Category archives for: Chasing A Ball Of Some Sort

Aaron Hernandez Grateful to Get Life in Prison Instead of Being Traded to the Raiders

aaron hernandezFALL RIVER, Mass. — Former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison Wednesday for a deadly late-night shooting, sealing the downfall of an athlete who once had a $40 million contract and a standout career ahead of him. Hernandez, 25, who had been considered one of the top tight ends in professional football, shook his head, pursed his lips and sat down after the jury forewoman pronounced him guilty in the slaying of Odin Lloyd, a 27-year-old landscaper and amateur weekend football player who was dating the sister of Hernandez’s fiancee. Hernandez’s mother, Terri, and his fiancee, Shayanna Jenkins, cried and gasped when they heard the verdict. Hernandez, his eyes red, mouthed to them: “Be strong. Be strong.” Lloyd’s mother also cried. Jurors deliberated for 36 hours over seven days before rendering their decision, which also included convictions on weapons charges. (read more at the Kennebec Journal)

Thirty-One Teams Vote to Make Patriots Punt on Third Down

patriots ravensIf you can’t beat ‘em, change a rule to stop ‘em. On Wednesday, the NFL did.  On the final day of the owners meetings in Phoenix, teams voted to eliminate the unconventional eligible/ineligible receiver play that the Patriots used to change the complexion of the AFC divisional playoff game against the Baltimore Ravens.  Under the change, “an offensive player wearing the number of an eligible pass receiver who reports as ineligible must line up within the tackle box.” If a team was to use the same play as the Patriots did against the Ravens, it would get flagged for illegal substitution and lose five yards.  Atlanta Falcons president Rich McKay, who serves on the Competition Committee, announced the rule change on Wednesday.  Against the Ravens, with the Patriots trailing by two touchdowns in the third quarter, running back Shane Vereen was declared ineligible but lined up in the slot, away from the four offensive linemen and tight end Michael Hoomanawanui. Vereen was announced as ineligible, and when the ball was snapped, he went backwards as Hoomanawanui ran straight ahead. The Patriots ran the play twice and earned two first downs, much to the ire of Ravens coach John Harbaugh. (read more at the Providence Journal)

Kansas City Officially Over Dwayne Bowe

de wayne boweThe Cleveland Browns desperately need receiver help and are getting it with the addition of Dwayne Bowe. The Browns have reached an agreement with Bowe on a two-year deal, according to ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter. NFL Network first reported the news. Bowe took to Twitter on Thursday afternoon to express excitement for his “next chapter….Cleveland! Look forward to spending time with the DAWG POUND in the endzone!!” The Kansas City Chiefs released Bowe after eight seasons with the team. Bowe visited Cleveland last week and had a productive meeting with the staff. He has a relationship with general manager Ray Farmer, who previously worked in Kansas City’s personnel department. Bowe and former Miami Dolphins receiver Brian Hartline add veteran experience to the Browns’ pass-catching lineup, but the only receiver on the roster with more than two touchdowns last season is Travis Benjamin (three). Josh Gordon, whom the Browns suspended for the last game of 2014 and is suspended for all of 2015, welcomed fellow wide receiver Bowe to Cleveland via Twitter. (read more at ESPN)

Tom Brady Casually Mentions To Roger Goodell That There’s Always the Same Amount of Air in the Goddamned Trophy

tom brady wins fourth super bowlGLENDALE, Ariz. — Quarterback Tom Brady won his fourth ring, tossing four touchdown passes to lead the New England Patriots over the Seattle Seahawks 28-24 in Super Bowl XLIX at University of Phoenix Stadium on Sunday night. The Patriots clinched the game defending their own end zone in the final 30 seconds of the game. The Seahawks got the ball back with 2:02 left and opened with a 31-yard pass down the left sideline from quarterback Russell Wilson to running back Marshawn Lynch. After another first-down conversion on a Wilson pass to Ricardo Lockette, Seahawks wide receiver Jermaine Kearse caught a 33-yard bomb down the right sideline. Going up for the ball with Patriots cornerback Malcolm Butler, Kearse tipped the ball and caught it on a second bobble while on his back at the 6-yard line. The Seahawks ran Lynch on first down to reach the 1-yard line and with 25 seconds left. Wilson then fired a slant to Lockette that Butler intercepted. On his 50th pass attempt of the game, Brady tossed an easy 3-yard score to wide receiver Julian Edelman in front of Seahawks reserve cornerback Tharold Simon, and the Patriots reclaimed the lead, 28-24, with 2:02 left in the game. Brady, who was named the game’s MVP, connected on all eight of his passes on the drive that began when the Patriots forced a three-and-out on a 48-second possession by Seattle. (read more at the Bangor Daily News)

Seattle Seahawks Preparing Both Bizarre Accusations and Crotch-Grabbing Preening So They’ll Be Ready for Any Outcome

seattle seahawksPHOENIX (AP) — A year ago, Pete Carroll stood at a podium in a New York City hotel, less than 12 hours after his Seattle Seahawks beat the Denver Broncos in the Super Bowl. He spoke about what would happen next.“The first meeting that we’ll have,” Carroll said, “will be tomorrow.” Sounded a bit over the top, even from the ever-enthusiastic coach. A moment later, he continued the theme, insisting: “We really have an eye on what’s coming, and we don’t dwell on what just happened. We’ll take this in stride.” Turns out he knew what he was talking about. Fast forward to Sunday, when Carroll’s Seahawks will face Bill Belichick’s New England Patriots in the Super Bowl with a chance to do something that, for many reasons, was thought to be too tall a task in today’s NFL: win a second consecutive championship. “It’s tough to win it once. That’s the hard part. Winning twice doesn’t happen (anymore),” said Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, whose team went back-to-back 10 years ago, making for the longest drought without a repeat champion in the nearly half-century of Super Bowls. (read more at the Kennebec Journal)

That One, Brief, Glorious Moment When There Were Only Nineteen Feet on the Floor Will Be Remembered by All, Forever

boothbay girls basketballOn a night before a blizzard, it rained three-pointers in Wiscasset. The Boothbay Region High School girls varsity basketball team was able to use the perimeter to their advantage and sunk the Wiscasset High School Wolverines, 70-33 on Monday, Jan. 26. The Seahawks (15-1) netted eight first-half three-pointers, including five by Morgan Crocker, who scored a game-high 27 points, and three from Sara Durgan, who scored 11 points. Despite the lopsided final score, the two teams were competitive throughout, and the first quarter featured two longstanding rivals trading big shots and blows.Boothbay Region was able to strike via the three-pointer early in the first quarter, but Wiscasset’s Kayla Gordon scored six points to cut the lead to 15-8 after one quarter. Alecia Faulkingham (team-high 14 points) found seams in the Seahawk defense to score 10 first-half points and to help Wiscasset remain in the game with a halftime score of 39-20 in favor of Boothbay Region. In the second half the Seahawks were able to muscle Wiscasset to pull out the victory. Gordon finished with 12 points for Wiscasset (4-11), who will travel to Auburn on Friday, Jan. 30 to play St. Dom’s. (read more at the Wiscasset Newspaper)

After Crushing Loss, Indianapolis Colts Present Evidence That the Grass at Gillette Stadium Is Fake

tom bradyNFL investigators met Tuesday with Patriots officials to determine whether footballs used in New England’s 45-7 victory against the Indianapolis Colts in the AFC championship game were not properly inflated, according to a person familiar with the league’s handling of the situation. And while the league indicated it may wrap up its investigation by week’s end, ESPN reported late Tuesday night that 11 of the 12 footballs that were used by the Patriots were under-inflated. An NFL spokesman, Michael Signora, said the league had “no comment at this time” about the report, which stated that the footballs were under-inflated by 2 pounds per square inch. Under NFL rules, game balls must be inflated to between 12.5-13.5 PSI. In-game officials inspect footballs two hours before kickoff and only give the balls to the respective teams 15 minutes before kickoff. Troy Vincent, the NFL’s executive vice president for football operations, told The Associated Press that the league’s “investigation is currently under way and we’re still awaiting findings.” (read more at the Kennebec Journal)

Bill Belichick Asks League for Permission to Stroke an Angora Cat During The Conference Championship Game

bill belichickOne of the more heavily discussed topics in the aftermath of the Patriots’ 35-31 win over the Baltimore Ravens on Saturday was New England’s use of a four offensive linemen formation in which a skill position player lined up on the line of scrimmage and reported himself as ineligible. The tactic — used on a touchdown drive that brought the Patriots to within 28-21 in the third quarter — angered Ravens coach John Harbaugh, who complained that his team wasn’t given enough time to identify the ineligible receivers. He also added that the strategy had never been used before. Asked about the origin of the set of plays during a conference call, Patriots coach Bill Belichick said he pulled the idea from another team in the league.”It’s a play that, it’s a situation that I saw another team use, kind of,” Belichick said. “We talked about it and thought about ways to put some pressure on the defense with that type of, that concept of having more receivers on the field than were actually eligible. To make them ineligible instead of ineligible guys eligible, go the other way around, so we came up with a few ideas.” He added: “The origin of that play was from the NFL. What they did, it sparked some ideas so we did what we did.” Belichick bristled at the notion that the league could look into the matter further and have that type of play officiated differently, as Harbaugh suggested after the game. “Like what?” Belichick said twice when asked how adjustments could be made in that regard. (read more at the Boston Herald)

Ravens Coach Says It’s Not Fair That Sometimes Brady Only Pretends To Hand Off, And Then Throws It Anyway

john harbaugh whines to officalsFOXBOROUGH, Mass. — Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh objected to what he called a “substitution trick” by the New England Patriots in the third quarter of Saturday’s AFC divisional playoff game, saying it was “clearly deception” that he hopes the league examines. The Patriots dug into their bag of tricks on their second drive of the third quarter, lining up just four offensive linemen and declaring a normally eligible receiver as ineligible to keep Baltimore off balance. Ravens players were confused about which Patriots to match up with in coverage, and Harbaugh drew an unportsmanlike conduct penalty for running onto the field and screaming in objection. Harbaugh said after the game that the officials “didn’t understand what was going on.” “We wanted an opportunity to be able to ID who the eligible players were,” Harbaugh said. “What [the Patriots] were doing was they announce the ineligible player and then Tom [Brady] would take them to the line right away and snap the ball before we had a chance to figure out who was lined up where. That was the deception part of it. It was clearly deception. (read more at ESPN)

Ellsworth-Sumner Football Team To Remain In The League For Scrawny Pale Kids With Inhalers For At Least Two More Seasons

ellsworth-sumner high school football teamELLSWORTH — After three winless seasons, the Ellsworth-Sumner cooperative varsity football program will likely remain in Class D East for another two years.The two schools’ combined enrollment would have bumped the team up to Class B next fall, but the Maine Principals’ Association’s football committee decided to make an exception for the Eagles. “It takes a long time to build a football program,” said Ellsworth-Sumner coach Duane Crawford. “Especially when you’re facing teams who have been in existence since the ’40s and ’50s, where football is ingrained in the community.” The MPA football committee convenes biannually to classify its member schools into four classes by enrollment. On Monday, Dec. 8, the panel recommended allowing both the Ellsworth-Sumner and Camden Hills football teams to continue playing in the smallest school division. The committee’s proposal to offer these schools a hand has raised some questions about what’s a realistic timeframe for a new program to grow and when should the MPA decline intervention. (read more at the Ellsworth American

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