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Thursday, April 27, 2017

Football

Sam Bradford has better things to do than watch the draft

Sam Bradford

Millions of NFL fans will be tuned into TVs, radios, phones, and other devices on Thursday night to see what their team does in the draft. But Sam Bradford will not be among them.

According to the St. Paul Pioneer Press’ Chris Tomasson, the Minnesota Vikings quarterback will not be watching the draft because he doesn’t find watching it to be very fun.

That’s fair. There are some players who have passed up on a chance to attend the draft because they’d rather do other things.

Bradford probably figures there’s no reason to watch the show for hours when he can just find out later what he missed, especially since the Vikings don’t have a first-round pick.

Marshawn Lynch leaves Raiders facility wearing helmet

Marshawn Lynch

Marshawn Lynch has not hid his enthusiasm at about now being a member of the Raiders.

Earlier in the day on Wednesday, the Raiders announced they had officially acquired the five-time Pro Bowl running back. Shortly after, the team shared a behind the scenes video of its newest acquisition via Twitter and Lynch’s excitement is certainly evident. Take a look.

Perhaps the biggest smile came when Lynch got to hold and put on his new helmet. Lynch apparently loved having it in his possession so much he left the Raiders facility with it on his head.

Lynch is an Oakland native and, despite sitting out last season, the opportunity to play for his hometown team was too enticing to let pass by. It’s obvious he loves wearing the silver and black and it’s a safe bet Raiders Nation will love seeing him wear it.

Marshawn Lynch gets Charles Woodson’s blessing to wear No. 24

Marshawn Lynch will have his preferred number on his Raiders jersey and that’s fine with one of the more beloved players in franchise history.

After much speculation, Lynch is now officially a member of the Raiders after the team agreed to a trade with the Seahawks that included the exchanging of draft picks. The 31-year-old running back announced his return to the NFL in the most Marshawn Lynch way possible. If you didn’t see what he did, you can here.

With his status as a member of Raiders confirmed, the next order of business was the uniform number. Lynch wore No. 24 while with the Seahawks. However, around Oakland, that number belonged to Charles Woodson. It now belongs to Lynch, as Woodson is okay with Lynch donning the number he proudly wore with the silver and black.

Woodson spent 11 seasons of what will be a Hall of Fame career with the Raiders and wore No. 24 during both stints with Oakland. It will likely be retired one day, but for now No. 24 will once again be in use.

JJ Watt offers to help pay Rockets owner’s fine

JJ Watt

Houston Rockets owner Les Alexander has enough money in his fortune where a $100,000 fine should mean very little to him, but there are some powerful people ready to help him take care of it anyhow.

Texans star JJ Watt sent a tweet on Wednesday, a few hours after the NBA announced Alexander’s fine, in which he offered to help pay for the fine:

Houston sports fans already love Watt, but things like this will just further endear him to his home fans.

Alexander was fined his money for approaching a referee to seemingly complain about a no-call during Game 5 of the Rockets-Thunder series on Tuesday night (video here).

Emmanuel Sanders: Paxton Lynch looks ‘more relaxed’ in second season

Paxton Lynch

Paxton Lynch will be trying to take the Denver Broncos quarterback job away from Trevor Siemian, and he has one positive review so far.

Broncos wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders had praise for both quarterbacks, noting that Lynch has lost the “deer in the headlights” look that plagued him during his rookie season.

“I was just watching Trevor [Siemian] walk around and he’s walking around with that same confidence,” Sanders said Wednesday, via Mike Florio of ProFootballTalk. “You put him in the shotgun, and he can sling it around. You see Paxton [Lynch] and you see an opportunity at hand being a young guy last year.

“Paxton was like that deer in the headlights, walking around big-eyed. Now, he’s more relaxed. It’s going to be interesting to see how Paxton takes his second year. Hopefully he gets that Memphis swag back. [We’ll] see those two guys compete and see who wins the job.”

Lynch has faced some questions, albeit disputed ones, about his work ethic. He and Siemian are both getting good reviews from one of the team’s top receivers, though, and it seems he’ll have every chance to win the job before the season begins.

Jay Gruden hints Redskins may move on from Matt Jones

Matt Jones RB

Just two years after being drafted by the Redskins in the third round, Matt Jones may be a goner in Washington.

According to Rich Tandler of CSN Mid-Atlantic, Jay Gruden had high praise on Wednesday for starting running back Rob Kelley and also complimented backups Chris Thompson and Mack Brown. But when it came to Jones, Gruden merely acknowledged that he was “still on the roster” and “didn’t have much good to say about him.”

Jones, 24, appeared in just seven games for the Redskins in 2016, rushing for 460 yards and three touchdowns before being usurped by Kelley as the lead back towards the second half of the season. While Jones once seemed poised to take over the Redskins’ backfield reins post-Alfred Morris, he has struggled with consistency and playmaking, and the Redskins don’t seem willing to give Jones the opportunity for further development with better options available.

Mickey Loomis: No Malcolm Butler discussions ‘for quite some time’

Malcolm Butler

The New Orleans Saints continue to downplay their chances of getting New England Patriots cornerback Malcolm Butler.

General manager Mickey Loomis didn’t rule out bringing Butler in on Wednesday, but he also made it clear it’s not a top priority.

“We haven’t really had any discussion for quite some time,” Loomis said, via Nick Underwood of the New Orleans Advocate. “Look, he’s their player. So, we’ll see how that evolves.”

Ultimately, the Saints would have to give up a fair bit in draft picks if they’re serious about acquiring Butler. Reportedly, they’re leaning against doing it. One can hardly blame them when seeing the potential asking price, and with the draft looming, this ship looks like it’s sailed barring an unexpected eleventh hour change.

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