Khalil Mack sat out offseason workouts and the preseason, had just one week to learn a new system following a blockbuster trade, and still managed to dominate in his debut for the Chicago Bears.
Blake Bortles threw four touchdown passes, three in the first half, and the Jacksonville Jaguars beat Tom Brady and the New England Patriots 31-20 Sunday in a rematch of last season’s AFC championship game.
The Cleveland Browns announced Saturday night their intention to release former Pro Bowl wide receiver Josh Gordon, whose immense talent has been overshadowed by substance abuse that has derailed a promising career.
Tashaun Gipson remembers his first game against Tom Brady five years ago as vividly as his last one eight months ago. They had similar endings. Brady threw two touchdown passes in the final 61 seconds to stun Gipson and the Cleveland Browns in 2013. The three-time league MVP tossed two scores in the final 9 minutes to defeat Gipson and the Jacksonville Jaguars in the AFC championship game in January.
The Seahawks will play the Chicago Bears Monday night at Solider Field in what looms as much of a must-win game as there can be this early in the season without three of their most veteran players — linebackers Bobby Wagner and K.J. Wright and receiver Doug Baldwin.
The Seattle Seahawks signed linebacker Mychal Kendricks despite his recent guilty plea on insider trading charges. The Seahawks announced the signing three days before their next game. It raises the possibility that Kendricks will be able to play on Monday night when Seattle travels to Chicago.
Andy Dalton threw four touchdown passes in the first half – three to A.J. Green – against a defense that has bedeviled him throughout his career, and the Cincinnati Bengals held on for a 34-23 victory over the Baltimore Ravens. The Bengals got ahead by 21 points, and the defense stopped Joe Flacco down the stretch.
The Seattle Seahawks are expected to sign linebacker Mychal Kendricks to a one-year contract despite his recent guilty plea on insider trading charges. A person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press on Thursday that Kendricks’ agreement is expected to be finalized in time for him to join the Seahawks for their Week 2 Game at Chicago.
The biggest concern about the Seattle Seahawks’ overhauled defense entering the season was probably the pass rush. The worries proved to be true in the season opener when the Seahawks generated just one sack and very little pressure against a quarterback who mostly sat in the pocket. The challenge in Week 2 will be different with the Seahawks facing the mobility of second-year Bears quarterback Mitchell Trubisky, but the need to wreak at least some havoc in the backfield remains the same.
Miami Dolphins wide receiver Kenny Stills says he’s committed to activism ‘forever.’ That means he plans to continue to be among the handful of NFL players participating in protests during the national anthem. Stills met with some veterans this week to explain his position. He says they understood his stand.
Tony Gonzalez is the most accomplished tight end in NFL history. He’s now a nominee for the 2019 class of the Pro Football Hall of Fame. So is safety Ed Reed. And cornerback Champ Bailey. And linebacker London Fletcher. All are first-year eligible players among the 102 modern-era nominees. The field will be pared to 25 semifinalists in November and 15 finalists in January.
Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota has practiced fully after being knocked out of Tennessee’s season opener. He hurt the elbow on his throwing arm in the game. Barring any setbacks, Tennessee coach Mike Vrabel expects his quarterback to play against the Houston Texans in Tennessee’s home opener. Vrabel says Mariota was able to do everything and looked OK after a late hit that the NFL told the coach should have been flagged in the loss to Miami.
After being signed and released by four teams last season, Villanova product Austin Calitro is making the most of his second opportunity in Seattle. That means rotating with Shaquem Griffin in place of injured linebacker K.J. Wright.
Green Bay Packers coach Mike McCarthy says that quarterback Aaron Rodgers will work with the rehab group in practice. McCarthy says Rodgers will be given the whole week to get ready for the Packers’ game on Sunday against the NFC North rival Minnesota Vikings. Rodgers returned from a knee injury to lead the Packers to a come-from-behind win last week over the Chicago Bears.
The Seattle Seahawks are likely to be without wide receiver Doug Baldwin for at least Monday’s game at Chicago and possibly longer because of an MCL injury to his right knee. Coach Pete Carroll was vague about the specifics of Baldwin’s injury but indicated it would be difficult for Baldwin to make it back to face the Bears and that it could be a couple of weeks. Baldwin was injured in the first quarter of Seattle’s season-opening loss to Denver.
Losing didn’t get any easier for Jon Gruden in his nine seasons away from coaching. Gruden’s much-anticipated return from the broadcast booth to the sideline for Oakland ended in disappointment as the Raiders were outclassed in a 33-13 loss to the Los Angeles Rams. The performance shows how far the Raiders have to go to get back to the level they were at when Gruden ended his first stint in Oakland more than 16 years ago. Oakland travels to Denver this weekend.
Sam Darnold sparkled in his NFL debut after a disastrous first throw and the New York Jets dominated on offense, defense and special teams for a stunningly complete 48-17 victory over Detroit in their season opener. Hopes have been raised just one week into the season. Well, everywhere outside the Jets’ facility. Coach Todd Bowles says his team’s expectations were already high even before the rout of the Lions.
The Atlanta Falcons have placed linebacker Deion Jones on injured reserve. Jones is the second key 2017 Pro Bowler on the defense to be placed on IR in less than a week. Jones hurt his foot in Thursday night’s 18-12 opening loss at Philadelphia. The team on Friday said safety Keanu Neal will miss the remainder of the season with a knee injury.
The Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots, who met in the Super Bowl, have switched places in the latest AP Pro32 poll. After the first week of the regular season, it’s the Patriots on top with three of the 12 first-place votes and 367 points in balloting by media members who regularly cover the NFL. The Eagles received six first-place votes for 366 points. The Minnesota Vikings remained at No. 3.
The Panthers will be without three-time Pro Bowl tight end Greg Olsen and second-team All-Pro Bowl right tackle Daryl Williams for the foreseeable future. The team announced Tuesday that Olsen re-fractured the right foot that kept him out of nine games last season in Sunday’s 16-8 win over Dallas. Olsen will not have surgery and will be reevaluated on a “monthly basis.” He’ll remain on the team’s 53-man roster. Williams suffered an undisclosed knee injury and will need surgery.
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