Alex Saucedo outworks, outpoints Sonny Fredrickson

Alex Saucedo attacked with bad intentions from the opening bell, outpunching and outlanding Sonny Fredrickson to win a decision Tuesday.

Alex Saucedo gave his performance a C+ after he outpointed Sonny Fredrickson on Tuesday night at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Fredrickson probably would give him a higher grade.

Saucedo attacked with bad intentions from the opening bell, outpunching and outlanding his opponent by large margins to win a wide decision in a 10-round junior welterweight bout in what has become known as the bubble at the MGM Grand.

The scores were 99-91, 98-92 and 100-90, all for Saucedo, who has now won two in a row since he was stopped by then 140-pound titleholder Maurice Hooker last July.

“I am a more disciplined fighter, but I’m still an aggressive fighter who goes for the knockout. That won’t change,” Saucedo said.

Indeed, Saucedo (30-1, 19 KOs) has been trying to refine his technique to avoid taking an inordinate number of punches, as has been the case in some fights. And he showed signs of evolving into a more responsible boxer.

However, he was largely the same Saucedo we’ve come to know, a warrior who comes at you hard and essentially doesn’t let up. Fredrickson (21-3, 14 KOs) had his moments, especially in the middle of the ring, but the taller fighter couldn’t keep Saucedo off him enough to win rounds.

The winner threw 885 punches, according to CompuBox. That’s a busy 88.5 per round. And of his 318 shots that landed, 201 were power shots. Fredrickson was 172 of 584 overall.

Saucedo hurt Fredrickson with an overhand right late in the first round and followed with a number of bombs but Fredrickson, tough and determined if overmatched, survived and continued to fight back.

The product of Toledo, Ohio, seemed to find his range in the middle rounds, when he followed a pretty consistent, long jab with some solid power shots. His uppercut was particularly effective at times.

The ever-aggressive Saucedo simply worked harder than Fredrickson in the late rounds to secure the victory.

Saucedo, bitterly disappointed with his performance against Hooker, wants another shot at a world title as soon as possible. And he feels the work he put in Tuesday night will help him.

“I am ready to take over the 140-pound division,” he said. “Whatever opportunity comes my way, I will take advantage of it. Most importantly, I got rid of the ring rust and went 10 hard rounds.”

In preliminaries, junior welterweight prospect Josue Vargas (17-1, 9 KOs) of Bronx, N.Y., overcome several obstacles to defeat Salvador Briceno (17-6, 11 KOs) of Mexico by a near-shutout decision in a 10-round bout.

Vargas learned shortly before the fight that his father/trainer Hilario Vargas wouldn’t be working his corner because he had left the controlled bubble, he suffered a cut above his left eye in the second round and he had his two front teeth knocked out in the fourth round.

In spite of all that, Vargas, boxing beautifully, outclassed the bigger, forward-charging Briceno the entire fight, beating him to the punch, outworking him and taking relatively few shots himself to win by scores of 99-91, 100-90 and 100-90.

Junior welterweight prospect John Bauza () of Puerto Rico defeated Lawrence Fryers (11-3, 4 KOs) of Ireland by a wide decision in an eight-round fight. The scores were 79-73, 80-72 and 80-72.

And, in a six-round middleweight bout, Isiah Jones (9-2, 3 KOs) of Detroit defeated Donte Stubbs (6-1, 2 KOs) of Riverside, California, by a majority decision. The scores were+ 57-57, 59-55 and 58-56.

College Football News Preview 2020: Tulane Green Wave

College Football News Preview 2020: Previewing, predicting, and looking ahead to the Tulane Green Wave season with what you need to know.

College Football News Preview 2020: Previewing, predicting, and looking ahead to the Tulane Green Wave season with what you need to know.

Contact/Follow @ColFootballNews & @PeteFiutak

– What You Need To Know: Offense | Defense
Top Players | Key Players, Games, Stats
What Will Happen, Win Total Prediction
Schedule Analysis
– Tulane Previews 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015

2019 Record: 7-6 overall, 3-5 in AAC
Head Coach: Willie Fritz, 5th year, 23-27
2019 CFN Final Opinion Ranking: 61
2019 CFN Final Season Formula Ranking: 62
2019 CFN Preview Ranking: 81

No one knows what’s going to happen to the 2020 college football season. We’ll take a general look at where each team stands – doing it without spring ball to go by – while crossing our fingers that we’ll all have some well-deserved fun this fall. Hoping you and yours are safe and healthy.

5. College Football News Preview 2020: Tulane Green Wave Offense 3 Things To Know

– Head coach Willie Fritz has done a marvelous job of adapting his style and making it all work with the personnel. This isn’t the option attack he used at Georgia Southern; this is a spread offense that’s just efficient enough throwing the ball to get by, and the running game works, too.

Even with some key losses, there’s just enough talent in place to keep improving after finishing 22nd in the nation in total offense, 30th in scoring, and ran for 243 yards per game.

CFN in 60 Video: Mississippi State Preview
Tulane at Mississippi State, Sept. 26
[jwplayer 7pgIQUVw]

It all starts around replacing QB Justin McMillan. Keon Howard is a veteran who spent the first part of his career with Southern Miss, and now is ready to step in and push the passing game while being able to run a bit.

There’s no experience among the reserve options, though. There will be a competition for the gig, but the scales are tilted heavily in Howard’s favor.

Top targets Darnell Mooney and Jalen McCleskey are done, but senior Jaetavian Toles has been around for a few years – he made 13 catches last season – and junior TE Tyrick James needs to be used more.

Throw in running back/receiver Amare Jones, and there are targets, but there’s not a true No. 1. Getting Oklahoma transfer Mykel Jones might be a massive McCleskey-like – who came from Oklahoma State – help.

But …

It’s a Willie Fritz team. The running game is going to rock. Howard probably won’t crank up the rushing production like McMillan – who led the team with 745 yards and 12 scores – did, but he’ll add to the mix.

Senior and former Texas Tech back Corey Dauphine was second on the team with 575 yards and seven scores. He brings the wheels, Amare Jones has the all-around game with his pass catching kills, and the system will make the stars – six Green Wave player ran for 250 yards or more.

NEXT: College Football News Preview 2020: Tulane Green Wave Defense 3 Things To Know

Buchner Bounces Back, Irish commit wows at Elite 11 Camp Day 2

The Notre Dame commit impressed onlookers during day two of the Elite 11 quarterback camp.

The first day of the Elite 11 camp may not have went the way Notre Dame commit Tyler Buchner would have liked. Day two however was a different story for the Californian quarterback, even though going into the evening he was ranked high by the Elite 11 staff.

He was ranked as the second-best performer and after watching this throw, you can see why he got high praise today.

It wasn’t all pretty for Buchner today, sometimes the adrenaline kicks in and you try and do too much. Eventually, he settled in and went to work.


The camp continues for another day, so Buchner will continue to learn from some of the best quarterback coaches in the nation. Another strong performance could net him the MVP of the camp. The experience can only be looked at as a positive for the Irish commit and Notre Dame fans should be excited about the possibilities Buchner will bring when he arrives on campus.

REPORT: SEC Media Days postponed due to COVID-19 pandemic

On Tuesday, broke the news that the 2020 SEC Media days have been postponed due to the coronavirus.

On Tuesday, broke the news that the 2020 SEC Media days have been postponed due to the coronavirus.

According to, a spokesperson with the league confirmed that the

“SEC Media Days won’t take place July 13-16 and that dates and times are still to be determined. In the June 10 press release for the switch to a virtual-only approach, it noted that the dates and times hadn’t been announced. Since that release, the NCAA approved a preseason football model that allows summer football activities to begin July 13.”

According to the report, the SEC Media Days will be pushed back to late July or the beginning of August.

Although the SEC has yet to comment on this, it’s important to note that the SEC no longer has the media days on their television schedule during the allotted time slots.

Roll Tide Wire will keep you up to date on the very latest regarding the 2020 SEC Media Days, and all things Alabama!

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Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll is making a decided push for equality in the NFL

Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll is making it clear that everyone in the NFL needs to listen to and value the thoughts of Black players.

About 10 years ago, when Pete Carroll wasn’t yet the Seahawks’ Super Bowl-winning coach (back then, he was still trying to shake the “Former NFL washout who left USC for another shot” label), he met performance coach and psychologist Michael Gervais — a meeting that led to Gervais’ involvement with the team. It has also let to a partnership between the two men that seeks to transcend sports and enter the world of the humanities.

Compete to Create: An Approach to Living and Leading Authentically is the result. An Audible Original available for pre-order now (it’s released on July 9), it’s the culmination of a passion Carroll has had for the psychology of performance for decades.

My interview with Carroll and Gervais started as a mild push for the product in which I would endeavor to ask questions about everything from how a football team handles life in the coronavirus era to how a head coach handles an NFL in which players have never been bolder about speaking their minds on civil rights and other issues, and Colin Kaepernick has been proven right. You do these types of interviews with the understanding that there’s a small plug for the thing someone’s advertising, and you try to keep everyone on point with actual topics beyond that.

This interview was decidedly different. This interview ended with the most blunt, thoughtful, and remarkable statements about racial equality I’ve ever heard from any white coach in any sport. Clearly, Carroll has had a lot on his mind, and he just as clearly wanted to use the media car wash he had on June 30 to speak it out.

“75% of our league is Black players. And they have the wisdom it’s necessary for us to learn from. Without an understanding of their story, we don’t understand what’s going on in the world. I’m talking about white people [not understanding]. We have to position them [Black players] to speak and teach us.” — Pete Carroll

Doug Farrar: Michael, tell me about how you first met Pete, and how it came about that you decided to do “Compete to Create” together.

Michael Gervais: We were put together by a mutual friend. It was over a dinner event, and we had just a great conversation – it was switched on about the psychology of becoming what sits underneath people who become their very best, and are working towards potential. We talked about shared passions, from a non-profit standpoint as well as a sports standpoint, and about humanitarian efforts. At the end of that conversation, Pete said, “Why don’t you come up [to Seattle] and see what we’re doing?” I took him up on the offer, and I’ll tell you, I’d been in pro sports [environments] before, and it was fundamentally different.  It was nothing like I’d ever seen before. It’s hard to put a word to it, because culture is the fabric of relationships… you know, that relationships hold. It was very different, and it was upbeat, and it was positive, and it was something I was excited to get to know better. That was the beginning of our relationship.

DF: Pete, you had to lean all in to this to make it work. What about Michael made that an easy decision? Because I’m sure you’ve been pitched on all kinds of performance stuff before.

Pete Carroll: It’s true – I had heard from a lot of guys over the years, from a long time back. When Mike and I started communicating and making sense, it just fit. I was really hopeful that when Mike came up, we could start a relationship that would work out for both of us. We were very open to it, and we found that there was real common ground in our backgrounds and what we believed in. I come from a humanistic psychology background, and Michael totally understands all that stuff, and it really made sense to me and helped me find my way. He’s helped me make sense of a lot of things I was doing all along, but I didn’t know how to call it. I didn’t know what the principles were. Through the process, that’s how we came to form a company for people outside of our program, if they’re interested.

DF: You mentioned the humanistic background, and I remember you telling me that you did a term paper on Abraham Maslow and the psychology of self-actualization. So, you’ve been deep into that for a long time. How much of the humanistic side comes into coaching? Because it’s football, but so much of it is human relations and teaching more than just “Brown Right Sprint Right Option.” You have to connect with your people. You have to bring them in.

PC: Yeah, I think so. I think it’s why we embrace the entire individual in the program – to try and help them develop to be their best, and put everything in line with being what they’re fully capable of becoming. Like Mike said, the discussion started on becoming, and it’s still there now. It doesn’t matter what you’re doing – working, or being a family man, it’s all the same. You have a chance to find your best, and in our world, we’re going to try and help you find it. Mike’s specific connection with the performance aspect of it – what it takes to get your body and your mind into it has been so instrumental. It’s always been there; but we’ve not always been able to develop it.

Dr. Michael Gervais and Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll. (Alex Wood/Compete to Create)

DF: In Compete to Create, you both talk about developing a philosophy. Pete, your classic example is “Always compete,” so I’d like to ask you to expand on that, because it goes beyond a buzzword, but it’s hard to amplify that in just two words. What does “Always Compete” mean in a larger sense?

PC: It’s about striving. The “compete” word is about striving. If you’re always striving to be whatever you’re capable of being, and finding your best way… that’s where the “compete” word can sometimes mislead somebody. The thought of it is that you’re always in process. This is what’s most important. It’s not about getting there, necessarily, because who ever gets to be the best they’ve ever been? A few [people] have, but most of us are trying to figure our way in that direction. That’s really what it is about. It’s about helping others find their way, and becoming fully what they’re capable of being. It’s really been an exciting thing. And even though it’s “Always Compete,” that’s a pretty simple way of saying it, and I’m a pretty simple guy. If I’m a competitor, I want to always compete. The central theme of the program is competition, and if it makes sense to other people, that’s what happens.

DF: Michael, you talk near the end of Chapter 3 of the Audible audio about developing optimism and how it’s easier now because we, as a set of societies, are further away from a constant worry about absolute survival. But that’s changed entirely in the last few months. I want to ask you both about this, because you both talk about developing and training optimism. How have you each found it challenging to maintain that in the face of this epidemic? Because this takes us back to, as you said, being eaten by tigers.

MG: So, let’s define optimism first. Optimism is the fundamental belief that the future is going to work out. And it’s a trained skill. The lenses that you see the world through are trainable. And essentially, I want to talk about a nuance between our brains and our minds. Our brain’s dictum is to survive. It’s to manipulate the environment, and to move in such a way to give us our best chance. And, it’s a meaning-making machine, based on our experiences. So, that’s the dictum of the brain, to survive. The software that is running that hardware is the mind. And optimism or pessimism  is one of the key ingredients for a robust software. So, what does optimism do? It’s the ability to look at any situation, especially the hard ones if you’re skilled at optimism, and say, “Okay. If I can navigate with my partners in the process, and sometimes by myself… if I can navigate this, something good is going to work out.

The thing we hope is going to work out is a flourishing for others. That’s essentially what this book and our program is built on – to help others flourish. It begins with your approach to life, based on your principles, and we want to help you discover those principles which are foundational to you. And then, to develop the mental skills to be able to emotionally navigate challenging environments. So, if you just have the principles, but you don’t have the mental skills, it’s good, but there are going to be some sticking points. If you just had mental skills, but weren’t anchored to core principles, you end up running quite thin. So, this is the balance between the two, and optimism sits right at the center of staying in difficult environments, because you believe that if you can stay in it long enough, it’s going to work out.

DF: So, how do you, in a situation like [the coronavirus pandemic], which is unprecedented in or lifetime, how do you do that? It sounds good, and I agree with it, but the skeptic might say, “It sounds good, but come ON. Look at this!”

MG: Let’s talk about naïve optimism. Naïve optimism is the belief that it’s going to work out in the face of contrary evidence – in the face of not actually doing the work. True optimism is built on the back of, what is the work I need to do to move through a scenario. So, this is actually at the center of mental toughness, and for us to move to the next phase of Humanity 3.0 or 4.0 or wherever we might be in our arc with our ancestors, it’s going to require discipline. It’s going to require discipline of thought, a discipline of embracing empathy when we feel triggered to defend ourselves, a curiosity and listening and being grounded in the experience when it’s hard. And remember, our brain wants to pop us out. Wants is to be a cynic and protect ourselves, when what we’re suggesting is to stay in the hard conversations. To be a great empathetic listener, and a compassionate doer, and to do that from a position of strength by embracing the fragility and strength of all people around us, and to go to Version 5.0, or wherever we might be.

DF: And wear a mask. Ding, ding. Pete, how has this all affected you as a person and as a coach? You’re talking with your players, you’re trying to get a season rolling, and there’s so much uncertainty. Where are you with all this?

PC: I’m in full-on mode. I’m battling to understand all the information that’s out there so that we can make all the right choices and decisions to protect everybody and keep everybody safe. To not be clouded by the mission so much as what we’re doing on a regular basis, to keep our guys where they’re healthy and they’re well, and they’re moving forward, and we’re looking after them the best way possible. So, how is it affecting me? I’m on. This is not a normal summer. This is not the breaktime we always enjoy, and part of it is the uncertainty. The uncertainty causes some disruption and discomfort and all that, unless you know it’s going to work out.

So, you say, “How are we going to make it through these hard times?” Well, it’s going to end, eventually. We’re going to get through it. Unfortunately, the hit we’re taking is so enormous. But we will find our way to the other end of this, and whether that’s optimism or I’d like to think it’s real… there will be vaccines and times when we’ll put this stuff behind us, and we’ll be better for it. If we had really good leadership, it would help.

More than ever, I’ve been a student. It’s been six months of watching this going on and four months of really being in it, but it’s been happening for a long time. You try to find out how we can adapt to these times, and get what we want to get done with our lives. Right now, we’re trying to play some ball, you know, but we have to be healthy and we have to care for one another. There are so many new elements of concern that we’re dealing with, and I’m just trying to be great at it. I want to be the best there is at doing it, and help our guys do this better than anybody could ever imagine.

We killed it during the offseason in a way I couldn’t envision it going as well as it did. It went great, and we accomplished a lot, and we’re smarter than we’ve ever been. The transition we make now will be huge. Who would have thought that we could come out of the offseason and say that this was an extraordinary offseason – learning and teaching and concepts, and then all of the social stuff and personal stuff we dealt with has been so challenging, but necessary. Hopefully, we’re really going to make a turn here that’s extraordinary. There’s so much happening, even though we’ve been sitting at home! It’s just amazing.

DF: Thanks for the segue to the social stuff, because that’s next.  I’ve covered your locker rooms in Seattle since you came here in 2010, and you’ve never been afraid to draft and sign players who are intelligently outspoken – Richard Sherman and Michael Bennett come to mind. You’ve marched recently with an “Equality” shirt, and you’re obviously aware of the recent and rapid increase in NFL players who are not only protesting, but speaking their minds as never before. What are your thoughts on where this is going, and where it needs to go?

PC: Well, this is a time for transformation. This is that time. There have been moments in the past. There’s been an ongoing, enormous moment through our entire lives, and we have not answered the call. And now, we have to do this. The necessity of the moment has to be supported by the love and the vision of moving forward and taking care of areas we haven’t in the past.  Hopefully, we’re going to do a great job of this, and we’re not going to back off the topic at any time with the people in our organization, because we all have to grow. We all have to learn, and we all have to come to understand what it means to live in a society where everybody is loved, and everybody is cared for, and everybody is equal. And there are people who are going to work against us in that regard. There are people who don’t see it that way. We’re going to have to overcome with our connections, with our love, with our vision, with our intellect, with our empathy, and all of that to make this happen. It’s an extraordinary time.

(Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports)

DF: Should the NFL do more to make its players feel comfortable and supported when speaking out about civil rights and these other issues? Because in the years before George Floyd was killed and after Colin Kaepernick “mysteriously disappeared” from the NFL, I had talked to a few players who said in different ways, “I don’t want what happened to Colin Kaepernick to happen to me.” I would ask questions about political or sociopolitical stuff, and they would beg off. And I would understand why. Does the NFL need to make players feel supported and comfortable to say what they want to say?

PC: I really, firmly believe that we need to listen to the players. I think the players need to be respected. I’ve got a big thing about this going way back through the history of this game…

DF: That’s why I’m asking you.

PC: …I don’t think players have been respected for what they have brought to our society. They’ve brought us the game, and an allegiance to our areas, and what we love and stand for and all of that, and they have risked so much to do that. Without them, we have nothing, Over the course of time, our players have become more versed, and more prepared to have so much to offer as we move forward. Their vision and their connection to what’s going on culturally and socially is at the essence of what’s going on right now.

So, we should be listening to them. And I always have – I’ve always felt like that. This isn’t new. But it’s more important now than ever. Because there are a lot of white guys who don’t know what they need to know, right? And there’s a lot to be learned. There’s a lot to understand. Our history has not worked properly for us to understand the real truth and reality of what’s going on in the world of minority groups – people who deserve the same love and consideration that everybody does. So, hopefully, through listening and positioning our players… they’ve got to find their voices too, so their voices can be constructive and productive. They want to, and they will, if we give them a chance.

It’s challenging for leadership to give the voice to the people. It’s supposed to be that way in our society, but it’s challenging, and most of the people on top try to control it. They try to manage it so they get what they want out of it. That’s not what I’m seeing here. I think it will work to our betterment if our players do have the voice, and they do have the leadership opportunities, and we follow along with them, they’re going to help us where we need to go. Particularly now.

75% of our league is Black players. And they have the wisdom it’s necessary for us to learn from. Without an understanding of their story, we don’t understand what’s going on in the world. I’m talking about white people [not understanding]. We have to position them [Black players] to speak and teach us.

DF: Another segue from you. As you said, 75% of the NFL’s roster population is Black. But there are three Black head coaches, and two Black general managers. And that head coach number is down from the “Black Monday” at the end of the 2018 regular season, when five Black head coaches were let go, and all were replaced by white coaches. How do we get from where we are to where we need to be?

PC: One step at a time. One step at a time. We have to do it for all of the right reasons. We’ve got to realize the representation that needs to be, so the league can be at its best. Our Black players need to have Black coaches to help them understand stuff, as well as white coaches. We need the mix of all people to bring around the right message it represents. We hire guys one step at a time, and we fill those spots up with real concern and earnestness that’s necessary to be done.

Where did Jags’ Jaxson de Ville land in The Athletic’s mascot power rankings?

Jaxson de Ville may be one of the most recognizable mascots in the NFL as he’s managed to make fans smile when the team couldn’t.

The Jacksonville Jaguars may be at the bottom of the league when it comes to popularity, but fans around the nation recognize their mascot, Jaxson de Ville. Since the Jags became an NFL franchise, he’s been the Evel Knievel of the NFL, constantly wowing the crowd with his daredevil antics at TIAA Bank Field. And as challenging as those stunts are while donning a cartoonish costume, he looks cool doing them.

In a recent ranking of the league’s mascots by The Athletic, Jaxson was able to crack the top-10 of Rhiannon Walker’s list (No. 8 to be exact) for his look. That put him behind Buffalo Bills mascot, Billy Buffalo, who came in at the No. 7 spot, and ahead of Detroit Lions mascot, Roary.

Thoughts: I see exactly what you did there, Jacksonville. I see you, and I commend you 😏. From yours truly, InstantRHIplay. Jaxson looks cool as the other side of the pillow, but you know what isn’t cool, though? A sign that says, “Towels Carry Ebola.” If it’s not too obvious, maybe don’t make fun of the current crisis we’re in with coronavirus.

As mentioned, there was one insensitive faux pas that set Jaxon back: the 2014 incident in which the mascot referenced the Ebola crisis with a sign that read “Towels Carry Ebola,” a remark that came across as tone-deaf during the outbreak. The optics of that mistake are no better now, but Jaxon thankfully appears to have learned his lesson.

That terrible mistake aside, it’s worth noting that Jaxson has put a lot of smiles on the faces of Jags fans through a period of time where the team has been hard to watch. And he has a good relationship with kids — a key part of the job. When combining those reasons, it wouldn’t be a shocker to see him make the top-8 of other rankings, if not higher.

Austin Rivers on the 2020 NBA champion: ‘One of toughest ever’

“I think whoever wins should have an asterisk next to it, but only for it being one of the toughest championships ever won,” Rivers said.

In new comments to Taylor Rooks of Bleacher Report, Houston Rockets guard Austin Rivers doubled down on his recent comments that the 2019-20 NBA champion will be remembered for a historic achievement.

Given the unusual dynamic of a season with a significant delay just before the playoffs, many fans have wondered whether a 2020 NBA champion would have an unofficial “asterisk” next to it.

But as the 27-year-old Rivers sees it, the odd circumstances could make this year’s champion even more meaningful. He elaborates:

I think whoever wins should have an asterisk next to it, but only for it being one of the toughest championships ever won. You’re asking guys to take three to four months off, then come back and find chemistry, etc., and then play during a pandemic, all while players are fighting for BLM [Black Lives Matter].

There’s a lot going on right now. Crazy times and a lot of worry. And during these times, players are leaving their families to go live in a locked-down bubble. So for all these reasons and more, I think it will be one of the tougher championships ever won. Only season like this EVER.

Rivers is averaging 8.5 points (35.8% on 3-pointers) and 2.4 rebounds in 23.4 minutes per game this season. When Houston’s season resume at the NBA’s bubble site near Orlando on July 31, he’ll be a key backcourt piece behind starters James Harden and Russell Westbrook as they pursue a championship that could be remembered for a very long time.

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Jalen Hurts works out with Eagles WR DeSean Jackson

Former Alabama and Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts was seen working out with Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson.

Former Alabama and Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts was seen working out with Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson.

Hurts posted videos on to his Instagram on Monday, with the caption “Locked In.”

When former Alabama and Oklahoma quarterback Jalen Hurts was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles as the 53rd overall pick, many wondered if he’d ever see any action on the field.

Even a little over a month ago, Eagles head coach Doug Pederson told the media that he didn’t see Hurts being the backup this year, some of which has to do with the coronavirus.

But Pederson also recently shared how Hurts is putting in the work, and over time, could become a huge asset for the Eagles.

And with the offseason work he’s putting in with some Eagles key receivers, Hurts may have a chance to step on the field this fall.

In a press conference earlier this month on Twitter, Pederson had this to say about Hurts:

“The one thing is not having them on the grass. But his growth as a mental standpoint from the beginning of the offseason to now has been very good and his ability to recall plays and recite plays, and one thing (quarterbacks coach) Press Taylor has done is put him into a huddle situation where he’s calling plays and being able to spit that back to him. And he’s done that at a really good, high level.

And now it’s just a matter of once we get him on the grass, he’s got to do it for real and go from there. But I’ve been really impressed with his progress this spring.”

Over time, Hurts could truly become a huge asset for the Eagles, maybe even this season.

Hurts finished the 2019 season at Oklahoma with a career high 3,851 yards passing, as well as a career-high 32 passing TDs. He added a career-best 1,298 yards rushing and career-high 20 rushing touchdowns.

In his college career at Alabama and Oklahoma, Hurts recorded almost 9,500 passing yards and 80 touchdowns along with almost 3,300 rushing yards and 43 rushing touchdowns.

Hurts won a national championship, SEC championship and Big 12 championship during his career. He was also named the Big 12 Newcomer of the Year this past season, as well as the BIG 12 Male Athlete of the Year

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Chiefs DT Chris Jones threatens to not play in 2020 without long-term contract

A new report on Chris Jones’ contract situation sparked a response from the star defensive tackle.

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The Kansas City Chiefs and Chris Jones aren’t on the same page on a new contract extension and haven’t been for some time according to a new report. NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo reported on Tuesday night that the star defensive tackle believes he’s a $20M-per-year player. The Chiefs’ front office has yet to offer Jones a contract at that number or greater according to Garafolo.

[Chris Jones] always viewed himself as a $20M-plus-per-year guy,” Garafolo said. “The Chiefs, frankly, never did. Even before the whole COVID situation, they never made an offer north of $20 million — felt like they could get him somewhere below that. A lot of work to be done here if there’s going to be a long-term deal for Chris Jones, who was disruptive throughout the regular season and then in the postseason as well. [Jones] had a pressure in the Super Bowl that led to an interception. This is a guy that has put up the production the last couple of years to deserve a long-term deal. [I’m] not quite sure that it’s going to happen, though.

Once this story started to gain traction in the Chiefs Kingdom, it prompted a response from Jones. He says that he might not play during the 2020 season without a long-term contract from Kansas City.

Jones evoked his friend, New York Jets RB Le’Veon Bell, who infamously held out for the entire 2018 season with Pittsburgh Steelers. He never signed his franchise tag and eventually became a free agent. There is, however, a big difference between Jones’ situation and Bell’s which was pointed out by Over the Cap’s Jason Fitzgerald.

Jones would need to sit out for two seasons in a row in order to hit free agency. That’s a bigger hit to the wallet than most would be willing to take, so this could be an idle threat from Jones. Either way, this type of public contention is never good for business.

This comes just days after NFL Network’s James Palmer reported that lack of clarity surrounding the 2021 salary cap due to the COVID-19 pandemic was holding up negotiations between Jones and the Chiefs. This new report from Garafolo would suggest that the 2021 salary cap might be a convenient excuse.

Nonetheless, as we get closer to the July 15 deadline for a long-term contract extension with franchise-tagged players, expect more information from both sides to reveal the true story about the future of Jones in Kansas City.

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Eagles Jake Elliott, Cameron Johnston land in CBS Sports ranking of the top-10 Punters and Kickers in NFL

Eagles Jake Elliott, Cameron Johnston land in CBS Sports ranking of the top-10 Punters and Kickers in NFL

The Philadelphia Eagles have one of the top special team’s units in the entire NFL and a huge part of that success stems from the consistency of kicker Jake Elliott and punter, Cameron Johnston.

Both players are entering their primes and are amongst the best in the NFL at what they do. The duo was recently listed in rankings from CBS Sports, listing the top-10 punters and kickers in the NFL.

Elliott landed at No. 10 on the list of kickers, while Johnston landed at No. 8 on the list of punters.

10. Jake Elliott, Eagles
Elliott has only been in the NFL for three years, but he’s already made a name for himself in Philadelphia. Elliott basically became a legend in the city during his rookie year when he beat the Giants with a 61-yard walk-off field goal in Week 3.

Elliott then capped off his rookie year in 2017 with a 3-for-3 showing in Philly’s 41-33 win over the Patriots Super Bowl LII. Of course, being a kicker in the NFL is all about what you’ve done lately, and Elliott has done plenty. During the 2019 season, the Eagles kicker started the year by making 14 straight field goals, which set a franchise record. Although Elliott did hit a lull late in the season when he missed four field goals over a four-week span (Weeks 13 thru 16), the 25-year-old bounced back nicely in the playoffs. During the Eagles’ 17-9 wild-card loss to Seattle, Elliott scored all of Philly’s points with three field goals. Elliott’s field goal and extra point conversion rate have improved every year that he’s been in the league, so the thinking here is that he’s only going to get better from here on out.

8. Cameron Johnston, Eagles
Last year, Michael Dickson was the top-ranked Australian punter on our top 10 list, but this year, that honor belongs to Johnston, who’s going into his third season with the Eagles. During the 2019 season, Johnston ranked in the top 10 in both yards per punt (46.4) and net yards per punt (42.3), and if you look at the past two years combined, Johnston looks even better. Since the start of the 2018 season, the 28-year-old is third in the NFL in yard per punt (47.2) and fifth in the NFL in net yards per punt (42.5).

Johnston is also good at drop-kicking the ball, which didn’t really help his rank on this list, but it is fun to watch him do it.

He’ll like be in Philly for at least two more seasons since he’ll be a restricted free agent in March 2021, and it won’t be surprising at all if the Eagles end up giving him a long-term deal.

A restricted free agent next offseason, Johnston could be in-line for a long term deal, while Elliott just got rewarded with a new contract and should only get better.

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