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Tuesday, August 14, 2018

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Todd Bowles: Terrelle Pryor ‘should keep his mouth shut’ about injuries

Terrelle Pryor

Terrelle Pryor has been battling an ankle injury throughout the offseason, and he decided to disclose the severity of the injury while speaking with the media on Monday. New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles wishes the receiver had not done that.

On Tuesday, Bowles was asked about Pryor revealing that he suffered a broken ankle in May. Bowles basically ripped Pryor and said he has already received an earful about it.

There had been reports that Pryor underwent some type of procedure during the offseason, but the details were unknown. Like many other coaches across the NFL, Bowles clearly would have preferred to keep it that way. As ESPN’s Rich Cimini noted, Pryor could even be fined by the Jets for being so loose-lipped.

Pryor previously blamed his down season in 2017 on an injury, so Bowles must have wanted to put an end to him being so open and honest about his ailments.

Eagles coach shoots down report about Alshon Jeffery’s availability

Alshon Jeffery

Alshon Jeffery has been recovering from a rotator cuff injury that he played through all of last season, and a report earlier in the week indicated the star receiver may not be cleared in time for Week 1. Eagles coach Doug Pederson felt the need to address that report on Tuesday.

After initially telling reporters he was not going to comment on Jeffery’s status, Pederson couldn’t resist shooting down Ian Rapoport’s report that Jeffery could potentially begin the season on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list, which would mean sitting out through Week 6.

“You know what, I’m not going to comment on that because we’re monitoring his progress, it’s day-to-day, we’re happy where he’s at, and we’ll continue to do that,” Pederson said, per Jimmy Kempski of Philly Voice. “But I’m not sure where that came from.”

The fact that Jeffery played through all of 2017 with a significant shoulder injury and still performed the way he did speaks to his toughness. He caught nine touchdowns during the regular season and added another three in the playoffs en route to a Super Bowl win. While the Eagles have the depth needed to overcome playing without Jeffery, there’s no reason to rule him out for Week 1 just yet.

Report: DeVante Parker dealing with broken finger

The Miami Dolphins are hoping DeVante Parker will break out in his fourth NFL season now that Jarvis Landry is no longer with the team, but the wide receiver will need to take some time off to heal before he is ready to practice and play again.

On Tuesday, Dolphins head coach Adam Gase said Parker is considered week-to-week with an injury. Joe Schad of the Palm Beach Post reports that Parker has a broken middle finger, and the team hopes he is ready to return by Week 1.

Parker, a first-round pick in 2015, should have plenty of opportunities to make plays this season. However, he has reportedly been struggling in training camp and has been called out in the past for not playing through injuries. The Dolphins can only hope the finger injury doesn’t end up being a major setback.

Martin Prado calls out Marlins for being ‘comfortable’ with losing

The Miami Marlins have lived up to the expectation that they would be one of the worst teams in baseball in 2018, but one of the team’s veterans is not willing to excuse the lack of fight he has seen over the past month.

The Marlins, who are currently 48-73 and in last place in the NL East, have lost a whopping 16 of their last 21 games. As he heads to the disabled list with a quad injury, 34-year-old third baseman Martin Prado lit into his teammates for being “comfortable” with losing.

Losing has become an all too familiar concept for the Marlins and their fans, and you can’t blame Prado for feeling like his team has packed it in. Miami has traded away numerous veteran players and there are indications that others want out. It’s almost impossible to create a winning culture under those circumstances, and that is obviously taking its toll on Prado.

Carson Wentz shares update on his Week 1 availability

Carson Wentz

Carson Wentz has looked sharp during the offseason and appears to be on track to play in Week 1, but the star quarterback is not yet ready to declare himself a lock for the starting lineup.

In an interview with SportsRadio WIP94 on Tuesday, Wentz was asked how important it is for him to be available in Week 1. He said not missing any of the 2018 regular season has been his goal since he tore his ACL last December, but he admitted it’s “going to be close.”

“I obviously would love to be out there. That’s been my goal all offseason ever since the injury. It’s going to be close. It’s going to be close,” Wentz said, as transcribed by Dave Zangaro of NBC Sports Philadelphia. “I’m still eyeing that date. At the end of the day, it’s not just my decision. There’s coaches and doctors that really have the final say. I really like where I’m at and time will tell here.”

Wentz took part in 11-on-11 drills at the start of training camp, but his workload has decreased a bit since. He has done mostly 7-on-7 work since and says he has experienced no setbacks.

“My knee feels really good,” Wentz added. “Rehab and everything has been going great. Every day it feels a little better out there. I really like where I’m at so it’s just a be patient thing.”

There’s no reason to rush Wentz back, especially with Nick Foles still serving as the primary backup in Philly. While it seems like Wentz is ready to cut loose, Eagles head coach Doug Pederson indicated recently that the former first-round pick still has plenty of work to do.

Orlando Scandrick made $1 million for doing nothing with Redskins

Many NFL players have spoken out against the structure of the league’s contracts and called for fully guaranteed salaries like they have in the NBA and MLB, but Orlando Scandrick doesn’t have much to complain about.

Scandrick, who signed a two-year deal with the Washington Redskins back in March, is being released by the team. Since he got a $1 million signing bonus, he still gets to collect that money without ever playing a down in Washington.

In other words, Scandrick collected $1 million for taking part in some offseason workouts and a portion of training camp. While he obviously would prefer to be on the regular season roster with the Redskins, that’s pretty good work if you can get it.

Scandrick had some harsh criticism for the Dallas Cowboys after they released him, but there should be no hard feelings between him and a team that paid him $1 million for some practice time.

South Carolina president agrees with Will Muschamp’s criticism of Maryland report

Will Muschamp

Will Muschamp has taken some heat for the way he defended Maryland head coach D.J. Durkin in the wake of reports of player mistreatment and negligence, but his employer is standing behind him.

Over the weekend, Muschamp ripped ESPN for using anonymous sources to accuse Durkin of creating a “toxic culture” at Maryland.

“There’s no credibility in anonymous sources. If that former staffer had any guts, why didn’t he put his name on that? I think that’s gutless,” Muschamp said. “In any business, in any company, in any football team, especially right here in August, you can find a disgruntled player, that’s probably not playing. I think it’s a lack of journalistic integrity to print things with anonymous sources.”

On Monday, University of South Carolina president Harris Pastides said he would never defend what Durkin has been accused of but agreed with Muschamp’s stance on anonymous sources.

“I don’t think (Muschamp) ever said if the facts are flushed out and (Durkin) did something wrong that he would not be for whatever (Maryland) has to do,” Pastides told David Cloninger of The Post and Courier. “I heard him specifically be concerned about anonymous sources.

“And that’s a policy of ours as well. We’ll read anonymous reports, but it’s very, very hard if you don’t have the backing of someone who stands up and says, ‘This is me. I saw it, I heard it, I smelled it,’ to really know what to do. And the other thing is really loyalty from a coach who knew the other individual.”

The most concerning aspect of ESPN’s report on Durkin suggests Maryland showed negligence in the death of 19-year-old offensive lineman Jordan McNair, who had a seizure while taking part in intense workouts on a hot day. Muschamp said Monday that his thoughts are with the McNair family, but he did not apologize for taking aim at the reporting about Durkin.

Durkin served as an assistant under Muschamp at Florida, so the two have a history together. Durkin has been placed on administrative leave as Maryland investigates the disturbing allegations against him.

Nationals manager completely lost after bullpen blows another game

Washington Nationals

Washington Nationals manager Dave Martinez is at a total loss with how to manage his bullpen after they blew yet another game.

The Nats lost 7-6 to the St. Louis Cardinals on Monday on a walk-off home run by Paul DeJong. That was the second straight game the Nats lost in a walk-off and third in four games that the bullpen blew. After the defeat, Martinez said he didn’t know what else to do about the bullpen.

The Nats just haven’t seemed to be able to put it together this season despite having a potential Cy Young and Rookie of the Year on their team. The bullpen was supposed to be a strength, but injuries to Sean Doolittle and Kelvin Herrera have hurt the club. Ryan Madson, who gave up the walk-off grand slam on Sunday, is also hurt.

On top of the injuries, the Nats shockingly traded one of their other relievers, and the GM cut another player after a tantrum on the mound. It’s all coming back to bite the Nats in a big way.

Ice Cube has approached Kobe Bryant about playing in BIG3

If Kobe Bryant ever wants to get back to playing competitive basketball again, one prominent fellow Angeleno may have just the opportunity for him.

In an appearance Monday on FOX Sports Radio’s “The Rich Eisen Show,” entertainment mogul Ice Cube said that he has pitched Bryant on playing in his BIG3 basketball league. Ice Cube did add though that the retired 18-time All-Star has turned down all of his overtures but also that he would continue trying, per Ryan Ward of ClutchPoints.

Bryant will be turning 40 years old later this month. He has been retired for the last two years now after playing 20 seasons in the NBA.

As for the BIG3, a three-on-three halfcourt league, it has already seen notable cameos from other retired NBA players, including this ex-Bryant teammate.

Eight NFL players making noise in training camp

Sam Darnold

While we are only a game into the NFL preseason, we have seen enough of training camp and game action to know who’s really starting to make an impression on coaches and teammates. A lot of the players are rookies, but some veterans and post-hype players are standing out as well. These players are standing in terms of how they’ve done in games, how they’ve looked in practice, and even how they interact with their teammates.

Here’s a look at eight NFL players making some noise early on in training camp.

Saquon Barkley, RB, Giants

Everyone expected Barkley to be great, and he certainly has been. All you need to do is watch his first preseason carry and you’ll see the skill he brings to the table. Barkley appears to have energized Giants camp; he looked very impressive in his first preseason game, and they’re putting a lot of responsibility on his shoulders considering he’s a rookie. He looks ready to handle it all.

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