The Cardinals were also going to have a hard time making something work with Cousins because of their cap space.

They missed out, but didn’t take much time to sign Bradford to a one-year, $20 million deal on Tuesday.

Bradford played well when he was healthy at the beginning of the 2017 season. But he spent most of the year sidelined with what Vikings coach Mike Zimmer described as a degenerative condition in his knee. He’s undergone two ACL surgeries and has been hindered by injuries throughout his career. He’s not a long-term answer for Arizona, but at least they’ve got a starter for this season.

Brees himself has said he doesn’t anticipate testing the open market, but it’ll be a little tricky.

Brees’ contract did not allow the Saints to use the franchise tag, so they’ll have to meet his price for a standard contract before a March 14 deadline that would accelerate $18 million in salary-cap space.

The situation provides an opening for Brees to test the market if he changes his mind.

The Broncos took themselves out of the mix early, signing Keenum to a deal that’s expected to be two years and around $18 million per season. That fits much more easily with the Broncos’ current cap situation than Cousins’ big money would have.

Keenum was decent last season in Minnesota, and he’ll have the benefit of a great Broncos defense and talent like Emmanuel Sanders and Demaryius Thomas around him. He needs to have a good year.

That’s why the Broncos haven’t ruled out drafting a quarterback in the first round this year, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.

This is a case of Mo’ money and Mo’ problems. He wasn’t very good in 2017 in every aspect of his game and isn’t ideal to have around for a rebuilding team. At 28, he has played his last down for New York.
ravens_179

Manning missed the entire 2011 season with a neck injury.

The next wave of precipitation rolled in around noon, as Ohtani was doing sprints in the outfield of Field No. 1, and by the time everyone moved to the batting cage on Field No. 2 we’d moved from light sprinkles to actual rain. Not heavy, but annoying. Not that anyone aside from media members trying to keep their equipment dry seemed to mind.

Ohtani’s batting practice, his first with the Angels, was a big damn deal. Angels GM Billy Eppler was there, and he had a hard time wiping the grin off his face. Manager Mike Scioscia was planted firmly with his arms on the back of the cage, and he spent most of BP smiling, too.

Cousins made every start and threw for more than 4,000 yards in each of the past three seasons.

With a proven track record and that kind of durability, the Vikings were all-in.

“If you have an opportunity to go out and potentially get a franchise quarterback or a quarterback that’s going to be leading you for years to come,” Spielman said.

“He’s right now in the prime of his career.

We had noticed the two were wearing rings recently that appeared to be wedding bands — and now, sources connected to the couple tell us they have indeed traded “I do’s.”

The move: QB AJ McCarron signed a two-year deal with the Buffalo Bills.

McCarron could be a Week 1 starter as a bridge QB, but this likely changes little for Buffalo’s need at QB. After moving up to 12, the Bills still look like a team poised to make another deal to jump up the draft order and take one of the top passers available. 

The move: Patrick Robinson is joining the Saints on a four-year pact, according to multiple reports.
ravens_001

How the Jets’ roster looks after initial wave of free agency

How the Jets’ roster looks after initial wave of free agency More Rich Cimini ESPN Staff Writer Close Longtime Jets beat writer for New York Daily News Syracuse University graduate Follow on Twitter Mike Maccagnan promised to be “very active” in the early stage of free agency. He wasn’t kidding.

Reuniting with former Jets defensive coordinator Mike Pettine, who is now serving in the same role in Green Bay, could be what Wilkerson needs to get his career back on track. The Packers have a grim outlook in the secondary, so they’ll need all the pass rushing help they can get. 

The move: The New York Jets are signing former Los Angeles Rams CB Trumaine Johnson and former Cleveland Browns RB Isaiah Crowell, according to multiple reports.

With the most cap space of any team, the Jets took longer than some might have thought to make a splash. Johnson gives the team the No. 1 corner it desperately needed, though at a high price of an expected $15 million per year. He should fit nicely into Todd Bowles’ scheme and add another asset alongside S Jamal Adams. Crowell is a nice addition after he showed promise at times in Cleveland, but it’s hard to see how he’ll carve out a role behind Bilal Powell and Elijah McGuire. 

Rapoport reports the Jaguars are signing former Jets tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins to a two-year deal worth $10 million, according to a source. Seferian-Jenkins was ranked No. 58 on the Top 101 list.

The Miami Dolphins signed former Bears guard Josh Sitton to a two-year deal for roughly $15 million, a source involved with the negotiations told Rapoport. The contract can be worth up to $18 million and includes $8 million guaranteed. Sitton ranked No. 50 on the Top 101 list.

The Houston Texans have agreed to terms with cornerback Johnathan Joseph on a two-year contract, Rapoport reported via a source. Joseph, who’s spent the past seven seasons with the Texans, was ranked No. 94 on the Top 101 list.

Henry is a bruising power back, but he isn’t much of a receiver.

Lewis can do just about everything, but he can’t stay healthy.
canucks_004

The Levinsons used that conviction Monday night in an attempt to impeach Nunez.

“ACES (the name of the Levinsons’ agency) has been thoroughly investigated, and at every turn, has fully cooperated. The MLBPA (players association) exonerated us, all of the players cleared us, and it was conclusively proven that we did absolutely nothing wrong. This is nothing more than a shakedown by a man broken by his own criminal actions,” the brothers said in a statement to MLBtraderumors.com.

As for Radomski, he told Heyman the statement Nunez is citing is likely the one Radomski gave to MLB when it was investigating the Levinsons’ alleged role in the Cabrera case (Heyman noted MLB just censured the brothers). Radomski also said he collected cash and checks from the Levinsons at their Brooklyn office when they paid him for PEDs and that both men knew what their clients were receiving.

Again, not really a “bombshell” revelation. Radomski has been saying similar stuff for years.

There needs to be something very new for this report to make MLB uncomfortable. Otherwise, the media and fans will just be re-litigating the Mitchell Report and Biogenesis while the litigation brought by Nunez drones on. And that’s going to get old very fast.

He has long expressed a desire to play with his brother.

The Patriots had a void at cornerback after Malcolm Butler signed with the Titans in free agency.

McCourty joins Stephon Gilmore, Eric Rowe, Jonathan Jones and Cyrus Jones atop the depth chart.

Jason spent one season with the Browns after playing eight with Tennessee.

McCourty played well in 14 starts, with three interceptions, one returned for a touchdown.

But he had to suffer through a winless season and voiced some unhappiness late in the season that coach Hue Jackson had said the team did not have the talent to win.

McCourty has one year remaining on his contract and will earn a base salary of $2.375 million.

He is due a $375,000 roster bonus on Friday, which will be the Patriots’ responsibility.

He can earn an additional $250,000 in per-game roster bonuses.
packers_132

Yankees acquire Seahawks QB Russell Wilson in trade with Rangers

As if acquiring Giancarlo Stanton wasn’t enough, the Yankees have added another star to their roster.

The Rangers on Wednesday traded Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson to the Yankees for future considerations.

“We’ve admired Russell’s career from afar for quite some time,” Cashman said in a statement. “After talking to a number of our players, there is a genuine excitement in having Russell join us for a short time in camp. We are all looking forward to gaining insight into how he leads teammates toward a common goal, prepares on a daily basis for the rigors of his sport, and navigates the successes and failures of a season.”

Wilson, a Super Bowl champion and four-time Pro Bowl player, hit .228 with five home runs in 315 minor league at-bats during the 2010 and ’11 seasons.

The Yankees open spring training play under new manager Aaron Boone against the Tigers on Feb. 23.

It’s technically no longer the offseason, with players reporting to camp in best shape of their lives, but there are still a few high-quality starters on the market. Let’s not pretend Jake Arrieta is someone the bargain-loving Wilpons are going to splurge on after the starter reportedly turned down a Yu Darvish-type deal from the Cubs. But what about Lance Lynn and Alex Cobb, two cheaper alternatives who arguably had better seasons than Arrieta?

Aaron Colvin, CB* Headed to: Houston Texans | Age: 26 News: Colvin to sign four-year deal with Texans Barshop: Colvin acquisition a step in right direction for Houston defense Colvin has been an excellent nickelback for the Jaguars but won’t be a starter as long as Jalen Ramsey and A.J.

Bouye are on the roster.

Does that mean Colvin could be looking to play elsewhere, for more money and playing time? It’s something to consider. packers_162

Jarvis Landry has been all over the place this offseason.

He was hit with the franchise tag by the Dolphins in February, and the two sides seeded open towards negotiating for a deal. He wasn’t thrilled with the tag, claiming it wasn’t his best deal.

But it’s since been circulated that Arizona is one of four remaining teams in the hunt for Cousins. The Jets and Vikings look like the primary suitors and Cousins’ decision probably comes down to those two teams, but it’s worth noting that, according to Mike Jurecki of 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station, Arizona is prepping a monster offer for Cousins.

Specifically, per Jurecki, the Cardinals plan to offer Cousins a five-year deal worth $145 million, which would mean Cousins makes $29 million per year, making him the highest-paid player in NFL history, surpassing Jimmy Garoppolo’s average annual value. Additionally, Jurecki reports the offer would feature a $20 million signing bonus and $15 million in base salary in the first year, along with a whopping $90 million in guarantees over the first three years of the deal. That sort of the contract would absolutely put the Cardinals in play for Cousins.

It’s believed the Jets could offer him north of $150 million over five years, which would obviously top this offer. But the Cardinals are a substantially more competitive team and could potentially make another splash in free agency to help entice Cousins.

That’s pretty revealing of their financial situation — along with their trade of Michael Bennett — and what they think Sherman is worth. Sherman returning to Seattle would make for a nice story. But the most-likely scenario sees him leaving for a team that is willing to pay him the money he desires and quite frankly, deserves.

The Kirk Cousins drama is hanging heavy over the NFL as free agency’s March 14 date approaches. Although reports widely indicate that the Minnesota Vikings and New York Jets are the two teams most heavily in contention, some players around the league are taking a “never-say-die” attitude. One of those players is Arizona Cardinals running back David Johnson. Johnson tweeted at Cousins, telling him to “c’mon” and “stop messing with every1 & tell them you’re coming to the desert.”

Former NFL star linebacker Aldon Smith, who played for both the San Francisco 49ers and the Oakland Raiders, pleaded not guilty Monday to domestic violence, assault, false imprisonment and vandalism charges.buccaneers_032

Ravens release Lardarius Webb for second straight offseason

The Baltimore Ravens parted ways with defensive back Lardarius Webb, ending his nine-year run with them and freeing up cap space to bring back offensive lineman James Hurst.

The Ravens freed up $1.75 million in cap space by releasing Webb, which occurred shortly after the team announced the return of Hurst. He signed a four-year, $17.5 million contract that included $8 million guaranteed.

With that in mind, it’s a surprise that Evans was able to make only a modest leap over the maximum value of Hopkins’ deal, with his contract coming in at five years and $82.5 million. The trade-off is in the money early in the deal. Spotrac reports that Evans will make $54 million over the first three years of the deal, which would be the most of any wideout in history. Hopkins’ new pact came in at $49 million over three years.

The difference between the three-year money and the difference between those fifth-year options is essentially identical, but even so, it’s a surprise that Evans and his representation weren’t able to get more given the 6.1 percent rise in the salary cap over last season. There’s every reason to think the 24-year-old will continue to rank among the league’s top wideouts, and while he just became the highest-paid wide receiver in football by the three-year money, the Buccaneers appear to have gotten off pretty easily with this extension.

The source said Peterson could re-sign with the Cardinals at a later date.

Peterson played in four games for the New Orleans Saints and six games for the Cardinals last season.

He had games of 134 and 159 yards with the Cardinals but otherwise totaled 155 yards in the four other games before suffering a season-ending neck injury in Week 12.

Peterson told ESPN’s Josina Anderson on Monday that the Cardinals doctor told him “my neck is completely healed” after reviewing his scans. Peterson said, “I’m still looking forward to playing next season.”

Peterson has 99 rushing touchdowns, tied with Barry Sanders for ninth all time. He has rushed for 12,276 yards, 12th on the all-time list, and is just 4 yards from passing Marshall Faulk for 11th place. He is the Minnesota Vikings’ all-time leading rusher, gaining 11,747 yards in his 10 seasons with the team.

A seven-time Pro Bowl selection, he was the NFL’s Offensive Rookie of the Year in 2007 and won the MVP award in 2012 when he rushed for a single-season career-best 2,097 yards.

buccaneers_123

He isn’t the fastest cornerback, but he uses the sideline well and is among the smartest players in the league, so he rarely gets himself out of position.

In the nine games he appeared in 2017, Sherman held opposing quarterbacks to a 75.5 passer rating when throwing his direction. It was the first time in his career that the number was over 70, but was still top 25 among cornerbacks who played at least half of their team’s snaps. From 2012 to 2014 — when Sherman first burst on to the scene — his opposing passer rating never topped 50.

The Panthers go for?more quickness and toughness for their passing game after they drafted another Christian, McCaffrey, at running back in the first round of?last year’s draft. Offensive line also will be a consideration with this pick, but Kirk’s rising stock as a versatile playmaker is hard to ignore.

Darvish was initially scheduled to pitch last Thursday, but stomach problems delayed his debut. He threw a bullpen session and took batting practice as he recovered instead.

ESPN noted Darvish likely won’t bat against Los Angeles, though he is expected to throw two or three innings.

Darvish, 31, began last season with the Rangers before being sent to the Dodgers ahead of the July 31 trade deadline. He pitched well for Los Angeles to close out the regular season, but struggled in the World Series. Darvish then signed a six-year deal worth up to $150 million with Chicago as a free agent.

Take me back to when you first came over from Japan. Is there anything you wish you knew back then or advice you would give to Ohtani and other Japanese players making the same transition?

White Sox: Same basic theory as the Phillies and Braves, except that the White Sox are at least a full year behind those two franchises in the rebuilding process.

If Gausman can continue to maintain that arm slot and success, he may be able to give the Orioles a sorely needed frontline starter — or least return to his form from 2016, when he had a 3.61 ERA and was worth 4.2 bWAR.seahawks_082_9e622c74648a5550-180x180

Royals RF Jorge Bonifacio tests positive for steroid; suspended 80 games

Royals right fielder Jorge Bonifacio has been suspended 80 games after testing positive for the steroid Boldenone.

Theoretically, Duffy is healthy now. Theoretically. We’re counting on that health to be an indicator that he’s going to return to his out-of-nowhere excellence from 2015. Duffy was an above-average hitter and a good fielder for the Giants that year. He was one of the feel-good stories in baseball. An injury-marred 2016 included a trade to the Rays, and he missed all of 2017. It’s been years since Duffy showed the prowess that makes him a name worth watching, but he’s the starting third baseman because Martin Prado has the mileage of a Model T and we don’t exactly know whether Brian Anderson is a starting third baseman.

The future of the franchise is going to be the starting right fielder, partially out of need, and partially because he’s probably ready for the job. Brinson has the defensive capabilities to play center (there’s a good reason he’s not for the Marays), and if everything clicks right on offense, he could be a terrifying power-speed threat with enough batting average to make it really work. Right field is the position he’s played the least in the minors, but screw it. It’s him or, uh, Brad Miller.

The shift toward digital consumption of live sporting events has been ongoing for some time. As a few of many examples, CBS has for years offered NCAA Tournament games online, and NFL fans watch the league’s England games on Yahoo.

But MLB’s deal with Facebook is the first exclusive arrangement between a major U.S. league and a social media network, Bloomberg News notes, and the 25 games will mark MLB’s first digital-only national broadcasts, according to the news release announcing the deal.

“Part of the next great leap,” sports media consultant Lee Berke told Bloomberg.

Facebook livestreamed 20 Friday night MLB games last season, but those games were simulcast locally.

“This partnership with Facebook reflects the ongoing commitment of Major League Baseball and our Clubs to connect with people around the world,” Tony Petitti, Deputy Commissioner of Business and Media for MLB, said in the statement. “It is a major creative step forward in serving our diverse, passionate community of fans, who will enjoy a uniquely interactive experience watching our games on Facebook each week.”
seahawks_044_d83e5dd60cababa3-180x180

Kevin Durant apologizes for criticism of officiating: ‘I was being an a—hole’

Kevin Durant was ejected for a league-leading fourth time late in the Warriors’ 123-112 victory over the Knicks on Tuesday night. Prior to the 2017-18 season, Durant had only been ejected once in 10 years. Durant did not hold back when asked about official James Williams’ role in his ejection.

“What do you mean I’m emotional?” he jokingly responded in comments that were published by John Dietz of the Daily Herald. “Nah, I’m just excited. It’s something I’ve been looking forward to. Obviously, it’s going to be weird, but I feel like once the puck drops, it will be just another game.”

Carolina (29-27-11) could use a strong game as it attempts to climb into one of the Eastern Conference’s top eight playoff spots. The Hurricanes have dropped two games in a row and are 2-6-2 since Feb. 15.

Added to Carolina’s plate was the news Wednesday that general manager and beloved former player Ron Francis had been moved from his role and will now be the president of hockey operations. The team is conducting a search for a replacement general manager, who will report directly to new owner Tom Dundon, according to The News and Observer.

As if that weren’t enough, the NBA announced on Wednesday that it had assessed Pelicans point guard Rajon Rondo a postgame technical foul for trying to distract a Bulls player during his free throw attempts late in the fourth quarter.

But it’s not like these free throws came at an incredibly pivotal moment in the game, right? Wrong.

The NBA announced that it has assessed Rajon Rondo a postgame technical foul for attempting to distract Justin Holliday from the bench on his free throws at the end of the 4Q in Monday’s game.

With 0.3 seconds left on the game clock, Pelicans forward Darius Miller fouled Justin Holiday on his 3-point attempt, giving the Bulls an opportunity to take the lead. Holiday would make the first two, but not the third, which is when Rondo decided to throw his towel up in the air. The miss sent the game into overtime and gave New Orleans the opportunity to secure the win.

Now the important question that the NBA has to answer is not whether Rondo should have been penalized in-game, giving Holliday another opportunity to score — it’s whether the play-by-play information on NBA.com will be updated.
lions_035