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Jon Gruden on Raiders job: ‘I’m not thinking about coaching’

Jon Gruden Raiders

Jon Gruden is the most high-profile name linked to the Oakland Raiders in the wake of the team’s decision to fire head coach Dennis Allen. If Gruden has any interest in the vacancy, he is keeping it to himself.

During a chat with “Mike and Mike in the Morning” on Wednesday, Gruden joked that he appreciates sports bloggers always linking his name to head coaching jobs but is only focused on his career as an ESPN broadcaster at the moment.

“I appreciate those seven or eight bloggers who bring my name up every year when there’s a coaching job,” Gruden said. “I’m just trying to hang onto my job. It’s four weeks into the season. Some of these teams haven’t even played (four) games yet, so I’m not really thinking about coaching. I’m thinking about heading to Washington next week to watch the world champions (Seattle Seahawks) and my brother coach.”

That’s the exact type of non-answer we would expect him to give, but it should be noted that sports bloggers aren’t the only ones linking Gruden’s name to Oakland. Raiders owner Mark Davis even admitted on Tuesday that Gruden is in the mix for the job and that the team could be in contact with him in the future.

While it’s only natural to link Gruden to Oakland because he had success there in his first stint with the Raiders, he would be a candidate for any vacant job in the league if he chose to return to coaching. Some teams would probably open up a vacancy for Gruden if they were convinced he was going to return. Despite what Rich Gannon said last year about the Raiders being in the mix, there are probably plenty of other opportunities out there that would be more enticing.

Tom Brady: I was happy for Jimmy Garoppolo

Jimmy-GaroppoloNew England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was asked on Wednesday if he intentionally ignored rookie Jimmy Garoppolo when Garoppolo came off the field against the Kansas City Chiefs after completing 6-of-7 passes and throwing a touchdown pass to Rob Gronkowski. In typical Patriot Way fashion, he didn’t really answer the question.

Instead, Brady insisted during his weekly appearance on WEEI Radio that he was “happy” for Garoppolo and wasn’t really paying attention to anything else.

“I’m really not [aware of the cameras],” Brady said, as transcribed by ESPNBoston.com. “When we lose there’s really not a lot — even when we win, I think it’s just important to not ride the roller coaster of emotions. You have to believe in your process. You have to believe in the things that you are doing to help the team win. I think you have to take the good with the bad.

“I was happy for Jimmy. I was happy for our team. We kept fighting at the end. That’s a good thing. The more good players we have, the better we will be as a team. So, I didn’t pay attention to any of those things. I was obviously disappointed that the outcome of the game was what it was. It’s been very frustrating all season the way that we have performed offensively. But we are trying to figure it out to become a better offense.”

[Also see: Jay Glazer rips Donovan McNabb for his thoughts on Tom Brady]

Ben Volin of the Boston Globe reported after Monday’s game that Brady handed out a few halfhearted high-fives to other teammates but appeared to steer clear of Garoppolo. Was that intentional? Probably not.

No matter what people want to tell you about Brady going soft since he married Gisele Bundchen, the guy is an intense competitor. Maybe he was giving Garoppolo the rookie treatment to send a message that he hasn’t earned anything yet. Or maybe he was just furious his team got embarrassed in a primetime game and wasn’t paying attention. Or, like we said before, perhaps Brady is angry Garoppolo has already stolen this crown from him.

Steve Smith to Panthers: Take your a– back to Carolina and mow my lawn (Video)

Steve Smith RavensSteve Smith promised after the Carolina Panthers released him over the winter that he would bring his A-game if he ever got a chance to face his former team, and boy did he deliver. After catching seven passes for 139 yards and two touchdowns in the Baltimore Ravens’ win, Smith said he was an old man running circles around “schoolyard kids” and vowed to smash the NFL’s record for a 35-year-old receiver. What he said during the game was even more legendary.

During Inside the NFL’s recap of the Panthers-Ravens game on Showtime this week, Smith was shown acting like he was hammering in a nail. Here was the commentary he provided along with it.

“This is a nail in their coffin. You’re dead,” Smith said emphatically. “Now take your ass back to Carolina. Make sure you mow my lawn, too, while you’re out there. Keep it clean for me.”

[WATCH: Steve Smith catches tipped pass for long TD against Panthers]

Is this guy the best or what? There may be no better trash talker in the NFL than Smith, and he clearly hasn’t lost his edge in the twilight years of his career. The way he called out the Panthers after his first touchdown with the Ravens earlier this year was even more intense. Even if Smith’s skills are declining, he more than makes up for it by being such a gamer.

Video via Black and Blue Review

Ned Yost was bunting in his baseball card

Ned-Yost-bunting-card

Kansas City Royals manager Ned Yost called for four sacrifice bunts during his team’s wild-card win over the Oakland A’s on Tuesday night. Calling for that many bunts in today’s game is almost unheard of, but Yost likes bunting more than a lot of other managers. He apparently liked it during his play days as well.

RotoAnalysis.com shared a perfectly timed photo on Twitter after Tuesday night’s game that showed what Yost’s Topps baseball card looked like when he played for the Milwaukee Brewers in the early 1980s. Guess what he was doing in the photo. Yup, dropping down a bunt.

Yost made quite a few unpopular decisions during Kansas City’s improbable comeback — just ask Pedro Martinez what he thought about one of the pitching changes. I’m sure there were some who felt he should have bunted less, but it all worked out in the end. A win is a win, as they say.

Bill Burr: Women are trying to take over the NFL, are jealous of men (Video)

Bill-BurrComedian Bill Burr was a guest on Conan O’Brien’s show Tuesday night, and he offered an interesting take on female NFL fans. I’m guessing most female football fans won’t find it all that humorous.

While Burr was discussing his football-watching schedule (he DVRs games so he has an NFL game to watch almost every single night of the week), he touched on why he feels women are trying to take over the NFL.

“You know what makes women happy? Nothing,” Burr said. “And that is why they are slowly taking over the NFL. Because it annoys them that we can sit there with pizza and a drink like, ‘That’s not holding!’ and enjoy ourselves.”

It sounded like Burr was only ragging on women, but he was also calling men dumb.

“They’re jealous of how simple the male brain can be,” he added. “We can just sit there and find true happiness and it bugs them, so they have to try and ruin it.”

My wife would tell you that football brings me the opposite of true happiness, but that’s because I’m currently rooting for the Patriots offense, have two fantasy football teams, make weekly NFL picks and may or may not place a small wager every now and then. That’s a perfect formula for sadness. I need some of whatever Burr is sipping on.

Video via SI Hot Clicks

Pedro Martinez rips Ned Yost after Royals win

Ned YostThe Kansas City Royals walked off with a win against the Oakland A’s on Tuesday night in dramatic fashion to win the first wild-card game of the 2014 MLB postseason. Pedro Martinez feels that the Royals won in spite of manager Ned Yost, not because of him.

Martinez, who works as an analyst for TBS during the playoffs, blasted Yost after the game for bringing in Yordano Ventura to replace James Shields in the sixth inning rather than turning to a relief pitcher. Deadspin has a video of Pedro making the comments on TV, and the former Cy Young winner basically repeated his argument on Twitter:

I think we can all agree with Martinez that Yost would have been crucified if the Royals didn’t come from behind in incredible fashion. Ventura, who pitched just 1/3 of an inning and gave up two runs, threw 73 pitches in a win over the Chicago White Sox on Sunday. It would have made more sense if Yost replaced Shields with a fellow starter if he was pulling Shields in the first or second inning, but why not trust your bullpen at that point?

To say clutch hitting bailed Yost out would be a massive understatement.

Previously: MLB.com publishes wrong story saying A’s beat Royals

Aaron Rodgers says smoking hand gesture was tribute to Jay Cutler

Aaron-Rodgers-smoking-signalIf you have watched the Green Bay Packers in their no-huddle offense at all over the past two seasons, you may have noticed Aaron Rodgers making a smoking gesture with one of his hand signals. It obviously indicates some sort of play call or formation change, but Rodgers wants you to believe he did it on Sunday just for Jay Cutler.

Rodgers is obviously aware of the hilarious ‘Smokin’ Jay Cutler’ meme that hit the internet two years ago and is still going strong. When asked what the smoking signal means during his weekly radio spot on ESPN Wisconsin, Rodgers claimed it was influenced by Cutler.

“That was just a tribute to Jay Cutler, because there’s that ‘Smoking Jay’ web site,” Rodgers said. “So I was just doing a tribute to Jay.”

Cutler and Rodgers are friends, but we know Aaron’s full of crap. Rodgers has been using that hand signal for a while — he just happened to play the Bears last weekend. When pressed further by co-host Jason Wilde, Rodgers tried to say the smoking gesture is just a “dummy” signal.

“It’s a dummy signal,” he said. “That’s the whole thing. You know, like, smoking dope — you’re a dummy if you smoke dope.”

Once again, Rodgers is full of crap. But anything that brings ‘Smokin’ Jay Cutler’ into the spotlight is more than OK with us.

H/T The Big Lead