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Thursday, July 20, 2017

Football

Aaron Rodgers defends Mike McCarthy against criticism

Aaron Rodgers is defending his head coach against criticism from outsiders. Well, in this case, a specific outsider.

Greg Jennings, who played from the Packers from 2006-2012, has been critical of the team since his departure. His most recent comments were aimed at Mike McCarthy.

“If we had a lead, our issue wasn’t the defense, our issue was Mike McCarthy,” Jennings said on FS1’s “Undisputed” last week. “He would cuff us. When you watch New England play, when they have a lead, they go for your throat, they don’t relax.”

Rodgers didn’t even see Jennings’ comments but nevertheless defended his coach to TODAY’S TMJ4’s Lance Allan.

“I’ve made it pretty well known how I feel about Mike,” Rodgers said. “He’s our leader and…we follow his lead and we love Mike. We believe in him, and he believes in us, and so we got his back.”

Jennings was a two-time Pro Bowler before leaving for the rival Vikings. In his first year after leaving Green Bay, Jennings was critical of Rodgers’ leadership and the Packers in general. Rodgers is probably tired of responding to his former wide receiver at this point.

OJ Simpson will receive NFL pension upon release from prison

OJ Simpson

O.J. Simpson could be in line for $300,000 a year no matter what he does, thanks to his NFL pension plan.

Simpson, who was granted parole on Thursday, will receive a pension that could total up to $25,000 a year no matter what, upon his release from prison, via Brad Tuttle of Time. He is also entitled to a Screen Actors Guild pension.

While Simpson still owes millions after being found liable for the deaths of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman, that pension will almost certainly not be taken away.

“Pensions are bullet proof,” David Cook, Ron Goldman’s father’s attorney, told Fox News. “Absent divine intervention, they are nearly impossible to topple. This is frustrating.”

Simpson has reportedly saved up a lot of other money, too.

Whatever the case, he shouldn’t be hurting for cash when freed.

Tony Romo thinks Ezekiel Elliott will ‘be fine’

Ezekiel Elliott

Former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo is backing running back Ezekiel Elliott to get himself straightened out.

The second-year running back has been embroiled in legal trouble, but Romo, speaking to 105.3 The Fan’s Ben and Skin, chalked Elliott’s issues up to making bad choices at a young age, and he firmly believes Elliott will figure things out eventually.

Elliott received some good legal news on Wednesday, but he is by no means out of the woods yet, particularly with NFL investigators. It’s clear, though, that Romo, having spent a year in a locker room with him, is a fan.

NFL scout: Bill Belichick thinks Jimmy Garoppolo is ‘the next great one’

Jimmy Garoppolo

The New England Patriots stubbornly refused to trade backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo over the offseason, and one NFL scout thinks he knows why.

Speaking on the condition of anonymity, the AFC scout told Mike Giardi of CSN New England that he thinks the Patriots’ refusal to deal Garoppolo is down to coach Bill Belichick believing he has the next great New England quarterback.

“He’s Bill Belichick. He doesn’t give a [damn] about what you, or me or anyone else thinks,” the scout said. “I know teams called about Garoppolo. I don’t believe they were ever given a realistic price. Why? To me, the answer is simple: Bill thinks he’s got the next great one. I watched his snaps. I think he can be that. [Garoppolo] has a great base, and his mechanics are close enough to [Brady] that you appreciate his willingness to learn and the coaching he’s gotten there.”

One team’s attempts to deal for Garoppolo were repeatedly rebuffed by the Patriots. Belichick is, quite obviously, a big believer.

Tony Romo says he is ‘99.9 percent done’ with NFL

Tony Romo

Tony Romo won’t completely close the door on his NFL career.

The former Dallas Cowboys quarterback told 105.3 The Fan’s Ben and Skin Show that he is “99.9 percent done” playing in the NFL.

Romo retired during the offseason and took up a position on CBS’s lead NFL broadcast team.

Romo has said before he’s done. This isn’t a total repudiation of this, but he’s going to some lengths to keep his options open. Is he likely retired? Yes. But he’s certainly willing to keep just that flicker of hope alive for everyone.

OJ Simpson granted parole, will be released from prison in October

OJ Simpson

OJ Simpson was granted parole from a Nevada parole board on Thursday, and the Hall of Fame running back is expected to be released from prison in October.

Simpson was convicted of 12 charges related to robbery and kidnapping in a sports memorabilia heist back in 2008. He has served roughly nine years of a sentence that was nine to 33 years.

While he was not convicted of the murders of his ex-wife Nicole Brown and her friend Ron Goldman in 1995, Simpson did lose a civil suit stemming from the case and has been ordered to pay $33.5 million in damages. He still owes much of that money and will be responsible for paying it back, though he could have a source of income from the NFL that cannot be touched in civil court.

Simpson, 70, could be set free as early as Oct. 1.

Twitter reacts to parole board member wearing Chiefs tie at OJ Simpson’s hearing

OJ Simpson appeared in front of a Nevada parole board on Thursday, and one of the board members was apparently a big NFL fan.

In what was truly one of those “you have to see it to believe it” moments, a parole board member at Simpson’s hearing was wearing a Kansas City Chiefs tie. That’s right, a grown man sitting on a parole board wearing an NFL-themed tie.

You have to wonder what the motivation was. Was the man trying to troll Simpson, who had a Hall of Fame career with the Buffalo Bills? Does he wear NFL-themed dress attire all the time? Did he know the hearing would be nationally televised and couldn’t turn down the opportunity to showcase his allegiance? So many questions.

Twitter, of course, had plenty of opinions.

As expected, the parole hearing was a media spectacle. That board member knew that’s exactly what was going to happen, so it’s amazing he chose to rock a Chiefs tie. If Simpson gets out and chooses the career path some people believe he could choose, Chiefs tie guy should make a guest appearance.

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