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What matters when evaluating QBs today? Not height and arm strength

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The secret sauce remains elusive to those trying to find the perfect formula for scouting college quarterbacks. It’s quite possible the code will never be cracked. There will always be hits and misses as the search for the next Patrick Mahomes or Tom Brady ensues. There is no perfect process.

Different evaluators concentrate on different traits. Some might be physical and easy to spot, others like trying to find a foul stench in the wind.

The answers received around NFL combine week about top priorities for a quarterback prospect ranged from instincts to leadership to functional intelligence to decision-making to production. One thing became certain roaming Indianapolis: Height isn’t at the top of the list.cheap nfl nike jerseys from china

This is especially relevant with Oklahoma’s Kyler Murray, all 5-foot-10 1/8 of him, in this year’s NFL draft. It seemed as if all the talk out of Indianapolis — from those working for teams to those close to Murray — was he would be the No. 1 overall pick by the Arizona Cardinals.8
The decision could depend on what the Giants see in each prospect. General manager Dave Gettleman is looking for a quarterback who can make all — or most — of the throws. He wants a quarterback who is athletic, but pass-first, not run-first. It’s the subtle pocket movements that matter most to the evaluator who has watched Jim Kelly, John Elway, Manning and Cam Newton most of his career.nfl cheap jerseys nike

This could play a large part in the Giants’ decision. Haskins’ pocket presence and ability to navigate around pressure might be the biggest question about his game. Can he move enough?

This is important to Gettleman, but not necessarily the most important quality being sought.

“A non-negotiable for me is instincts. It really is,” Gettleman said. “There are guys that are big, great arm, great athletes. They can’t figure it out. I don’t think people talk about it enough. Instincts are critical. You turn around at every position — people will fall in love with the height, weight, speed, defensive tackle, but you put his hand in the dirt, he can’t find the ball, he doesn’t understand blocking schemes — so all this great height, weight, speed, whatever he’s got, it doesn’t make a difference.”

Liga MX W2W4: Monterrey and Tigres clash in Clasico Regio, La Volpe returns to Toluca

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It doesn’t get much bigger than this. A crosstown rivalry clash between the two title favorites will be one of the defining moments of the Clausura.

Sitting in the top two spots of the Liga MX table, Tigres and Monterrey have so far been the most impressive teams in 2019. Thanks to a reliable backline and a six-game winning streak, Tigres are currently sitting in first place on 22 points. Although Monterrey are one point behind their local rivals, Los Rayados’ attack remains the most dominant in the league.

At the risk of overlooking some of the X’s and O’s of the Clasico, there is very little between the two rivals who both boast an embarrassment of riches on the pitch. Even if Tigres striker Andre-Pierre Gignac isn’t 100 percent fit and available this week, the upcoming match will still be a star-studded affair that will feature many of the league’s top talents.cheap nike nfl jerseys wholesale9

With some help from a restored attack, Tijuana has surpassed all expectations. A current position of fourth in the league table and a place in the quarterfinals of the Copa MX has caught even the most optimistic of Tijuana fans off guard. Benefitting from Pareja’s leadership on the sidelines, Xolos are also on an eight-game unbeaten streak in all competitions.

Will Pareja extend that streak to nine this Saturday against Pachuca?cheap nfl nike jerseys china

Even though they’ve have had some serious defensive issues this season, Los Tuzos have remained quite strong at home. In the last 11 league games at the Estadio Hidalgo, Pachuca have collected eight victories and three draws. When looking at their previous Copa MX and Liga MX matches, Xolos have also never gained an away win over Pachuca.

After his early success with Tijuana, will Pareja be the first Xolos manager to steal three points at the Hidalgo?

MVP? Champion? Captain? Expectations sky-high for Aaron Judge in Year 3

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At this early stage of his career, Aaron Judge’s résumé already reads like a dream of a baseball-loving 11-year-old.

Home Run Derby champion. Fifty-two homer season. Rookie of the Year. Seven October bombs in back-to-back playoff appearances.cheap nfl custom jerseys

After an eventful first two seasons that have featured several milestones and accolades — and yes, injuries — what aside from winning a World Series is there for the 26-year-old New York Yankees superstar to accomplish in Year 3?

“See, that’s kind of the thing that drives me, to be honest,” Judge said in front of his George M. Steinbrenner Field locker earlier in spring training. “Nobody really knows. I don’t even know.10

“People can speculate and say, ‘He’s like this guy, he’s like that guy.’ But that unknown is kind of what drives me. Like, how good can you be? How good could somebody be? Just having that constant motivation of the unknown is kind of what pushes me.”

The projection sites have weighed in on what kind of hitter they think Judge will be in 2019. At best, they expect him to sneak over the 40-homer plateau. At worst, they’re anticipating he’ll struggle to hit .250.

Those who see Judge every day scoff at those numbers. As the right fielder enters a new phase of his career, they’re bracing for a whole lot more.nike nfl jerseys for cheap

“I guess the next step is winning the MVP,” veteran Yankees starter CC Sabathia said.

Do that, and bring a ring to the Bronx, and Judge will enter into the territory where one Yankees legend believes he belongs.

“His competition, for me, is in the monuments. His competition, for me, is the history of the Yankees,” said Hall of Famer Reggie Jackson, referring to the plaques in Yankee Stadium’s Monument Park. “If you look at some of the things he has done, he compares to [Babe] Ruth and [Lou] Gehrig. He’s put up crazy numbers.”

How Mike Trout could wind up with Bryce Harper in Philly

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The ink is barely dry on Bryce Harper’s contract with the Philadelphia Phillies, and Mike Trout is under contract with the Los Angeles Angels for the next two seasons, but everyone already is talking about what might happen after the 2020 season. That’s when Trout can hit free agency and sign with the Phillies, teaming up with the player he was so closely linked with back in 2012, when both were hotshot rookies.cheap nfl custom jerseys

Consider some of the comments after Harper’s 13-year, $330 million deal with the Phillies was announced:

Jeff Passan, ESPN.com: “The deal is mutually beneficial. Philadelphia adds a middle-of-the-order bat to a lineup that already includes the homegrown Rhys Hoskins and a pair of dangerous trade acquisitions: catcher J.T. Realmuto and shortstop Jean Segura. It gets to sell tickets and sponsorships around Harper. And because the deal’s average annual value is $25.4 million, it gets flexibility to spend more in coming offseasons and not run the risk of exceeding the luxury-tax threshold. In other words: Yes, an outfield with Harper and Philadelphia-area native Mike Trout is realistic.”9
Ken Rosenthal, The Athletic: “So, $330 million was the magic number. The average fan probably sees no further than that total. The average Phillies fan likely is salivating, knowing Harper’s relatively low AAV will give the team greater room under the luxury-tax threshold and enable it to pursue other expensive players in the future — most notably Mike Trout if he becomes a free agent after the 2020 season.”

Joe Sheehan’s newsletter: “There’s no need to be coy; Mike Trout is scheduled to reach free agency at the end of the 2020 season, and he plays for a team that has made the postseason once in his seven full seasons, one that is unlikely to get to October in 2019.”cheap nike nfl jerseys china

Then came the hammer, from Harper himself during his introductory news conference in Clearwater, Florida, on Saturday: “I’m making 26 [million] a year. That’s going to be able to bring some other guys in as well to build up this organization. There’s another guy in about two years that comes off the books. We’ll see what happens with that.”

If that sounds like a recruiting pitch for Trout, well, that’s exactly what it was. Harper even said he consulted with Trout during his free-agent process. Of course, there is no guarantee that Trout reaches free agency. The Angels remain hopeful about signing him to a mega-extension, although if that happens it likely won’t happen until next offseason. On Friday, the day after Harper’s agreement with the Phillies broke, Trout remained mum on his future, saying his focus is on getting ready for the season.

Here’s hoping: LeBron, Simmons still a chance for Melbourne showdown

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Marvel Stadium could be the stage for a dream match-up between NBA superstars LeBron James and Ben Simmons when Team USA take on the Australian Boomers in a highly-anticipated FIBA World Cup warm-up series.

More than 90,000 tickets have been sold for the two-match series to be held in August as teams prepare for the World Cup that kicks off in China on August 31.

USA Basketball national team director Sean Ford and Basketball Australia acting chief executive Paul Maley led a delegation that toured the Docklands facility on Tuesday afternoon.nike nfl jerseys wholesale cheap

Ford outlined the difficulties involved in assembling a roster of NBA superstars, but is hopeful James, an unabashed fan of incoming coach Gregg Popovich, will opt to play.10

“I think he would like to play for coach Popovich, but of all the athletes, LeBron probably has the most going on both on and off the court,” Ford said. “I mean we would love to have him … who wouldn’t, right?

Whether ‘King’ James is present for the August 22 and 24 games or not, Ford is confident there will be plenty of big-name NBA talent on show for the locals.

“It’s hard for us to say ‘These five or six guys will be here’,” he said. “I’m confident that we will have a quality team here with high-level NBA players … who exactly they will be I can’t say right now.”

Meanwhile, Simmons remains coy about his availability for the 2019 World Cup.

With a mega-dollar contract extension with Philadelphia 76ers in the offing, he has a lot to lose if he suffers a major injury playing for his country.cheap nike nfl jerseys free shipping

“He is a 22-year-old and most of us can only comprehend a little bit of what his life is like,” Maley said. “He’s in the middle of a season where they are legitimately hopeful of going deep into the playoffs, then there’s contracts coming up and all sorts of things.

Beverley: Clippers ‘want it more’ than Lakers

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“There was seven people in here on media day,” Beverley explained in the Clippers locker room after beating the Lakers. “I told Shai [Gilgeous-Alexander], look [around] the room, there’s seven people … watch at the end of the year [how many more there will be]. Like I said about us being the best team in L.A., a lot of people don’t believe me, it’s fine.

“Women lie. Men lie. Numbers don’t.”

Like Beverley, the Clippers just keep grinding and proving people wrong as they’ve won three straight and are in seventh place in the Western Conference standings despite trading away their leading scorer and rebounder, Tobias Harris, at the trade deadline.nfl nike jerseys for cheap

Meanwhile, the Lakers’ season keeps fading away as LeBron James watched his team fall for the ninth time in the past 12 games.

Beverley played a significant part in adding to the Lakers’ demise with 13 points, nine rebounds, five steals and four assists. He took on the assignment of guarding James and picking him up at half court at times as well.9

“Aggravating, defensive, hard-nosed, competitive,” teammate Montrezl Harrell said of Beverley. “That is what he brings to our game, that is what he brings every night. Before the coaches even went down to who’s got who, Pat came in and said I got LeBron.

Beverley’s tenacity helped set the tone for the Clippers. Beverley came into the game with something to prove, reminding some in the locker room on Sunday after the Clippers defeated the Knicks that he had predicted who would be the best team in L.A. before the season began.

Even though Beverley plays like he has something to prove every night, the Clippers guard looked extra motivated against the Lakers.nike nfl jerseys wholesale cheap

“I played for Miami, with LeBron,” Beverley said of being in training camp with the Heat in 2010. “They cut me. I got drafted by the Lakers, they traded me to Miami. Bron got there, they cut me.

Packers focus resources to improve on special teams

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And it’s no surprise that Gutekunst, the Packers general manager, and Murphy, the team president, want things to change.

It was in Week 2 last season, when the Titans, playing without starting quarterback Marcus Mariota, came up with a fake-punt touchdown pass and a game-winning field goal in the last minute to beat the Texans.

And it was most of last season when Gutekunst and Murphy watched the Packers stumble to a dead-last ranking in Rick Gosselin’s annual special teams rankings under former coordinator Ron Zook.

To say special teams has been a problem for the Packers is to say Lambeau Field gets a tad chilly in December.

“It has,” Murphy said when asked if he views special teams as recurring problem.cheap nike nfl jerseys wholesale

So Murphy approved an added position on LaFleur’s coaching staff. He not only has a special teams coordinator in Shawn Mennenga, who came from the college ranks (Vanderbilt) to take his first NFL coordinator job, and returning assistant Maurice Drayton, but there’s a third coach dedicated to special teams, quality control assistant Rayna Stewart (who assisted Mennenga at Vandy last year).

“It was an added position, and we’ve struggled on special teams,” Murphy said. “So hopefully one more person could be helpful there.”

So could players specifically pegged for special teams.10

Not since the days of Sean Richardson (in 2015) and Jarrett Bush (in 2014) have the Packers kept veteran players on second contracts whose primary role is on special teams. Yes, Richardson and Bush played some in the secondary, but their main roles were as veteran cover men and blockers.

In 2016, the Packers cut backup safety Chris Banjo with an injury settlement. A year earlier, he led the Packers in special teams tackles and was elected as a playoff captain following the 2015 regular season.

Banjo joined the Saints in 2016 and was named as a Pro Bowl alternate as a special teams player for the 2017 season. That year, he made just $1.05 million. He turned 29 last month but still played in every game for the NFC’s top-seeded Saints, who paid him just $1.55 million.cheap nfl jerseys china nike

Last season, four of the Packers’ top-five special teams tacklers were rookies.

“I think it’s kind of the philosophy,” Murphy said. “Some teams keep players just for special teams. We’ve been one of the younger teams. Part of that is getting players that are going to be able to perform on special teams.”

After combine, Broncos still have to decide if they see QB of future in this draft

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But in the weeks to come, they still have to decide if quarterback is still high on their list of draft priorities, and whether they think any of the quarterbacks in this draft can help them fill out what is still an unfinished long-term plan at the position.

“I think that being 6-10, you evaluate every position,” Elway said at the combine. And as for this year’s draft class behind center, Elway added: “We’re still in the process of studying them. We’ll keep looking at them. I think that there are a lot of people excited about next year’s class. But we’re going to spend the time on this year’s class and see where we come out on that. I think there’s some good players in this draft too.”nike nfl jerseys cheap paypal

The Broncos have the framework of a trade in place for Joe Flacco to be their starting quarterback. That deal, for what is expected to be one of their two fourth-round draft picks in exchange for Flacco, 34, will become official on or shortly after March 13 when the new league year begins.9

Elway has also said his “preference” would be that last year’s starter — Case Keenum — stays (if Keenum is willing to take a pay cut) to be Flacco’s backup. Keenum is set to earn an $18 million base salary at the moment and is guaranteed, whether he’s on a roster or not, $7 million of that base salary.

Making Flacco the Broncos’ starter and trying to keep Keenum might well say everything about what Elway really thinks about this year’s draft class of quarterbacks, and what he thinks about the ability of any of those quarterbacks to move into the lineup quickly.

It was clear as the combine drew to a close that, no matter how optimistic the league’s talent evaluators are about Oklahoma’s Kyler Murray and Ohio State’s Dwayne Haskins — the top two quarterbacks in this draft — most in the league do not think either player is as NFL ready as Baker Mayfield, who was the No. 1 pick in the 2018 draft, was a year ago.

In the end, the Broncos are in need of solution that goes beyond Flacco and Keenum. They do not have a quarterback on their current roster they selected in the draft, as none of the five Elway has selected since being hired in 2011 remains with the team. But to use a premium pick on a quarterback the organization isn’t totally sold on, or isn’t up to the challenge, is no solution either.cheap nike nfl jerseys wholesale

“We’re going to do everything we can, at every position, to get back to playing the way we need to play,” Elway said. “That includes quarterback and every other position on the field.”

Bregman hit in 1st appearance since surgery

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On the morning of his spring debut Saturday, Alex Bregman woke up early because of a nightmare about being hit by a pitch.

Hours later, as Houston’s third baseman prepared to take the field against the New York Mets following his recovery from surgery on his right elbow, he was still thinking about his dream. He asked a teammate to borrow a guard to cover his other elbow.

The move proved fortuitous: On his third and final plate appearance, Bregman was plunked by Jeurys Familia on the protected elbow. Infield prospect Alex De Goti, who provided the guard, became Bregman’s hero.nfl nike jerseys for cheap

“De Goti saved my life today or else I would have been on the shelf for a minute with the other elbow,” Bregman said laughing.

Bregman was limited early this spring after having arthroscopic surgery on his right elbow in January. He said after the game that both elbows were OK, but that the surgically repaired one felt better than the other, which was bruised from the pitch.

“I’m fine,” he said. “Other elbow’s good. This one is sore.”10

He walked on his first two plate appearances. Bregman started at third base but didn’t see any action on the field with Justin Verlander giving up just two hits in three innings.

“I got to throw the ball across in between innings,” Bregman said.

Though Bregman declared his right elbow 100 percent, the 2018 All-Star Game MVP said he’ll need a few more games this spring before he’s where he wants to be.cheap nike nfl jerseys wholesale

“I’ve got a lot of work to do to get ready for the season, but I’ve got plenty of time,” he said.

Jose Altuve played second base for the first time this spring after serving as the designated hitter in his first two games. He is coming off surgery to repair a fractured kneecap.

The 2017 American League MVP doesn’t have a hit yet but walked twice in three plate appearances Saturday.

“I feel better than what I thought,” he said. “I’m really happy. I feel good. I feel like I’m where I want to be right now.”

Manager AJ Hinch was glad to see two of his stars back on the field and was encouraged by their work.

“Good, productive day,” Hinch said. “Just seeing them on the field together is nice. I like when our good guys play.”

Celtics owner: ‘Worst February’ I can remember

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Count Boston Celtics co-owner Wyc Grousbeck among those disappointed with the team’s performance of late.

Speaking Saturday at the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, Grousbeck said the Celtics just finished the “worst February” he can remember since taking over the team in 2002. The Celtics were 5-6 last month, including a finishing stretch in which they lost four straight games.nike nfl jerseys cheap china

Grousbeck acknowledged that the Celtics aren’t necessarily worried about finishing with the best record in the Eastern Conference, adding that the team as constructed has “the capability of getting to the Finals.”1

“We also have the capability of losing in the first round,” Grousbeck said, according to Boston.com. “We have a very, very good set of opponents in the East, all of whom have beaten us in the last month.”

Grousbeck’s uncertainty echoes comments that some of his team’s players have made during the season. Amid that losing stretch to finish February, guard Marcus Smart said the team is “just not together,” while Kyrie Irving has more than once discussed the need for some of the younger Celtics players to mature and understand their roles.cheap nfl nike jerseys from china

Heading into Sunday’s game against the Houston Rockets (3:30 p.m. ET, ABC), the Celtics (38-25) sit in fifth place in the Eastern Conference, two games behind the Philadelphia 76ers for fourth and home-court advantage in the first round.

“I really have a lot of hope for these guys,” Grousbeck said. “I give us a chance. I don’t think anybody wants to play us in the playoffs. I really do think, after 16 years in the league, that these guys still have a chance.”