Category Archives: NFL


Rob Gronkowski: ‘I’m Ready To Go’ for Patriots Home Opener

Rob Gronkowski said Monday that he’s been cleared to play in the New England Patriots’ opener Sunday against the Miami Dolphins.

Gronkowski underwent surgery on his torn right ACL Jan. 9 and returned to full-team drills for the first time on Aug. 18.

Gronkowski said he won’t be playing every snap but that he’s ready to return.

Aside from perhaps Jimmy Graham of the New Orleans Saints, there is no more dominant tight end in football than Gronkowski.

Gronk racked up 90 receptions for 1,327 yards and 17 touchdowns in 2011, which was his last full season. Unfortunately, remaining healthy has been a major issue as he has missed 14 regular-season games since the 2011 campaign.

With that said, he is still just 25 years of age and has plenty of productive seasons left if he can find a way to stay on the field.


Alex Smith Agrees to a Contract Extension with a $30 Million Guarantee at Signing

After leading the Kansas City Chiefs to the playoffs and enjoying a strong 2013 campaign overall, quarterback Alex Smith has been signed to an four-year extension, worth $68 million, with a reported guarantee amount of $45 million. 

Is this the real guarantee amount? We saw the Colin Kaepernick deal get initially reported as $61 million in guaranteed money only to be nothing of the sort.

However, Pro Football Talk is reporting that it is $30 million guaranteed at initial signing, with $15 million more vesting next offseason, as an injury-only guarantee.

The Chiefs provided comments from GM John Dorsey and head coach Andy Reid in the team’s official release on the contract.

“It was a priority of ours to get this deal done and keep Alex in a Chiefs uniform long-term,” Chiefs general manager John Dorsey said. “Alex is a proven leader on and off the field. He is a special individual with a lot of ability, and we are fortunate to have him here.”

“John and his staff along with Tom and his group have worked hard to get this deal done. They’ve done a nice job,” Chiefs head coach Andy Reid said. “Alex is a smart, talented football player that has adapted well to our offensive scheme.

“He also, obviously, has had a tremendous amount of success as a quarterback in this league. We as a team are very happy to have Alex as our quarterback moving forward.”

The extension is a good sign for all involved. Smith and the Chiefs had been working on the new deal throughout the offseason.

The Chiefs started this past season 9-0 and finished with a record of 11-5, which was good enough to capture the No. 5 seed in the AFC. Kansas City was in contention with the Denver Broncos in the AFC West all year long, but it simply fell just short in big games.

Though the Chiefs lost in the first round of the playoffs last season, Smith set playoff-game franchise records with 46 attempts, 30 completions, 378 yards and four touchdowns in the 45-44 shootout against the Colts.


Ray McDonald: 49ers Defensive Lineman Arrested for “Inflicting Injury on a Spouse or Cohabitant”

Ray McDonald, a veteran defensive lineman for the San Francisco 49ers, was arrested early this morning for “inflicting injury on a spouse or cohabitant.” According to the Sacramento Bee’s Matt Barrows, the incident occurred at McDonald’s 30th birthday party, and other teammates were present.

KNTV’s Damian Trujillo reports that sources have said the alleged victim is pregnant, and that the arrest happened on the same block where Aldon Smith got a DUI. Ann Killion from the San Francisco Chronicle adds that McDonald was also arrested for DUI in 2010.

When she showed police bruising on her neck and arms, McDonald was arrested. … Other 49ers were present, including tight end Vernon Davis and defensive end Demarcus Dobbs. McDonald was booked at 5:30 a.m. in San Jose for “inflicting injury on a spouse or cohabitant,” according to the Santa Clara Department of Corrections. Bail has not yet been set.

These allegations come just three days after NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced that domestic violence would fall under the purview of the League’s Personal Conduct Policy, and be subject to a six-game suspension for first offense. League observers will be watching the McDonald case, and that of fifth-year Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy, very closely.

McDonald is heading into his eighth NFL season, all with the 49ers. Playing defensive end in San Francisco’s 3-4 alignment, he made 37 tackles and 3.5 sacks in 14 games last season.

This is just another blow to the 49ers defensive unit who had already loss linebacker Aldon Smith the first nine games of 2014 after numerous arrests. Overall, this is the 10th arrest of a 49ers player since 2010.


Michael Sam Was Cut By The St. Louis Rams

Michael Sam was the first openly gay player drafted by an NFL team. He will not be the first openly gay player to play in an NFL game, yet. The Rams opted to release the former Missouri DE. Undrafted rookie Ethan Westbrooks made the final squad in his stead.

As a 7th round pick, Sam was always a realistic long shot to make the Rams’ team, who are loaded on the defensive line. It will be interesting to see whether another team signs him for the practice squad, considering his encouraging preseason performance.


James Harrison Retires From the NFL After 11 Seasons

After 11 productive NFL seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers and Cincinnati Bengals, linebacker James Harrison is retiring at the age of 36.

The five-time Pro Bowler and 2008 NFL Defensive Player of the Year made the official announcement on his Facebook page:

“I have made the difficult decision to retire as of today,” Harrison’s statement said. “My love for my family and the need to be there for them outweighs my desire to play the game. I have missed too many experiences with them because I devoted SO much time to my career.

“My love for the game isn’t strong enough to make up for missing one more birthday or first day of school.”

On the heels of his least productive year since his second season in the NFL, Harrison was cut by the Bengals back in March. In 15 games, he had just 30 tackles and two sacks. Used primarily in run-stopping situations, Harrison didn’t see the field much in those 15 games.

Harrison registered at least 8.5 sacks in every season from 2007 through 2011 for the Steelers, and he was once one of the most dominant defensive forces in football.

“I am sincerely thankful to the people who have supported me over the years,” Harrison added. “First and foremost my family, the Rooney family and my Steeler family, also Mr. Brown, the Bengals organization and fans, and last but FAR from least, Steeler Nation.”

Harrison won two Super Bowls with the Steelers, assisting in the 2005 and 2008 victories. One of the most memorable plays of his career was his 100-yard interception return for a touchdown against the Cardinals in Super Bowl XLIII.