Titans WR Rishard Matthews honors Barack and Michelle Obama with tattoo

Rishard Matthews has about 20 tattoos, but one on his calf carries special meaning. It’s an homage to the former president and first lady: Barack and Michelle Obama.

The first president I voted for, first black president, first black first lady, Matthews said, via Logan Murdock of the Tennessean. Myself being African American, they’re obviously great role models and they let the black community and minorities, in general, know that the sky is the limit if you put your mind to it.

The kids successfully steal the jersey which, let’s be honest, didn’t seem all that difficult for C. Martin Mauricio Ortega, who really did steal two of Brady’s Super Bowl jerseys.

These intrepid children then drive while dancing, and all of this is extremely unsafe because these kids all seem to be about 10 years old to Lynch’s house.

Here, let me see that Real Deal Holyfield, Lynch says after the kids hand over the jersey.

Then kid Macklemore, young Lil Yachty, and their pals have a pool party at Lynch’s house, which is clearly the only way to celebrate a successful Brady jersey heist.

This one is particularly rough in hindsight with all the stars that came right after the No. 10 pick. An injury-prone drop machine, Ebron has done little to live up to his draft status. That said, he’s still holding down a starting job and the Lions don’t have much depth in the passing offense. So Ebron will get another chance to put it all together next year.

Barr looked like a rising star in his rookie year and a genuine star in 2015. Things weren’t quite as rosy in 2016 Barr managed just two sacks and one forced fumble while becoming a liability in coverage. Head coach Mike Zimmer, never one to mince words, said Barr could be better at all areas of his game. Barr was once thought to be a sure thing, and he could easily return to that level. But 2017 is shaping up as a make-or-break year for his Vikings future.

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Julio Jones lost a $100k earring in a lake

People lose earrings all the time. It happens. But unless you’re Julio Jones, losing an earring probably won’t set you back $100,000.

Jones set out for a fun day of jet skiing on Georgia’s Lake Lanier last week. Things went south when he realized his earring, which is worth about as much as some peoples’ homes, was missing.

Riley’s friends were hyping him up by telling him to rise up, the Falcons’ motto that is often featured in the Georgia Dome (soon to be Mercedes-Benz Stadium) with Samuel L. Jackson. It’s what Falcons do.

Riley was as expected excited to be drafted. Looking back, some of these excited hugs and handshakes might have hurt for his friends on the receiving end.

Between Riley’s talents on the field, strength, and golden mullet that flows like the Chattahoochee River, Falcons fans are going to enjoy their rookie linebacker.

Packers: Clinton-Dix is a stable force in the secondary, while second-round WR Davante Adams developed into a solid receiver, and third-round TE Richard Rodgers came up with some big plays over the years. Meanwhile, fifth-rounder Corey Linsley has been a decent starter at center, giving Green Bay a hidden gem in the later rounds. With quality talent and no obvious busts, this draft is a big win for Ted Thompson and Co.

Giants: If you get Odell Beckham Jr., you’re a winner no matter who else you draft. It helps that New York got a starting center, Weston Richburg, in the second round.

Browns: Boy was this a debacle, even by Browns standards. They managed to get two first-round picks, neither of whom are in the league right now. Manziel was a disaster on multiple levels, while Gilbert was a more mundane bust but a bust nonetheless. The only saving grace is second-round guard Joel Bitonio, who earned a hefty extension this offseason despite recovering from Lisfranc surgery. There’s also UDFA running back Crowell, who developed into a decent-if-unspectacular runner.

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they need more contribution from the offensive side of the ball

Instead, I want to go to a game where there are no stakes. I can just ride the chillwaves and watch football in a pure way, with fans who love their teams so much that they’d pay way too much money even when they know the product will only disappoint.

Bonus No. 1: This is likely to be a switched at birth rookie quarterback matchup. No one will be surprised if Ohio native Mitchell Trubisky, who once said he wanted to play for the Browns, is the starter for the Bears at that point. The Browns will probably have cycled through enough quarterbacks by Week 16 that DeShone Kizer is under center. At Notre Dame’s pro day, Kizer not-so-subtly campaigned for Chicago to draft him.

Bonus No. 2: I’m not sure if it even snows anymore in Chicago, but at least a quick trip to the suburbs would let me ogle streets lined with Home Alone-looking colonial houses all decorated for the yuletide.

Now, there’s no way I’d actually pay to attend this game. But if someone gave me a ticket or if I ended up with one in a white elephant gift exchange? I’m there with a Merry Christmas, ya filthy animal smile. Sarah Hardy

Injuries have dogged Shazier over the years he has yet to play a full 16-game season but when on the field, he’s one of the Steelers’ best defensive playmakers. 2016 was Shazier’s best year yet when he set career highs with three interceptions and nine passes defended to go along with 3.5 sacks and a Pro Bowl appearance.

But if they hope to get back to Super Bowl contention, they need more contribution from the offensive side of the ball specifically, their franchise quarterback, Eli Manning.

Manning thrived with McAdoo as the offensive coordinator in 2015, setting a career high with 35 touchdowns. However, things weren’t as good in 2016. Manning still threw for 4,027 yards, but it was his lowest total since 2013 and his TD-to-interception ratio fell from 35-14 to 26-16. His yards-per-attempt average (6.7) was the lowest since 2007.

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I’m pretty sure you’ve heard of this guy.

The Pacers won that game, 99-92, tying up the series and eventually forcing a Game 7. Hibbert had 23 points and 12 rebounds, Stephenson dropped 20 points in the most Lance Stephenson way possible, and every starter for the Pacers scored in double figures. But what I will never forget as long as I live is Stephenson’s corner three-pointer at the buzzer at the end of the third quarter, with Dwayne Wade flying past him, and after he hit the shot he just sat on the floor and let the Pacers fans celebrate around him. I thought Bankers Life Fieldhouse was going to explode that night.

He’s definitely not, but it’s sweet of her to say it. I mean, the guy ran a 5.28 40-yard dash at his combine. And this is what he looks like lumbering for a first down:

Unless all of Brady’s opinions are vague and noncommittal, he’s not forthcoming about anything. He’s been asked about things like his relationship with Donald Trump and other hot-button issues, and he gives bland answers that don’t actually tell you a thing. Maybe you’d rather not know what Tom Brady thinks about anything, but there are plenty of people who would appreciate a straight answer once in a while.

Yeah, I’m pretty sure you’ve heard of this guy. Despite some concerns over his on-field demeanor (and that whole stupid boat thing), there’s no doubt that Beckham is one of the best receivers in the game. Still only 24 years old, the sky is the limit for Beckham, who’s the focal point for the Giants entire offense. Eli Manning finally has the big-play threat he lacked for several years prior to this draft.

After missing six games to injury his rookie year, Lewan has stayed mostly healthy and developed into one of the league’s better left tackles, making his first Pro Bowl last year. He’s also a notorious hothead who’s prone to cheap penalties (including an ejection for shoving a referee), but the Titans will put up with that as long as he keeps locking down Marcus Mariota’s blind side.

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Hali pointed the need to build chemistry as a reason for his frustration.

Justin Houston, Eric Berry, and Marcus Peters all key members of the Kansas City defense missed the team’s voluntary offseason workouts this year.

I wasn’t calling out any players, Hali said. I was just letting people know how I feel.

Hali pointed the need to build chemistry as a reason for his frustration.

And we have a young team, and sometimes you have to kind of tell your leaders or point fingers at your leaders and let them know that, guys, you’ve got to be around, Hali said.

But he’s playing behind one of the best to ever take the field, and there’s no chance Garoppolo is beating out a healthy Brady for the Patriots’ starting job. Unless Brady gets hurt or the Patriots run up the score on a bunch of opponents, Garoppolo won’t see the field much this season in 2016, he attempted only four passes total after Brady returned.

His future is going to hinge on his performance in limited starts last season.

In his two starts last year, Garoppolo completed 71.2 percent of his passes for 496 yards, four touchdowns, and zero interceptions. That completion percentage, if he’d sustained it over an entire season, would have put him near the top of the league, just below Sam Bradford’s record-setting 71.6 percent mark.

If he wants to play, he should have plenty of options in free agency.

Kirk Cousins will probably set the quarterback market pretty high in 2018. He’ll likely earn more than the $25 million per year Derek Carr currently makes as the highest-paid player in the NFL. Garoppolo won’t approach those numbers, but considering the small sample size of his experience, he should be cheaper and more appealing to any team that needs a quarterback and doesn’t have the cap space to lock in Cousins.

Garoppolo’s cap hit in this final year of his rookie deal is just over $1.1 million, so even if he’s not in line to make Cousins money, he’s due a hefty pay raise.

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Tom Brady wrote a letter to Hall of Fame voters to campaign for Jason Taylor

That means running back David Johnson, who stole the show for the Cardinals in 2016, won’t see the field either. He rushed for 1,239 and 16 touchdowns, the second-highest in the league. He showed how dominant he can be as a receiving back, hauling in 80 passes for 879 yards and four scores.

It wouldn’t be a surprise if the Cowboys decided not to trot out Prescott, Elliott, and the other starters, either. But fans should still tune in to watch rookies like Charlton, Awuzie, Lewis, Reddick, Baker.

Charlton is a massive defensive end with speed and pass-rushing moves. The Cowboys will need his skill set to help generate pressure on opposing quarterbacks. Awuzie and Lewis are press corners who can play in man coverage, which should help the Cowboys’ passing defense that ranked 26th last season.

In Jason Taylor’s 15-year NFL career, he played 20 games against the Tom Brady-led New England Patriots. He sacked Brady 12.5 times and certainly earned the quarterback’s respect.

The tents made their NFL debut in the 2017 Hall of Fame Game between the Arizona Cardinals and Dallas Cowboys.

The NFL officially adopted the practice back in May at the league’s spring meetings.

It’s an opportunity for us to have a better examination because it will ensure privacy for a short period of time, so doctors can go ahead and make the appropriate diagnosis, commissioner Roger Goodell said in May.

While these tents won’t solve the league’s concussion crisis, they will aid doctors and staffers while providing players with the dignity of an evaluation away from prying eyes. Early diagnosis is a major factor in preventing the future injuries that can derail careers and lives. An environment that provides fewer distractions and more latitude for on-the-spot evaluations is a step in the right direction albeit a small one.

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Everson Griffen gets huge 4-year, $58 million extension from Vikings after back-to-back Pro Bowls

Everson Griffen may not be the first name that comes to mind when elite pass rushers are discussed, but now he’ll be paid like one of the elite sack artists of the NFL. The Minnesota Vikings announced an extension for Griffen on Wednesday and, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, it will average $14.5 million per season.

Rapoport says it’s a four-year, $58 million extension for Griffen with $34 million in guarantees. The veteran defensive end was under contract through the 2018 season, so the extension will now keep him in Minnesota through 2022, which could mean Griffen ends his NFL career with the team. That’s Griffen’s plan.

Griffen, 29, earned the extension with back-to-back Pro Bowl seasons in the last two years. He was selected in the fourth round of the 2010 NFL draft, but didn’t step in as a full-time starter until 2014 when he re-signed in Minnesota on a five-year, $42.5 million contract.

If [the] NFL wishes to continue to support research at NIH, a simple donation to the NIH Gift Fund to support research on sports medicine would be favorably viewed, as long as the terms provided broad latitude in decisions about specific research programs.

Wednesday, Democrats from the House Committee on Energy and Commerce sent a letter to Roger Goodell asking how the league would follow through with its commitment to the NIH.

In a statement via ESPN, the NFL responded saying it was engaged in constructive discussions with the NIH’s fundraising arm regarding potential new research projects and the remaining funds of our $30 million commitment.

Based on the NIH’s statement, and what spokesman John Burklow told ESPN’s Outside the Lines in June, that doesn’t seem to be the case.

If you asked me what happened with the agreement, there’s no action that I’m aware of. So it ends in August, he said. … I have not heard of any plans to use the remaining funds.

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The team probably isn’t even done yet

Meanwhile, the Bills relieve some pressure from a crowded QB race. Tyrod Taylor has broken out since moving north, earning a pair of Pro Bowl invitations in his two seasons as Buffalo’s starting QB though that has more to do with a shallow pool of available passers than his play behind center. With Jones gone, he’ll now be backed up by journeyman T.J. Yates. The franchise can also turn to 2017 draftee Nathan Peterson should the former Pitt project develop quickly as a pro.

The move makes sense for all parties. Jones will have a greater opportunity to stake his claim as a foundational player for a Chargers team that will need to begin planning for life after Rivers. The Bills, while swapping a fourth-round pick for a later-round selection, clear space from a log jam at quarterback and make a potentially difficult preseason cut a bit easier.

But the punishment of Moore is still going to be another negative mark for a team that can’t stop racking up suspensions.

Dallas Morning News tallied all the suspensions in the NFL over the last four years and the Cowboys lead the way by a huge margin. The two-game ban for Moore is the team’s 16th suspension since 2014, with 102 total games lost. The Cleveland Browns are second in suspensions with 10 and the Baltimore Ravens have the second most games lost with 55.

The team probably isn’t even done yet. Linebacker Damien Wilson was arrested for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon on July 4 and cornerback Nolan Carroll was arrested in May for suspicion of DWI following a welcome party celebrating his signing with the Cowboys.

It’s also possible All-Pro running back Ezekiel Elliott could receive a suspension stemming from the NFL’s yearlong investigation into an alleged domestic violence incident.

No position has been hit harder by all the punishments than defensive end.

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Shattenkirk’s second main reason for selecting the Rangers?

Individually, it’s who can I play with that’s going to make me the best player? said Shattenkirk. I think I have the opportunity to play here with Ryan McDonagh, who is an All Star defenseman and a great fit for me. I think we’ve played together since 17 or 18 years old, we’ve had a few experiences (with Team USA). I really couldn’t find a better situation than here.

McDonagh, the Rangers’ captain, and Shattenkirk were teammates for several major tournaments including the 2014 Winter Olympics, 2009 World Junior Championships and 2007 World Under 18 championships.

Of course, the exclamation point on Shattenkirk’s decision is the chance to play for the team he has always loved.

I didn’t realize until after I signed just how many Rangers fans there are, stated Shattenkirk. I am really excited to be a part of this.

Ottawa had an answer for both.

Mark Stone’s second-period marker came 20 seconds after Kunitz broke the ice. Then it was Ryan Dzingel, without a goal in nearly a month, who scored with 5:19 to play.

In overtime, where the Sens made a living with a 6-1 record these playoffs, Craig Anderson was as stellar as he’s been during their run. The veteran netminder twice turned aside prime chances from Phil Kessel, the first on a breakaway and the second clanking off the post and just over the crossbar.

Kunitz, whose last goal came Feb. 16, 35 games ago, got the game winner on a slap shot from the top of the faceoff circle that made it past two Sens defenders and over the right shoulder of Anderson, who stopped 39 of Pittsburgh’s 42 shots on goal.

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The Steelers and Chiefs faced off early last season and it wasn’t that great.

It all starts up front, as most great defenses do. Vernon lived up to his price tag and led the team with 8.5 sacks. Pierre-Paul, wearing a custom-fitted glove on his mangled hand, had a tremendous comeback year with seven sacks and three forced fumbles, finally getting the big long-term contract he’s always wanted. Big Snacks Harrison was an unmovable force in the middle of the line, though Johnathan Hankins could be hard to replace after he left in free agency.

In the secondary, Jenkins teamed up with Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie to form one of the better cornerback duos in the league. Safety Landon Collins had an explosive breakout season with five interceptions, four sacks, and a defensive touchdown, getting named to the All-Pro first team as a result. Pro Football Focus recently ranked this unit as the best secondary in the league:

The Steelers and Chiefs faced off early last season and it wasn’t that great. Kansas City lost 14-43. But then in the playoffs … the Chiefs also lost to the Steelers but not by a lot. That was only a 2-point Pittsburgh victory thanks to a late Chris Boswell field goal. Maybe Dontari Poe can surprise the defense with another beefy touchdown?

We appreciate the enthusiasm for your team, but be careful what you wish for because you might end up watching a Giants game against the Rams where Greg Zuerlein is responsible for all six points on the board until its the last drive in the fourth quarter. Still, the Giants can probably get out of that scenario.

If you could attend *one* NFL game in 2017, which one would you pick?

This is obviously the best answer if you can pick out one of the best games to go to throughout the season. But I have to strike this one out based on a technicality. The upcoming Super Bowl is in 2018. So unless you want to watch a game that already took place I’m looking at you Patriots fans / sorry for bringing up old stuff Atlanta then we have to pick another game. Let’s see what the regular season can offer.

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