Dion Lewis among top fantasy football free-agent finds for Week 8

We’re past the halfway point of the fantasy football regular season (the default setting on ESPN Fantasy is for the playoffs to be conducted Weeks 14-17 of the NFL regular season), with yet another typically fast season cruising by. How’s your squad holding up so far?

Rookie left tackle Garret Bolles and new right guard Ronald Leary have been solid, helping elite center Matt Paradis. But the Broncos’ mix at both left guard and right tackle have been awful, the latter further hampered by injuries to Menelik Watson and Donald Stephenson. Players such as Allen Barbre shouldn’t be starting on any line. That also hurts Denver’s continuity and any chance for cohesiveness.

Chuck Pagano’s team has avoided the ignominy surrounding the 49ers and Browns by winning two of its first seven games, doing so specifically by beating those two teams by three points each. The Colts have lost their other five games by a combined 109 points. Football Outsiders believes that the Colts — not their winless brethren — are the worst team in football on a play-by-play basis.

The biggest problem for the Colts, of course, is that their franchise quarterback hasn’t thrown a pass since New Year’s Day. Andrew Luck underwent shoulder surgery in January and was supposed to return in July. Things changed. Luck’s return kept getting pushed back further and further, and it quickly became clear the organization had no idea when he would be back. The team took him off the physically unable to perform list, implying that they believed he would be back before Week 7, but Luck didn’t make his way back into practice until before Week 5. Shortly after, he stopped throwing because of soreness in his shoulder, and now there’s no timetable for Luck’s return.chargers_016

T.Y. Hilton Jersey apologizes for blasting Colts’ offensive line

Game Kids Brett Gardner Jersey T.Y Hilton has issued an apology after he made some polarizing remarks about the Colts’ offensive line following their 27-0 loss to the Jaguars Sunday.
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First and foremost, I would like to apologize to the team and the O-line, Hilton said, via Indy Star Sports. It was out of character, frustrated how the game went. At the end of the day, I have their back. I love them to death and I was wrong.

Speaking of good matchups, the Patriots have allowed a touchdown to an opposing tight end in five of seven games this season. With his snaps continuing to increase, I like the Chargers’ Hunter Henry this week as a top-10 play. … Minnesota’s Kyle Rudolph is the latest Thomas Morstead Jersey winner of who gets to play tight end against the Browns…. Carolina’s Devin Funchess has cooled off a bit, but with at least eight targets in five straight games in a matchup you know I like Cam Newton in, I’m back on Funchess. … So far, Bears QB Mitchell Trubisky hasn’t thrown that much, but against the Saints he’s probably gonna have to.

The entire list of the Week 8 overall matchup grades are posted below, along with a detailed look at some of the favorable and unfavorable blocking matchups fantasy managers should be aware of and how those could impact their start-sit decisions. Subjects here include if the Raiders’ turnaround will continue, whether Ben Roethlisberger and Matt Ryan earn QB1 status, whether the replacements for Marshawn Lynch are worth a flex pick and if Frank Gore will step his game up against the Bengals.

Frank Gore played 22 snaps and Marlon Mack handled 32 during the Colts’ first game without Robert Turbin on Sunday. It was the first game in which the rookie out-snapped the veteran. Gore was limited to 34 yards on nine carries and wasn’t targeted. Mack racked up 26 yards on five carries and added four catches for 40 yards on six targets.

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Raiders sign NaVorro Bowman Jersey to one-year, $3M deal

Linebacker NaVorro Bowman is staying in the Bay Area, joining the Raiders after being released by the 49ers. Kyle Terada/USA TODAY Sports
In his time with the 49ers, Bowman became one of four players in franchise history to earn four first-team All-Pro nods, and finished his time in Santa Clara with 709 total tackles, 12.5 sacks, seven forced fumbles and four interceptions.
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Bowman also provided some of the most memorable moments in franchise history, including his 89-yard interception return for a touchdown that nailed down a playoff spot in 2013 and closed down Candlestick Park, and the pass breakup in the NFC Championship Game that sent the Niners to Super Bowl XLVII.
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The Raiders (2-4) have lost four straight games and are in danger of falling out of a playoff race in October with the Chiefs D.J. Humphries Womens Jersey (5-1) having won five straight against Oakland.

The great thing about this game too 鈥?Stafford has been dealing with an ankle injury and likely wasn’t 100 percent and still helped the Lions stay in the game.

They still drafted a QB in 2016, and gave him 8 starts. If you were so worried about the supporting cast getting a QB killed, you’d completely punt on one in the draft and have a depth chart of veterans to get you through the season, like the Jets are doing this year. They didn’t. The Browns felt they would be smarter than everyone else and take Cody Kessler in the 3rd round. If you want to be really reactionary, they graded Cody Kessler higher than Carson Wentz and Dak Prescott. Kessler has spent the 2017 season inactive.

Talent changes hands often in the NFL. The Eagles have four new starters on offense this year, as many as the Browns. Tanking in the NFL can work, but there’s little need to do it for multiple years when there is a QB staring you in the face. Upgrades to help out your young QB on a bad team are readily available in free agency, especially when you have as much cap space as the Browns
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Christian McCaffrey Jersey 1st NFL TD was a nifty, possibly illegal shovel pass

The Lions’ defense held tight on Carolina’s first drive into the red zone to hold its opponent to a first-quarter field goal. On the team’s second big drive, the Panthers got creative — and bent the rules — to score their first touchdown of the day.

Cam Newton rolled left before firing a shovel pass to Christian McCaffrey in a hybrid option play that took advantage of Carolina’s athletic backfield. McCaffrey corralled the ball then darted 6 yards into the end zone to tie the game at 10-10 for his first NFL score.

Smith was throwing on the run on the final play of the third quarter when Mitchell, who blitzed on the play, came in from behind. Mitchell said he lost his balance after feeling himself getting tripped and pushed. Linebacker Anthony Chickillo was behind Mitchell and put his hand on the safety’s back as the two chased Smith.

My wife and I have been passionate about education being a gateway for upward mobility and equality, Long told The Associated Press. I think we can all agree that equity in education can help affect change that we all want to see in this country.

Limited Mens Dustin Pedroia Jersey Long signed a two-year, $4.5 million contract with the Eagles, including a $500,000 signing bonus and $1.5 million guaranteed. His base salary in 2017 is $1 million.

The charitable initiative encourages people to make donations to improve equal education opportunities. Long began his career in St. Louis in 2008 and played for the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots last season. Long’s foundation has selected four organizations whose missions focus on making education easily accessible to underserved youth while also providing students the support they need to develop strong social and emotional character.
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Vikings activate Michael Floyd and release Steven Ridley 4 days after signing him

Stevan Ridley’s time with the Vikings was brief. Ridley was signed by Minnesota on Thursday, and on Monday, the team announced Michael Floyd has been added to the 53-man roster and Ridley has been released.

Latavius Murray signed with the Vikings as a free agent prior to the 2017 season, and he should be the Vikings’ primary back. Murray said this week that he still isn’t 100 percent recovered from offseason ankle surgery, according to Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press.

The Vikings also have Jerick McKinnon on the roster, but McKinnon is more of a change-of-pace back. But Minnesota must be comfortable with its depth at the running back position, because they’re moving forward without Ridley.

An average of 15 million people watched games for the first six weeks this year, compared with 16.2 million people through Week 6 last season, according to metrics from Nielsen.

NFL owners, players and representatives met to discuss social issues in the wake of protests across the league, and many involved called the session a positive step.
In the past week, Credit Suisse lowered its price targets on both Fox and CBS stock, citing NFL ratings declines.

“If ratings don’t improve materially, we see a potential headwind to domestic advertising revenues,” the investment bank’s analyst Omar Sheikh wrote of Fox on Thursday.

On Monday, Sheikh estimated third-quarter revenue for CBS would be off 3 percent, versus the previously projected 1 percent, due to “soft ratings for both the summer [programming] and for the start of the NFL season.”

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Joe Flacco Jersey made an elite play

Elite Kids Nikita Kucherov Jersey The Ravens are trying to take advantage of a Raiders team short of Derek Carr, and Joe Flacco is doing his part to make that happen.

On a third and 5, Flacco somehow tripped himself up, got back up, and was able to deliver a pass to Jeremy Maclin for a first down.

Roberts was the only person who interviewed both Elliott and his accuser.

Chris Ivory tied for the team lead with 10 targets during Sunday’s loss to the Rams. He caught nine passes for 74 yards and a touchdown while accruing two carries for 3 yards on the ground. It was a bit of a backward outing for Ivory, who entered the game with seven catches and 38 carries during his first five games this season. Believe it or not, Ivory sits 29th among running backs in fantasy points. The Jaguars have dedicated themselves to the running game, which has opened up plenty of opportunities for both Leonard Fournette and Ivory. Ivory doesn’t see enough volume for stand-alone value, but he’s a highly underrated handcuff/upside bench stash.

Des Plaines, Illinois-based Riddell says it introduced helmets designed to mitigate concussion risks more than 15 years ago.

Hernandez’s attorneys filed a federal lawsuit last month after Hernandez killed himself in prison and an autopsy revealed he had chronic traumatic encephalopathy (ehn-sehf-uh-LAH’-puh-thee), a brain disease found in people who’ve suffered repetitive brain trauma such as concussions.
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The lawsuit was refiled Monday. It accuses the NFL of hiding the dangers of football and names Riddell. It seeks damages for Hernandez’s daughter.

The quarterback change from DeShone Kizer Jersey to Kevin Hogan Jersey was met with predictably disastrous results.

For the Panthers to be taken seriously and for them to hold off the Falcons and the surging Saints, they need to go into Chicago and handle their business. Presumably, they’ll have Luke Kuechly available despite the scary way he exited the Thursday loss to the Eagles. Cam Newton is in one of the best stretches of his career, while Mitchell Trubisky, going into his third start, has yet to put together a complete performance.
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Through these additional events, the Tokyo 2020 Games aims to inspire new generations and become a turning point and a model for future Olympic Games, Yoshiro Mori, the president of the Tokyo Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, said in a statement.

But pole dancing, foosball, aka table soccer, and poker?

Womens Ray Bourque Jersey These barroom pursuits, along with dodgeball, foot golf, kettlebell lifting and the previously mentioned sports, now all have the same status as sports like baseball and surfing once had.

Under the GAISF, observer status allows new sport to grow its base while being guided by the federation toward the requirements of membership, such as receiving the required recognitions by National Olympic Committees, increasing their membership and becoming compliant with the regulations of the World Anti-Doping Agency.

This was supposed to be a big matchup of former Ohio State standout running backs, Ezekiel Elliott and Carlos Hyde. Now Hyde will probably keep ceding more work to rookie darter Matt Breida. This is a comfortable spot for 49ers rookie QB C.J. Beathard to make his first start, at home against a bad Dallas defense. It’s close … until it’s up to Dak Prescott to make sure the Cowboys avoid the post-bye upset.

Three takeaways from Marcus Mariota Jersey return to lead Titans’ win over Colts

Marcus Mariota wasn’t great early, but he was perfect late.

Authentic Denver Broncos Jersey The Titans quarterback completed all six of his passes in the fourth quarter to lead Tennessee to a 36-22 win over the Colts at Nissan Stadium Monday night.

The Colts got a game effort from Jacoby Brissett, in what might be his final start before Andrew Luck returns. Brissett was 21 of 37 for 212 yards and a touchdown.
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After Mariota led a scoring drive that ended in a 48-yard Ryan Succop field goal, Brissett had the Colts in position for a touchdown on the Colts’ opening series. The Colts had to settle for a short field goal after a perfectly thrown pass by Brissett was dropped in the end zone by Donte Moncrief. There was no drop on the next Colts drive with tight end Jack Doyle catching an 8-yard touchdown pass.

Here are three takeaways from the Titans’ win over the Colts:

Both gave substantive dissertations on fundamental fairness, Florida-based sports law attorney Daniel Wallach, who has followed the case from the start, told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. The (New York) judge is now armed with two powerful court opinions to grant the injunction as a place holder. The opinions provide a road map for an injunction. All he has to show is a likelihood of success. It doesn’t mean he will win the case in the long run.

The Cowboys (2-3) are on their bye this week and don’t play until Oct. 22 against the 49ers. Elliott, who has 393 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 105 carries, and his legal team are hoping he will be on the field at Levi’s Stadium.

If the six-game ban remains in place, Elliott would miss games against the 49ers, Redskins, Chiefs, Falcons, Eagles and Chargers. He would be eligible to return against the Redskins on Thursday, Nov. 30.

Detmer started Cleveland’s first game back in 1999 since being granted an expansion squad.

Overall, batters slugged .450 against Darvish’s fastball and .511 against his cutter. The way to beat him is to jump on those pitches early in the count.

The prediction: Arizona is coming off a terrible Game 2. It’s not just the fact that they lost, but they played poorly, with Robbie Ray walking too many guys, J.D. Martinez making an ill-advised throw to third that allowed a runner to move up to second, a key error by Ketel Marte, and even Lovullo’s decision to bring in rookie Jimmie Sherfy — he of 10.2 career innings — in a key situation. Lovullo is probably counting on three pitchers in this game: Greinke, Archie Bradley and Fernando Rodney. Let’s say that works and the Diamondbacks get to Darvish. They win 6-3 and we go to Game 4.

He was intercepted once and sacked twice during a 43-0 loss to Pittsburgh.

On the second day of training camp in Newport, Rhode Island, after Tatum had started to distinguish himself with his natural feel for the game, 11-year NBA veteran Al Horford suggested that Tatum is, “as ready as I’ve seen any rookie.” Pressed on whether Tatum will be able to contribute in his first season, Horford didn’t hesitate with his response: “No question.”

The Philadelphia Eagles beat the Carolina Panthers 28-23 in Charlotte on Thursday night to begin NFL Week 6. The lucky number for the Eagles was three. Quarterback Carson Wentz finished with three touchdowns on 16-for-30 passing for 222 yards.

Philadelphia’s defense, meanwhile, forced Cam Newton into three interceptions. Turnovers deep in its own territory helped cost Carolina (4-2) the game. In the final minutes, the Eagles (5-1) needed a stop to secure the win, and the defense delivered. Newton’s fourth-down pass to Christian McCaffrey with 1:16 left was incomplete.

Worse for Carolina, the loss of linebacker Luke Kuechly (concussion protocol) again raised concerns about Kuechly’s long-term health. This is his third concussion in three seasons. ravens_008

NFL TV audience numbers continue to decline early in 2017 season

No wonder alarm bells are sounding in NFL commissioner Roger Goodell’s office.

The league’s average TV audience through Week 5 of the 2017 season dropped 7 percent vs. the same period of the 2016 season, according to Nielsen data obtained by Sporting News. Worse for the league, the average game audiences are down 18 percent compared to the first five weeks of the 2015 season.
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The NFL’s average TV audience (including Sunday afternoon, Sunday night, Monday night and Thursday night games) slid to 15.156 million viewers through Week 5 of the 2017 season. That’s down 7.42 percent from an average of 16.371 million viewers through the same period of the 2016 season, and 18 percent down from the average of 18.438 million viewers through the first five weeks of the 2015 season.

Thursday night’s game in Carolina will air nationally on CBS and NFL Network. It’s the third of five Thursday night games that will be televised on CBS throughout the 2017 season as part of the NFL’s Thursday Night Football expansion package for 2016 and ’17. NBC also will carry five Thursday night games this season, beginning in Week 10 and not including the NFL season-opener. In addition to CBS and NBC, NFL Network broadcasts every Thursday night game of the season.

Jimmie Ward Limited Jersey Both CBS and NBC provide their lead broadcasters for Thursday Night Football, meaning Jim Nantz and Tony Romo will call the Eagles-Panthers game Thursday night from the booth in Carolina.