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Yankees adjust to new label: likeable underdogs
The New York Yankees, traditionally one of the most reviled teams in Major League Baseball due to its long history of success, are adjusting to a new label - likeable underdogs. We see guys hit the ball out of the ballpark, in the gap, run. While Judge understandably gets headlines, team chemistry has been key to the Yankees' success. They are having fun, three-time World Series champion Al Leiter said on an ESPN podcast on Thursday.
Bucs hold off on allowing Winston to test injured shoulder
(AP) - Jameis Winston says his injured right shoulder is getting better every single day, however the Tampa Bay quarterback still isn't throwing in practice. The Buccaneers decided against the third-year pro testing his arm Thursday, saying Winston instead will work with the first-team offense on Friday. Winston, who has a sprained AC joint in his throwing shoulder, was listed as limited in practice for the second straight day.
Super Bowl reminders abound ahead of Pats, Falcons rematch
The Falcons and Patriots have lived in two different realities since their Super Bowl matchup in February. New England has savored the memories of how it turned a 25-point second-half deficit into largest comeback victory in Super Bowl history. That's the 25-point deficit they overcame this past February on their way to posting the largest comeback win in Super Bowl history. For the Falcons it represents the seemingly insurmountable lead they squandered on the NFL's biggest stage.
Bowman set to make debut for Raiders vs. Chiefs
Linebacker NaVorro Bowman is active for his debut with the Oakland Raiders just three days after signing with the team. Bowman is slated to play Thursday night against the Kansas City Chiefs. Bowman was released last Friday by San Francisco and signed with Oakland on Monday. The Raiders are without starting right tackle Marshall Newhouse (foot), linebackers Marquel Lee (ankle) and Corey James (knee), and rookie cornerback Gareon Conley (shin).
Matthews up for challenge as Packers rally without Rodgers
In the visiting locker room after Green Bay lost to the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday, the Packers spoke of how they'd rally behind backup Brett Hundley in the absence of injured quarterback Aaron Rodgers. With injuries atop of injuries, Matthews said the next-man up mentality was being thrown to the wolves. On Thursday, Matthews struck a more optimistic tone as the Packers get ready for Sunday's home game against the New Orleans Saints. Like Rodgers, Matthews is one of the veteran leaders on the Packers.
Mass. girls soccer teams sing national anthem when sound system fails
We have heard plenty about protests during the national anthem in recent weeks. Girls soccer teams found out Monday night, and improvised beautifully. It started when a technical malfunction rendered the Star-Spangled Banner silent before Monday night's game between Rockland and East Bridgewater. Beyond the score, it was the anthem performance started by the players that had a lasting impact. All of a sudden everyone got into it, and it was really cool, Rockland coach Lauren Rizzotti's said.
Redskins put rookie defensive lineman Jonathan Allen on IR
(AP) - Rookie defensive lineman Jonathan Allen isn't returning to the Washington Redskins lineup any time soon, a blow to their revamped defense but one they believe they can survive. He's a big man and sometimes bigger guys take a little bit longer but we'll wait and see. The Redskins now have Allen and kicker Dustin Hopkins on IR and by NFL rules can bring up to two players back before the season is over.
ESPN's Smith urges LaVar to stay away from games
With this LA vs. LA matchup for Ball's NBA debut, it's a good bet that LaVar Ball will be in attendance. If it were up to Stephen A Smith, LaVar would stay home. During Thursday's First Take on ESPN, Smith relayed conversations he had with NBA players. He felt that the outlandish nature of LaVar will make Lonzo a target when he steps on the floor. If these players see LaVar in the stands, matters will only get worse for Lonzo.
Surging Saints march into Lambeau, face Rodgers-less Packers
Third-year pro Brett Hundley will make his first NFL start in place of the injured Aaron Rodgers when Green Bay hosts the rejuvenated Saints. GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) - This was supposed to be one of those marquee NFL games that would be dominated by the quarterbacks. Potential Hall of Famers Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers facing off at Lambeau Field. I'd rather do that than prepare for Superman, said Kenny Vaccaro, referring to Rodgers and his penchant for late-game heroics.
Cardinals, Rams travel far for big NFC West matchup
The Arizona Cardinals are preparing for an NFL regular season game against the Los Angeles Rams in London on Sunday. The Arizona Cardinals and Los Angeles Rams normally play their home games 371 miles apart, but they are traveling thousands of miles across the Atlantic for their important NFC West matchup on Sunday. Obviously, it's a very big game, a division game, Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said. It's the first time that we've faced the Rams this year, and they're playing extremely well.
Saints Ramczyk quickly adjust to protecting Brees' blindside
- Ryan Ramczyk wasn't expecting to be thrust into the role of protecting Drew Brees' blindside. He has moved up and down the Saints offensive line, and they have needed all of Ramczyk's versatility. New Orleans selected the Wisconsin tackle with the final pick of the first round in the NFL draft nearly six months ago. Up next for the Saints (3-2), who have three in a row, are the Green Bay Packers - the team Ramczyk idolized as a youngster.
Will ALCS off day zap Yankees momentum like it did Astros?
HOUSTON (AP) - Joe Girardi says the New York Yankees would have preferred not having a day off Thursday after winning three straight home games to take a 3-2 lead in the AL Championship Series. The Astros won the first two ALCS games at home last week before an off day stopped their momentum. I think the script, how it played between Game 2 and 3, should play perfectly between Game 5 and 6, Hinch said.
Tigers reportedly set to hire Ron Gardenhire as manager
The Detroit Tigers have reportedly settled on veteran Ron Gardenhire as their new manager. The Athletic reported that the Tigers, who interviewed Gardenhire on Tuesday, and Gardenhire have reached agreement for the 59-year-old to replace Brad Ausmus as their manager, needing only to work out contract details. Gardenhire spent 13 seasons as the Minnesota Twins manager, leading the small-market club to six American League Central championships between 2002-2014.
White House snub of South Carolina women's basketball draws strong reaction
CLOSE A collection of SEC coaches shared their thoughts on South Carolina not receiving an invitation to the White House following the team's national championship win. Vanderbilt women's basketball coach Stephanie White said it was a slap in the face that President Donald Trump had not invited the South Carolina national title team to the White House.
Redskins hope to cut Eagles' lead in NFC East
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - If the Washington Redskins are going to make a run at the NFC East title, they have to beat the Philadelphia Eagles on Monday night. The Redskins (3-2) already lost to the Eagles (5-1) at home in Week 1 so another loss drastically reduces their chances. We've got to measure ourselves against really good football teams, and the Eagles certainly are one. Carson Wentz has been outstanding in his second season, and the offense has balance thanks to LeGarrette Blount's tough running.
Bucs' Fitzpatrick in familiar spot with chance to face Bills
ORCHARD PARK, NY (AP) - Having a rocket scientist for a father and a Harvard education doesn't prevent Ryan Fitzpatrick from being superstitious. Then there was 2015, when Fitzpatrick landed the Jets' starting job after Geno Smith had his jaw broken by teammate IK Enemkpali. Fitzpatrick would not have gotten this opportunity after he contemplated retiring following a dreadful season with the Jets. I still love being out there, Fitzpatrick said after going 22 of 32 for 290 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions.
Broncos excited about boost Jake Butt will provide
(AP) - Trevor Siemian broke into a wide grin when asked about seeing Jake Butt line up and finally run some routes this week. Butt can open up the middle of the field, take pressure off Demaryius Thomas and help the offensive line keep Siemian safe. More than nine months after undergoing surgery to repair his torn ACL, Butt made his practice debut this week. The Broncos (3-2) can activate him anytime but it's almost certain he won't play Sunday against the Chargers (2-4).
Lyon player punched by supporter holding child at Everton
LIVERPOOL, England (AP) - Everton could face punishment from UEFA after a fan holding a child appeared to aim a punch at a Lyon player during a second-half melee at a Europa League game at Goodison Park. Everton captain Ashley Williams' push on goalkeeper Anthony Lopes ignited a heated confrontation between several Everton and Lyon players which continued off the pitch and in front of the Howard Kendall Gwladys Street End.
Keenum, Flacco with role reversals for Vikings and Ravens
Minnesota Vikings quarterback Case Keenum (7) throws before an NFL football game against the Green Bay Packers in Minneapolis, Sunday, Oct 15, 2017. At 6-foot-6, Joe Flacco is the statuesque, Super Bowl-winning quarterback who has been unquestioned starter in Baltimore for the last decade. Keenum is playing the best football of his life and has revived the Vikings' playoff hopes while filling in for the injured Sam Bradford.
Marshawn Lynch had a blast doing the voiceover for Darth Vader
Marshawn Lynch got the help of the supervising sound editor and designer at Skywalker Sound to do the voiceover for Darth Vader in one of the Star Wars movies in the second episode of No Script, his Facebook reality show produced by Bleacher Report. For a moment, Lynch became Darth Vader. The Raiders running back had just as much fun with this as he had driving the race car in the first episode.

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