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Thursday, April 18, 2019

Football

Ezekiel Elliott shows up to offseason program despite seeking new contract

Ezekiel Elliott

Ezekiel Elliott has been one of the top running backs in football for the past three seasons and wants to be compensated accordingly, but it does not look like he plans to hold out for a new contract — at least not yet.

Elliott showed up for the start of the Dallas Cowboys’ offseason conditioning program on Monday despite speculation that he might stay away while seeking a new deal. He made his arrival known on Instagram.

Elliott’s base salary is around $3.8 million for 2019, which is about $10 million less than Todd Gurley, Le’Veon Bell and David Johnson are making with their teams. It makes sense that the former No. 4 overall pick wants a contract comparable to the ones the top running backs in the NFL have been getting, but he doesn’t exactly have much leverage. The Cowboys hold a team option for Elliott for 2020 and could use the franchise tag on him after that.

Considering he racked up more than 2,000 total yards from scrimmage last year, it goes without saying that Elliott is a crucial part of the Cowboys’ offense. He’s going to get paid eventually, but Dallas has other key players that need new contracts as well. Holding out probably would not accomplish much for Elliott at this point.

Tom Brady could reportedly ‘bulk up’ for 2019 season

Tom Brady

Tom Brady and his now famous TB12 Method focus mostly on flexibility and injury prevention, and the future Hall of Famer has openly criticized teammates in the past for placing too much emphasis on lifting weights. However, now that he is well into his 40s, might Brady feel he could benefit from a little more meat on his bones?

Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reports that Brady will not be present for the start of the Patriots’ offseason conditioning program on Monday, which was expected after he skipped it last year as well. What’s more surprising is that Rapoport notes Brady could be looking to “bulk up” while working out on his own.

That can’t be right, can it?

Brady has said he wants to play until he’s at least 45, and his personal brand continues to get stronger the longer he can compete at a high level. There has been talk in the past that his training methods have created some tension within the Patriots organization, and a lot of that supposedly had to do with Brady encouraging teammates to focus on his training methods rather than more traditional ones, a lot of which involve building muscle mass. A significant “bulk up” would be a surprise for the 41-year-old, though perhaps he is planning to train a bit differently this offseason than he did last.

Cardinals becoming less likely to draft Kyler Murray?

Kyler Murray

The idea of the Arizona Cardinals taking any player other than Kyler Murray with the first overall pick in the NFL Draft has seemed farfetched for the majority of the offseason, but there are at least some people who believe it is becoming closer to a reality.

NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah tweeted on Monday that he was 90 percent confident two weeks ago that the Cardinals would draft Murray. That confidence has dramatically decreased since.

Why the change? Jeremiah says he doesn’t understand why Murray would be visiting with so many teams if he already has a handshake agreement — or close to it — in place with the Cardinals.

Murray took official visits last week with the New York Giants, who have the No. 6 overall pick, and Washington Redskins, who are scheduled to pick at No. 15. Washington would almost certainly have to trade up to draft Murray, but the fact that the Heisman Trophy winner took a visit with them indicates he feels there is at least a chance he won’t wind up in Arizona.

It’s possible Murray is just keeping all of his options open, and the Cardinals could be hesitant to give him a commitment because they want to protect the trade value of Josh Rosen, who is said to be drawing interest from multiple teams.

10 worst moves of the NFL offseason

Antonio Brown Crying Jordan

The 2019 offseason has seen an unexpected number of trades as well as big names moving from one team to another. There’s been quite a shakeup throughout the league, with some moves standing out compared to others.

Previously we took a look at the 10 best moves thus far in 2019, but what about the opposite end of the spectrum? Which teams and players are bad combinations? Which moves are simply bad fits?

Here’s a look at the 10 worst offseason moves across the NFL.

10. Seahawks bank on Jason Myers

The Seahawks had Myers in camp last season before cutting him in favor of Sebastian Janikowski, but now he’s back on a four-year, $16 million deal. The money makes sense for a kicker who connected on 91.7 percent of his field goal attempts, but can he deliver another similar season? In his previous two seasons with the Jaguars, Myers connected on 79.4 percent and 73.3 percent of his field goals, respectively. He’s also struggled on his point after attempts, missing a combined 15 over the last four seasons. The deal is essentially a gamble for Seattle, who hope to get 2018 Myers as opposed to 2015-2017 Myers. Short of getting his very best, that’s a hefty investment in an otherwise sketchy kicker.

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Tom Brady sends hilarious tweet after Tiger Woods wins Masters

Tom Brady

Tiger Woods stole the show with his win at the Masters on Sunday, but not too far behind was Tom Brady.

The New England Patriots quarterback, often considered by many to be the greatest quarterback, if not football player, ever, was tweeting throughout the final day of the major. He sent some tweets of support for Tiger and other players:

But he really took his Twitter game to another level after Tiger won. Brady congratulated Tiger on the performance.

Then came the great tweet — he joked about how long it would take him to get to 15 Super Bowl rings.

If there were four Super Bowls available to win each year, Brady might have gotten there. For now, he’ll have to settle for his six rings — the most ever by a player.

Rival NFL star believes Russell Wilson wants to play for Giants

Russell Wilson

Russell Wilson is looking for a contract extension from the Seattle Seahawks as soon as possible, but one NFL star wonders if a new deal from his current team is what the quarterback actually wants.

Wilson has reportedly set a deadline of Monday to work out a new contract with the Seahawks, and many believe the team will eventually make him the highest-paid player in league history. Tyrann Mathieu, who played against Wilson in the NFC West for several seasons, tweeted over the weekend that Wilson wants to play for the New York Giants.

It’s unclear if Mathieu has inside information or is just guessing, but it seems unusual that he is putting that out in public unless he has a good reason to believe it.

The latest we heard about Wilson’s contract negotiations with the Seahawks makes it seem like he could have to play out the final year of his deal. Seattle could always use the franchise tag on him next offseason, but that has the potential to create some tension. Either way, it would be a shock if the Seahawks let him leave.

This Alvin Kamara training video is nothing shy of incredible

Anyone who has watched the New Orleans Saints over the past two years can tell you Alvin Kamara is one of the most athletic players in the NFL, but you can never understand just how athletic until you see the way the star running back trains.

Over the weekend, Dr. Sharif Tabbah of Athletix Rehab & Recovery in Miami shared a video of an exercise he has been doing with Kamara this offseason. The amount of strength, agility and hand-eye coordination the former Tennessee star possesses is absolutely remarkable.

Kamara has done countless impressive things on the football field, but that may be more amazing than any of them.