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Kyle Orton reportedly did not get along with Tony Romo

Tony Romo Kyle Orton

Kyle Orton forced his way out of Dallas over the offseason and ended up signing with the Buffalo Bills, for whom he is now the starter. One report suggests that Orton’s poor relationship with Tony Romo was a factor in his decision to force his way out.

Here’s what ESPN’s Ed Werder tweeted on Tuesday:

Orton, who started and lost in Week 17 last year with a chance to get the Cowboys into the playoffs, threatened to retire in order to get Dallas to release him. After E.J. Manuel struggled in the preseason, the desperate Bills signed him to a two-year, $11 million deal. They’ve already installed him as their starter.

In addition to reportedly having a bad relationship with Romo, The Dallas Morning News’ Rick Gosselin said earlier this month that it appeared Orton grew tired of the circus in Dallas. All in all, we could sum up Orton’s time with the Cowboys by simply saying it was a poor fit.

H/T Dallas News

Could Jon Gruden return to Raiders as head coach?

Jon Gruden Raiders

The Oakland Raiders have not had a winning season since 2002 and are still searching for a head coach who can help them return to the success they had in the early-2000s. Might they consider hiring the man who is responsible for those successful seasons as their next head coach?

After firing Dennis Allen on Monday night following an 0-4 start, Raiders owner Mark Davis said at a press conference Tuesday that Jon Gruden will be in the mix for the team’s head coaching job.

Here’s how the exchange went between Davis and reporters:

-Q: Do you plan on reaching out to Jon Gruden to coach this team?

-DAVIS: I don’t know. He may reach out to me, I may reach out to him. I may reach out to anybody. That’s the future and I’m not going to talk about future coaches.

-Q: Does Reggie [McKenzie] have the ability to reach out to a Jon Gruden or whoever?

-DAVIS: He has the ability to reach out to people–he’s the general manager of the Raiders and he’s able to do that.

Davis could have outright dismissed the possibility, but it’s telling that he will consider it.

The Raiders already have Tony Sparano as their interim head coach, and Davis told the media that the team’s next head coach could already be in the organization, but you have to figure that they will go for a home run this time. They’re on their ninth coach! Ninth! since trading Gruden to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. They can’t afford to screw it up again.

The obvious question becomes: would Gruden be interested in the position?

Though his name has come up in connection with multiple college and NFL coaching jobs since being fired after the 2008 season, Gruden has remained out of the coaching profession and instead insists he enjoys his position as a broadcaster for ESPN. However, Gruden, 51, is still young and could probably be one of the better coaches in the league if he ever took a job.

Also take this into consideration, via NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport:

NFL Network also reports that Davis is willing to pay Gruden a lot of money to get him out of the broadcast booth.

And here’s reporter Jim Trotter, who closely profiled the Raiders for SI a few years ago:

It sounds like this is a legitimate possibility, though we wouldn’t say it seems likely to happen.

Geno Smith reportedly got into ‘altercations’ at bars during offseason

Geno Smith JetsGeno Smith has struggled on the field since the New York Jets named him their starting quarterback last season. In 20 career games, Smith has just 16 touchdown passes and a whopping 26 interceptions. He has also fumbled six times and has a career passer rating of 68.5. Believe it or not, the Jets may be more concerned with Smith’s behavior off the field than they are with his performance on it.

According to Bleacher Report’s Jason Cole, questions about Smith’s character arose long before he shouted an F-bomb at a heckling fan on Sunday.

“One of the things that happened during the offseason is Geno Smith got into scuffles at bars,” Cole reported on Tuesday. “I wouldn’t say they were physical altercations, but verbal altercations at minimum. It makes people wonder what kind of patience he has.

“Now with the incident that happened (on Sunday), the Jets are wondering does Geno Smith have the patience, does he have the personality to handle the pressure of playing in New York. This goes beyond playing.”

Cole also pointed out how Smith left the NFL Draft last year and was initially not planning to come back for the second round after he was crushed that he didn’t get drafted in the first. If he can’t handle the disappointment of slipping down a draft board, is he capable of handling the criticism that goes along with being an NFL quarterback in a major city?

While Rex Ryan has continuously shown support for Smith (like he did with Mark Sanchez), there’s a reason the Jets signed Michael Vick this past offseason. In addition to being a veteran backup, Vick also has starting experience and has won at the NFL level. If Smith continues to struggle on the field and/or makes any other poor decisions off of it, we could see Vick sooner rather than later.

Tom Brady among most-dropped quarterbacks in fantasy football

Tom Brady dropped

What do Tom Brady, Kirk Cousins, E.J. Manuel, Derek Carr and Blake Bortles all have in common? They were among the most-dropped quarterbacks in Yahoo! Fantasy Football this week.

Andy Behrens, who is a fantasy sports analyst for Yahoo, tweeted a screenshot of the image seen above that shows the transaction trends for fantasy quarterbacks.

The most action has involved Cousins, who replaced the injured Robert Griffin III, put up big numbers against the Jags and Eagles, and then had a stinker on Thursday night against the Giants. Second on the list is Brady, who has been one of the most added/dropped/traded quarterbacks.

It’s hard to see this as anything other than shocking.

From 2007-2013 (excluding the 2008 knee injury season), Brady was a fantasy stud and the kind of quarterback who could anchor a championship team. There were signs of a statistical drop-off last year, but he still threw for 4,343 yards and 25 touchdowns. Through four games this season, Brady has thrown for just 791 yards and four touchdowns, which sets him on pace for a pedestrian 3,164 yards and 16 touchdowns. Even Mark Sanchez put up better numbers than that when he was the Jets’ starting quarterback.

We fully expect Brady to get better, but there are still plenty of other more appealing fantasy options at quarterback. The drops are surprising but justifiable.

Ryan Fitzpatrick was so fired up in speech before the Bills game (Video)

I bet you didn’t know that Ryan Fitpatrick could get this hyped before a game. I sure didn’t.

Sunday’s Houston Texans-Buffalo Bills game meant a little extra for Fitzpatrick, who played for the Bills from 2009-2012. He expressed that notion in a speech to his teammates prior to the game.

Fitz got so excited I thought he was going to pass out from losing circulation to his head. Either that, or it looked like his head was going to pop off and fly away like a balloon. The “Amish Rifle” didn’t play too well — he went 25/37 for 268 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions in the win — but he had to be satisfied with the result.

I sure know I’m happy we got to see what it’s like when Fitz loses his mind. Who knew he had that in him?

Ryan Fitzpatrick Texans beard

H/T Deadspin

Matt Hasselbeck emails Colts’ Stanford graduates to help his 6th-grade daughter with math homework

Matt Hasselbeck revealed the true reason why he’s on the Indianapolis Colts’ roster: to get preferred tutoring for his 6th-grade daughter.

Colts starting quarterback Andrew Luck was a guest on ESPN’s “NFL Live” on Tuesday and confirmed that Hasselbeck emails the team’s Stanford graduates to provide math homework assistance for his daughter. The question came thanks to inside information from Tim Hasselbeck, who is Matt’s brother.

Including Luck, the Colts have four players on their team who went to Stanford. The others are wide receiver Griff Whalen, tight end Coby Fleener and safety Delano Howell.

Between the four of them, someone should be able to answer the questions.

As if worrying about NFL opponents, getting the playbook down and each week’s game plan weren’t enough, now Colts players have to worry about helping Hasselbeck’s daughter on her math homework. Lovely.

I bet things in the Colts’ locker room are a little big like this:

Also in the interview, Luck confirmed he still uses a flip phone and said that Kyle Orton wears the neck beard better than he does.

Andrew Luck flip phone

Raiders fired Dennis Allen over the phone

Dennis-AllenThe Oakland Raiders fired head coach Dennis Allen on Monday night — one day after his team returned from London with an 0-4 record. The move was one that everyone knew was coming, especially after an AP reporter tweeted (and then deleted) on Sunday night that the Raiders had decided to let Allen go and would likely make the announcement this week.

Yet even after that report was out there and speculation was building by the minute, the Raiders still chose to fire Allen over the phone.

No one is going to argue that Oakland should have held onto Allen. The Raiders have lost 10 consecutive games dating back to last season and Allen is 8-28 as coach of the team. He has been in Oakland since 2012 and the Raiders look no better now than they did then.

Having said that, I’m not sure why the team couldn’t call a meeting with Allen to give him a chance to look the Raiders’ brass in the eye and thank them for the opportunity. Mark Davis and company must have gotten advice from Rory McIlroy on how to end a lengthy relationship.