seager was being protected because of the elbow soreness that plagued him last season. Jansen had turned up with a tight hamstring. Their maladies were the closest thing to drama.

Spring training B games are amazing, played on a back field surrounded by chain-link fences, and the dugouts are contraptions that you’d expect to find at a small high school. The rules are lax — Seager batted leadoff each inning to get in extra work. No one seems to keep score.

Seager had two fielding chances, both of which resulted in routine throws that he executed with no apparent difficulty. He also swatted a home run during his first at-bat, reminding everyone why we care so much about his elbow in the first place. He was fine and in his soft-spoken way, he fielded questions afterward.
patriots_100

Aaron Hernandez Tortured By Gay Secret

Aaron Hernandez was gay — according to several people close to him… and his private struggle with his sexuality caused him great emotional pain that may have turned him violent.

Graham is 31, and his overall production numbers dipped sharply after leaving New Orleans and Drew Brees. It took forever for the Seahawks to figure out how to use him, but at this point, it’s hard to imagine Graham replicating the catch and yardage totals he delivered early in his career for the Saints. 

That wouldn’t be a huge problem, but the Packers are paying Graham to be the top tight end in football. His average of $10 million per year is still the highest at the position, and his huge contract was at least a partial factor in the Packers’ decision to release franchise icon Jordy Nelson. 

The Packers are paying a big price for Graham to unlock the middle of the field and replace the red-zone production of one of the franchise’s most decorated receivers. It’ll be no small task for a tight end who will turn 32 in November. 

The NFL Network was first to report the agreement.

The Seahawks reinforced a position of some need following Paul Richardson’s departure in free agency. Brown, who is listed at 6-foot-2, 205 pounds and is considered to have good speed at that size, could push 2017 third-round pick Amara Darboh for the No. 3 role behind Doug Baldwin and Tyler Lockett.

Indeed, Trump hailed Mc­Cabe’s dismissal in a gleeful tweet at 12:08 a.m. Saturday as “A great day for Democracy.”

That drew a stern rebuke from former CIA director John Brennan, who responded on Twitter: “When the full extent of your venality, moral turpitude, and political corruption becomes known, you will take your rightful place as a disgraced demagogue in the dustbin of history. You may scapegoat Andy McCabe, but you will not destroy America… America will triumph over you.”
patriots_111

Wild forward Luke Kunin out for rest of season with ACL tear

Minnesota Wild rookie forward Luke Kunin is out for the rest of the season with a torn ACL in his left knee.

The Wild announced Monday that Kunin suffered the tear during Sunday’s 4-1 win at Detroit. He is expected to have surgery in the coming weeks and return to play in about seven months.

Adebayo won’t likely sustain those numbers as he gets more minutes against better competition — the likes of Rudy Gobert, Jordan Bell and Joel Embiid have defended far more shots at the rim than Adebayo to this point of the season — but it’s clear he has the tools to anchor a defense as a full-time center.

It helps that Adebayo has also held his own against several All-Star big men this season. He was directly involved in five of Dwight Howard’s season-high nine turnovers in their Dec. 1 matchup, and he helped limit Anthony Davis to 17 points on 5-for-11 shooting three weeks later (albeit in a game the Heat lost by 15 points).

Adebayo proved that he has the strength to keep up with those players in one-on-one situations, as well as the length and athleticism to make them uncomfortable around the basket.

The Bruins have scored 20 goals during their winning streak but clearly missed McAvoy, who went down on the first shift on Saturday night’s win over Montreal, on Tuesday.

Boston trails the Tampa Bay Lightning by six points for the Atlantic (and NHL) lead but has three games in hand and have three games remaining with Tampa Bay.

Blake Griffin and the Clippers agreed to a five-year, $173 million deal last summer, keeping the star forward in LA and allowing the team to stave off a rebuild. The Clippers’ presentation during the 2017 free agency period made it clear: Griffin should be a Clipper for life.

The Clippers held their free agent meeting with Griffin at Staples. They lowered the lights in the arena and raised his jersey to the rafters as a choir sang. The PA announcer said: “Tonight, we’re honoring a lifelong Clipper.”
packers_154

The last episode ended with the fire starting as shots of the family’s happy life together were interspersed as the flames spread.

Because it’s about death. We’re all going to be shown a dozen commercials throughout the game promoting an episode about a beloved father seemingly dying horrifically in a house fire as the rest of his family escapes. Doesn’t that sound like something you want to watch late on a Sunday after you’ve overloaded yourself with wings and chip dip?

The final shot of the hour was the fire licking up the staircase to the second floor as everyone slept peacefully. Ah, yes, definitely a cliffhanger I want to follow up on right after the big game wraps.

Things have finally come to a head over four main issues — the role of Brady’s personal trainer and business partner, Alex Guerrero; the succession plan at quarterback; Belichick’s coaching style; and irreconcilable differences over who’s responsible for the team’s unprecedented success over the years.

Brady’s insistence in recent years that he’ll play into his 40s stems from his relationship with Guerrero, his various training and lifestyle methods, and, as our own Matt Ufford called it, the “pseudoscientific grift” that Brady and Guerrero have built into a lifestyle business.

The faith Brady espouses in his program and its impact on his career has led to other players feeling pressured to turn to Guerrero and the TB12 method. For some it’s worked fine. Others describe it “like a cult.”

“They’re going to do a very in-depth investigation,” Carlisle said. “They’re going to talk to everybody in the organization, and they’re going to find out the how, the why and the best way to resolve this. An outside party was brought in so there would be no local influence or anything like that. And these people are the best of the best. Their findings are going to go directly to Mark Cuban and [NBA commissioner] Adam Silver, and the Mavericks will abide by whatever recommendations are made.

“I’ll tell you that when it comes to anything involving the Mavericks: Mark Cuban is a believer in extreme ownership, extreme accountability, and he is highly motivated to get this resolved in an expeditious but thorough fashion. No steps will be skipped here.”

Added Carlisle: “Things happen for a reason. Any problem or crisis presents an opportunity, and this is an opportunity for us to get something fixed.”

The New England Patriots coasted into the playoffs and locked up a Super Bowl bid once again, but things might not be so rosy behind the scenes. A report from ESPN’s Seth Wickersham says that tensions between the team’s twin icons, head coach Bill Belichick, and quarterback Tom Brady, have festered to the point that the situation might just be untenable going forward.bears_140

Gettleman might make things work and restore the Giants to their accustomed level of success.

WR Allen Hurns vs. Patriots CB Eric Rowe: When the Jaguars spread the field for Bortles, he needs to avoid forcing it to Westbrook, Lee or Cole. This is a good week to get Hurns going in the slot, given another savvy possession veteran receiver, the Titans’ Eric Decker, ripped the Patriots for six catches and 85 yards on seven targets last week.

It’s been another injury-riddled year for Hurns, but Jacksonville can’t hold him back from being a key part of the game plan against the overmatched Rowe.

RG A.J. Cann vs. Patriots DT Malcom Brown: While the Malcolm on the outside will contain Lee, this Malcom in the middle can be a huge force in blowing up the running game at the point of attack. There is a big drop-off from Linder and Omameh to Cann in Jacksonville’s interior run-blocking for Fournette.

It also is possible that the hiring of Gettleman could take the Giants out of the running for Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels to fill their head coaching vacancy. Some within the league suspect that McDaniels wants to work with Patriots executive Nick Caserio or ESPN analyst Louis Riddick as his GM. The Giants interviewed Riddick but went with Gettleman, who formerly worked for Ernie Accorsi in the team’s front office. Accorsi assisted the Giants’ search.

But not everyone within the sport considers that a sure thing.

DT Malik Jackson: Much has been made about Tom Coughlin knowing how to beat the Patriots with a strong front four. But on a team full of younger players with little playoff experience, Jackson is the one who’s been on the field to defeat New England twice in the AFC championship game while in Denver.

Jackson was a beast in the games against Buffalo and Pittsburgh as Jacksonville’s savvy anchor. Campbell and Ngakoue have the double-digit sacks, but Jackson can have a bigger overall impact vs. run and pass Sunday.

He’s as competitive as they come; he just doesn’t rub people the wrong way when he expresses that competitiveness. He’s also a better athlete than people think — just think back to the Helmet Catch in Super Bowl XLII, where he was only able to get the ball off after escaping certain doom in the pocket.chargers_083