@TSFSports Week 7 NFL Picks: Cam Newton Hasn’t Arrived Only Because He’s Always Been Here

Posted in Blogroll on October 25th, 2015 by Ron Glover

(Joe Nicholson/USA Today)

Cam Newton solved his bugaboo against the Seattle Seahawks last week on their way to a 5-0 start.

No player has done more with less and looked good doing it than the Carolina Panthers Cameron Jerrell Newton. In his first three seasons, the offense consisted of Newton, the great Steve Smith and a less than average rushing attack. Last season it was Newton, rookie Kelvin Benjamin and a less than average rushing attack. With Benjamin nursing a torn ACL the next man up has been tight end Greg Olsen. Olsen has been the one constant in the Panthers aerial attack — hauling in 24 passes for 374 yards and three touchdowns. Newton and Olsen connected on a 26-yard scoring play late in the fourth quarter against the Seattle Seahawks last week to give the Panthers the lead and eventually the victory.

Funnier still was the admiration thrown Newton’s way after the victory. Seems kinda late for a player who’s been one of the game’s great leaders from day one.

Hate to say I told you so but…

Byes: Bears, Bengals, Broncos, Packers

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The Thunder May Have Solved their Biggest Issue by Nigel Broadnax

Posted in Blogroll on October 22nd, 2015 by Nigel Broadnax

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Savior? 

The Oklahoma City Thunder are days away from starting a season that will likely be vacuum-packed with storylines. Many narratives will probably be developed from these facts: Kevin Durant is in the last year of his contract, he’s returning from foot problems that kept him out of 55 games last season, a new head coach in Billy Donovan is taking over and the team has championship-expectations yet again.

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@TSFSports Week 6 NFL Picks: Marvin Lewis is One Cool Cat

Posted in Blogroll on October 18th, 2015 by Ron Glover

(Getty Images)

Marvin Lewis is the exception to the rule when it comes to NFL head coaches. Name a coach who can last thirteen seasons in the same city without a playoff victory and stay in the good graces of team ownership? I’ve seen coaches of a lesser caliber than Lewis be recycled repeatedly, keeping the NFL’s ol’ boy network alive.

With the Cincinnati Bengals off to one of their best starts in team history, this may finally be the year where Lewis ends his playoff drought and with a little luck a Lombardi Trophy for good measure.

Byes: Buccaneers, Cowboys, Raiders and Rams

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We Were There: Justice Or Else Interview with Daronn Wright, Dr. George Ferguson, James Coleman, Juan Ferguson and Pat Evans

Posted in Blogroll on October 14th, 2015 by Michael Tillery

youngbull

This phone interview will be also posted in a Justice Or Else piece I’m posting on the 20th year anniversary of the first Million Man March. Interviewed: Darron Wright, Dr. George Ferguson, James Coleman, Juan Ferguson and Pat Evans. The fellas spoke of the march, racial incidents occurring in their lives, the effect of the march, solutions, etc. It was a great experience, and because of all the recent killings of unarmed Black folk, and the consistent lack of justice since Black folk hit American soil in 1619, the march was much needed therapy to uplift the spirit. The EIC of TSF, Ron Glover, and I rode down because as writers, we needed to be present so history is accurately served. The soul of the march could only be felt if you were in attendance yourselves, and it’s a feeling I wish everyone could have experienced. Media outlets will show uneducated Black folks speaking on camera to head local news daily, in perp walks, looting, and committing other crime around the clock to maintain an inaccurate violent perception of Black people, but why not 3 peaceful events over the span of 20 years attended by millions combined sans any altercations? Ha, don’t answer that because I know the answer.

Just know, perception is not reality.

Darron went to all three, including the Millions More Movement on 10-15-05, a few of us went to the first on 10-16-95, and of course, Justice Or Else, on 10-10-15. All were headed by Nation of Islam leader, Minister Louis Farrakhan. Long live the spirit of the Million Man March. Thanks for tuning in, and we hope you enjoy the show. Please comment. – Michael Tillery

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@TSFSports Week 5 NFL Picks: Larry’s Still Givin’ Secondaries Fitz

Posted in Blogroll on October 8th, 2015 by Ron Glover

(Getty Images)

The ageless Larry Fitzgerald leads all NFL receivers in touchdown receptions.

For a dozen seasons, Larry Fitzgerald has set the standard for today’s NFL receivers. While Odell Beckham Jr. and Julio Jones lead a youth movement of talented wide outs, Fitzgerald remains the grizzled veteran whose work ethic and preparation are unrivaled.

Rebounding from a season which saw him post a career low in touchdown receptions (2) and his lowest receptions and yards since his rookie season, Fitzgerald is the NFL leader in touchdown receptions (5), averaging 104 yards per game. The Arizona Cardinals are 3-1 and the NFL’s version of Tony Gwynn is once again a huge reason.

Byes: Dolphins, Jets, Panthers and Vikings

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A Love Letter to NBA Players Association Executive Director Michele Roberts

Posted in Blogroll on September 28th, 2015 by Michael Tillery

(Photo: Jennifer S. Altman/Washington Post)

Michele Roberts, the Executive Director of National Basketball Players Association

If I were an NBA athlete, the following would be my love letter to you Michele.

Where have you been our love? Where has been this fire so strong of thee? Where has been this commitment that we’ve needed to represent such a purposefully muted voice? A voice of us knowing fully what it is to be shunned, criminalized, sexualized, objectified, bamboozled and run amok? We’ve been together for a year now, and we’d like to congratulate you on your success over that time. As the first Black woman (let alone woman in general) to lead any major sport player union, we need your love; we need your strength; we most definitely need your courage to galvanize our ranks, and take us into the next era where our beloved soul rock soul will be seen on more TV’s across the world.

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@TSFSports Week 3 NFL Picks: The Trouble With Being 0-2 is…

Posted in Blogroll on September 26th, 2015 by Ron Glover

(Mitchell Jeff/Getty Images)

After falling out of the gate to an 0-2 start, it may be time to start reconsidering the so-called “genius” of one Chip Kelly.

A handful of the eight remaining 0-2 teams in the NFL were preseason favorites to make the NFL’s postseason. The importance of starting 0-2 really depends on who you are. If you’re the Houston Texans — who have elected to go with a younger quarterback in Ryan Mallet and are without lead back Arian Foster — dropping your first two games seems more realistic. If you’re the Indianapolis Colts, New Orleans Saints, Philadelphia Eagles or Seattle Seahawks, there’s some second-guessing going on in relation to off-season moves, play calling and maybe even to who’s running the show.

On a more encouraging note, six teams with at least one victory are led by quarterbacks who are either in their first or second season. In the case of the Buffalo Bills Tyrod Taylor, he’s a first time starter in his fifth season.

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Dallas vs. Philadelphia Flashback: 12/28/08 Eagles 44, Cowboys 6

Posted in Blogroll on September 20th, 2015 by Michael Tillery

(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

PHILADELPHIA - DECEMBER 28: Donovan McNabb #5 of the Philadelphia Eagles talks with Tony Romo #9 of the Dallas Cowboys after their game on December 28, 2008 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Eagles defeated the Cowboys 44-6.

PHILADELPHIA – DECEMBER 28: Donovan McNabb #5 of the Philadelphia Eagles talks with Tony Romo #9 of the Dallas Cowboys after their game on December 28, 2008 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Eagles defeated the Cowboys 44-6.

Found this recap looking through old email. I covered the game for a wire service that day and my editor, Anthony Carter (we share a birthday), allowed me to write this longer than usual. As many games as I’ve covered in multiple sports, this is most definitely high at the top. When Weapon X ran and did his thing out the tunnel as Oakland’s victory over Tampa Bay (31-24)  flashed across the big screen (Philly needed Tampa to lose to have a shot at the playoffs) the Linc exploded. Quoted: Brian Dawkins, Brian Westbrook, Donovan McNabb, Terrell Owens, Tony Romo and Andy Reid. The full game is linked following the recap. Enjoy the flashback Eagles fans – Michael Tillery. 

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@TSFSports Week 2 NFL Picks: The Heat’s on Early for Chip Kelly and the Eagles as the Cowboys Come Knocking

Posted in Blogroll on September 17th, 2015 by Ron Glover

(Jason Getz/USA Today)

Philly’s top free agent Byron Maxwell was burned repeatedly by the Atlanta’s Julio Jones Monday Night.

Chip Kelly’s new look Philadelphia Eagles climbed out of a 20-3 halftime hole to the Atlanta Falcons only to drop their season opener 26-24. Cody Parker missed 44-yard field goal Kelly passed up going for the first down on fourth and short from the Falcons 27-yard line with 2:27 remaining. Ricardo Allen picked of Sam Bradford to seal the win for the Dirty Birds.

Kelly’s seemed contradictory since he brought in free agent running back DeMarco Murray — who is a north to south runner — for such an emergency. The loss ruins a great second half effort by the defense, despite a 9-catch 141-yard two touchdown effort by Falcons wideout Julio Jones done primarily against Eagles top corner Byron Maxwell.

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Does Floyd Mayweather Retire as Boxing’s Best or Richest Star Ever?

Posted in Blogroll on September 12th, 2015 by Okori Wadsworth

(Getty Images)

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All signs (for now) point to Floyd Mayweather stepping away from boxing after Saturday’s bout with Andre Berto.

You might not have remembered that Floyd Mayweather — the presumed best pound-for-pound fighter in the sport — is fighting this Saturday night. A large part of this is fatigue, namely since we’ve seen this movie a few times and at this point no one seems to be too interested in the sequel.

Here’s something else, it’s the competition Floyd has picked. As we all know, Floyd does what he wants. He’s always done what he wants. Depending on your opinion, it’s either proof that he can manage his career better than anyone and a sign that more fighters should be willing to do that or a failing in his quest to be anointed as the greatest ever. In case you haven’t noticed, I’m in the latter camp.

Nevertheless, Floyd Mayweather steps into the ring supposedly for the last time against Andre Berto this Saturday night.

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Jerold Wells Jr. and Michael Tillery Comment on Robert Griffith III and Pick NFL Week 1

Posted in Blogroll on September 11th, 2015 by Michael Tillery

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Can’t see RG3 ever playing for DC again unless there is an injury. 

Crazy off season huh? I’m sure we’re all glad the drama (Deflate Gate, Spygate) is over and the hitting is to begin in earnest. How did your team do transaction wise throughout the NFL Draft and free agency? There are many injuries that might decide the outcomes of entire conferences as well as the return of the best running back in the NFL, Adrian Peterson of the Minnesota Vikings. Jerold and I talk RG3, and a few other things before we get to the picks. Audio is below. Enjoy the game tonight and power up for Sunday Funday this weekend. Thanks for tuning in, and we hope you enjoy the show!

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@TSFSports Week 1 NFL Picks: The New England Patriots Are Out For Blood and Glory

Posted in Blogroll on September 11th, 2015 by Ron Glover

(Stew Milne/USA Today)

After a hellacious summer, Tom Brady is out to restore calm to the New England Patriots fan base.

The 2015 NFL season kicks off with 26 players on the suspension list. Notably absent from this group is New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady. Brady avoided a four-game suspension when it was ruled his involvement in the Deflategate scandal was not enough to call for a suspension.

The Patriots open the 2015 season against the Pittsburgh Steelers, who will be without their leading rusher Le’Veon Bell. Bell is serving a two-game suspension for violation of the league’s substance abuse policy. Bell will be replaced by former Carolina Panthers running back D’Angelo Williams who was signed as a free agent.

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Temple Owls Stun Penn State Nittany Lions 27-10 to End 74-year Losing Streak

Posted in Blogroll on September 6th, 2015 by Ron Glover

(Max Petrosky)

Temple’s Tyler Matakevich (8) sacks Penn State quarterback Christian Hackenberg (14) in the Owls 27-10 stunner at Lincoln Financial Field.

The last time the Temple Owls defeated the Penn State Nittany, Lions the United States was less than two months from entering World War II due to the attacks on Pearl Harbor. Tuition at the university on North Broad Street was only $275 per year.

It took 74 years and 13 U.S. Presidents, but the Owls finally ended their 31-game losing streak against their cross-state rivals with a 27-10 drubbing, thanks to a stellar defensive performance.

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Joe Horn Apologizes to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell and Slams NFLPA Executive Director DeMaurice Smith

Posted in Blogroll on August 26th, 2015 by Michael Tillery

joe horn

After the devastation of Hurricane Katrina, Joe Horn was a superhero throughout the Gulf region. 

Head over to Bleacher Report to check out former Saints receiver Joe Horn’s words as told to me, Michael Tillery, regarding the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina as it happened back then. He said some things I did not know. Horn was the Saints’ face of the effort to return the Saints to New Orleans, because was as involved as anyone after the storm. He gave his time and money like few others, and says that people didn’t leave despite all the warnings to do so (there was much criticism from folk outside of the New Orleans) because it wasn’t the storm damage that devastated the region, it was the four levees breaking in the middle of the night that eventually trapped city residents. During our convo, Horn offered an apology to Roger Goodell after he was very critical of the NFL Commissioner in May. His words of NFLPA Head DeMaurice Smith are also very critcal, strong to the point, and something the NFL at-large needs to hear.

“As far as my statements criticizing Roger Goodell on his disciplinary practices, I’m going to back up and recant what I said. I’d like to apologize to him. I did that interview after being upset at all the decisions he was making with all that power. I really, really, really want to apologize to Roger Goodell. Everything I said was really stupid! At the end of the day, the one I should have gone after and criticized was DeMaurice Smith. That’s who I should have said that the players should have fired. What lawyer lets the NFL players he represents sign a CBA deal giving Roger Goodell that much damn power? So, why in the hell am I mad at Roger Goodell? Goodell knows who he is. Shit. Roger Goodell works for the owners. He doesn’t work for the players. He works for the NFL to make the league more money, and be the judge and the jury. You can’t take the whip outta his hand unless you’re DeMaurice Smith and say I’m not signing that deal. It’s simple. DeMaurice Smith should have said “Roger, you cannot suspend a player until he goes to court and the judge and the jury finds he’s either guilty or not guilty. You can’t suspend a player until you find out what’s in the report. DeMaurice Smith works for the players. He’s supposed to tell them, “No, no, no guys. We have to take the power from Roger Goodell’s hands, so let me talk to him and negotiate the power that he cannot have. Because you’re arrested, you’re not going to be suspended until he finds out what you did wrong. No, you’re going to allow the court process to go through, and once they decide what happens, that’s when I’ll decide if you’re to be suspended. Guess what? You may not be guilty.” So, it’s the other way around. I feel so stupid, ignorant and uninformed by going after Roger Goodell, when DeMaurice Smith is the reason he has so much power. I’m making a national apology to Roger Goodell, and I spoke so emotionally because I was pissed off. Thinking it over after a couple of days, I was like damn I need to do another interview. I should have known and spoken that it was DeMaurice Smith, and not Roger Goodell, that gave the league the power to treat players like slaves. To clarify, I mean white, black, Mexican – any player in the NFL. Back in the day, there were white folk in the cotton field too.” – Joe Horn

There you have it. It will be very interesting to see if Horn’s words cause ripples within the NFL Player’s Association regarding DeMaurice Smith and the rest of union leadership. Players are checking lists and makin’ ’em twice for those representing their interests like never before because corruption is a helluva drug. Last season was hellish on the NFL and its brand, so how will the league respond internally to such a public relations disaster and rebuild trust with fans externally? Check the player conduct first (ultimately it’s their responsibility to do the right thing), the sweat under DeMaurice Smith’s collar second, and lastly, the consistency, moral rationale and strength of Roger Goodell’s hand when player misconduct — perceived or otherwise — comes into question.

This should be a most compelling year for the NFL. The preseason has never generated this much evenly distributed buzz. That’s a testament to such a dramatic Super Bowl, the drastically over inflated idiocy of Deflate Gate, casual fan convos of player misconduct, CTE and general player safety, the league’s ever evolving talent, and of course the unrelenting explosion of social media.

Work stoppages across sports have given fans reason to educate themselves on the inner workings of unions, how those unions process collective bargaining agreements, league leadership in all regard, and of course, salaries and salary caps. The NFL is such a marketing juggernaut that fans clamor for everything falling under its brand, and because of that reality, it appears everyone associated with the league is and should be under scrutiny as well.

Ik Enemkpali and Geno Smith: A Lesson in Humility

Posted in Blogroll on August 18th, 2015 by Ron Glover

(AP Images)

Former NY Jets linebacker Ik Enemkpali caught a break by signing with the Buffalo Bills one day after wiring Geno Smith’s jaw.

Last week’s locker room dust-up between New York Jets quarterback Geno Smith and former teammate turned Buffalo Bill Ik Enemkpali gave us everything the on-field scuffle between Carolina Panthers Cam Newton and Josh Norman did not.

A $600 beef has detoured Smith’s attempts to take the reins as the team’s leader in his third season — while Enemkpali hopes to make the Bills 53-man roster amid heavy scrutiny.

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