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Saints signing Shane Vereen

The Saints will be without Mark Ingram for the first four weeks of the regular season and they are adding a veteran to the backfield to help carry the load.

Mike Garafolo of NFL Media reports that the Saints are signing Shane Vereen ahead of the start of their training camp.

Workmanlike at best. The most exciting moments are passes to Lonnie Walker. I kept asking myself if this guy is a guard or forward. Brown seems like he could be an effective wing defender—three words you never want associated with your YouTube reel.

According to The Union-Times, in addition to getting closer to his roots, Dareus is also keeping a promise to his late mother Michelle Luckey by donating to Haiti, which is still recovering from the effects of a 2010 earthquake as well as 2016’s Hurricane Matthew.

I promised my mom that I would support Haiti in any way I could and now I am using my platform to keep my promise, Dareus said according to The Union-Times. It’s a beautiful country with incredible people and children who need help. I want to make sure I do everything I can to lift them up. This is just the beginning of what we’re looking to accomplish here. I plan to come back after next season to see the new school and decide what else I can do to continue to build a legacy of hope for Haiti.

When Belichick first led the Patriots to the Super Bowl, 16 years ago, his defense led the way. But for most of the Patriots’ dynasty, it’s been Tom Brady and the offense. The Patriots’ defense isn’t very good right now, and Kelce and the Eagles noticed it on film, and showed it on the field.

New offensive-minded head coach Matt Nagy will be charged with developing second-year quarterback Mitchell Trubisky. Trubisky’s strength is his on-the-move passing, but that can’t be the main part of his game. As our Andy Benoit pointed out, because of Trubisky’s good-not-great arm strength, his success depends on how well he can develop as a timing and rhythm passer.

Look for a complete overhaul of the Bears offense as we knew it under John Fox. Nagy is of the Andy Reid school, which means there will be more creative play-calling. The Bears return defensive coordinator Vic Fangio and 10 starters from the 2017 unit, which ranked 10th in yards, 11th in yards per play and ninth in points allowed. With the addition of first round pick linebacker Roquan Smith, this defense should be just as solid.

Ravens veterans report to training camp Wednesday

The Ravens rookies reported to training camp a week ago and they’ll get some experienced company on Wednesday.

Summer vacation is officially over for all the players on Baltimore’s roster as they become the first team to open training camp. They will be joined by the Bears on Thursday as the two teams taking part in the Hall of Fame Game get a head start on the rest of the league.

But the Hawks—who have point guard Dennis Schröder signed for $15.5 million per season through 2020-21—clearly announced themselves as believers, and it’s not hard to see why. Young has an outstanding feel for the game and excellent court vision, with passing skills that could often be overshadowed by the absurd point totals he amassed in equally absurd fashion. His ability to create for others should provide a safer floor to his game than questions about his ability to be a high-level scorer suggest.

As long as the Steelers don’t rescind the franchise tag, Bell is guaranteed $14.5 million this year by reporting to the team before the first game of the regular season so it’s not hard to understand why he’d be looking for a bigger upfront commitment than the one the Steelers were reportedly ready to make this offseason.

After the draft, those new players, be it rookies or free agents, showed up for OTAs and started learning the scheme much like the coaches did months before. Their progress is constantly monitored. On another wall in the defensive meeting room, across from the list of defensive packages, is a depth chart comprised of players’ names on magnets. Guenther marvels at how more than 25 names up there now are first-year Raiders. It’s basically a half-new roster, he says. It’s pointed out to him that one of those names is Senquez Golson, the former Steelers second-round pick who lasted just a few weeks in Oakland before being cut on May 2Oh, yep, gotta take Senquez off, Guenther says, dropping the magnet into a bin of markers and erasers.

The meetings where players learn the scheme present another opportunity for the coaches to relearn the scheme, and a first opportunity to truly teach it. That’ll be important come training camp, when everyone must hit the ground running and not stop until New Years—or beyond, for the teams that do it best.

Former Saints Cheerleader Brings to Light Sexist Rules With Discrimination Charge

Collectively, the cheerleaders take aim at what they portray as a strict, burdensome and often uncompensated workload. To that end, Turnbow’s complaint notes that Texans cheerleaders engaged in job functions that went well beyond merely appearing and performing at NFL games. As the cheerleaders explain it, they were required to partake in team meetings, photo shoots, cheer rehearsals, apparel fittings and also travel long distances on behalf of the Texans. The cheerleaders were paid $7.25 an hour—which is the federal minimum wage—but they insist that they were not paid for most of their work. Along those lines, the cheerleaders argue that Texans supervisors and human resources personnel failed to record much of their team-related activities. Therefore, the cheerleaders insist, the Texans failed to pay them for numerous hours of active employment.

This alleged pattern included invasive physical inspections and body shaming rituals. Gary is also accused of trying to embarrass cheerleaders through physical assaults, such as duct-taping a cheerleader in the stomach and on the sides. Gary allegedly duct-taped Angelina Rosa and then, while dangling the duct tape in front of the other cheerleaders, Gary warned them that they would be next if they didn’t properly attend to their bodies. For her part, P.G.G. recalls Gary walking up to one cheerleader and poking her face, asking her if she had gained her ‘freshman 15’ [and] saying she looked like she ‘ate a plate of salt.’

A handful of pardons will not address the sort of systemic injustice that N.F.L. players have been protesting, they wrote. These are problems that our government has created, many of which occur at the local level. If President Trump thinks he can end these injustices if we deliver him a few names, he hasn’t been listening to us.

Last Friday, Trump said he had not heard any response from players yet.

Baldwin, Boldin, Jenkins and Watson went on to ask the president to consider releasing the elderly who commited nonviolent crimes and don’t pose a serisous threat to society. They also asked Trump to look at the sentences for those serving time for nonviolent drug offenses.

People like Alice Johnson, for example, should not be given de facto life sentences for nonviolent drug crimes in the first place. The president could stop that from happening by issuing a blanket pardon for people in that situation who have already served long sentences.

Breaking down new-look Bears: Mitchell Trubisky has what he needs to break out

In some ways, the 2018 Bears are a very different team than the one that ended the 2017 season. In other ways, they are building on more of the same.

Head coach John Fox was fired, and offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains was not retained. Those two were replaced by offensive-minded Matt Nagy and former Oregon coach Mark Helfrich, respectively.

Those were the first steps for Chicago in trying to get a breakout second year out of quarterback Mitchell Trubisky. Then, along with the philosophical and schematic reboot, came upgraded offensive skill personnel through free agency and the draft.

The topic has dogged the league ever since, in part because President Donald Trump grabbed the issue and has continued to criticize the players, even as the NFL tried to put out the long-playing public relations firestorm.

As recently as last week, Trump called the NFL’s new policy of allowing the players to remain in the locker room as worse than protesting.

What really matters: Bryant was ruled academically ineligible for 2018, and having already used his redshirt, he had no other alternative but to enter the Supplemental Draft. He was arrested and charged with a DUI in January 2017. He’s a fantastic athlete, as shown by his Pro Day testing, and with added time for preparation might have been even more impressive. His mental make-up and attitude remain concerns for NFL teams, perhaps more so than any other player in the Supplemental Draft, but his athleticism is hard to deny.

Major league baseball teams have, by turning more and more innings over to bullpens, collectively adopted a high-variance strategy that can make a good team look bad not for a game or a week but for a season. It’s almost certainly wise to lean heavily on relievers, the better of whom are generally more dominant in their one-inning bursts than (even superior) starters are over seven or eight innings. Relievers can be matched up against batters so the team on defense has the platoon advantage more often. Relievers can be saved until the most perilous moments so the best pitchers’ finite pitches aren’t wasted in six-run games. It’s good strategy, which is why it’s what the game has been moving toward since, oh, 1950? Maybe earlier.

Longevity and productivity have ensured Gore’s place among the NFL’s greatest.

On Frank Gore’s final touch as a member of the Indianapolis Colts, he took a second-and-8 handoff from Jacoby Brissett, bounced it outside, turned on his geriatric jets, burst forward for 9 yards, stayed in bounds, and clinched the W for his team.

Oh, it also pushed him over 1,200 yards from scrimmage on the year, extending his record of consecutive seasons reaching that mark to 12, which should stand until the sun burns out.

No other player had that many seasons with 1,200 total yards period, and only two guys — Jerry Rice and Emmitt Smith — have had that many seasons hitting even 1,000.

The team, I would say, like most teams are very systematic in their approach, Brady told Winfrey. And what I learned, I guess, is different from some of the things that are systematic but that work for me. It’s nothing that I don’t talk about with my coach and owner — ‘This is what I want to do; this is what I need to be the best player I can be and hopefully you can support that.’

You can check out the rest of Brady’s well-conditioned half-answers over at Pats Pulpit, where they’ve broken down all the important parts of a rare offseason glimpse into the future Hall of Famer’s mind.

He wasn’t Cam Newton, but he sure as hell wasn’t pretty much any of the other hapless schmucks the Bills had been starting before his arrival in 2015.

McDermott offered some dumb excuse about trying to get better at the QB position, evaluating his options there, etc. Basically, he was punishing Taylor for a rough outing the week before against the Saints.

We were made for more than 5-4 and I’ve come here to be more than 5-4, he said when explaining the decision.

Maybe he lacked the proper context: It’s the Bills, dude, and you’re in a playoff race.

His coach speak got even worse after Peterman’s disastrous game.

If the Colts beat the Jaguars in Week 17 of the 2011 NFL season, it might’ve landed Andrew Luck with the Cleveland Browns.

This story was published on June 27, 2016, but we think it’s worth reading again as part of our NFL What If? week at SB Nation.

When Maurice Jones-Drew bulldozed through a couple of Indianapolis Colts defenders for 5 yards and a first down in the final minutes of a Week 17 game on New Year’s Day in 2012, it sealed a 19-13 victory for the Jacksonville Jaguars and ended a late rally for the Colts.

But if Jones-Drew was stuffed at the line of scrimmage, the NFL might look much different today.

On the previous drive, Dan Orlovsky led the Colts 82 yards in just over three minutes, completing seven of his eight pass attempts, including a 12-yard touchdown to Austin Collie. The Jaguars’ defense was on the ropes, but it was bailed out by a Jones-Drew run that dealt the Colts their 14th and final loss of the season.

Leagues will try to assert ownership of certain game data, so they can sell it to sportsbooks for a healthy price.

Every sportsbook needs a way to feed in data about the games people are betting on. That ranges from the simple stuff you can find in a box score (the final score and basic player stats) to more granular play-by-play information that might show up in an live game-cast. Sportsbooks need this stuff in order to operate at any scale. They don’t have people watching every single game and manually reporting back on who won, or Googling to figure out the results of in-game bets like, Who’s going to score the first touchdown?

After getting banged up in 2014, the wheels fall off for Manning in 2015. The Titans’ defense, which has improved to become an average unit, regresses to one of the NFL’s worst with an offense that puts them on the field far too often. The Titans finish 3-13 with Zach Mettenberger starting more than half of the season after a foot injury for Manning.

The Broncos add Josh McCown to compete with Smith at quarterback, and that provides consistent enough play to get the team to 11-5. Kansas City wins the AFC West again, but the Broncos are in the playoffs as a wild card and blow through the Texans before dropping a Divisional round game against the Patriots.

The Marcus Mariota-led New York Jets are a trendy pick to compete for a Super Bowl in 2016 with Todd Bowles leading a top-ranked defense and a promising young passer leading the offense

Everything depends on individual states’ legal climates, but possibilities abound. Leagues could build their own betting websites and apps. They could attach betting software to their streaming offerings, like NBA Game Pass or They could even put betting booths inside stadiums, opening the action to fans while they’re attending games.

Corey Dickerson and Elias Diaz also homered for the Pirates, who took two of three games.

Moran connected off Tyson Ross with two outs in the fifth to put the Pirates ahead 6-3. He also hit a grand slam in the home opener on April 2, a 5-4 victory against Minnesota.

Ross, who singled and then had his first career stolen base a half inning earlier, faltered with two outs in the fifth. Austin Meadows doubled, Josh Bell walked and Josh Harrison beat out an infield single to load the bases. Moran then drove a 1-0 pitch to right for his eighth homer.

He’s one of the calmest people I’ve ever played with, Dickerson said. He just has no emotion. He has a good plan. He does the same thing every day. You don’t ever change stuff up. He’s very simple. Simple sometimes is the best in great moments like that. He came through.

As noted by Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times, Chancellor has $6.8 million in injury guarantees in his contract this year and $5.2 million next year. His 2018 base salary of $6.8 million became guaranteed in February.

There’s also the possibility of a settlement, as he and the team try to work out some common ground.

That’s what happened with the Bills and center Eric Wood, who was released on May 31 with an injury settlement, after he announced following the season that his playing days were done. The fact that took months would suggest it might be some time before Chancellor is no longer on the Seahawks roster.

Sources at several teams confirmed tidbits in those stories that the Lakers are reaching out across the league in search of an extra first-round pick, indicating they would take on some unwanted future salary to snare it — a fascinating twist, given L.A.’s need to hoard cap space. That alone indicates the Lakers are at least a little worried and interested in nabbing Leonard now. If the Lakers build a super-ish team, their own future picks over the next three or four seasons lose value; they will presumably fall in the 20s. Thus the search for others.