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NFL Power Rankings through 7 games

1. Broncos (5-1) Peyton Manning now has the most passing touchdowns of all time, and the Broncos are rounding into a complete team. Von Miller and Demarcus Ware are league leaders in sacks the defense is starting to hold its own. They’re my pick to represent the AFC in the SuperBowl.

2. Cowboys (5-1)  Once upon a time this team would go as far as Tony Romo could carry them. Demarco Murry has now taken that role behind a devastating offensive line. They’ll continue winning games, as long as their bellcow is healthy.

3. Eagles (5-1)  This team reminds us every week, that there are three phases of the game. Their special teams have been phenomenal. McCoy’s starting to run with a purpose, but ultimately Nick Foles’ decision making will decide their fate.

4. Packers (5-2)  The most overused word this season? “R-E-L-A-X.” This team is very hard to beat, and they’ll continue to live and die by Aaron Rodgers heroics. They’re my pick to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl.

5. Colts (5-2) Lost in how amazing Andrew Luck has looked, is the improved play of their defense. Their corners lock up, and their front seven allows little running room.

6. Cardinals (5-1) The Cardinals best start through six games since 1976 and Carson Palmer has been more effiecient than anyone imagined. They’re in the driver’s seat of the leagues toughest division.

7. Chargers (5-2)  Doesn’t matter who’s catching passes from Philip Rivers the quarterback 2nd in QBR has been a man on a mission. Not to be forgotten coach Mike McCoy and their defense have been phenomenal. Can they surpass the Broncos?

8. Patriots (5-2)  So everyone agrees that whispers of Brady’s demise were premature? Improve his protection, and the Patriots rattle off three straight. You Can’t bet against a Brady-Belicik duo.

9. Ravens (5-2)  Are the Ravens that good?  Maybe the Falcons are that bad. Joe Flacco’s had a bounce back year, but this team needs to be more consistent. The Steelers and Browns will make it tough to win the NFC North.

10. Lions (5-2)  This Lions team is built differently from the past teams. They now lean on their number one defense. Reggie Bush and Megatron’s health are question marks moving forward. Stafford and the offense need to round into form.

11. Seahawks (3-3)  The once undisputed best team in the league is going through a rough patch. Their pass rush isn’t what it once was, and neither is their leadership, after alleged locker room issues.

12. Chiefs (3-3) Andy Reid’s teams usually win after the bye, and with the next two games against the Jaguars they’re feeling confident.

13. 49ers (4-3)  The 49ers simply have too many starters out were subsequently dominated by the Broncos. They’re going to have to hold the fort until Bowman and Smith return.

14. Steelers (4-3) The Steelers have gotten back to Steelers football with a new focus on running the ball. Le’veon Bell is behind only Demarco Murray among running backs.

15. Bengals (3-2-1)  A 27-0 shutout loss against the Colts and the Bengals are falling fast. Once considered an AFC contender the Bengals fall to third in their division.

16. Bills (4-3)Kyle Orton might be this years version of Josh McCown, an aging journeyman taking over and winning games. With two straight comebacks, and an emerging Sammy Watkins Buffalo is starting to feel themselves.

17. Dolphins (3-3) Despite the heartbreaking loss to the Packers they’re competing and Tanehill is starting to live up to expectations.

18. Panthers (3-3-1)  After having an elite defense last year that side of the ball has seen a sharp decline. Things won’t get any easier with Seattle coming to town.

19. Bears (3-4) Things looked ugly on the field, but the tension in their locker room may be more problematic. A lot is on the line against New England this week, with the Packers and Lions pulling away.

20. Giants (3-4) Two division losses in a row and an injury to Victor Cruz, things are getting ugly. You can’t ever count the Giants out, but this is a flawed team.

21. Browns (3-3) After some impressive wins the Browns lose to the Jaguars of all teams. Johnny Manziel might see the field soon.

23. Saints (2-4) Feisty at home but dreadful on the road this team has been one of the season’s biggest disappointments. On paper this team looks a lot better than they’ve played.

24. Rams (2-4)  Despite their record this team competes, and they do so in the leagues toughest division. No one had them beating the Seahawks. Austin Davis is doing something right after receiving praise from…Brett Favre.

25. Texans (3-4)  What’s more entertaining an Antonio Brown touchdown throw, or Bill Obrien’s angry post-game press conference? Ryan Fitzpatrick is more known for his beard than his play. When the Texans get a quarterback they’ll be scary.

26. Falcons (2-5) A former NFC contender there’s a lot of questions in Atlanta these days. Expect them to clean house in the offseason, this team has been worse than anyone could’ve imagined.

27. Washington (2-5) Robert Griffin III rejoices, since its clear Kirk Cousins is not the guy. College football superstar, Colt McCoy takes the reigns in the mean time. This team needs an identity. They’re not running the ball like they have in previous years, and there’s no stability under center.

28. Titans (2-5) The Jake Locker era might be over, rookie Zach Mettenberger is preparing to take over. Colt McCoy looked like he was back at Texas against this secondary.

29. Jets (1-6) They hung in their with the Patriots, but still came up short. Overlooking the offensive side of the ball has finally caught up with this team. Don’t see the logic in trading for Percy Harvin this late in the season. Geno Smith and Rex Ryan know they’ll be replaced.

30. Buccaneers (1-6) Aside from a spectacular comeback win against Pittsburg the Buccaneers seem to get blown out every game. The NFC South has been awful, and the Bucs have a role in it.

31. Jaguars (1-6) The Jaguars got their first win of the year, but Blake Bortles is struggling mightily. This team loves picking in the top 5, and it will only get worse if Bortles doesn’t develop.

32. Raiders (0-6) After signing veterans, Justin Tuck and drafting David Carr the Raiders are still in familiar territory. At 0-6 they’re off to they’re off to their worst start in 50 years. To be fair it doesn’t help that the AFC West is loaded (Broncos, Chargers, Chiefs).

Peyton Manning breaks NFL career touchdown passes record

2014-10-19-peyton-manning-2

Photo Credit: USA Today

Peyton Manning is now the NFL’s all time touchdown passing leader.

The Denver Broncos’ 38-year-old quarterback threw touchdown number 509 of his career Sunday night against the San Francisco 49ers to pass Brett Favre’s career record. Manning entered the game needing three scores to break the record. He did that by halftime, and wound up sitting out the entire fourth quarter in a 42-17 rout by the Broncos over San Francisco.

Manning connected with Demaryius Thomas for an 8-yard touchdown in the second quarter which placed him right above Brett Favre’s previous record.  Manning then was swarmed on the sideline, wrapped into a hug by Broncos head coach John Fox as Sports Authority Field at Mile High public address announcer Alan Roach notified the crowd to the achievement.

According to NFL.com, Manning finished with just as many touchdowns (four) as incompletions on the night, racking up 318 yards on only 26 attempts.

Manning has thrown 19 touchdowns and three interceptions on the season. On Thursday night, he’ll face Philip Rivers’ Chargers in a crucial division game between two top quarterbacks.

 

Hong Kong protesters stand their ground

Photo Credit: q13fox.com

China has gone through many changes in modern times. Their cities are expanding rapidly, and they have one the fastest growing economies in the world. The Social climate of China is also undergoing drastic change. Its citizens want something else, democracy.

Chinese citizens have long felt the government has limited their freedoms. Several websites have been banned throughout China, such as Google. The more the country expands on a global scale, the more citizens want a true democracy.

The streets of Hong Kong have been flooded with protestors all calling for an end to Chief Executive C.Y. Lueng’s regime. China’s leader Lueng is losing his patience calling for the end of protests.

“The government and the police have the responsibilities and determination to take all necessary actions to restore social order,” Leung said in his televised address.

According to CNN, the wave of protestors were given a deadline to disperse, but remained in the streets. There were no riots, and government workers were allowed to pass.

The Hong Kong Federation of students met with Hong Kong chief executive secretary Carrie Lam on possibly diffusing the protests. This conflict might be worth monitoring, as it could negatively affect China’s economy.

Derek Jeter drives in winning run in final home game

Photo Credit: New York Times

In a very fitting farewell, Derek Jeter drove in the winning run in the final at-bat of his final home game.

Jeter said farewell to Yankee Stadium on Thursday night with a walk-off single to drive in the winning run in the bottom of the 9th inning. The Yankees beat the Baltimore Orioles, 6-5. A delighted Jeter jumped and raised both arms between first and second.

After he was swarmed on the field by his teammates, he stood right in the middle of the field and tipped his cap to the fans he has played in front of the last 20 seasons.

Former Yankee manager and Hall of Famer Joe Torre and many of Jeter’s former teammates from the Yankee dynasty joined him on the field, including Jorge Posada, Mariano Rivera, Bernie Williams, Andy Pettitte and Tino Martinez.

According to The New York Times, Joe Girardi said “I got a little choked up yesterday after his last at-bat and the way the fans reacted. You start thinking that you’ve been around someone for so long, and he’s not going to be there.”

Jeter finished the game with two hits, including a first-inning double that almost left the park for a home run. Jeter also drove in three runs, including the game winner.

Devon Still and The Bengals Goodwill

Photo Credit: Today.com

In light of all the controversy surrounding the NFL in recent weeks, Devon Still’s story has been a bright spot. Bengals defensive end Devon Still’s 4-year-old daughter, Leah, was diagnosed with cancer. Still was uninsured at the time, and on the verge of being cut.

Realizing Still’s situation the Bengals decided to place him on the practice squad so they could pay for his daughter’s bills. Hearing about Still’s daughter on the radio, Saints coach Sean Payton immediately purchased 100 Still jerseys. The proceeds from Still’s jerseys go to children staying at the same hospital as Leah. As a result the Bengals team store has sold nearly 10,000 jerseys.

The Still’s received even more good news after the entire tumor was removed from Leah, when doctors previously had concerns about its removal.

Photo Credit: Devon Still’s Instagram

The Bengal’s, and fans that showed support, should be applauded for their humility. The NFL, has been dealing with public relations issues, but this is a reminder that some things are bigger than football.

‘Scandal’ Cast on the Set of Ellen

Jennifer Lopez and Iggy Azalea Sizzle in New Video!

The NFL’s PR Nightmare

Photo Credit: Associated Press

The NFL has experienced four high profile domestic violence cases in the span of a year, child abuse, substance abuse, and performance enhancing drugs. Now there are many fans suspecting negligence by commissioner Roger Goodell.

Instead of the focus being on football and the start of a new season, the video of Ray and Janay Rice’s altercation has been the topic of discussion. The NFL first came under fire for only suspending Rice for two games. Rice has received the most attention, but isn’t the only player accused of abuse.

  • Pro bowl defensive end Greg Hardy was convicted of domestic violence, and death threats against his former girlfriend.
  • Jonathan Dwyer of the Cardinals has been accused of violence against his wife and son.
  • Forty-Niner Ray McDonald defensive end is also facing domestic violence allegations.
  • All-pro running back Adrian Peterson has been exempt from his team for child abuse.

Soon after the string of cases, a new domestic violence policy was created. Goodell announced that first time domestic violence offenders will receive a six game suspension, and second time offenders will receive a lifetime ban. In addition to the rule change, the NFL has created a team of four women to combat domestic violence.

Some of these cases happened earlier in the year, bringing to question why they weren’t disciplined until the public reacted. Several of the league’s sponsors have threatened to pull out if players aren’t disciplined properly. Besides McDonald all of the aforementioned players have been exempt from the team, but are still being paid.

This calendar year has been a black eye for the league’s image with thirty-one suspensions, and several other cases pending according to SBNation. Roger Goodell once revered by players and fans, is now dealing with a public relations nightmare.

The current controversy surrounding the league has many calling for his job. National Organization of Women president Terry O’Neil called for Goodell’s job in an interview with ESPN.

 “The only workable solution is for Roger Goodell to resign and for his successor to appoint an independent investigator with full authority to gather factual data about domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking within the NFL community and to recommend real and lasting reforms.”          -Terry O’Neil

As new information continues to emerge, Roger Goodell’s future will be something to keep an eye on. It’s unlikely the NFL will see a significant dent in its profits, but one has to wonder about the public’s perception going forward.

 


Robert Griffin III suffers potentially season-ending injury

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Just about everything went right for the Redskins on Sunday besides one devastating loss to their starting lineup.

ESPN confirms that Robert Griffin III has a dislocated left ankle, an injury that will sideline the Washington Redskins star quarterback indefinitely.

Griffin suffered the injury while running to his right toward the sideline in the first quarter. Even though he was not touched on the play, Griffin fell and landed awkwardly out of bounds and was carted to the locker room. To know the full extent of the injury, Griffin will need an MRI exam which will be taken Monday morning. Another question facing many Redskins fans is Griffin’s recovery time. He is believed to be facing a minimum six to eight week recovery.

It wasn’t all bad for the Redskins as they comfortably beat the Jacksonville Jaguars 41-10. The win snapped a nine-game losing streak dating from last season. It was the team’s first victory since a 30-24 overtime win against the San Diego Chargers in Week 9 of 2013.

Former Athlete Creates Sensor, Prevents Brain Injuries

Photo Credit: www.kickstarter.com

A former collegiate athlete has created a new form of preventative healthcare.

According to Fox News, founder and CEO of Jolt Sensor, Benjamin Harvatine has created the small sensor to assist in the prevention of concussions and other forms of brain injuries.

Harvatine wrestled for Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he sustained a number of concussions.

Harvatine explained that although he was hit in the head, he continued to practice even though he was experience dizziness, resulting in a longer recovery. The sensor, aims at detecting these injuries sooner, and preventing these long recoveries.

The clip-on sensor can be attached to a helmet, glasses, headband or other protective headgear. The goal is for the small device to track head impacts both based on level of impact as well as repetition.  When a potentially damaging situation occurs, the sensor will vibrate on the athlete’s head while also sending a notification to the cell phone of a parent or coach.

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