Von Miller “excited to see” how Bills respond to loss

Pro Football Talk - NBC Sports
September 26, 2022 - 11:46 AM UTC
By Josh Alper · Original Article
Buffalo Bills v Miami Dolphins
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Bills linebacker Von Miller has spent more than a decade in the NFL, so he’s well aware that teams don’t make it through entire seasons without having to deal with rough patches.

The Bills hit one of them in Miami on Sunday. After two blowout wins to open the year, the Bills were shorthanded due to injuries and they wilted in the Florida heat during a 21-19 loss to their AFC East rivals.

After the game, Miller’s message was not focused on what went wrong during the loss. Instead, he turned his attention to how the team will learn and grow from coming up short.

“In Buffalo, that’s all we have is football,” Miller said, via the team’s website. “That’s all we care about is football and winning games and a loss like this early in games is good medicine. Adversity like this truly reveals character and we have a team full of tough guys. This is all just adversity and I’m excited to see how we respond. Real men respond to things like this and I’m excited to see how we respond.”

Miller wasn’t alone in trying to turn the page immediately. Tight end Dawson Knox said it was “super encouraging” to see how players fought on Sunday and quarterback Josh Allen said the Bills will “learn from this one” as they prepare to face the Ravens in Week Four.

Bears call David Montgomery “day-to-day” with ankle, knee injuries

Pro Football Talk - NBC Sports
September 26, 2022 - 11:35 AM UTC
By Josh Alper · Original Article
Houston Texans v Chicago Bears
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Bears running back David Montgomery made an early exit from Sunday’s win over the Texans.

Montgomery hurt his leg while pass blocking in the first quarter of the 23-20 victory and he did not return to the field with what the team called ankle and knee injuries, but head coach Matt Eberflus offered an optimistic update on his condition when he spoke to reporters after the game.

“He’s going to be day-to-day, so that’s a positive,” Eberflus said, via Courtney Cronin of “We’ll see where he is tomorrow and re-evaluate it from there. It’s a positive, for sure.”

The Bears will be on the road to face the Giants in Week Four and Montgomery’s status will be watched throughout the week.

If he can’t go, Khalil Herbert will take on the lead back duties. That worked out well for the Bears on Sunday as Herbert’s 20 carries for 157 yards and a touchdown were a vital counterbalance to a rough day for quarterback Justin Fields.

Baker Mayfield: We’ll take wins when we get them, but I have to be better

Pro Football Talk - NBC Sports
September 26, 2022 - 11:25 AM UTC
By Josh Alper · Original Article
New Orleans Saints v Carolina Panthers
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Baker Mayfield won his first game as a member of the Panthers on Sunday, but he wasn’t full of good cheer about his performance after beating the Saints.

Mayfield was 12-of-25 for 170 yards and a touchdown in the 22-14 victory, which left him to say that “we’ll take wins whenever we get them” while he was discussing the game with reporters. Mayfield joined the Panthers just before training camp and has not had a long time to get comfortable in the offense, but he said that is no excuse for the way he’s played through three weeks of the season.

“It doesn’t matter. There’s no acclimation period for me,” Mayfield said, via the team’s website. ” I know there’s going to be bumps in the road, but I expect to be a whole lot better than I’ve been so far. I’m just going to continue to be my own biggest critic and just continue to push these guys.”

Mayfield will shoot for a better outing against the Cardinals next weekend and moving the record to 2-2 would make it easier to deal with any improvements that need to be made in the future.

Patrick Mahomes: I don’t expect growing pains, offense has to gel together

Pro Football Talk - NBC Sports
September 26, 2022 - 11:15 AM UTC
By Josh Alper · Original Article
Kansas City Chiefs v Indianapolis Colts
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The Chiefs offense looked good in a Week One win over the Cardinals, but the sledding’s been tougher for the unit over the past two weeks.

They produced 20 points against the Chargers in Week Two and got a big play from the defense to beat their divisional rivals, but things got worse against the Colts on Sunday. They scored two touchdowns on short fields, but the second half featured one field goal and drives that ended with a failed fake field goal, a missed kick and an interception.

After an offseason of significant change to the offense, some people predicted tough times as the Chiefs put the pieces together but quarterback Patrick Mahomes said that’s no excuse for the “little mistakes” that contributed to the 20-17 loss to Indianapolis.

“I don’t expect any growing pains,” Mahomes said, via Adam Teicher of “Obviously have new players and you don’t know everybody’s going to respond to tough situations. . . . We’ve got to gel all together. It starts with me. There were certain throws I was putting on guys’ back hips instead of in front of him. There were certain situations where we were just barely off of it.”

The Chiefs will be in Tampa next weekend and they’ll need to find a crisper offensive performance if they want to remain above .500 on the year.

Kyle Shanahan defends declining penalty before Broncos’ 55-yard field goal

Pro Football Talk - NBC Sports
September 26, 2022 - 11:13 AM UTC
By Michael David Smith · Original Article
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Early in the second quarter on Sunday night, the Broncos were called for holding on a third down that they failed to convert, leaving 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan a choice: Decline the penalty and give the Broncos a chance to try a 55-yard field goal on fourth down, or accept the penalty, push the Broncos out of field goal range, and trust his defense to make a stop on third down.

Shanahan chose to decline. The Broncos made the field goal for three very important points in what turned out to be an 11-10 Broncos win.

Why didn’t Shanahan take the penalty to push the Broncos out of field goal range? He said he worried that Broncos quarterback Russell Wilson would pick up the first down if given another third-down opportunity.

I was told it was a 50-50 decision,” Shanahan said, via the San Francisco Chronicle. “I was a little nervous about Russell making a big play on 3rd-and-long. Get a pass interference or a [defensive] holding and give them an automatic first down. So we went with the 55-yarder.”

Given how well the 49ers’ defense played for most of the game, it’s surprising that Shanahan didn’t think they would get a stop in that situation. And it’s probably a decision he wishes he could have back today.

49ers believe Trent Williams suffered a high-ankle sprain

Pro Football Talk - NBC Sports
September 26, 2022 - 11:04 AM UTC
By Josh Alper · Original Article
Seattle Seahawks v San Francisco 49ers
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49ers left tackle Trent Williams left Sunday night’s loss to the Broncos after hurting his ankle and it sounds like the team will have to play without him in the coming weeks as well.

Head coach Kyle Shanahan said after the game that Williams likely suffered a high-ankle sprain in the third quarter of the 11-10 loss in Denver. Further tests will be done to confirm that diagnosis and come up with a recovery timetable for the veteran.

Williams was injured on the same play that saw quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo run out the back of the end zone for a safety.

Fifth-round pick Jaylon Moore stepped in for Williams on Sunday night and the team will likely have to use him more as they wait for Williams to get the green light to return to action.

Can 24 votes be mustered against Daniel Snyder?

Pro Football Talk - NBC Sports
September 26, 2022 - 10:58 AM UTC
By Mike Florio · Original Article
Washington Redskins  and the Philadelphia Eagles
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If 24 owners vote to remove Commanders owner Daniel Snyder from Club Oligarch, Snyder will be compelled to sell. (After, of course, any and all options and strategies in court are exhausted.)

As the Washington Post reported on Friday, some owners are ready to move on. The question becomes whether enough will say yes. Or, putting it another way, whether nine would say no.

Per a source with knowledge of the dynamics, there is a “growing consensus” within some ownership circles that dumping Snyder would be the right move. However, it’s too early to know whether 24 will sign off of telling Snyder to get out.

As the source put it, it’s more likely now than it was six or 12 months ago. The question becomes whether additional information will emerge to move the needle closer to the requisite two dozen.

The two biggest potential sources of more possibly detrimental developments continue to be the ongoing work of the House Oversight Committee and the league’s in-house investigation, currently being conducted by Mary Jo White. Launched in February, the league recently said there’s no timeline for a final report. Whenever White finishes her work, Snyder may finally be on the clock for a long overdue fight with the league.

Nathaniel Hackett: When we needed it, Russell Wilson did it

Pro Football Talk - NBC Sports
September 26, 2022 - 10:52 AM UTC
By Josh Alper · Original Article
NFL: SEP 25 49ers at Broncos
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When the Broncos traded for quarterback Russell Wilson this offseason, they believed they brought in a player who would lead them to both victories and impressive offensive performances.

They settled for half of that on Sunday night. The offense went three and out nine times against the 49ers, but it came up with an 80-yard touchdown drive in the fourth quarter that proved to be enough for an 11-10 win over the 49ers.

That drive saw Wilson hook up with Kendall Hinton to convert one third down and use his legs for another key first down before Melvin Gordon‘s go-ahead touchdown run. The drive was an outlier on an ugly night of football, but Broncos head coach Nathaniel Hackett wasn’t focused on all the punts after the game. He called Wilson’s play “just unbelievable” and said “when we needed it, he did it.”

“We knew that was a great football team,” Wilson said, via the team’s website. “That’s a Super Bowl-caliber football team on the other side. How they play defense, they’re coached really well and everything else. We also knew, and I told the guys earlier in the week, I’ve played these guys a bunch over the years. They’re going to win some battles, that’s for sure, but it’s going to come down to the wire in the fourth quarter. It always has, and we were able to win in the fourth. I told the guys, despite us battling back and forth, back and forth, the game was still close. It was in striking distance. We just kept staying on it.”

The first three weeks of the Wilson/Hackett partnership have been filled with game management mistakes and unattractive offensive football, but the Broncos are 2-1 despite the negatives and that makes it a bit easier to deal with the need to play better football over the remaining 14 games on the schedule.

NFL to play 31st London game, has still never matched two winning teams

Pro Football Talk - NBC Sports
September 26, 2022 - 10:26 AM UTC
By Michael David Smith · Original Article
Miami Dolphins v Jacksonville Jaguars
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The NFL wants to establish a big fan base in London, but the league is not sending great games across the pond.

Sunday’s Vikings-Saints game will be the NFL’s 31st game in London, and for the 31st time, it will not match up two teams with winning records. The Vikings did their part, starting the season 2-1, but the Saints are 1-2.

Ten London games have matched up two teams with losing records, while the other 21 London games have had one team with a winning record or a .500 record, but never have both teams had a winning record.

The NFL sometimes sends bad teams to London because those teams struggle to fill their home stadiums and don’t mind giving up a home game to play overseas. But sometimes the London games are just the victims of bad luck, with the games looking good on paper when they’re scheduled, only to have the teams playing in London struggle early in the season.

It’s possible that the streak could be broken in Week Five, when the Giants face the Packers in London. The Giants are currently 2-0 and the Packers are currently 2-1, so if the Giants win either tonight or next week, and the Packers win next week, they’ll both have winning records heading to London, and give the London fans something they’ve never seen before: Two winning teams.

Here are the 31 London games so far, with the teams’ records heading into the game:

2007: Giants (5-2) vs. Dolphins (0-7)
2008: Chargers (3-4) vs. Saints (3-4)
2009: Patriots (4-2) vs. Buccaneers (0-6)
2010: Broncos (2-5) vs. 49ers (1-6)
2011: Bears (3-3) vs. Buccaneers (4-2)
2012: Patriots (4-3) vs. Rams (3-4)
2013: Steelers (0-3) vs. Vikings (0-3)
2013: 49ers (5-2) vs. Jaguars (0-7)
2014: Dolphins (1-2) vs. Raiders (0-3)
2014: Lions (5-2) vs. Falcons (2-5)
2014: Cowboys (6-3) vs. Jaguars (1-8)
2015: Jets (2-1) vs. Dolphins (1-2)
2015: Bills (3-3) vs. Jaguars (1-5)
2015: Lions (1-6) vs. Chiefs (2-5)
2016: Colts (1-2) vs. Jaguars (0-3)
2016: Giants (3-3) vs. Rams (3-3)
2016: Washington (4-3) vs. Bengals (3-4)
2017: Jaguars (1-1) vs. Ravens (2-0)
2017: Saints (1-2) vs. Dolphins (1-1)
2017: Cardinals (3-3) vs. Rams (4-2)
2017: Vikings (5-2) vs. Browns (0-7)
2018: Seahawks (2-3) vs. Raiders (1-4)
2018: Titans (3-3) vs. Chargers (4-2)
2018: Jaguars (3-4) vs. Eagles (3-4)
2019: Raiders (2-2) vs. Bears (3-1)
2019: Buccaneers (2-3) vs. Panthers (3-2)
2019: Bengals (0-7) vs. Rams (4-3)
2019: Texans (5-3) vs. Jaguars (4-4)
2021: Jets (1-3) vs. Falcons (1-3)
2021: Dolphins (1-4) vs. Jaguars (0-5)
2022: Vikings (2-1) vs. Saints (1-2)

Aaron Rodgers says he saw something on Buccaneers’ Jumbotron that helped Packers win

Pro Football Talk - NBC Sports
September 26, 2022 - 8:47 AM UTC
By Michael David Smith · Original Article
Green Bay Packers v Tampa Bay Buccaneers
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Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers hinted after Sunday’s win over the Buccaneers that the big screen in the Bucs’ stadium showed the Packers something that gave them some key insight in the game’s final moments.

After the game, Fox sideline reporter Tom Rinaldi asked Rodgers why he was talking to head coach Matt LaFleur as the Packers’ defense was on the field before the Buccaneers attempted a game-tying two-point conversion. Rodgers gave a cryptic answer that hinted that he saw something on the stadium screen that let him know what play the Bucs were going to run.

“Well they showed it on the previous play, too,” Rodgers said. “It was a delay on both plays. But sometimes you see things in the game. Sometimes the Jumbotron shows things they probably shouldn’t show, even at home. I saw something. I just passed on the information.”

What did Rodgers mean by that? It’s not clear, but social media was abuzz with interpretations that Rodgers saw Tom Brady and the Bucs’ coaches strategizing on the sideline on the Jumbotron, that Rodgers figured out what the Bucs were going to do from what the Jumbotron showed, and that he told LaFleur, who then sent the message in to the Packers’ defense.

If that’s the case, Tom Brady may move from breaking tablets to breaking the Buccaneers’ in-house cameras the next time they get close to him in a game.

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