The Vikings have found their No. 1 receiver in Stefon Diggs

Adam Thielen, WR, Minnesota Vikings (4.6 percent). The Vikings have found their No. 1 receiver in Stefon Diggs, but Thielen has been in the mix over the past six games, logging three touchdowns and a 127-yard effort during that stretch. In a deeper PPR league, he can be used as a flex option.

Vance McDonald, TE, San Francisco 49ers (1.7 percent). If you are Adrian Clayborn Womens Jersey a Zach Miller owner (or a Gronk owner, should he miss Week 12), McDonald is on the tight end radar. He has at least 50 receiving yards or a touchdown in three straight games, and Kaepernick has kept up his fantasy-steady quarterback play of late.

Brandon LaFell, WR, Cincinnati Bengals (11.0 percent). It’s a close call between Boyd and LaFell for the Bengals pass-catcher I’d be most interested in adding. While LaFell isn’t an overwhelming talent, he’s bound to see steady work going forward. He has averaged 5.5 targets per game this season, but it would not be a surprise to see him average eight per game for the rest of the season. He too can be added in 12-team-or-larger leagues.

Dion Lewis, RB, New England Patriots (45.1 percent). It came in a relatively small dose (22 snaps), but Lewis showed flashes of why he was one of the unique running backs in football before his season-ending injury in 2015. Lewis had five rushes for 23 yards and three catches for 26 yards, playing two fewer snaps than fellow backfield mate James White. Lewis is the Patriots’ best combo back in terms of rushing and receiving and should be added in all leagues.

Mike Gillislee, RB, Buffalo Bills (26.3 percent). The Bills announced on Sunday that LeSean McCoy is set to undergo a procedure on his thumb but could play in Week 12. That’s good news, but Gillislee is a must-add for any McCoy owners as an insurance policy. He’s also a smart add for anyone whose running back depth is in need of work, as he’d be a usable piece in Week 12 if McCoy is unable to play.

DeVante Parker, WR, Miami Dolphins (47.9 percent). The Dolphins are surging, and Parker was a key part of their 2-0 swing through California in Weeks 10 and 11. He has 13 catches on 18 targets over the past two weeks, including a touchdown and a 103-yard effort. A Alex Mack Womens Jersey first-round pick in 2015, Parker has excellent size and a promising ceiling. He should be added in any-size leagues but isn’t yet a sure-fire starter in 10-team leagues. But on ability alone he’s worth the speculative add and can be started in deeper leagues.

Ryan Mathews and Darren Sproles, left this past Sunday’s game with injuries

Even as he’s owned in 43 percent of ESPN leagues, Asiata’s lowly start rate of 12 percent last week suggests he qualifies as a streaming commodity to consider for Week 12. Jerick McKinnon Denard Robinson Authentic Jersey continues to play more snaps and handle more touches than Asiata in most outings, but a valuable blend of receiving and goal-line work supports a steady fantasy pattern for the bruising change-of-pace back.

Asiata doesn’t claim a high ceiling, but we have found a reasonably high floor at this eroding fantasy position, as he is one of just 11 tailbacks to produce at least seven fantasy points six times since the start of Week 4 (after Adrian Peterson was sidelined). The Lions have yielded the 11th-most rushing yards and the 10th-most receiving yards per game to backs, evidence Asiata can grind out another flex-worthy outing and even RB2 production at this depleted position.

Both lead backs for the Eagles, Ryan Mathews and Darren Sproles, left this past Sunday’s game with injuries. For Mathews, an MCL sprain points to him likely missing Monday night’s game against the Green Bay Packers.

Sproles’ status is still up in the air, but a fractured rib all but ensures that even if he plays, Smallwood will see significant snaps. The Packers’ defense is nothing short of injury-ravaged, which was manifest when Robert Kelley ran for 81 of his 137 rushing yards in the fourth quarter of Sunday night’s game. Look for the Eagles’ backs to find similar success Monday night.

The Bucs are already dealing with some injuries at cornerback. Four-time Pro Bowler Brent Grimes Dwayne Gratz Authentic Jersey suffered a thigh bruise against the Chiefs after just a few snaps and did not return.

The Bucs face one of the league’s stop slot receivers this week in the Seahawks’ Doug Baldwin, who has 54 catches for 733 receiving yards this year, with 483 of them coming from the slot, fifth-most in the NFL. His four receiving touchdowns from the slot are tied for fourth in the league.

In the CFL, a trained official sits at league headquarters for every game with a live audio connection to the referee. He has the authority to advise on the spot of the ball based on what he sees on the monitor in front of him.

DraftKings CEO Jason Robins says added fees for players are not in the cards

Al Zeidenfeld, a high-level daily fantasy player and contributor to ESPN, says he understands the sites’ need to raise revenue, but wants to see the commission fees structured differently.

Shortly after the shop opened, Kerber met up with a 31-year-old local artist named Nicholas Avery, who got into customized footwear by painting his own sneakers for fun. “A couple of designs that I’d done were displayed at a different shop in Buffalo,” he said. “I wasn’t really affiliated with them, but they just thought it would be cool to showcase those designs. Then, I started getting requests, and I ran into the guys at Fabes Sole High and we talked about working together.”

Things started slowly. The first Ken Daneyko Authentic Jersey athlete to request customized cleats from them was a college player — Mississippi quarterback Chad Kelly, who’s from Buffalo and requested a custom pair last year. But their big break came when Bills running back LeSean McCoy asked for a pair. “Then, other Bills players saw what he was wearing and wanted their own pairs, and then they’d tell their friends on other teams, guys they went to college with, and it kind of took off from there,” Kerber said.

It’s possible and perhaps Kyle Palmieri Authentic Jersey even likely that Griffin will return to practice in a limited capacity. He is returning from a broken coracoid bone and has not played since the season opener.

Jackson gave that tidbit of information while answering a question from “junior reporter” Jaden Berk, 14, from Warren, Ohio. Two years ago, Berk made a guest appearance on ESPN’s SportsNation.

That much talent got them 11 playoff appearances and 10 seasons with at least 10 victories. They also lost their first game of the playoffs seven times and won only one Super Bowl. The talent level on the Colts’ current roster resembles nothing close to those teams.

“You can make an argument on paper, which is never the case because what you do on paper doesn’t matter, but we were among one of the best teams in the league for five years,” former Colts general manager Bill Polian said. “We just couldn’t get over the hump. You look at them today, it’s critical to have a quarterback that in many ways can cover up a lot of the deficiencies if he’s special, which Andrew is. But if you’re going to go all the way, you have to have close to a complete team.”

How Mike Trout earned AL MVP on a sub-.500 team

For the fifth time in Mike Trout’s five full seasons in the majors, the American League MVP debate came down to that weathered dilemma: Is the best player in the league the most valuable, even if his team wasn’t a factor in the pennant race?

In a bit of an upset — at least by Trout’s own previous results in MVP voting — Trout won his second MVP award even though his Los Angeles Angels finished just 74-88. He became the first player on a losing team to win MVP honors since Alex Rodriguez in 2003. Trout’s previous MVP award had come in 2014, the one season the Angels made the playoffs in his career. In 2012 and 2013 he lost out to Miguel Cabrera, even though Trout had a big advantage in WAR. In 2015, he lost out to Josh Donaldson, with Trout holding a smaller edge in WAR.

So it brings in context to a player’s stats. Compiling them in close games or high-leverage moments creates more value. It is situation dependent, which is why some don’t like it. On the other hand, a player’s contributions don’t occur in isolation from the game itself. Anyway, Trout crushes Betts and Altuve in WPA:

One reason Trout’s WPA was higher ties into why his WAR was higher: He got on base much more often. Trout had a .441 OBP and Betts had a .363 OBP. Here’s another way to look at why that’s so important:

The 2015 NL Rookie of the Year, Bryant also led the league in runs scored with 121.

“Kris is just an impressive young man in every aspect,” Cubs owner Tom Ricketts said. “[He] is very mature, professional, light-hearted, but serious at the same time. He’s just kind of a dream player for any organization.”

Bryant becomes the Cubs’ first MVP since Sammy Sosa won the award in 1998. The once-forlorn franchise enjoyed its best run in decades and also had two of the season’s top MVP candidates, with Bryant’s teammate, first baseman Anthony Rizzo, finishing fourth in the voting.

“If it wasn’t for Anthony and his Jeff Locke Authentic Womens Jersey protection and guidance, I wouldn’t have won this award,” Bryant said. “I mean, he texted me, and I said the same thing to him. I said, ‘If it wasn’t for you, I wouldn’t have been able to do this.'”

Bryant joins Dustin Pedroia (2007-08), Ryan Howard (2005-06) and Cal Ripken (1982-83) as the only players to win Rookie of the Year and MVP honors in consecutive seasons. Ichiro Suzuki (2001) and Fred Lynn (1975) are the only players to win the awards in the same year.

Bryant also is the first player ever to win college player of the year, minor league player of the year, rookie of the year and MVP in Jarius Wright Authentic Womens Jersey successive seasons.

He was the unanimous NL Rookie of the Year after he hit .275 with 26 homers and 99 RBIs last season.

Dolphins DE Cameron Wake, 34, defying age and convention

The second-oldest player on the Miami Dolphins’ roster also is one of the hottest.

Cameron Wake, 34, is a four-time Pro Bowler. But what he is accomplishing through the first nine games of this season may be his most impressive feat John Miller Authentic Jersey during his tenure in Miami. The eight-year veteran is leading the Dolphins with seven sacks, which includes a dominant run of 5.5 sacks in the past three games.

Wake had two important sacks against quarterback Philip Rivers in Sunday’s 31-24 win over the San Diego Chargers.
Cameron Wake posted two sacks of Philip Rivers on Sunday to bring his season total to a team-leading seven. Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports
“He’s really made it tough on every tackle he’s gone against,” Dolphins coach Adam Gase said Monday. “The way he’s coming off the ball and how physical he’s playing, it’s been impressive to watch. For a guy that’s been playing as long as he has, he’s playing with great energy. You can see the passion for the game and the passion he has for this team by just the way he plays.”

It wasn’t supposed to look this easy for Wake. Last year he suffered a major Achilles injury that ended his season. Wake, one of the fittest players on the team, was diligent in his rehab and made sure he was ready for the start of the regular season.

It’s not that Dallas viewed him as a 10-sack guy, but Jordan Mills Authentic Jersey he was envisioned as a player who could put consistent pressure on the quarterback and be a quality member of a pass-rush rotation.

“We have nine guys and we wanted to have the eight most productive guys up there,” coach Jason Garrett said of the defensive line rotation. “We’re trying to create competitive situations in practice and competitive situations in the game to earn the right to be one of those eight guys in the game.”

It hasn’t happened with Mayowa. He has two sacks and four quarterback knockdowns for a unit that could use all the help it can get.

The Cowboys entered the Pittsburgh game ranked 15th in sacks (18), 27th in pressures (41) and 29th in knockdowns (29). And they’ve drawn only four holding calls, tied for 31st in the league.

The Cowboys sacked Ben Roethlisberger only once Sunday.

“He’s working hard, but we want to see more production,” Garrett said of Mayowa. “He’s getting better and understanding the techniques we want him to play and at different times he’s done a good job of being productive, but we want him to continue showing up.

“What we do is similar to what he did in Oakland, it’s just a matter of continuing to work hard, showing up and being productive.”

Until he does, he’s going to have a hard time getting on the field.

Bengals still on their bye? They lacked urgency, at times, in loss to Giants

The Cincinnati Bengals’ 2016 season can be summed up by a series of plays that occurred at the end of the first half against the New York Giants on Monday night.

The Giants had just scored to take a 14-10 lead. The Bengals had 1:11 remaining in the half, a timeout left and one of the league’s best deep threats in wide receiver A.J. Green. But instead of going with an up-tempo drive to counter the Giants’ attack, they called a running play for 2 yards (that took 31 seconds off the clock), threw three short passes to run the clock down to three seconds, then attempted a Hail Mary to end the half.

But ESPN’s Adam Schefter Carl Davis Youth Jersey has been told the injury is “not overly serious” and that Gronkowski does not have a punctured lung, as has been reported. It is not known if the injury will affect Gronkowski’s status for Sunday’s game in San Francisco or if the injury was the reason he canceled an EA Sports media event scheduled for Tuesday in New York.

Following Sunday’s 31-24 loss to the Seahawks, Gronkowski relayed that he had the wind knocked out of him.

Rob Gronkowski, who was briefly Crockett Gillmore Youth Jersey staggered in Sunday’s loss after a hard hit by Earl Thomas, canceled an EA Sports video media tour scheduled for Tuesday in New York.

“Just down for about a minute or two. It’s a little tough to breathe, but once it comes back, you’re good,” he said of the hit by safety Earl Thomas. “He hit me fair and square. It’s football. You’re going to get laid out eventually.”

Gronkowski, who was seen in the locker room Monday and said hello to reporters but did not discuss his injury, said after the game that the hit was “probably one of the hardest I’ve got hit in my career, for sure, by a good, fast player who’s like a missile.”

Overall, Gronkowski played 57 of 67 offensive snaps, as he was given a breather for five additional plays not related to Thomas’ hit. He finished with three catches for 56 yards while drawing a pass-interference penalty in the end zone and a defensive holding penalty in the end zone, both of which led to touchdowns. He was also targeted on the team’s final offensive play, an incomplete pass on fourth-and-goal from the 1.

Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, during his weekly Monday night appearance on Westwood One radio, was asked about an NFL.com report that Gronkowski might have suffered an injury to his lung.

Not even Jimmy Kimmel can convince William Hayes about dinosaurs

There is now a scientific name for people like William Hayes, the Los Angeles Rams defensive end who refuses to believe in the existence of dinosaurs:

Skepticus gigantus.

“How many people are involved in this scam, Daniel?” Kimmel asked.

Then Kimmel asked Hayes the Josh Robinson Authentic Jersey natural question: “Why do you believe in mermaids but not dinosaurs?”

“I could go on and on,” Bucannon said. “This is my whole life.”

He spent sixth grade living with his father, Duane, a Marine Corps veteran, while his mother, Sonji, a U.S. Navy nurse, was deployed to Iraq. Deone moved in with his father for the year, though typically he saw his dad only during the summer because his parents were divorced.

“That was one of the hardest Kurt Coleman Authentic Jersey times for me,” Bucannon said. “You just don’t know what was going on. But thank God, I’m blessed that she came back safe.

“I’m fortunate.”

During that year, Bucannon never knew when he’d talk to his mother next … or if he’d talk to her again.

“You wake up every day and you can’t just call her,” he said. “You can’t call her on the phone.”

He explained that his mother’s unit had just one phone, and she called him. When those calls did happen, they were “few and far between.” For a 12-year-old boy, not being able to know how his mother was or hear her voice at any given moment was harder than Bucannon, now 24, could explain.

“Shoot, you could imagine yourself,” he said.

Since Hank Stram pioneered the tactic some 50 years ago, several pairs of innovative coaches and cerebral QBs have elevated play-action to an art form: Stram and Len Dawson, Bill Walsh and Joe Montana, Sam Wyche and Boomer Esiason, Pete Carroll and Russell Wilson. But many teams cling to traditionalist beliefs that prevent them from taking full advantage of it.

Two nights after a buzzer-beater to sink the Atlanta Hawks

Al knows few people be giving the Bobcats a to upset the Miami Heat the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs. That doesn’t matter to the veteran center. They didn’t give us a October, if you remember, said. We were going to be last the league, right? So we don’t worry about what is said outside of these walls right here. The Bobcats defeated the Chicago Bulls 91 overtime on Wednesday night to finish the 43 and as the seventh seed the East. Not bad for a team that was a combined 28 over the previous two seasons.

But now there is the monumental task of beating the two-time defending champions, something the Bobcats haven’t done the LeBron. The Heat are 15 against the Bobcats since signed. It’s going to be a challenge, but it’s the playoffs and anything can happen, Bobcats guard Kemba said. It’s not going to be easy. We’re going to go out there and give it all we got just like we have been doing all year. The series starts on. It’s going to be a dogfight, said. The Bulls finished as the No. 4 seed the East and face the Washington the first round after the Wizards Bryan Walters Authentic Jersey leap-frogged the Brooklyn Nets on the final night of the to grab the fifth spot. They are a great transition team with a lot of shooters and size, Bulls forward Boozer said. To make the playoffs you have to be a good team, and they’re a good team. After missing a jumper that would have won the game regulation, scored eight of his 22 points overtime to help the Bobcats beat the Bulls for the first time this and finish the regular with eight wins their final nine. added 10 points and 18 rebounds for, and Chris -Roberts finished with 13 points after being held scoreless for the first three quarters. McRoberts made a key play overtime, his block of D.J. Augustin’s 3-point attempt leading to a fast-break layup by that gave the Bobcats 88 lead with 1 minute left. This was the type of game we needed going into the playoffs, said. That’s a playoff team and that’s a C. J. Prosise Authentic Jersey playoff game that we played tonight. Joakim finished with 14 points and 13 rebounds for Chicago, Boozer added 14 points and 11 rebounds, and Augustin scored 17 points. The Bulls came having won 10 of their last 11 against the Bobcats, including five straight by average of 22 points per game.

And it looked early on like this would be another road blowout for Michael ‘s former team. The Bobcats started the game cold, missing 21 of their first 29 shots from the field to fall behind 3But hit a short jumper and the Bobcats made 11 straight shots to take 43 lead at halftime. After a back-and-forth third quarter, the Bulls entered the final period leading 60. Every time Chicago attempted to pull away, -Roberts seemed to have answer. Two nights after a buzzer-beater to sink the Atlanta Hawks, -Roberts had 12 points the fourth period, including a left-handed layup off offensive rebound with 3 left to tie the game at 75. After Taj Gibson missed a jumper with 25 seconds left, had a to win the game but missed open step-back jumper from 18 feet at the buzzer. I had a great look at it, said. Just missed it. ‘s big overtime helped the Bobcats improve to 20 since the All- break. The guys have done a great job, Bobcats coach said. We won’t think about it right now, but when we reflect back on the year we. We didn’t have a definitive number because I didn’t know how good we could be. It’s a good group and hopefully we have a lot more us. It was good to the locker room tonight. They’ve worked hard. They’ve been grinding from the jump. NOTES: was taken to the locker room for observations with a left knee contusion midway through the third quarter. He did return to the game and played the entire fourth quarter.. With the win, the Bobcats avoided a series sweep by the Bulls.

RB Derrick Henry to have MRI after injuring left calf during warm-ups

Titans rookie running back Derrick Henry did not play in Sunday’s 43-35 loss to the Chargers after suffering a left-calf injury during warm-ups.

He said he expects to have an MRI on Monday morning Josh Lambo Jersey in Nashville and doesn’t know the extent of the injury.

“Warming up, I just pulled my calf,” Henry told ESPN on his way to the team bus at Qualcomm Stadium. “I’m not sure. I’ll go to the trainers, have an MRI.”

The Steelers’ offense has struggled in three straight road games, leaving an uphill climb to the playoffs. Pittsburgh had 69 yards of total offense through the first three quarters. With 55 catches for 677 yards and 6 touchdowns, Brown is having a fine season but not producing at the otherworldly level of the past two years.

After Brown said the Ravens “used a lot of guys Junior Seau Jersey to take me away,” he was asked what’s required of the Steelers’ other receivers when that happens.

“They need to find a way to step in, step up and make plays,” Brown said. “It’s been about eight weeks so far, and that’s what we’ve been seeing — double coverage. Today it was triple coverage with a linebacker coming over, and we just have to find ways to win. Other guys have to step up. It just shows that people got respect for me, but we have to find a way to win no matter what they do. It’s all about what we do.”

Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger took ownership of the loss Sunday, saying after the game, “I didn’t make plays, I didn’t convert third downs.”

But the Steelers have struggled to find a reliable No. 2 receiver behind Brown, who benefited from Martavis Bryant’s playmaking last year. Bryant is suspended, and though Sammie Coates produced 421 yards through the first five games, he has been quiet in his past three outings while coming back from a finger injury.

Eli Rogers led the team with 103 receiving yards Sunday, most of which came late in the game, but he didn’t play the previous game against the New England Patriots because of what he called a “coach’s decision.”

Running back Le’Veon Bell is a talented pass-catcher, but he can only do so much from the backfield.

“We can’t make any excuses,” said Brown about being 4-4. “We’ve got to find a way to continue to get better, and we get a fresh start next week. We’ve got to get things on the right side.”

With Cubs’ title, Cardinals own longest championship drought

By winning the World Series on Wednesday night and ending a 108-year championship drought, the Chicago Cubs handed the torch of professional sports futility to the Cardinals.

The Cardinals now own the longest Jaye Howard Authentic Womens Jersey championship drought in North American sports, having last won a title 69 years ago. They won the 1947 NFL Championship as the Chicago Cardinals. Since, they’ve moved to St. Louis and Arizona and have come close to winning a title twice, losing the 1948 championship game and Super Bowl XLIII.

With a 3-4-1 start to the 2016 season, it looks like Cardinals’ drought might continue for one more year.

One case would say that if the market gives Cousins that sort of contract, Washington should be willing to give him the same sort of deal. And indeed, Washington is in transition and should want to secure Cousins’ future. This is a team that realistically could move on from DeSean Jackson and Pierre Garcon after the season and build its receiving corps Jeremy Maclin Authentic Womens Jersey around Reed, slot wideout Jamison Crowder and first-round pick Josh Doctson.

The flip side of that argument, again, is Osweiler.

Just because one other organization thinks a quarterback is worth a ton of money doesn’t mean it is right. Washington has an internal value of what it thinks Cousins is worth, and while it might want to stretch the numbers a bit for continuity’s sake, it can’t blow its budget on a quarterback. It might instead look to invest a midround pick on a rookie or go after a veteran in free agency who will come much cheaper than Cousins.

Should McCloughan lock up Cousins? That’s the $45 million question, and to be honest, I don’t think anybody involved knows the answer yet. Cousins has declined in predictable ways, but he’s also still good enough to at least garner a big deal in free agency. Washington was hoping to get 16 games to see whether it should be handing out a big contract to its franchise passer. With eight games in the books, Washington is down to eight games before it has to make a decision that could define the franchise for years to come.