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    Daniel Carlson kicked a 33-yard field goal with 8 seconds remaining, and the Oakland Raiders earned a bizarre 22-21 preseason victory over the Green Bay Packers on a field shortened to 80 yards for player safety. End zones were marked by bright orange pylons at the 10-yard lines and there were no kickoffs. The field was reconfigured because of concerns about the areas where the goal posts for the CFL's Winnipeg franchise were removed and covered with turf. Before warmups, game officials and staff from both clubs examined the turf that covered the goal post spots for 110-yard CFL games. The goal posts would have been inside the NFL end zones. Packers coach Matt LaFleur decided to sit 33 players, including star quarterback Aaron Rodgers and running back Aaron Jones. Rodgers hasn't played in the preseason. Oakland didn't play starters, including quarterback Derek Carr or receiver Antonio Brown. 'We were going to have all our starters play, and it was just one of those deals,' LaFleur said. 'We certainly have all played on much worse surfaces in our life, but it was just one of those deals where they weren't playing their starters and so we just decided to sit them.' It was the first NFL game in Canada since the Buffalo Bills faced the Atlanta Falcons in December 2013 to finish a run of eight games in Toronto. Packers quarterback Tim Boyle said he checked out a turf-covered spot during warmup. 'It was just a little raised,' Boyle said. 'But it's something you don't really want to play around with, especially guys who, this is their living. This puts food on the table for them, so you don't want to mess around with injuries.' Oakland coach Jon Gruden said the playing surface didn't concern him. 'I'm not going to make a big deal about the field,' Gruden said. 'We liked the field. We thought the field was perfectly ready to roll. You'll have to ask Green Bay about that.' The Raiders decided to move one of their two home exhibition games to Winnipeg in a move that saved them $500,000 in rent at the Oakland Coliseum. The team is planning to move to Las Vegas in 2020. Tim Boyle, Rodgers' backup, threw a 23-yard touchdown pass to Trevor Davis and a 26-yarder to Jake Kumerow. Tra Carson ran for a touchdown for the Packers, and Green Bay led 21-10 at halftime. The Raiders' Nathan Peterman threw two touchdown passes, including a 17-yarder to De'Mornay Pierson-El in the fourth quarter that cut Green Bay's lead to 21-19. His 2-point conversion attempt was intercepted. Peterman finished 23 of 37 for 210 yards. UP NEXT Packers: End their preseason schedule by hosting the Kansas City Chiefs next Thursday night. Raiders: At Seattle on Thursday night. ___ More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
  • Was_FG Hopkins 48, 4:03. Atl_I.Smith 5 run (Tavecchio kick), 6:09. Was_FG Hopkins 29, 1:21. Was_Perine 3 run (Hopkins kick), 11:33. Was_FG Hopkins 23, 1:59. Was_FG Hopkins 40, 8:21. A_70,126. ___ ___ RUSHING_Washington, Guice 11-44, Thompson 3-20, Reynolds 5-19, Perine 4-16, Marshall 4-11, Haskins 1-(minus 2). Atlanta, Etling 7-48, Ollison 12-42, I.Smith 5-23, Brooks-James 3-17, Ryan 2-9, Hill 4-7, Neasman 1-6, Freeman 2-3. PASSING_Washington, Keenum 9-14-0-101, Haskins 7-13-0-74. Atlanta, Ryan 9-14-0-74, Etling 2-6-0-19. RECEIVING_Washington, C.Sims 3-48, Harmon 2-37, Kidsy 2-11, Thompson 2-4, Sprinkle 1-28, Doctson 1-16, Holtz 1-12, Reed 1-10, Guice 1-4, Perine 1-3, Marshall 1-2. Atlanta, Sanu 3-23, Zaccheaus 2-19, Hardy 1-24, I.Smith 1-9, Ridley 1-9, Freeman 1-6, Hooper 1-2, Graham 1-1. MISSED FIELD GOALS_Atlanta, Tavecchio 39.
  • If Case Keenum is still the leader in Washington's quarterback competition, rookie Dwayne Haskins at least gave coach Jay Gruden more to think about. Haskins led Washington to three second-half scoring drives, including two set up by Atlanta's lost fumbles while attempting to field punts, and the Redskins took a 19-7 preseason win over the Falcons on Thursday night. Keenum played the first half and lost a fumble, which helped the Falcons lead 7-6 at halftime. Haskins, the first-round draft pick from Ohio State, completed 7 of 13 passes for 74 yards in the second half. 'I'm excited to see Dwayne make some throws from the pocket,' Gruden said. 'I like some things Case did. Obviously the turnover was disturbing. But other than that I think he moved the ball pretty well and did some good things. They both have done some good things this preseason.' Colt McCoy, Washington's third contestant in the quarterback competition, is still recovering from a broken right leg suffered in 2018. Keenum, Denver's starter in 2018 after spending most of 2017 starting at Minnesota, said he's not anxious to have a starter named for the regular season. 'I don't necessarily need to be told, I guess you could say,' Keenum said. 'I'm fine with however things go. I went pretty much the entire season with the Vikings not being told I was going to start until Wednesday of that week's practice and we won 13 games that year, so that worked out all right.' Keenum completed 9 of 14 passes for 101 yards but his lost fumble when he was sacked by Deadrin Senat set up a second-quarter touchdown for Atlanta. Takk McKinley recovered the fumble and ran 17 yards to the Washington 33. Ito Smith's 5-yard touchdown run gave the Falcons a 7-3 lead. Atlanta's Matt Ryan played the full first half in his most extended playing time of the preseason and completed 9 of 14 pass for 74 yards. He was perfect in the first quarter, when he completed each of his eight passes for 60 yards. Veteran backup Matt Schaub was held out as Danny Etling became the latest third-string quarterback to play in the preseason. Matt Simms was held out with an undisclosed injury. Simms was signed after Kurt Benkert was lost with a toe injury. The Falcons signed Etling last week after he was released by New England. Etling's lack of familiarity with the Falcons playbook showed as he struggled to move the offense in the second half and was dropped by two sacks . Specials teams mistakes helped drop Atlanta to 0-4 in the preseason. Rookies Marcus Green and Olamide Zaccheaus lost fumbles inside the Atlanta 20 when trying to field punts in the third quarter. Each turnover set up short Redskins scoring drives led by Haskins. Green's lost fumble, recovered by Washington's Troy Apke, set up Samaje Perine's 3-yard scoring run for a 13-7 lead. Zaccheaus couldn't catch Tress Way's next punt, and the recovery by Robert Davis set up Dustin Hopkins' 23-yard field goal. Hopkins also made field goals from 48, 29 and 40 yards. Running back Kenjon Barner, who may be Atlanta's primary return specialist, did not play because of an undisclosed injury. 'Barner is the one that will lead the way,' coach Dan Quinn said when asked about his plan to address the situation. INJURY REPORT Redskins: TE Jordan Reed left the game in the second half with a possible concussion. TE Matt Flanagan (hand) was listed as questionable in the fourth quarter. ... CB Fabian Moreau (ankle) and LB Shaun Dion Hamilton (chest) did not play. Falcons: TE Jaeden Graham (knee) was declared out in the second quarter. CB Taveze Calhoun was helped off the field and then carted to the locker room in the fourth quarter with a possible concussion. DT Justin Zimmer (foot), FB Ricky Ortiz (ankle) and DT Ra'Shede Hageman (neck) were listed as questionable. GUICE RUNS STRONG Washington running back Derrius Guice ran for 44 yards in his first game since a knee injury in the 2018 preseason ended his rookie season. 'He made a 5-yard run a 9-yard run and so on,' Keenum said. 'He made some really good cuts in a lot of traffic.' PRESEASON DROUGHT The Falcons suffered their 12th straight preseason loss. They last won on Sept. 1, 2016, against Jacksonville. JUST FOR KICKS Atlanta's Giorgio Tavecchio, who missed two 42-yard field goal attempts in last week's 22-10 loss to the New York Jets, was wide left on a 39-yarder in the first quarter. The Falcons may be forced to look for help at the position. 'Like everything we are going to evaluate that spot,' Quinn said. NEXT UP Redskins: Washington will return home to play Baltimore in its final preseason game next Thursday night. Falcons: Atlanta will conclude its five-game preseason schedule when it visits Jacksonville next Thursday night. ___ More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL
  • The NFC South's reputation as the NFL's most balanced division has taken a hit. The New Orleans Saints' two-year run as division champion, including a dominant showing in 2018, has left other teams eager to prove there is still competitively even in the South. The NFC South's depth was impressive in 2017, when the Saints, Falcons and Panthers made the playoffs. Last year was different. Led by quarterback Drew Brees and running back Alvin Kamara, the Saints were the division's only team to finish with a winning record. Instead of three teams making the playoffs, three teams were left out. So much for parity. 'No, it didn't look like that in the final standings,' said Falcons coach Dan Quinn. 'I'm hopeful that is an outlier.' There is reason to expect restored balance in 2019. Proven playmakers at each of the four camps include Carolina quarterback Cam Newton, who will be handing off to Christian McCaffrey, one of the league's most dynamic backs. 'We want the division back,' Newton said, referring to the Panthers' three straight NFC South titles in 2013-15. Here are some more NFC South developments to watch for in 2019: MARCHING FOR THREE STRAIGHT A third straight division title would represent merely the start of what the Saints hope to accomplish. New Orleans likely would have been in the Super Bowl a season ago if not for what the NFL acknowledged were missed pass interference and helmet-to-helmet contact penalties committed by the Los Angeles Rams late in the NFC title game. Defensive end Cameron Jordan said the playoff loss is motivation 'to not only push yourself through the offseason, come in in the best shape of your life, push guys beside you and push guys behind you. ... It makes you better and stronger as a team.' Brees, 40, is coming off one of his most efficient seasons. Receiver Michael Thomas and Kamara return as his top targets. During camp, Brees also has quickly developed a connection with new tight end Jared Cook, acquired in free agency after a career year with Oakland. The Saints' defense is led by Jordan on the edge, linebacker Demario Davis in the middle, and top cornerback Marshon Lattimore. Following Pro Bowler center Max Unger's retirement, the Saints' top draft pick, Texas A&M's Erik McCoy, is on track to start the season opener. FALCONS HEALING Quinn has been cautious with key starters who are recovering from injuries. Safeties Keanu Neal and Ricardo Allen, linebacker Deion Jones and running back Devonta Freeman were among players on Atlanta's injured reserve list in 2018. All appear to be ready for the regular season. Meanwhile, wide receiver Julio Jones has missed all preseason games for the second straight year as he recovers from a foot injury. Jones led the NFL with 1,677 yards receiving in 2018. It's a crucial season for Quinn. He also lost both starting offensive guards to season-ending injuries last season. The long injury list led to a 7-9 finish and Quinn fired all three coordinators. He has taken over the defense while bringing back two former Atlanta assistants, Dirk Koetter and Mike Mularkey, as offensive coordinator and tight ends coach, respectively. COUNTING ON CAM The Panthers will go as Cam Newton goes in 2019. Newton was plagued by shoulder issues last season and struggled throwing the ball more than 20 yards downfield in the second half of the season as Carolina lost seven of its final eight games after a 6-2 start. Newton's arm strength appears to have returned following offseason surgery. He has more weapons to work with on offense, so he no longer needs to be Superman. Curtis Samuel could emerge as Carolina's No. 1 receiver. Tight end Greg Olsen is back after broken bones in his foot kept him out of 16 games the last two seasons. Defensively, the Panthers have switched to a 3-4 alignment, adding Gerald McCoy up front. The team selected outside linebacker Brian Burns in the first round in hopes of bolstering the pass rush following the retirement of Julius Peppers and the decision to let outside linebacker Thomas Davis walk in free agency. LOOKING FOR A WINNER Tampa Bay brought coach Bruce Arians out of retirement to end the Buccaneers' 11-year streak without a playoff appearance. The Buccaneers have finished last in the division eight of the last 10 years. If Arians, 66, can help quarterback Jameis Winston put up consistent production while cutting down on mistakes, Tampa Bay has a chance to move up in the division. Arians, the former Arizona coach, said one reason he was lured out of his one-year retirement was the chance to work with Winston. Arians has a long record of success with quarterbacks. Winston, who has 58 interceptions in 56 career games and served a three-game suspension in 2018 for violating the NFL's personal conduct policy, could be the coach's biggest challenge. Winston's top targets include receivers Mike Evans and Chris Godwin. Arians runs a two-tight end set, which should lead to more high-percentage passes to Cameron Brate and O.J. Howard. PREDICTED ORDER OF FINISH Saints, Falcons, Panthers, Buccaneers. ___ AP Sports Writers Brett Martel and Steve Reed contributed to this report. ___ More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/tag/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL
  • ATLANTA FALCONS (7-9) New faces: OG James Carpenter, OG Jamon Brown, DE Adrian Clayborn, SS J.J. Wilcox, S Chris Cooper, S Afolabi Laguda, DE Chris Odom, DT Tyeler Davison, OT John Wetzel, RB Tony Brooks-James, offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter, tight ends coach Mike Mularkey. Key losses: RB Tevin Coleman, CB Robert Alford, OT Ryan Schraeder, PK Matt Bryant, DE Brooks Reed, OG Brandon Fusco, OG Andy Levitre, DE Derrick Shelby, offensive coordinator Steve Sarkasian, defensive coordinator Marquand Manuel, special teams coordinator Keith Armstrong. Strengths: QB Matt Ryan posted numbers last season which almost matched 2016 MVP production. He has strong trio with WRs Julio Jones, Mohamed Sanu and Calvin Ridley, and TE Austin Hooper had breakout in 2018. RB Devonta Freeman's return from groin injury is crucial. Freeman has had full clearance since OTAs. Weaknesses: In desperate search to better protect Ryan and clear running room for Freeman, Atlanta drafted two offensive linemen — guard Chris Lindstrom and tackle Kaleb McGary — in first round after signing guards Carpenter and Brown. McGary needed heart procedure during training camp while Carpenter missed time with hip flexor injury, so unit still coming together. After Coleman signed with 49ers, Falcons still looking for backup running back. Fantasy Players To Watch: Freeman missed 14 games in 2018 but when healthy can post big fantasy numbers. He topped 1,000 yards rushing in 2015 and 2016 but overlooked fantasy key is combined 127 catches those two years. Despite 71 catches, first Pro Bowl honor in 2018, Hooper still going late in drafts, so could be bargain. Ridley's 10 TD catches may be difficult to repeat but big-play talent is legitimate. Vegas Says: Win Super Bowl 33 to 1. Over/under wins 9. Expectations: After firing all three coordinators, Quinn is under pressure to take Falcons back to playoffs. Team owner Arthur Blank has spent big to retain Ryan, DT Grady Jarrett, Freeman and Jones, among others. 2016 Super Bowl season and return to playoffs following season made 2018 especially disappointing. Ryan is 34 and still performing at peak. ___ More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/tag/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL
  • Dan Quinn has gone back to his past to protect his future with the Atlanta Falcons. Quinn fired his three coordinators following a disappointing 7-9 finish in 2018. He appointed himself as defensive coordinator. He was a longtime defensive coach, including two years directing Seattle's defense, before being hired as Falcons head coach in 2015. 'It's like putting on your old favorite sweat shirt,' said Quinn of his new role. Clearly, last season's decline was not acceptable after Quinn took the Falcons to the Super Bowl in his second season and back to the playoffs in 2017. Team owner Arthur Blank has demonstrated his belief in the team's top talent by investing in long-term deals with such players as quarterback Matt Ryan, wide receiver Julio Jones , running back Devonta Freeman, cornerback Desmond Trufant and defensive tackle Grady Jarrett. Ryan is 34. Jones is 30. They continued to perform at elite levels in 2018, but the window for this team is closing. There is pressure to win now. The heat is on Quinn, who is 39-30, including 3-2 in the postseason, through four seasons. Quinn refused to blame his first losing record on a devastating rash of injuries. Safeties Keanu Neal and Ricardo Allen, linebacker Deion Jones, Freeman and both starting guards were among those who landed on injured reserve. All who returned are expected to be ready for the start of the regular season. The defense was improving before losing many of its top playmakers to injuries last year. Quinn is working on multiple looks this year. Julio Jones said he has been impressed by what he has seen from the unit in practice. 'They disguise really, really well,' Jones said. 'Our depth is amazing throughout the whole defense. I'm looking forward to seeing what the defense is going to do this year. Just stay healthy, and it should be a fun season for us.' Here are some keys for the Falcons in 2019: FAMILIAR NAMES Two former Atlanta assistants were brought back when Quinn hired Dirk Koetter as offensive coordinator and Mike Mularkey to coach tight ends. Koetter was Tampa Bay's coach the last four years. Mularkey most recently spent two seasons as Titans coach, and also has been the head coach at Buffalo and Jacksonville. Each has coordinated the Falcons' offense with Ryan. Mularkey was Ryan's first offensive coordinator in 2008-11; Koetter directed the Falcons' offense from 2012-14. HIGH EXPECTATIONS Ryan said he knows the Falcons are expected to make the playoffs. 'I'm not scared of the expectations or shy away from that or what we're capable of doing,' he said. 'I think we can do great things as a team ... but how we get there is most important and focusing on how we get there is my message to them.' O-LINE COMMITMENT The Falcons have made a big commitment to providing better protection for Ryan after giving up 42 sacks in 2018. The Falcons signed free-agent guards James Carpenter and Jamon Brown and drafted two offensive linemen in the first round: guard Chris Lindstrom and tackle Kaleb McGary. Carpenter was slowed in camp by a hip flexor injury. McGary is expected to miss a few weeks after having a cardiac ablation, described as a minimally invasive procedure, to correct heart rhythm problems. He has returned to individual drills but is not yet ready for game action. NEW HELP FOR DQ Quinn said newly hired special assistant Bob Sutton , Kansas City's defensive coordinator the last six seasons, will be crucial. Sutton was hired to focus on game strategies including clock management, time-out usage, and replay review, helping to free Quinn for his new responsibilities with the defense. 'I've enjoyed doing both roles,' Quinn said. 'I wouldn't be able to do it if I didn't have all the support from the coaches on offense and having Bob here.' DEVONTA'S BACKUPS The depth chart at running back behind Freeman is a big question after Tevin Coleman signed with San Francisco. The good news is Freeman has made a strong return after missing 14 games last season with knee and groin injuries. Even with a healthy Freeman, the Falcons have considered having a more shared role of the backup job. Ito Smith ran for 315 yards and four touchdowns. Brian Hill has looked explosive at times. Kenjon Barner, also competing for a spot on returns, and rookie Qadree Ollison are behind Smith and Hill. ___ More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/tag/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL
  • The Raiders' worldwide tour gets started in the preseason when they play a 'home' exhibition against Green Bay in Canada. The Raiders will be the first team to play games in three countries in one season; they also will play a 'home' game in the regular season in London against Chicago on Oct. 6. 'We'll treat it like a normal road game,' coach Jon Gruden said of the visit to Winnipeg, Manitoba, on Thursday night. 'We have to respond to a tough schedule. We are going to fly a lot of hours this year and we are going to play home games in foreign countries. It doesn't sound right, but that's the facts.' Gruden will likely rest most of his regulars for this game, including quarterback Derek Carr and star receiver Antonio Brown. Brown has yet to make his Oakland debut as he has dealt with frostbitten feet and a fight with the NFL over his banned helmet. Thursday will be the third time the Packers have played a preseason game outside the United States. Green Bay defeated the Bills 35-3 in Toronto on Aug. 16, 1997, and beat Kansas City 27-24 in overtime in Tokyo on Aug. 2, 1998. Coach Matt LaFleur is looking forward to seeing wide receiver Trevor Davis make his preseason debut. The fourth-year pro, also a kick return specialist, returned to practice Sunday after dealing with a neck stinger. Davis had more than 700 yards as a kick returner in 2017 but missed most of 2018 with hamstring injuries. 'I kind of always feel like I have something to prove,' he said. 'Even if I was a fifth- or sixth- or seventh-year (player), I mean, either way it doesn't really matter to me. I approach it the same every day. I come out here to compete and not feel like anything's solidified ever.' RAVENS AT EAGLES The Ravens seek their 16th consecutive preseason victory in a matchup with Eagles, against whom they participated in a pair of joint practice sessions this week. Coach John Harbaugh intends to start quarterback Lamar Jackson, who took 22 snaps in last week's 26-13 win over Green Bay and engineered two scoring drives in two tries. Harbaugh indicated Jackson and the first-team offense would receive about the same amount of work against the Eagles. Josh McCown will likely make his debut with the Eagles after ending his brief retirement. The 40-year-old quarterback signed a one-year deal after Philadelphia lost backup Nate Sudfeld and No. 3 QB Cody Kessler in the first two preseason games. Rookie Clayton Thorson should get most of the snaps while Carson Wentz and the rest of the starters continue to watch from the sideline as they wait until Week 1 to play in a game. The Eagles and Ravens scrimmaged for two days, so they'll be quite familiar with each other when they take the field. GIANTS AT BENGALS Call it Manning and Jones, Part III. Eli Manning has started the Giants' first two games and played one series in each. The Giants failed to get a first down in the opener against the Jets, then put together a touchdown drive against the Lions' second-team defense. Daniel Jones, the sixth overall draft pick and Manning's heir apparent, played one series against the Jets and completed all five passes with a touchdown. He threw a TD pass in the second game but also fumbled twice, once on a snap in the red zone and another after a sack. Owner John Mara and coach Pat Shurmur have said Manning is the starter in his final season under contract, but the Giants went 5-11 last season and are rebuilding. How Manning and Jones fare at Paul Brown Stadium will be in the spotlight, but defense is one of New York's biggest weaknesses, and it has given up a score on the first series of each preseason game. It will be new Bengals coach Zac Taylor's first game at Paul Brown Stadium. He was hired from the Rams after Marvin Lewis was fired following his 16th season without a playoff victory. The offense is Cincinnati's main focus: The line is still a work in progress because of injuries and retirements. Andy Dalton had a tipped interception returned for a touchdown in Washington last week, when he finished 5 of 9 for 36 yards with a passer rating of 25.5. In two games, he is 12 of 18 for 116 yards with no touchdowns, one interception and a subpar passer rating of 61.3 in Taylor's new system. Rookie Ryan Finley has been much better playing with the reserves, moving to No. 2 on the depth chart by completing 33 of 44 passes with three TDs, one interception and a passer rating of 102.4. JAGUARS AT DOLPHINS Dolphins coach Brian Flores has yet to announce whether Ryan Fitzpatrick or Josh Rosen will be his starting quarterback to begin the season, and he said the decision may not come down to Thursday's game. 'I wouldn't say that,' he said. 'I would say there have been a lot of practice reps, game reps, from the spring to training camp to games to our practices last week with Tampa Bay. For it to come down to one game, no, I don't think it's that. As a staff, we've talked about this position — as well as every other position on this team — a lot. We've spent a lot of time on it.' Flores said he'll treat the game as a dress rehearsal for Week 1, but injured players likely to miss the game include RB Kenyan Drake, WR DeVante Parker, LB Kiko Alonso, S T.J. McDonald, LB Raekwon McMillan and WR Albert Wilson. REDSKINS AT FALCONS Falcons fans likely will see quarterback Danny Etling, signed off waivers from the Patriots last week, against Washington. Atlanta needed the depth behind Matt Ryan and Matt Schaub following injuries to Kurt Benkert and Matt Simms. Etling was a seventh-round pick out of LSU in 2018 who tried a move to wide receiver with New England in training camp. He is a full-time quarterback with Atlanta. Left guard James Carpenter could play after missing the first two preseason games with a hip flexor injury. Meanwhile, rookie tackle Kaleb McGary has returned to individual drills after having a heart procedure, but the first-round draft pick won't play this week. The offensive line remains a concern after giving up five sacks, eight tackles for loss and 14 quarterback pressures in last week's loss to the Jets. PANTHERS AT PATRIOTS Panthers quarterback Cam Newton will finally see his first action of the preseason. Newton had been expected to play last week, but coach Ron Rivera decided hours before the game to rest his quarterback as well as a handful of other star players. Newton has not played in a game since Dec. 17. He had arthroscopic shoulder surgery in January. This will also be the first preseason game for running back Christian McCaffrey, linebacker Luke Kuechly and tight end Greg Olsen. Veteran QB Tom Brady and the Patriots starters should play at least a handful of series. Most starters on both sides of the ball haven't seen the field in New England's first two games. Brady said this week that he hopes to be out there. History suggests he will be: Dating back to 2009, he has appeared in at least two preseason games. Thursday is also expected to be a big night for punter Jake Bailey. The Patriots this week cut Ryan Allen, who booted them to three Super Bowl victories in six seasons. Bailey, a fifth-round draft choice in April, has punted twice in the exhibition season, including a 54-yarder against Tennessee. ___ More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/tag/NFLfootball and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL
  • Devin Fuller got his first taste of the NFL's business side during his rookie minicamp. One of the receiver's would-be teammates had a bad practice. Not much later, that player got pulled out of a meeting. Not much after that, the player was no longer Fuller's teammate. 'I was like, 'Wow, so it's like that?'' Fuller said. In the coming weeks, as training camps break and the regular season beckons, it will be like that for hundreds of rookies and young veterans vying for the NFL's most-vulnerable roster spots. They are the interchangeable backups and special teams players whose current health, glimmers of untapped potential and cheap contracts factor into their value every bit as much as their playmaking ability. There will be about 1,200 cuts before the Aug. 31 deadline for teams to trim their rosters to 53 players. For the multitude of veterans whose dreams end before Game 1 of the regular season, there's a chance to walk away with something more than a pink slip at the end of their NFL careers, even if those careers lasted only a couple of seasons. The Trust is a multi-pronged benefits program created out of the 2011 collective bargaining agreement between the league and the players' union. With a budget of around $29 million a year, it offers players with two or more credited years on NFL rosters a scholarship award to continue their education, health screenings, gym memberships and even free training for players such as Fuller, who haven't given up on making a roster again. 'I wasn't surprised it existed, but I was surprised at all the things it offered,' said Fuller, a seventh-round draft pick of the Atlanta Falcons in 2016, who spent two seasons on injured reserve and has never been on an active roster. The Trust came into being in 2013, after the league and union negotiated a number of benefits designed to better the retirements and recognize the efforts of the thousands of NFL retirees. With a board of directors composed of executives at both the NFL and the players' union, this organization also provides career counseling and a state-of-the-art health screening that gives players a sense of where they stand after their years in football. 'The fact is that when you leave the NFL, there are no avenues out there where you can apply that skill set and keep on working,' executive director Bahati VanPelt said. 'Nobody is going to take his shoulder pads, helmet and cleats and move across the country and walk into the HR department and say: 'Here I am, I'm ready to play football.' We're approaching these players as they get ready to compete in a completely different space.' While the average NFL salary hovers at around $2.1 million, according to Forbes Magazine, that number is skewed by the enormous sums paid to the top players, along with the way those contracts are structured — often with huge signing bonuses up front but not as much guaranteed money on an annual basis. The majority of players, however, hover at or slightly above the league minimum, which this season will be $378,000 for a rookie and $473,000 for a fifth-year player. For most, getting to that fifth year takes hard work and some luck. An Associated Press analysis of career lengths found that, since 2005, the average amount of playing experience on an NFL roster has shrunk from 4.6 to 4.3 years. In 2005, there were 784 players with three years' experience or less on opening-day rosters and 714 with five or more years. In 2018, the gap widened to 852 and 644. It means a player making the league minimum or slightly more, if he got a signing bonus as a rookie, and then was good (and fortunate) enough to stay on the active roster for an entire season, might clear $3 million over four years, before hitting retirement at 25. 'There's a perception that NFL players leave the game the way that Tom Brady and Peyton Manning and Ray Lewis leave the game,' VanPelt said. 'But in reality, we know most guys, the teams will move on from, as opposed to them moving on from the teams.' Fuller landed an 'externship' at The Trust, tasked with helping spread the word about some of the benefits that not all players knew existed. After the 32 NFL teams make their cuts, a few hundred players will wait a few hours, or days, and then be re-signed to practice squads, at lesser pay. Some will get spots on other teams' 53-man rosters. Many more will wait longer for the phone to ring. For a good number of them, it never will. 'It's something guys need to hop on,' Fuller said. 'It's stuff they've earned, not stuff that's just being given to them. It's stuff that players who are thinking about retiring need to know about, or players who are already retired need to take advantage of.' ___ More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL
  • The Jets will be without playmaking linebacker Avery Williamson for the season because of a knee injury. A person familiar with the nature of the injury told The Associated Press that Williamson tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee in the second quarter of the team's 22-10 preseason win at Atlanta on Thursday night. An MRI on Friday revealed the nature and severity of the injury, according to the source who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the team did not make an announcement. NFL Network first reported that Williamson tore his ACL. Williamson, one of the key pieces of the Jets' defense, was still in the game with 3:52 left in the first half with mostly backups when cornerback Tevaughn Campbell dived for a pass from Matt Ryan to Brian Hill in the end zone and hit into the linebacker's knee. Williamson was slow to get up and then stayed on one knee as trainers attended to him. He slowly got up under his own power and walked off the field to the locker room. It's a big blow to the Jets' defense — and raised some questions as to why Williamson was still playing when the starters were done for the night. Coach Adam Gase said after the game that Williamson also saw extended snaps in the preseason opener last week against the Giants. He added that some players are slotted for a specific number of snaps, and defensive coordinator Gregg Williams is also working players in certain packages. 'The last two weeks, he's kind of stayed in there a little longer,' Gase said. 'That's just kind of how we roll it. Some guys play a little longer than others.' Williamson was set to start next to C.J. Mosley, who was signed during the offseason to anchor the middle of the Jets' defense. Williamson had been adapting to a new role as the Will — or, weakside linebacker — after playing the Mike — or, middle linebacker — spot last season. Williamson led the team with 159 total tackles in his first year in New York after signing last year as a free agent following four seasons in Tennessee. He also had three sacks, an interception, two forced fumbles and a fumble recovery last season. Backups Neville Hewitt and Anthony Wint are likely to see increased snaps in Williamson's absence. The Jets also have James Burgess and rookie Blake Cashman, a fifth-rounder who has been dealing with a shoulder injury. ___ More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL
  • NYJ_Montgomery 1 run (kick failed), 11:05. Atl_FG Tavecchio 24, 3:33. Atl_I.Smith 4 run (Tavecchio kick), :33. NYJ_FG Bertolet 49, 5:20. NYJ_Burnett 9 pass from Falk (Bertolet kick), 11:38. NYJ_Burgess 28 interception return (kick failed), 1:25. A_70,037. ___ ___ RUSHING_New York, Montgomery 7-36, Powell 5-20, McGuire 5-14, Webb 1-13, Cannon 6-6, Darnold 1-3, Holmes 3-3, Falk 2-2, Siemian 1-(minus 1). Atlanta, Ollison 9-44, I.Smith 5-13, Hill 4-12, Simms 2-8, Brooks-James 5-5, Ryan 2-3, Freeman 1-2, Blake 1-0. PASSING_New York, Darnold 5-7-0-46, Siemian 2-4-0-10, Webb 2-5-0-10, Falk 4-4-0-41. Atlanta, Ryan 10-14-0-118, Schaub 8-10-0-76, Simms 9-19-1-85. RECEIVING_New York, Ro.Anderson 3-32, Burnett 2-24, Enunwa 2-14, Cannon 2-9, McGuire 1-10, D.Brown 1-8, Thompson 1-8, Bellamy 1-2. Atlanta, Graham 4-55, I.Smith 3-45, D.Gray 3-45, Hooper 3-20, Ridley 2-28, Worton 2-20, Brooks-James 2-16, A.Gray 2-15, Zaccheaus 2-0, Hardy 1-15, Gage 1-11, Blake 1-5, Paulsen 1-4. MISSED FIELD GOALS_Atlanta, Tavecchio 52, Tavecchio 52.

News

  • A man who survived five days lost in the wilderness on the Montana-Idaho border said he pulled through, in part, because he promised his pregnant wife he'd return home safe. >> Read more trending news  Kaden Laga, 25, of Utah, was backpacking with his family when one of their horses went lame, Laga told KPAX-TV. Laga volunteered to hike ahead of the group to the trailhead. But he took a wrong turn and wasn't able to find the trail. After a few hours, Laga realized he was lost. Hours turned into days. On his first night alone, Laga was wet and cold, and didn't think he'd survive. He wrote a text to his wife, Arden, on his phone. “I wrote a little text in case they found my body cold,” he told KSTU-TV. “I just said, ‘In case I don’t make it out of here, I love you. I loved my life with you and I’m so sorry I left you to be a single mom.’” But Laga said he was determined to be reunited with his family. Before he had left on the trip, Arden had told him, 'You better promise me that you come home safe,'' Laga told KSTU-TV. Laga drank water from streams and ate berries and crickets. One day, he noticed helicopters flying overhead. “I’m like, 'This is it, they’re going to get me,' and they just take off into the other direction,” he said. Laga realized the searchers couldn't see him, so he continued hiking to try to find a way out. Finally, around 1 a.m. on Aug. 16, he stumbled upon a campsite. Volunteers helped Laga down the mountain, and he was reunited with his family the next day. Laga kept his promise to his wife. The couple told KPAX-TV they plan to name their baby boy after one of the rescuers.
  • An irate customer was arrested Tuesday after pounding on a fast-food restaurant’s drive-thru window while threatening employees and yelling obscenities, police said. >> Read more trending news Jonathan Gullett, 31, was upset about an order around 10 p.m. and was asked to leave a fast-food restaurant at Nitro Marketplace, WSAZ reported. Police said Gullett placed a drive-thru order, pulled around and paid. As he was waiting, he started yelling and hitting the drive-thru window.  When the manager opened it, Gullett told her he was upset about items missing from an order earlier in the day. The manager asked to see a receipt. He did not have one, so she told him there was nothing she could do.  This made Gullet more upset, investigators said. The manager shut the window, called 911 and showed Gullet the phone. Gullett drove off, parked at a nearby restaurant and walked back, police said. The manager locked the restaurant doors before Gullett returned.  When investigators arrived, Gullett was pounding on the drive-thru window, blocking customers, shouting obscenities and yelling about how he wanted to kill the restaurant employees, WSAZ reported.  Gullett was arrested and charged with threats of terrorist acts. He is being held on $5,000 bail. 
  • The nation's first death possibly linked to vaping has been confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Illinois Department of Public Health says an adult person who recently vaped died after being hospitalized with 'severe respiratory illness.' The agency didn't give any other information about the patient, including a name or where the person lived. The CDC says there are currently 193 potential cases in 22 states, including Georgia. Patients reported similar symptoms – shortness of breath, chest pain, cough, and vomiting in some cases – and some were admitted to the intensive care unit.
  • An 8-year-old boy was bitten on the head Wednesday night by a mountain lion, Colorado wildlife officials said. >> Read more trending news The boy was jumping on a trampoline with his brother around 7:30 p.m. when a friend called to him from a nearby house, Colorado Parks and Wildlife said in a release. When the boy ran to visit the friend, he was attacked by the mountain lion. “The kid was running, and it probably triggered the lion’s natural response to a prey animal running,” Mark Lamb, wildlife manager, said in a release. “We all hope that the child will be alright, and you just hate to see this occur.' The boy’s brother ran inside and told their father something was wrong. The father came out, found the animal on top of his son and scared off the mountain lion.  “He did what a father would do, run out and protect his son knowing that he was in trouble,” Jason Clay, parks spokesman, told KCNC. “The father saved his son’s life.” The boy was taken to a hospital, where he was in serious but stable condition, KCNC reported.  Because the animal attacked a human, it must be euthanized, wildlife officials said. They set traps and used dogs to try and track the mountain lion.  On Thursday, a homeowner realized one of his goats was missing, saw two mountain lions and called wildlife officials. Officers were already in the area, which was about a mile from where the boy was attacked. They captured and euthanized the animals, which were about 12 months old and 65 pounds. A necropsy will be conducted to determine if they are the same lions involved in the boy’s attack. “That is how we would be able to confirm with absolute certainty that we got the mountain lion from the attack,” wildlife officials said. Because the mountain lions were feeding on livestock, they can be euthanized. If a mountain lion is captured alive in a trap, it will be kept alive until DNA samples are tested. If the results are negative, the lion will be relocated, officials said.  Officials are still monitoring mountain lion activity in the area but do not have plans to actively search for them. Mountain lions have attacked humans 22 times since 1990, with three attacks coming this year, officials said. A trail runner was attacked Feb. 4 and there was another attack Aug. 10. The last year there had been a mountain lion attack was 2016. The last time there were three attacks in a year was 1998. “We don’t want people to panic, they are very aware of all the wildlife that lives around them, but the proper precautions need to be taken,” Lamb said in a statement. “There are obligations that people must be committed to for living responsibly with wildlife.” Three more mountain lions were seen on the property where the goats went missing Friday, but no more goats have gone missing since.
  • According to many polls, Americans – especially those who say they are Democrats -- are not that fond of the Electoral College. Neither are many of the Democratic candidates for president. >> Read more trending news  With just over 14 months until the 2020 presidential election, a movement to change the way electoral votes are awarded and who will be elected president has gained some steam. The National Popular Vote Compact (NPV), which has its roots in the most contested presidential election in U.S. history, sets in state law a policy that awards all a state’s electoral votes to the candidate who wins the national popular vote. Under the Electoral College system used today, 48 states have a “winner-take-all” system that awards all the state’s electoral votes to the person who gets a majority of votes in that state. The Electoral College does not take into consideration that national popular vote. Sixteen states, along with the District of Columbia, have passed the NPV agreement. They are California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon and Rhode Island. While legislation has been passed in the 16 states and the District of Columbia, the agreement would not go into effect until states with a collective 270 electoral votes — the number needed to win the presidency — agree to join. Currently, the District of Columbia and the 16 states in the agreement hold a combined total of 196 electoral votes, meaning the pact would need enough new state members to get 74 electoral votes.Supporters say the system would give the person who got the most votes country-wide the presidency he or she deserves. Opponents say states would be forced to hand over electoral votes to a candidate who did not win that state. For instance, in the 2016 election, a state such as Florida, in which President Donald Trump earned more votes, would have had to pledge its 29 electoral votes to Trump’s opponent, Hillary Clinton, who won the national popular vote in the 2016 election. The Electoral College of today was established by the Twelfth Amendment to the Constitution which replaced the method for electing the president and vice president provided in Article II, Section 1, Clause 3. Under the system, when voters cast a ballot for president, they are actually choosing members of the Electoral College, called electors, who are pledged to that presidential candidate. Following the election for president, electors then meet to choose the president. Electors almost always vote for their state’s popular vote winner, and some states have laws requiring them to do so. However, electors are not bound by federal law to vote for a specific candidate – for instance, the one who won the popular vote in their state. In 29 states and the District of Columbia, electors are bound by state law or by a pledge they sign to vote for the candidate who won the popular vote of the state they represent. Five men have won the presidency in the Electoral College while not winning the country’s popular vote: John Quincy Adams in 1824, Rutherford B. Hayes in 1876, Benjamin Harrison in 1888, George W. Bush in 2000 and Donald Trump in 2016. The National Popular Vote campaign goes back to Democratic presidential candidate Al Gore's loss to Bush in 2000, according to The Associated Press. Gore won the popular vote but lost the election over a vote count in Florida.
  • Fans of all things Disney are in Anaheim for the D23 Expo. And news of future development for the properties at the Disney Parks around the world has already started being released. Inside the Disney Parks 'Imagining Tomorrow, Today' Pavilion at the 2019 D23 Expo visitors will be able to see what is coming next to the Disney Parks around the world. While there are a lot of cool things to share, in this post we are going to focus on the upcoming additions coming to Walt Disney World! There is an all-new Star Wars vacation experience coming to Walt Disney World!  >> Read more trending news  The Star Wars: Galactic Starcruiser will be a new, first-of-its-kind vacation experience where guests will check in for a two-night adventure aboard a glamorous starship called the Halcyon.  Once onboard, guests will interact with characters and become active participants in stories that unfold around them on their galactic journey.  Also in the pavilion is a model of the multi-year transformation of Epcot complete with new experiences, 'that will make the park more Disney, more family, more timeless, and more relevant.' The reinvention of Epcot will include several new additions, and the first one we learned about was a new attraction called Journey of Water which is inspired by 'Moana.' This first-ever attraction based on the Walt Disney Animation Studios film, 'Moana,' will let guests interact with magical, living water in a beautiful and inspiring setting. And this October, guests will be able to visualize all the exciting plans for Epcot at a new experience center in the Odyssey Events Pavilion called Walt Disney Imagineering presents the Epcot Experience. Inside this first-of-its-kind offering within a Disney park, guests will discover engaging and interactive exhibits that allow you to step inside excitement to see some never-before-revealed details driving the future of Epcot during this unprecedented period of transformation. The Disney Parks pavilion also features other upcoming Walt Disney World attractions including TRON Lightcycle Run coming to Magic Kingdom Park as well as Mickey & Minnie's Runaway Railway coming to Disney's Hollywood Studios. On Sunday, August 25, we'll find out more details on these and other announcements during the Disney Parks, Experiences, and Products presentation at D23 Expo 2019!