Free agent shortstop Manny Machado’s market is strong as we move toward the MLB Winter Meetings.
According to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic, six teams have registered their interest in Machado. Three of them — the Chicago White Sox, New York Yankees, and Philadelphia Phillies — are known commodities. Rosenthal adds, however, that at least three other teams have voiced their preliminary interest.
It’s not just the #Phillies, #WhiteSox and #Yankees that have interest in Manny Machado. One rival executive hears at least three other teams are in the mix and will meet with Machado’s agent, Dan Lozano, at the winter meetings.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) December 8, 2018
While some believe they know where Machado will land, they’re all just guesses, especially with so many unknown suitors lurking. He’s exceedingly likely to get one of the two biggest deals handed out this winter, rivaling only Bryce Harper’s.
- Manny Machado
Michigan athletic director Warde Manuel has heard the rumors this week that Jim Harbaugh is looking for a way to leave the program, and he wants Wolverines fans to know they are completely baseless.
On Monday, NFL Hall of Famer and FOX Sports 1 personality Cris Carter mentioned Harbaugh’s name as one to watch with the Green Bay Packers job having opened up. According to Carter, Harbaugh is looking for a way out of the remainder of his deal at Michigan.
"I'm just gonna tell you guys a name: watch out for Jim Harbaugh, because he's potentially trying to get his way out of Michigan."
— First Things First (@FTFonFS1) December 5, 2018
In an appearance on WTKA 1050-AM in Ann Arbor Thursday morning, Manuel was asked about Carter’s report. He blew it off.
“I would say consider the source of the comment,” Manuel said, as transcribed by Aaron McMann of MLive.com. “Cris is very accomplished in his life, but he went to the school down south (Ohio State). We tend to throw out things like: ‘Sources say,’ ‘My sources.’”
Manuel added that he has “not missed any sleep” over what Carter said and that Harbaugh has not spoken to him about it. He said Harbaugh has been operating as if he has no intention of leaving Michigan.
“He is on the road recruiting, putting in great effort,” Manuel said. “So, from my perspective, it has no validity at all. There have been zero conversations about it. And I believe Jim is very happy here.”
The Wolverines recently endured what was in many ways the worst loss of Harbaugh’s tenure with the team, and this is not the first time we have heard his name come up with NFL head coaching rumors. But now that Urban Meyer is retiring from Ohio State, it would stand to reason that Harbaugh will be more motivated to stick around and become the new sheriff of the Big 10.
Montrezl Harrell is not someone you want to mess with. A fan seemed to learn that lesson on Friay night.
Barstool Sports shared video on social media Saturday that shows the Los Angeles Clippers big man seriously confronting a fan. The video appears to have been recorded after the Clippers’ loss to the Memphis Grizzlies on Friday night.
Harrell can be seen close to the stands, as if he had climbed up stairs to get closer to the fan. He repeatedly said “watch your mouth” to the fan.
An official had to get Harrell and direct him back down the stairs and away from the fan. You can watch the video here, but beware it contains bad language.
Harrell has a history of violent acts. He was ejected for throwing a punch during a college game for Louisville in 2014. In 2016, he was suspended five games for shoving a D-League referee to the ground. Do you think the fan was aware of that?
Alex Smith has reportedly undergone multiple surgeries since suffering a compound fracture in his left leg last month, and there are concerns about whether or not he will ever be able to play football again.
Numerous reports on Thursday revealed that Smith is having complications with his surgically-repaired leg and doctors are working to treat an infection. According to ESPN’s Dianna Russini, there is “serious concern” that the Washington quarterback’s career is in jeopardy.
Redskins QB Alex Smith is still recovering from multiple surgeries. The QB is dealing with an infection from complications. Told by sources there is serious concern this is a career-threatening injury.
— Dianna Russini (@diannaESPN) December 6, 2018
We knew Smith’s injury was gruesome, but everything we heard initially indicated he was expected to make a full recovery, even if it would not be in time for the start of the 2019 season. Unfortunately, it sounds like the 34-year-old is having much bigger issues.
Smith suffered the injury in a game against the Houston Texans a few weeks ago, and the horrific details made it clear that it was a lot worse than your typical knee or leg injury. We can only hope doctors are able to clear the infection and get Smith back on the road to a full recovery.
- Alex Smith
Kareem Hunt is still waiting for the NFL to determine how long he will be suspended in the wake of multiple off-field incidents, and the running back is trying to show the league he is taking the situation seriously.
Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reports that Hunt entered into counseling this week for alcohol and anger management. The 23-year-old knows he is going to be suspended and wants to begin serving the ban as quickly as possible, and he has been in touch with the NFL and the NFL Players Association regarding what is expected of him in the meantime.
Hunt was waived by the Chiefs after a video of him shoving and kicking a woman was released last month. That incident would likely be enough to trigger a six-game suspension for violating the NFL’s personal conduct policy, but he has also been accused of punching a man in the face during an altercation at a resort over the summer and attacking a man at a nightclub back in January. He’ll likely be looking at longer than a six-game suspension because of all that.
While Ray Rice never played again in the NFL after a video of him punching his now-wife surfaced, the belief seems to be that Hunt will find work when his status becomes more clear. He was a Pro Bowler with the Chiefs and is still in his prime. Unfortunately, that often is what matters most in the NFL.
- Kareem Hunt
Derrick Henry didn’t just rush for a 99-yard touchdown on Thursday night. He destroyed a couple of Jacksonville Jaguars defenders while doing so.
Henry scored on the second ever 99-yard touchdown run in NFL history, joining Tony Dorsett as the only players to do it, as the Tennessee Titans took a 13-2 lead on the Jaguars in the second quarter. The touchdown run came after the Titans stuffed the Jags on 4th-and-goal at the 1-yard line.
The Titans then gave the ball to Henry, who stiff-armed three defenders on his way to the end zone.
DERRICK HENRY WENT BEASTMODE!!!
99 YARDS. #TitanUp
— NFL (@NFL) December 7, 2018
The Twitter reactions were awesome.
That’s a grown man run right there. Yikes
— James Palmer (@JamesPalmerTV) December 7, 2018
Whoa… Beastmode II
— Jeff Duncan (@JeffDuncan_) December 7, 2018
Grown man run from Derrick Henry. Punked like 3 jags
— Robert Littal (@BSO) December 7, 2018
One of the greatest runs I’ve ever seen.
— Andrew Siciliano (@AndrewSiciliano) December 7, 2018
WHOOOOA!!!!!!! DERRICK HENRY!!! #BEASTQUAKEISH 99-yard touchdown run with humiliating stiffarm. NO REGARD FOR HUMAN TACKLERS!
— Brett Smiley (@brettsmiley) December 7, 2018
DERRICK HENRY JUST STIFF-ARMED THREE MEN BACK TO BOYHOOD. #TitanUp
— Yardbarker (@yardbarker) December 7, 2018
Derrick Henry just stiff-armed all of Jacksonville on his 99-yard TD pic.twitter.com/DrpOQz8qUs
— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) December 7, 2018
Derrick Henry!!!! WOW!!!!!!!
— Le'Veon Bell (@LeVeonBell) December 7, 2018
Oh wow!! Henry just challenged at least three defenders to tackle him and none of them wanted any problems #JagsvsTitans
— Brian Westbrook (@36westbrook) December 7, 2018
OMG #BEASTMODE 2.0
— Chris Baker (@cbakerswaggy) December 7, 2018
- Derrick Henry
Washington Redskins head coach Jay Gruden said during the week that the team discussed the possibility of signing Colin Kaepernick in the wake of injuries to Alex Smith and Colt McCoy, but those discussions never got to the point where they reached out to the quarterback or his agent.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, neither the Redskins nor any other NFL team has tried to contact Kaepernick to discuss signing him or bringing him in for a workout. Gruden said this week that Washington talked about bringing in Kaepernick but there would have been “a greater possibility” of him being an option if the injuries to Smith and Colt McCoy happened before the season.
Gruden added that Washington would have to change its offense too much to cater to Kaepernick’s skillset, which is something we have heard from other teams in the past. He insisted the team took nothing but football into consideration when opting to pass on the 31-year-old.
“When you’re talking about a backup quarterback this late in the game you want someone with a similar skill set to the quarterback you have,” Gruden said. “Not that Colin can’t do some of the things we’ve talked about, but we want someone with a little more familiarity.”
The Redskins ended up signing Mark Sanchez as a backup behind Colt McCoy, and they added Josh Johnson after McCoy suffered an injury in last week’s loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.
Kaepernick’s agent said recently that two NFL teams had expressed interest in signing the former San Francisco 49ers star, but that seems like it was just an attempt to drum up interest. Kaepernick has almost certainly played his last snap in the NFL at this point.