Cardinals among three teams to push start time changes to help body clocks

The Arizona Cardinals will face both the San Francisco 49ers and Los Angeles Chargers on the field this season.

But off of it, the three teams have come together in an effort to help their schedules.

The teams submitted a proposal to the NFL bylaws ahead of next week’s owners meetings that nfl nike jerseys cheap would prevent teams from playing more than three games “with a scheduled kickoff time prior to 1 p.m. in the time zone of their home stadium.” For the NFL schedule to require a team to play more than three games before 1, the team would have to give permission.

This season the Cardinals could have four road games starting at either 10 a.m. or 11 a.m. in Arizona: at Green Bay, Minnesota, Kansas City and Atlanta. Because the state doesn’t observe daylight saving time, Arizona will be two hours behind Central Time and three behind Eastern Time until Nov. 4. After that, Arizona will be an hour behind Central and two behind Eastern.

According to the formal proposal, the effect of playing games before 1 p.m. Arizona time can “reduce the competitive equity that exists between teams who have morning body clock start times on long road trips.”

If the proposal passes — it will be voted on next week by team representatives at the owners meeting in Orlando, Florida — the Cardinals could have at least one of their games in the Central or Eastern time zone start in the 4 p.m. ET time slot.

According to the NFL, road teams with long trips that play in the early time slot on Sundays see their win rate reduced from 45.2 percent to 33.5 percent.

Last season, the Cardinals played six road games that started before 1 p.m. in Arizona — including their game in London, which was played at 10 a.m. Arizona time. They went 1-5.

By comparison, the Seattle Seahawks played all five of last season’s games in nike nfl jerseys for cheap Central or Eastern time after 1 p.m. Pacific time. They went 2-3.

In 2016, Arizona went 0-4 in games that started earlier than 1 p.m. in Arizona and 0-1 in road games in Eastern Time that started after 1 p.m. in Arizona.


Does Derek Carr remind Jordy Nelson of Aaron Rodgers?

It was Michael Crabtree who famously compared Derek Carr to Brett Favre a few years back, in that “gunslinger” kind of way.

But many observers thought Carr’s skill set more closely resembled that of Favre’s successor with the Green Bay Packers, nfl jerseys cheap authentic future Hall of Famer Aaron Rodgers.

So who better to compare and contrast Carr and Rodgers than a guy who spent the past 10 years with Rodgers and who, oh yeah, is essentially replacing Crabtree with the Oakland Raiders?

Especially since Carr met Jordy Nelson at the airport last week when Nelson arrived for his free-agent visit.

“He told me they gave him my number earlier, but he was like, ‘I wasn’t going to text you and add to the flood of text messages coming in. … If you come into town, I’ll meet up with you.’ So he did,” said Nelson.

“We spent pretty much the whole day together. In the building here. He was the one who drove me around some of the area. I was actually about to meet his wife and two boys. Get a feel for the area and obviously a feel for him. I knew a lot about him from James Jones, who played here, and Davante Adams, who he played with him at Fresno State. I knew a lot about him before I even came out here. It was great to get to know him a little bit more. I think it’s a great fit to be with him for the next couple of years.”

With Rodgers throwing him the ball, Nelson authored three seasons with at least 1,250 receiving yards and at least 13 touchdown catches. Only Hall of Famers Jerry Rice, Randy Moss and Terrell Owens have had more, with six, five and four, respectively.

Yet, Nelson is coming off a subpar season in which he had just 53 catches for 482 yards and six touchdowns, albeit, with Rodgers limited to just seven games by injury.

So can Carr, known in some circles as a mini-Rodgers, jump-start “White Lightning?”

Be careful who you ask. Former Oakland defensive backs coach Rod Woodson (yes, the Hall of Fame player) skewered the notion.

“I don’t want to sound like a scorned lover because I was fired by the Raiders,”nfl nike jerseys cheap Woodson said recently on Fox Sports. “I love Mark Davis; I love the Davis family. But you can’t tell me, you got rid of Michael Crabtree and you put Jordy Nelson in there and Jordy Nelson is better than Michael Crabtree? That’s a lie. And, I love Derek Carr; Derek Carr is not Aaron Rodgers.”


Why Pep Guardiola will be ready for Manchester City’s vital fortnight

A Champions League double-header sandwiched by a crucial league game, custom nfl jerseys cheap a derby against a team determined to upset his side’s path to glory, Jose Mourinho’s news conferences a distraction to what his side are doing on the pitch… Pep Guardiola has seen all this before.

Thanks to an early exit from the FA Cup, the Manchester City manager is midway through a three-week break from action before returning to a fortnight of football that will go a long way to defining his club’s season.

On March 31, he begins with a trip to Everton — a team that Guardiola has failed to beat in three attempts and the scene of that disastrous 4-0 defeat in January 2017 which was among the worst he has ever suffered as a coach.

Four days later they return to Merseyside for the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinal against Liverpool — the only team to beat them in the Premier League this season — followed by the Manchester derby at the Etihad Stadium, which could be a potential title-clincher. Three days after that it’s the second leg against Liverpool.

Four intense, raucous north-west derbies with a huge prize for Guardiola’s side if they can get through it. But for the Catalan, it’s exactly the sort of run of fixtures that he will revel in — a reward for the hard work done in the opening six months of the season and an opportunity to nike nfl jerseys cheap add to his incredible personal record of success after a surprising first campaign without a trophy.


Legends games increasingly key for Europe’s elite to keep fans on board

Anfield will be full on Saturday, even though virtually every member of Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool squad will be away, somewhere in the world, on international duty.

As most supporters will attest, the international break is no substitute for club football, nfl jersey for cheap especially when only friendlies are being staged ahead of the World Cup.

But the game’s elite clubs have now found a way to ease their fans’ withdrawal symptoms, at the same time as raising funds for charity and, more strategically, keeping their global brands in the public eye at a time when the domestic game has closed down for two weeks.

The Liverpool Legends game this weekend against their Bayern Munich counterparts — when the likes of Steven Gerrard, Robbie Fowler and Dirk Kuyt will take on Lothar Matthaus, Owen Hargreaves and Bixente Lizarazu — is the latest example of the growing popularity of such fixtures.

Manchester United and Real Madrid set the ball rolling on the “Legends Tour” with an encounter in the Santiago Bernabeu in 2012 designed to raise funds for the Real Madrid Foundation.

A year later, over 60,000 fans turned out to watch the two clubs meet again at Old Trafford, with the money raised this time going to United’s Foundation.

The years since have seen Barcelona and Bayern join the party — both clubs have staged home and away Legends fixtures against United — with Liverpool, Arsenal and Chelsea also forming Legends teams with the same charitable intentions.

Since 2013, United have raised £2.5 million for their Foundation from the home games against Real, nfl jerseys cheap authentic Barca and Bayern, while the club have also played Liverpool in Stockholm, in September 2015, and contested a fixture against an Australia Legends in Perth in February 2017.


Broncos believe Case Keenum’s 2017 season was a preview of what’s to come

So, it’s Keenum and not Cousins (or any of the other available quarterbacks) who the Broncos have chosen to help lift an offense that has fallen on decidedly hard times.

“He may be just hitting his stride right now,” said Broncos president of football custom nfl jerseys cheap operations John Elway. “A lot of times it takes different situations to get comfortable, obviously. Case was in a good situation last year with the Vikings. My plan is to put him in that same situation this year where he can be successful and have the year — if not a better year this year than he had last year — and continue on.”

Elway added that, with Keenum, he has “high expectations of what we can do.”

It is telling in the Broncos’ evaluation of Keenum that the coach who put him under center in 2013 when the Houston Texans lost Keenum’s first eight NFL starts still has a high opinion of Keenum now. Gary Kubiak was eventually fired by the Texans after that 2013 season. After Kubiak recharged his career with a successful 2014 as the Baltimore Ravens’ offensive coordinator, he won a Super Bowl as the Broncos’ head coach in 2015.

Kubiak, after stepping away from coaching following the 2016 season for health reasons, was then hired for what has become a growing role in Denver’s personnel department. In the Broncos’ evaluations of Keenum, Kubiak is known to have lauded the quarterback’s leadership (a mental toughness honed by a bumpy developmental road as a former undrafted rookie) and his room for growth.

Elway publicly confirmed last week that the Broncos tried to trade for Keenum just after Peyton Manning’s retirement in March 2016 but could not reach a deal with the Rams.

“We had interest in Case back then, [but] I think it was more the fact that the Rams didn’t want to let him go because we wanted him and were trying to get something done,” Elway said. “They knew what they had in Case, so therefore we couldn’t get it done … nike nfl jerseys cheap also Gary’s relationship with Case and knowing Case, that was a big feather in Case’s cap. As far as I’m concerned, an effect of what Gary thought of him really as a man and what he could do in that locker room for us.”

It is a bit of a gamble to give more weight to one year of production over five, but the Broncos said they’ve done the work, and Keenum said he’s ready to do his part. The Broncos represent Keenum’s first chance to enter an offseason program and training camp as the unquestioned starter.


Importance of Vikings backup QB Trevor Siemian? Think Case Keenum

The Minnesota Vikings know firsthand how having a skilled, reliable backup quarterback can be a game-changer for a franchise. Finding someone to step in at a moment’s notice and do more than just move the ball efficiently downfield was a test Minnesota aced last year — and one the Vikings hoped to repeat this free agency.

Case Keenum proved to be the most important offseason acquisition nfl jersey for cheap in the NFL in 2017 after he was thrown into the fire for an injured Sam Bradford in Week 2 and led the Vikings to the NFC Championship Game.

Aside from signing a potential franchise quarterback in Kirk Cousins, viewed as the missing piece for a team in search of its first Super Bowl victory, Minnesota emphasized adding an element it had relied on heavily last season: quality depth.

The former Broncos quarterback came to the Vikings via a trade, a move that was made official Monday. Minnesota sent its fifth-round pick in the 2019 draft in exchange for the fourth-year quarterback and a seventh-rounder this April.

Siemian embarks on the next chapter of his career in a similar position to Keenum’s ahead of last year: a former starter who heads to Minnesota for a fresh start, a redefined role and an opportunity to take his career in a different direction.

It panned out as the opportunity of a lifetime for Keenum, who posted career numbers in completion percentage, passer rating, TD-INT ratio and Total QBR in Minnesota, which earned him a big payday with Denver in free agency. Siemian could be the next beneficiary of such an immense turnaround.

The former Northwestern standout took over for Peyton Manning the season after the future Hall nfl jerseys cheap authentic of Famer led the Broncos to a win in Super Bowl 50. Siemian started 24 games in Denver, where he left with a 13-11 record despite struggling throughout 2017, getting benched in favor of Paxton Lynch and then being called upon to start again last December before his second shoulder injury in just more than a year ended his season.

Phillies’ Eickhoff expected to miss 6-8 weeks

Two days after introducing Jake Arrieta as their new staff ace, the Philadelphia Phillies suffered a hit to the middle of their starting rotation.

The Phillies said Friday that starter Jerad Eickhoff is expected to be out six to eight weeks with a strained lat muscle and will begin the season on the disabled list. Eickhoff and Vince Velasquez were lined up to slot into the 3-4 spots in the team’s rotation after Arrieta and Aaron Nola.107

Manager Gabe Kapler told reporters cheap nfl throwback jerseys at Spectrum Field that Eickhoff suffered the injury late in a 3-1/3 inning appearance against the Pirates on March 9. The Phillies sent Eickhoff back to Philadelphia, where the diagnosis of a lat strain was confirmed.

“There might be a blessing in disguise here,” Kapler said. “We’re always thinking about keeping guys healthy and strong and limiting their total innings count. Those are things that are always on our mind, so it’s possible the innings are limited on the front end and then in September, October, he’s strong and healthy and prepared to go through a full season.”

Eickhoff, 27, came over to Philadelphia from Texas with fellow prospects Nick Williams and Jorge Alfaro as part of an eight-player trade that sent pitcher Cole Hamels to the Rangers in 2015.

Eickhoff got off to a promising start with the Phillies in 2016, when he went 11-14 with a 3.65 ERA and a 1.16 WHIP in 197 1/3 innings. But his velocity declined last season, and he missed time with back stiffness and nerve irritation in his pitching hand. He finished the season at 4-8 with a 4.71 ERA and a 1.52 WHIP in 128 innings.

Kapler said the team thinks that Eickhoff’s current injury is unrelated to his upper-back problems a year ago.nfl shop jerseys

With Eickhoff likely out until May, Nick Pivetta could assume a bigger workload to start the season. Ben Lively, Thomas Eshelman, Zach Eflin and Jake Thompson are the other starters in Philadelphia’s camp in Clearwater.

Olney: Why some young players may increasingly jump at long-term offers

The smallest adjustment can make an enormous difference for a Major League Baseball player, which is part of the game’s allure.

Trevor Hoffman frantically searched for a solution in the spring of 1995 after hurting his shoulder diving on the beach at 26 years old, and when he tried a changeup grip showed to him by teammate Donnie Elliott,throwback nfl jerseys cheap he discovered the off-speed pitch that will propel him into the Hall of Fame later this year.106

Jamie Moyer was within a few months of his 33rd birthday when the Orioles cut him in 1995, just as he felt he had started to make progress in the art of working inside. Moyer was 49 when he finally threw his last pitch in the majors.

That uncertainty about when a player’s breakthrough might occur is why some agents are reluctant to advise their clients to jump at a long-term offer of guaranteed money. Under certain circumstances, taking a team-friendly deal might feel a little like burning Powerball tickets before the numbers are drawn.

But after the brutally harsh conditions for free agents this winter, more players might reflexively grab guaranteed dollars when they are offered, because there have been too many examples of peers who left money behind. Mike Moustakas rejected a qualifying offer of $17.4 million last fall and then settled for $6.5 million this spring. Neil Walker turned down a $42 million, three-year proposal in the winter of 2016-17, and after making $17.2 million last summer, he took a one-year, $4 million deal with the Yankees.

Cautionary tales are swirling throughout baseball right now, and one agent said the other day he assumes that the spawn of “Moneyball” nfl throwback jerseys front offices will use the desperation against free agents next fall. “Those m—–f—ers just can’t wait to get into talks next fall, because they know there will be some players scared to wait and will jump at bad deals early,” the agent said.

Trade with Jets more proof Colts are confident in Andrew Luck’s shoulder

One of the things that the Indianapolis Colts’ trade with the New York Jets proved on Saturday is that they remain confident that quarterback Andrew Luck will be healthy next season.

Why else nike nfl jerseys for cheap would they have traded back from No. 3 to No. 6 in next month’s draft, which features as many as four quarterbacks who could be selected in the top five? The Colts likely would have stayed put at No. 3 if there were legitimate concerns about Luck’s health.94

Colts general manager Chris Ballard was as adamant as he’s been about Luck’s health at the NFL combine last month, when he said he believes his franchise quarterback will be ready for the 2018 season.

“Do I have any doubt that he’s going to be ready? No, I don’t,” Ballard said at the time.

Through all the front-office, coaching and roster changes the Colts have made in the past 14 months, the key for the organization continues to be Luck’s ability to be healthy.

The desire to cut corners caught up to the Colts when Luck’s body started breaking down in 2015. nfl jerseys nike cheap He has missed 26 games in the past three seasons and it’s likely no coincidence that the Colts missed the playoffs in all three of those seasons.

The Colts — and Luck — have had their sights on the quarterback playing in 2018. It started when they shut him down after continued soreness following a cortisone shot last October. It continued when he spent six weeks rehabbing in the Netherlands. Then there were the comments by Ballard and Luck, saying he won’t need a second shoulder surgery. Luck spent several weeks in Southern California working with throwing coaches to regain the form in his surgically repaired right shoulder.

Jets’ trade could mean Bradley Chubb, other top picks available to Bucs at No. 7

With the New York Jets trading into the third spot of the 2018 NFL draft, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are in better shape to land a top-five caliber prospect at No. 7. That’s assuming that the Cleveland Browns, New York Giants and the Jets all select quarterbacks,nfl jerseys cheap nike which could cause a few of the elite prospects to fall into the Bucs’ lap. Here’s a look at who may be available:

Bradley Chubb, DE, NC State93

A dream scenario would be selecting Bradley Chubb, arguably the top defender in the draft. The Bucs have focused heavily on improving their defensive line play this offseason, signing defensive tackles Beau Allen and Mitch Unrein and defensive end Vinny Curry in free agency. But Chubb is a true edge rusher who can play every snap from Day 1. This would also be a big help for 2016 second-round pick Noah Spence, who is recovering from his second shoulder surgery in two years.

The Browns, who also select at No. 4, don’t need a pass-rusher after drafting Myles Garrett in 2017 and Emmanuel Ogbah in 2016. The Denver Broncos no longer need a quarterback with a top pick after trading for Case Keenum, but do have needs with their pass rush,cheap nfl jerseys nike which is where Chubb could come in. But they also have to account for the loss of Aqib Talib, which could bring a cornerback into play. With the Bucs signing center Ryan Jensen (the Colts were looking at him as a guard), general manager Jason Licht may have effectively forced the Colts to draft offensive guard Quenton Nelson.