Author: nfl football jerseys

Why D.J. Reader is an ‘invaluable’ piece of Texans’ defense

10

Jadeveon Clowney isn’t the only member of the Houston Texans’ front seven due for a new contract this offseason.

While Clowney and J.J. Watt typically get the headlines, nose tackle D.J. Reader is the player doing the dirty work — “a grinder’s job,” according to Watt — as a presence in the middle of the defensive line, taking on “double-teams so everybody else can make the plays.”cheap nike nfl jerseys free shipping

Don’t sell Reader short, though. He’s capable of making his fair share of impressive plays.

“He doesn’t get enough credit for what he does,” Watt said. “If you really watch the film closely, you’ll see D.J. sometimes runs down plays all the way down the line of scrimmage to the sideline. I think for a nose tackle to be able to do that, with the athleticism and the endurance he has, I don’t think he gets enough credit.”

“In terms of the success of our defense, [Reader] is invaluable,” Weaver said. “While he may not fill up the stat sheet, all those guys who are filling up the stat sheet, whether it’s a linebacker behind him or J.J. [Watt] or J.D. [Clowney] on the outside, they know that a lot of that success is the result of what D.J. is doing.10

“To me, D.J. is a strong pillar. If you’re talking about a house, you’re talking about a foundation. That’s D.J. Reader. He’s the guy who you build everything around. I think great defenses are built from the inside out. If you’re talking about the defensive line, that starts up front with D.J. Reader at nose tackle. Because if teams can just run right down the middle, if you don’t have a solid nose, it’s going to be bad for you. We force that ball to go outside, you don’t want to run into 90 [Clowney] and 99 [Watt] and 59 [OLB Whitney Mercilus] and all those guys. He enables us and allows us to do that.”

“He’s a leader on this defense,” Weaver said. “He’s very smart. He’s very smart and he relates to almost everybody. I think that’s where some of his leadership skills and traits shine. Because he’ll talk to the lowest guy on the totem pole, and the highest guy on the totem pole, and treat each and every one of them the same, and can relate to them. So, not only does he have tremendous value for us as a player, but he has tremendous value for us in that locker room as well.”

Reader says he’s not thinking about a new deal, but has felt like he has found a home in Houston. The Texans have typically signed their draft picks to extensions before the start of their fourth season. Still, there’s no doubt the Texans have Reader in their plans for the foreseeable future given his importance to the defense.nfl nike jerseys for cheap

“He does a tremendous job,” Mercilus said. “He definitely holds down the middle of the line. He’s quiet, but you know his presence is going to be there. The linebackers would say something if he was getting pushed back, but D.J., you can’t push him back at all.”

Tom Coughlin’s ‘history with receivers’ brought Terrelle Pryor to Jaguars

9

Tom Coughlin is known for many things. He helped build the Jacksonville Jaguars, taking them to a pair of AFC Championship games in eight seasons. He also won two Super Bowls as the head coach of the New York Giants and is a strict disciplinarian with some ridiculous-sounding rules.

But when Terrelle Pryor thinks about Coughlin he immediately thinks about wide receivers, which is why he was happy the Jaguars called him for a workout and eventually signed him last Monday morning.

“His view of receivers and how he teaches it, even when he was a head coach,” Pryor said. “I remember working out for him back in 2015. I was hurt coming off of the Browns and I got cut from the Browns in the preseason. I worked out for the Giants, and I was excited because I knew about Coughlin’s history with receivers and stuff. When I worked out for him and he didn’t sign me, I was kind of bummed out.”nike nfl jerseys wholesale cheap

Jimmy Smith enjoyed seven of his nine 1,000-yard seasons and Keenan McCardell four of his five 1,000-yard seasons while Coughlin was coaching the Jaguars from 1995-2002. During Coughlin’s 12 seasons as the Giants coach, five receivers (Plaxico Burress, Steve Smith, Hakeem Nix, Victor Cruz, and Odell Beckham, Jr.) surpassed 1,000 yards receiving nine times.9

Coughlin isn’t doing any on-field coaching with the Jaguars in his role as executive vice president of football operations but he was at Pryor’s workout and attends organized team activities. Pryor is hoping Coughlin offering him a chance to win a roster spot over the next three months will allow him to make up for the past two disappointing seasons.

Pryor, whom Oakland selected as a quarterback in the third round of the 2011 supplemental draft, has only been a receiver since 2015. He seemed to be on his way to a productive career after catching 77 passes for 1,007 yards and four touchdowns with the Browns in 2016, but multiple injuries and a clash with New York Jets coach Todd Bowles ruined his past two seasons.

The Browns didn’t re-sign Pryor and he joined the Washington Redskins on a one-year, $8 million contract. He suffered an ankle injury in Week 2 but played through it until opting for surgery in November and finished with 20 catches for 240 yards and one TD in nine games.cheap nike nfl jerseys free shipping

Pryor signed with the Jets and had 14 catches for 235 yards and two touchdowns in the first six games while playing through a groin injury. He also drew heavy criticism from Bowles during the preseason after he told reporters he had suffered a broken ankle during offseason workouts. Bowles and the Jets had previously said it was a minor injury.

The Jets cut Pryor in October (he was still dealing with the groin injury) but he landed with Buffalo and told reporters there that he felt he was underused in New York. Pryor caught two passes for 17 yards in two games before being cut.

No more confusion: Jaguars play 4-3 defense, and Josh Allen is an end

10

Defensive coordinator Todd Wash was adamant about what kind of defense the Jacksonville Jaguars are going to run in 2019. And where top pick Josh Allen is going to line up.

Wash didn’t even leave a smidgen of wiggle room.

“We are a 4-3,” Wash said. “That is what we always have been. As long as I’m here, that’s what we will be.”

And: “Josh Allen was drafted to be a defensive end.”cheap nike nfl jerseys wholesale

It should bring an end to the speculation that the Jaguars would undergo a defensive overhaul. That all started in February, when the Jaguars hired longtime NFL coach Dom Capers to be a senior defensive assistant; and it intensified when the Jaguars snapped up Allen, who played linebacker at Kentucky, with the seventh overall pick in late April.

On the surface, the speculation about a defensive switch made sense. In addition to twice being a head coach in the NFL, Capers served as a defensive coordinator for four teams (including the Jaguars in 1999-2000 under then head coach Tom Coughlin) and ran a 3-4 scheme in each stop. He had a lot of success with it too.10

In his three seasons as Pittsburgh’s defensive coordinator (1992-94), the Steelers ranked second, ninth and second in scoring. His Jaguars defense in 1999 led the league in scoring and was fourth in yards allowed, though those rankings dropped to 12th and 16th the following season.

When Capers was hired in Green Bay in 2009, he scrapped the 4-3 the Packers had used since 1992. His first two defenses ranked seventh and second in scoring, then finished in the top 15 in that category in three of the next seven seasons. Mike McCarthy fired Capers after the 2017 season, in which the Packers finished 26th in scoring, 22nd in total defense and 23rd in pass defense.cheap nfl nike jerseys from china

Despite the way his time in Green Bay ended, Capers is regarded as one of the top defensive coordinators in NFL history. The Jaguars brought him on board full time to help Wash get the defense back to the level it was in 2017, when Jacksonville finished second in interceptions and sacks and first in pass defense. Capers had served as a consultant in 2018.

“We’ve got a great working relationship,” Wash said of Capers. “Obviously, he’s been in the league one or two years longer than I have, or 102 years longer than I have, but it’s a great working relationship, and we dealt with each other all last year. So, I’m glad that he chose us with the other opportunities that he had, and he’ll be a great addition to the staff.

Devonta Freeman takes verbal hits from Warrick Dunn to avoid real ones

8

Devonta Freeman has done a solid job emulating Warrick Dunn as a dual-threat back, but imitating how Dunn talks is another story.cheap nfl nike jerseys from china

Freeman, the Atlanta Falcons’ two-time Pro Bowl running back, leaned on a set of bleachers, took a deep breath, lowered his tone and offered his best impersonation of Dunn, who had his most productive seasons with the Falcons from 2002 to ’08.

“Warrick always tells me all the time — you know he talks low — but he tells me, ‘Hey, man, you’ve got to do better. You can’t be taking all these hits, man. It’s all about longevity,'” Freeman whispered with a Southern drawl. “That’s what he always says to me, and I appreciate that. I really appreciate stuff like that.”8

Dunn probably would have laughed at the way Freeman mimicked his tone, but at least his message seems to have resonated. The bond Freeman shares with Dunn, a fellow Florida State Seminole, extends beyond football talk. They keep in touch often, even if it means checking in just to say hello. In the bulk of those conversations, Freeman has grown accustomed to Dunn preaching to him about avoiding some of those vicious hits.nfl cheap jerseys nike

“Yeah, I agree with him 100 percent,” Freeman said. “I’ve talked to a lot of people about it.”

Dunn, now a Falcons minority owner, never regrets bringing it up.

“A lot of times, these guys always want to prove that they’re tough or that they can get the tough yard, but sometimes you have to live for another down,” Dunn said. “My advice to Devonta was, ‘You have to learn how to protect yourself at the same time. You’re picking up tough yards, but you have to be smart and strategic about it.’

“To be a better runner, it’s not always about, ‘Let me run over guys.’ It’s ‘How can I avoid the big hit so I can have longevity in this league?’ And I just try to encourage him to become a better overall runner.”

Sources: Man Utd doubt Juve can afford Pogba

10

United insist Pogba, who is under contract until at least 2021, is not for sale. And, privately, the club have also played down Juventus’ ability to pay a transfer fee which would be significantly higher than the £89.3 million United paid for Pogba in 2016 while also offering a salary that would tempt the 26-year-old to return.

Real Madrid are also interested in Pogba and sources have told ESPN FC he would prefer a move to the Bernabeu to link up with compatriot Zinedine Zidane. Solskjaer is keen to keep Pogba, who scored 16 goals in 47 games last season, and build a new-look team around the World Cup winner.nike nfl jerseys cheap paypal

The Norwegian is set to name Ashley Young as club captain following Antonio Valencia’s departure but is open to offering Pogba a leadership role within the dressing room that would see him wear the armband when Young is not in the team.10

Should Pogba force a move, sources have told ESPN FC United have identified Tottenham’s Christian Eriksen and Leicester’s James Maddison as possible replacements.cheap nfl nike jerseys china

Manchester City, Liverpool and Tottenham are also interested in 22-year-old Maddison, who impressed in his first season in the Premier League following his move to the King Power Stadium from Norwich last summer.

Eriksen is open to a move away from Tottenham after helping Mauricio Pochettino’s side reach the Champions League final. The Denmark international, who been at the club for six years, is also on Real Madrid’s radar.

Solskjaer is already targeting at least one new midfielder this summer after Ander Herrera left on a free transfer. The Spaniard is expected to join Paris Saint-Germain.

The Warriors want to fill the hole in Stephen Curry’s trophy case

9

The 35-year-old swingman, who has been dealing with the injury throughout most of the Golden State Warriors’ postseason run, spends the moments following Game 2 of the NBA Finals limping through the locker room inside Scotiabank Arena. Iguodala peels off his jersey and tells the assembled media what continues to motivate him to play through injuries at the tail end of a 15-year career.

“I like Steph,” Iguodala says. “He’s a good dude, good guy to be around. That’s really the only reason why I like playing basketball.”

In this moment, Iguodala’s motive is far deeper than the joy he gets from playing alongside Stephen Curry; he is also determined to bolster Curry’s individual résumé. Coincidentally, that means getting Curry something Iguodala already has: an NBA Finals MVP award.cheap nike nfl jerseys china

“I’ve never seen a person, such a good person, ever get some backlash, whatever, from his peers,” Iguodala said. “Because they’re so jealous of what he has. … So whatever it takes to protect his legacy, I’m all for it.”9

Since the NBA-ABA merger in 1976-77, Curry is part of a small group of players who have won both a regular-season MVP award and a title but not claimed Finals MVP. Like Curry has the past two years, David Robinson and Julius Erving played alongside another MVP (Tim Duncan and Moses Malone, respectively) when they won their titles, while Kevin Garnett was four years removed from his MVP season — and on a different team — when he won his lone championship.
Iguodala echoed those sentiments, saying, “He’s not arrogant. He doesn’t go about life like a superstar. DeMarcus [Cousins] said it one day — he was like, ‘He’s the most normal superstar I’ve ever seen.’ He’s like, ‘This is unreal.’ But it’s just talk about culture. People don’t understand how important that is.“nike nfl jerseys cheap paypal

Curry has played well on the game’s biggest stage. He was the team’s leading scorer in the 2015 Finals, averaging nearly 10 points per game more than Iguodala, who won Finals MVP. He led the Warriors in scoring again in 2016, when they lost in seven games to the Cleveland Cavaliers — a setback Curry blames himself for.

Kevin Durant arrived that summer, and took the Finals scoring lead from Curry en route to winning each of the past two Finals MVPs. Still, Curry averaged 27.1 points per game over those two series, an increase over the 25.7 PPG he put up in the 2016-17 and 2017-18 regular seasons.

“I think if you ask him he’ll take that championship and everyone being healthy,” said Bogut, who was part of the Warriors’ title team in 2015 and, after stints with Cleveland, Dallas and the Lakers over the past two seasons, rejoined Golden State earlier this season. “In my opinion, I don’t think [winning Finals MVP] changes the direction of his career, but I guess for the media people that are out there criticizing him for not having that, it might silence them a little bit, for at least a year — until they find something else to criticize him for.”

Cards place Molina on IL due to thumb injury

10

Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina was placed on the 10-day injured list Friday because of a strained right thumb tendon.

The 36-year-old, a nine-time All-Star, got hurt during Saturday’s game against Atlanta and tried to play through the injury.

“It’s just a slight little tear between the thumb and the webbing, his right finger, rather,” Cardinals manager Mike Shildt said.

Shildt said the injury affected Molina’s batting.cheap nfl jerseys nike china

St. Louis said the roster move was retroactive to Wednesday.10

Cardinals president of baseball operations John Mozeliak said surgery had not been discussed.

“We did an MRI this morning and that indicated that there is some damage to the tendon in his thumb, throwing hand, and we’ll have him see a specialist this afternoon, as well,” Mozeliak said. “Probably have a better idea of maybe length and what to expect by sometime tomorrow morning.”cheap wholesale nike nfl jerseys

Matt Wieters will get most of the playing time while Molina is sidelined. St. Louis selected the contract of Andrew Knizner from Triple-A Memphis.

Molina is batting .265 with four home runs and 33 RBIs and started 49 of the Cardinals’ first 53 games.

Knizner, 24, was batting .286 with five home runs and 17 RBIs at Memphis.

Boring? That description fits the Cubs’ bats with men on base

9

While the Blues were playing the Bruins in the Stanley Cup Final across town, Cubs star third baseman Kris Bryant was hearing plenty of boos after calling St. Louis “boring” over the winter. But that word applied to the Cubs at the plate as much as anything else.

The team’s offense has gotten decidedly boring lately.

“We have to give ourselves a better chance, more opportunities than we’re giving ourselves,” first baseman Anthony Rizzo said after Sunday’s 2-1 loss to the Cardinals completed a three-game sweep that knocked the Cubs out of first place in the NL Central. “That’s the ebb and flow of the season. We’re grinding right now as a unit. We have to get back on track.”

Rizzo got robbed by Kolten Wong late in Sunday’s contest to help preserve the win for the home team, but this can’t all be about a bad BABIP right now. The Cubs seem to be squeezing their bats about as hard as possible as soon as a runner reaches base. On Sunday, they nearly became just the second team this year to walk at least eight times without scoring — only a ninth-inning run prevented it.cheap wholesale nike nfl jerseys

“We just have to do a better job, reorganize our strike zones and make pitchers throw the ball over the plate and stay in the middle of the field,” manager Joe Maddon said.9

Maddon has no other answers for an offense that has just one hit in its past 33 at-bats with a runner in scoring position — and even that lone hit didn’t plate a run. If the ball isn’t leaving the ballpark these days, the Cubs aren’t scoring.

“It’s not like we’re in here moping around and, ‘Poor us, we can’t get a hit right now with a runner in scoring position,'” Rizzo said. “We’re doing our best, we’re just falling short.”

Some of this rhetoric is eerily similar to the second half of last season, when the Cubs inexplicably went into offensive hibernation. That led to another “B” word no Cubs fan ever wants to hear again. If Theo Epstein declares the Cubs offense “broken” anytime soon, as he did last October, there might be a mutiny in Chicago.

“We have guys in here that have driven in a lot of runs before,” Rizzo said. “The more opportunities we have, the better off we’ll be.”cheap nfl jerseys nike china

Rizzo isn’t wrong. By year’s end, the top on-base teams are usually the top run-scoring teams. That’s a fact.

But the Cubs seem to do things that don’t go with the norm. For example, despite respectable National League rankings in batting average (fifth) and on-base percentage (second), the Cubs drop all the way down to 14th — just ahead of the lowly Marlins — when it comes to hitting with runners in scoring position. Let that sink in. They hit .255 overall but just .240 when runners are poised to score. Only one other NL team (Pittsburgh) has a drop of that significant. All others hit the same or better when the going gets tough for the pitcher.

That leads to a cruel joke forming for opposing teams: The best way to get out of an inning against the Cubs is to put a runner at second base.

“I don’t think we’re going up there just trying to hit homers,” Kyle Schwarber said. “Some of it isn’t falling right now. It’s the reality. We’re all up there trying to drive guys in.”

Jets interview Seahawks exec Fitterer for GM job

10

The Jets have interviewed Seattle Seahawks executive Scott Fitterer for their general manager job.

The team’s announcement Friday that it completed its meeting with Fitterer marked New York’s first interview in the process of filling its front-office vacancy.cheap nike nfl jerseys paypal

Fitterer has been the Seahawks’ co-director of player personnel alongside Trent Kirchner since 2015. He has worked with Seattle since 2001 and served in various roles, including as the team’s director of college scouting.10

Mike Maccagnan was fired in a surprise move by Jets chairman and CEO Christopher Johnson on May 15 after four seasons — just over two weeks after the GM oversaw the team’s draft. Johnson said he was looking to hire someone who was “a strategic thinker” and added that “it’s more than a talent evaluation guy.”cheap nfl nike jerseys from china

Head coach Adam Gase is the acting general manager and has an active role in the Jets’ process of finding a new GM.

Joe Douglas, Philadelphia’s vice president of player personnel, is expected to interview with New York over the weekend. He is largely considered the favorite to land the gig. Terry Fontenot, New Orleans’ director of pro scouting, is also expected to be among the candidates to meet with the Jets.

Colts’ Kelly gets 2-game ban for October arrest

9

Colts quarterback Chad Kelly, assuming he makes the team, has been suspended without pay for the first two games of the 2019 season for violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy, the league announced Friday.

Kelly’s suspension stems from his October 2018 arrest for criminal trespassing after he entered a couple’s home while he played for the Denver Broncos, who released the quarterback the next day.cheap nfl nike jerseys from china

Kelly, a seventh-round pick by the Broncos in 2017, pleaded guilty to second-degree criminal trespassing — a misdemeanor — in March. He was sentenced to one year of supervised probation and 50 hours of community service.

The Colts signed Kelly on May 20 after he performed well during the team’s rookie minicamp earlier in the month. Coach Frank Reich was a teammate of Kelly’s uncle, Hall of Famer Jim Kelly, with the Buffalo Bills from 1986 to 1994.

“At the end of the day, you have to put in enough work for [the Colts] to trust you,” Chad Kelly said earlier this week. “It’s going to take some time, of course, because there’s been things that have happened in the past. But I’m up for the challenge to prove to these guys that I’m dedicated to this.”9

Kelly is allowed to participate in offseason activities, preseason practices and games. He is eligible to return to the Colts’ active roster Sept. 16, if he makes the roster.

Andrew Luck and Jacoby Brissett are the top two quarterbacks on the roster. Kelly will compete with Phillip Walker for the No. 3 spot.cheap nike nfl jerseys paypal

The Colts kept only two quarterbacks on the active roster last season, with Walker on the practice squad.

Kelly has a history of off-the-field troubles.

He was kicked off Clemson’s football team for arguing with coaches during the spring game in 2014. He pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct after he was arrested for a bar fight in 2014. Kelly was in another fight, at his brother’s high school football game in New York, in October 2016, with videos showing Kelly being held back by the coaches.

Kelly spent his rookie season in 2017 on injured reserve because of knee and wrist injuries suffered while at Ole Miss. He played one snap before his release from the Broncos last season.