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NJNR’s Tom ‘The Bomb’ picks $32 Kentucky Derby Winner plus $306 cold exacta! NFL Hall of Famer Harry Carson, mentor to Junior Seau, makes head trauma a priority Titanic message for sports and athletes: Get desperate now
NJNR’s Tom ‘The Bomb’ picks $32 Kentucky Derby Winner plus $306 cold exacta!

NJNR’s Tom ‘The Bomb’ picks $32 Kentucky Derby Winner plus $306 cold exacta!

Tom The Bomb Valledolmo, newjerseynewsroom.com racing correspondent and professional handicapper, continued his amazing run in the Triple Crown series by picking the Kentucky Derby winner for the third straight year when he not only tabbed I’ll Have Another, the $32 winner Saturday, but the $306 exacta with second-place finisher Bodemeister as well. Watch for more [...]

NJNR’s Tom ‘The Bomb’ picks $32 Kentucky Derby Winner plus $306 cold exacta!
NFL Hall of Famer Harry Carson, mentor to Junior Seau, makes head trauma a priority

NFL Hall of Famer Harry Carson, mentor to Junior Seau, makes head trauma a priority

BY ADELE SAMMARCO NEWJERSEYNEWSROOM.COM NFL football great, Harry Carson, and Meridian Neuroscience spokesperson, made a surprise visit Thursday to Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune. With a charismatic style all his own, the former New York Giants team captain visited stroke patients and popped in on Edison native Ken Kramer in his hospital room. [...]

NFL Hall of Famer Harry Carson, mentor to Junior Seau, makes head trauma a priority
Titanic message for sports and athletes: Get desperate now

Titanic message for sports and athletes: Get desperate now

BY MIKE TULLY NEWJERSEYNEWSROOM.COM COMMENTARY All those Titanic movies over the weekend got me thinking about hitting golf balls. That may sound like an odd connection to make, until you see those passengers standing on the stern, hundreds of feet above the ocean, just before the ship goes down. They are doing anything they can [...]

Titanic message for sports and athletes: Get desperate now

New York Jets’ Darrelle Revis not Backing Down on Comments About Bill Belichick, Tom Brady

New York Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis was asked to clarify some recent comments about New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick. When Revis appeared on ESPN as part of the Madden 13 Cover competition, he was asked to play a word association game, and was prompted with Bill Belichick. His reaction: “Jerk.” It was a hot topic today and Revis, known for his ability to backpedal on the field, did anything but when asked to clarify his comments.

New York Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis took exception to the way New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick reacted after his team’s 37-16 win over the Jets at MetLife Stadium in November. He made that clear when he called him a jerk on ESPN. Asked to clarify, Revis did so.

“I don’t know. Talking about the best defense… they can suck my… All that stuff. That’s just ignorant. Why go there? You won fair and square. Hey, we shook your hand after the game. We’ll see you in New England or wherever in the playoffs, ok.”

Revis went on the clarify the difference between what Bart Scott said and what Belichick said.

“Bart (Scott) said his thing… “Can’t Wait” thing, but he still didn’t disrespect. He just said that they feel like they’re better than us. That’s okay. He didn’t say go suck– go do this or go do that. It’s personal. It’s disrespectful.”

Revis was then asked about Antonio Cromartie’s comments about Tom Brady. Revis said that was a response to Brady’s previous disrespectful actions.

“That’s his personal opinion about him. If that’s how he acts on the field. That’s how he acts. He wants to throw a touchdown and point at our sideline. That’s disrespect, man.”

Good. This is how it should be. Don’t tiptoe around it, these teams don’t like each other. The Jets have something to prove now after going 0-2 against the Patriots last season, including a three-touchdown loss on their home field. Revis is a leader on the team, the best player on the team, and if he feels disrespected by an opponent he has every right to say something.

Ding ding, let’s get it on. October 21 can’t come soon enough.


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How Will the 2012 Draft Class Turn Out? The Crystal Ball Reveals All!

What’s this all about, guys?
In case you missed the NFL draft, here’s a brief synopsis of how things went:
- Neither ESPN nor the NFL Network understands just how angry I get when they tell us who is about to get picked. Seriously, let me watch the freaking draft! If I wanted to just find out the pick, I’d watch whatever crappy movie is on F/X and look up the draft results later!
- The Jaguars selected a punter – A PUNTER!!! – in the third round. A punter. In the third round.
A punter…
(I keep saying it in my head, waiting for it to make sense. It still doesn’t.)
- 253 Pro Bowlers were selected overall. That’s right, 253!

Of course, we all know that isn’t true, but you might think so from the gushing analysis offered after each and every pick. Every CB has great ball skills, every DE is explosive off the end, and every LB is amazingly instinctual. Yes, this is shaping up to be the greatest draft of all time!
To be fair, it’s hard to place the blame at the feet of last weekend’s analysts. After all, what are these guys supposed to do when tasked with breaking down the selection of 253 guys over the course of many hours?
Chris Berman: Hey Mel, what do you think of this pick?
Mel Kiper: What a terrible pick! This guy probably won’t even make the team!
He can’t do anything right!
That scenario seems unlikely, even if it is probably closer to reality than the drivel substituted for it. Not only that, but how in the world can you expect anybody to have an adequate knowledge of 253 different players? Honestly, the deck is very much stacked against the broadcast team. Seven rounds and 253 picks is just way too much to televise.
Unfortunately, this “excuse” cannot offer to return you the countless hours of your life you spent on this draft. It also cannot undo the “analysis” you heard. And so, here you are, lost and confused, wondering how both Robert Griffin AND Kirk Cousins can possibly make the Pro Bowl at the same time. It must be tough. Thankfully, I’ve taken a look in my crystal ball, and I’m now offering you some clarity as to how this draft will turn out.
(Note: My crystal ball is very difficult to cipher at the moment, mostly because I kept throwing it across my basement during and after each Cowboys meltdown. Those happened. A lot.)
(Other note: Please don’t confuse this with the common “Draft Grades” type of column. I will not be throwing around arbitrary A’s and B’s like Mel Kiper, mostly because it’s stupid. Moving along…)
Andrew Luck will vastly outplay Robert Griffin in Year One
Sure, it’s easy to kick the Colts while they’re down (and kinda fun!), but Indy is clearly a much better situation than Washington. Not only will Luck have the benefit of a real professional football player at WR (Reggie Wayne), he’ll have Austin Collie in the slot and the draft’s top two TE’s causing all kinds of matchup problems. Meanwhile, Griffin will have to make do with a guy the Colts decided not to pay, mostly because he can’t actually catch (Pierre Garcon), one solid TE (Fred Davis), and a 70 year old (Santana Moss). Give me the Colts, please.
It’s not just the weapons, though. It’s the preparedness, and the ability to quickly grasp what the NFL game is all about. A lot of college QB’s talk about coming from a pro-style system, but few really understand what the heck they’re talking about. Take Mark Sanchez, for example. He was touted as a “pro-style guy” coming out of USC…three years later, and we’re still waiting on him to actually figure out the pro game. Andrew Luck? Look, if there’s anyone who’s ever had an advantage coming out of college, it’s him. His dad played QB in the NFL, his college coach just won NFL Coach of the Year, and he has been doing things at Stanford that even current NFL QB’s don’t do. I’m not saying he’s going to be Peyton Manning out of the gate (or ever, for that matter), but if I had to bet my life on one guy figuring this thing out next year, it would definitely be Luck. Long term, maybe Griffin is the better prospect…I highly doubt it, but I’ll concede that it’s possible. But this year will probably be a much bigger struggle for him than most think. He’s on a bad team, he’s in a brutal division, and his adjustment from the spread to Mike Shanahan’s system will not be easy.
Trent Richardson will not break 100 yards in a game until Week 7
Uh-oh, Browns fans! These are fighting words! The Browns, who still suck, open up against Philly, Cincy, Buffalo, Baltimore, New York Giants, and Cincy before playing Indianapolis in Week 7. Aside from the Bills, those are some pretty strong defensive fronts. Also, there’s this one little problem that the Browns seem to have forgotten…you can’t really run the ball in the second half when you’re losing by a bunch. If my memory serves me correctly, the Browns are often losing by a bunch.
(OK, I’m not actually sure I believe this one. You got me! I just wanted to take another opportunity to point out how stupid the Trent Richardson pick was!)
Michael Floyd will catch at least 3 more TD’s than Justin Blackmon
My initial prediction was going to be that Justin Blackmon catches 0 TD’s. In a related story, I was also going to predict that BADGAB would make it through 16 straight games with no TD’s.
Seriously though, there is no one in this draft I feel sorrier for than Justin Blackmon. First, he had to sit back and watch “experts” basically burn all of his stellar game tape because he ran a few tenths of a second slower than expected. Then, he found out he would be catching passes from BADGAB. And by “catching passes” I really mean watching wobblers hit the ground five yards in front of him. On the plus side, he’ll probably make Sportscenter more than a few times since he’ll have to lay out for any and every catch.
As for Floyd, he’s in a pretty good situation. No, Kevin Kolb isn’t anything special, but he really wasn’t as pathetic last year as everyone made him out to be. With even a little better protection, there’s no reason he can’t be a weaker armed Joe Flacco*. And with Fitzy on the other side, Floyd will see plenty of single coverage with little to no safety help over the top.
*Wow, is that the ultimate of backhanded compliments or what?!
Ryan Tannehill will start 6 or more games next year
Miami is going to continue to feed us the “sit and develop” line for as long as they can. Don’t believe it. As the losses mount, the pressure to get the youngster in will increase exponentially. Fans will clamor for him, the media will debate it endlessly, and eventually the franchise will cave. I’m going to predict that Tannehill gets his shot after a disastrous Week 11 loss at Buffalo drops the Dolphins to 2-8. Also, I will predict that the Tannehill experiment is an utter disaster, and that he turns the ball over 24 times in their Week 14 game at San Francisco.
Riley Reiff will do something heroic in helping Jon Snow defend The Wall
Wait…I don’t think we’re talking about the same thing here. Let’s just move on.
(Seriously though, they look exactly alike! It’s uncanny!)
Doug Martin will not play defense for the Bucs
That’s really too bad for Tampa, since they gave up over 30 PPG and all. But I can definitely see why a team that allowed that many points would need a RB…especially a RB that is exactly the same player as the RB they already have (the one they got as an undrafted rookie free agent…and not as a costly first round pick).
(Insert snarky comment about David Wilson and the Giants)
(Insert snarky comment about how David Wilson was a terrible pick and he won’t make the Giants even a little bit better)
LaMichael James will turn into LeSean McCoy-lite
Even if Trent Richardson’s rushing numbers are always better than James’, I think James will end up as the more valuable player. In fact, I’m gonna go out on a ledge and say that LaMichael James will be the best RB from this draft. Not only is he a far better value than Richardson, but he’s a much better fit for the NFL game. His speed, change of direction, and versatility in the passing and return games give him much more utilization in the fast paced, high octane NFL game. His opportunities will obviously be limited early on, but I expect Harbaugh to get him more involved in the offense as the year wears on. By the end of the season, he will be a dangerous weapon.
Courtney Upshaw will notch double digit sacks
Like Blackmon, Upshaw fell in the draft thanks to a worse than expected Combine. Again, I will never understand why so much is put on these stupid workouts. In a way, though, Upshaw has to be thrilled that things worked out this way, considering where he landed. Not only is the Ravens defensive scheme tailor made for Upshaw’s game, but I hear they just had an opening pop up for a rush LB.
Lavonte David will lead all rookies in tackles
For two reasons:
1. Opposing offenses have the ball for the majority of the game, so there will be A LOT of tackles out there.
2. David might be the best LB in the draft. That’s right; I’m talking to you, Luke Kuechly. I’m a bigger fan of David due to his range and athleticism, something that will make him much more valuable in coverage and will allow him to make plays all over the field. Also, there’s literally zero competition for playing time in Tampa, while Kuechly will have a healthy Jon Beason (maybe), and James Anderson to contend with.
Peyton Manning will say less than 7 words to Brock Osweiler during training camp
This is self-explanatory, right?
Jared Crick and Jake Bequette will both be key players by the end of their rookie season
Both Crick and Bequette play like their lives depended on it, and isn’t that really half the battle with defensive linemen? As for the talent, they have that covered as well. Crick looked like a potential top 10 pick at one point in his career, only to have his senior season marred by constant injures (which he played through, and fairly well). Similarly, Bequette fought through injuries last year, posting 8 sacks in the toughest conference in the country. Both players are versatile enough to move around, and both will be heard from by the end of the season.
Bruce Irvin will beat out Janoris Jenkins as the first rookie to be arrested
Of course, if we were counting undrafted guys, then Vontaze Burfict would win this hands down. Perfect fit for Cincy!
The Rhett Ellison era in Minnesota will not last long
Prince (a Vikings fan) and I were sitting in BW’s when the Vikings chose Ellison, a FB, in the fourth round, prompting laughter from me and a sorrowful shake of the head from Prince. Why do I feel so confident in Ellison’s failure? Well, maybe it’s because he said the following things:
1. I didn’t expect to get drafted at all
2. I don’t have any specific skills
Sounds like a winner…

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Five reasons the NHL’s Capitals/Rangers is a bigger Game 7 draw than the NBA’s Lakers/Nuggets

Both New York and Los Angeles host big Game 7s on Saturday night. On the West Coast, the NBA’s LA Lakers and Denver Nuggets will go the distance at the Staples Center. On the East Coast, the New York Rangers and the Washington Capitals will face off for the right to play the New Jersey Devils in the Eastern Conference Final.

No doubt, with the Lakers involved, conventional wisdom says that that’s the hottest Saturday ticket on the schedule. But, as it turns out, that’s not actually the case. Judging from the online resale market, New York/Washington is far and away tomorrow’s marquee event. From USA Today:

Tickets for Rangers-Caps are averaging 2 vs. 5 for Lakers-Nuggets, according to Joellen Ferrer of StubHub. The online ticket service is seeing 10 times the sales volume for Rangers-Caps as Lakers-Nuggets, she adds.

So what’s making the Rangers/Capitals showdown the hotter ticket? Braden Holtby prom hopefuls? The rise of Jay Beagle? Maybe it’s all that sexy, sexy shot-blocking?

Here are 5 things that might be giving the NHL’s Game 7 the edge:

1) Star power

Not to take anything away from Kobe Bryant, but he’s the only real star here in a Lakers/Nuggets matchup; the opponents bring very few recognizable names to the table. Seriously, name a player on the Denver Nuggets. If you can’t do it, don’t feel bad — I assure you that basketball fans struggle just as much. And if you said Javale McGee, um, wow.

The Rangers’ opponents, on the other hand, have this Alex Ovechkin guy. You’ve probably heard of him, since he’s one of recognizable hockey names in the world. He can draw a crowd, and the fact that he’ll be in the visitors’ locker room for this game is going to drum up some additional interest.

2) The live experience

You hear it all the time, but for all its knocks about the television experience, most Americans will tell you that hockey is incredible live. If this were just about TV viewers, the NBA probably takes the title in a walk, but we’re talking about the in-arena experience. If you have an opportunity to attend a hockey Game 7, you have to take it.

3) Madison Square Garden

More than just the live experience, the MSG experience factors in here. Let’s be clear: as nice as the Staples Centre is, it’s no Madison Square. Seeing a Game 7 at the Staples Centre is one thing; seeing a Game 7 at MSG is something you remember forever. The world’s most famous arena is a draw all on its own, and the fact that the event inside of it Saturday has some serious marketability is the cherry on top.

4) Canadians

The distance between Toronto and New York is about 8 hours by car, which is completely manageable since the game’s on a Saturday and there’s no need to rush back for work the next morning. The opportunity for Canadian fans to see a rare Game 7 at Madison Square Garden is there, and we all know how easily swayed Canadians are by the promise of hockey history. They’ll pay through the teeth to witness it, and that may be factoring into the high resale volume.

5) Hungrier Market

And finally, speaking of rarity, the Lakers are a massive draw, to be certain, but they’re in contention a lot more often than the Rangers. They’ve won 6 of the last 12 NBA titles. Kobe Bryant has played in five Game 7s in his career, the most recent being the final game of the 2010 NBA Finals, a home court win over the Boston Celtics. The Lakers also hosted Game 7s in 2009 and 2006.

The Rangers, on the other hand, are in territory that hasn’t been charted in a long time. They haven’t won a Cup since 1994, and they’ve played just one Game 7 in the last 17 years, and it was two weeks ago. This isn’t just a big game. It’s an exceptionally rare big game, and the novelty factor tends to jack up the price.

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MLB: Yankees GM balked at hiring trainer in Clemens case

(Reuters) – The New York Yankees’ general manager testified at ex-pitching ace Roger Clemens perjury trial on Thursday that he opposed hiring the trainer who later alleged he injected Clemens with performance-enhancing drugs.

General Manager Brian Cashman said a “frustrated” Clemens, his injured right leg iced up, asked that the Yankees sign trainer Brian McNamee after he had bombed out of a 1999 American League playoff game.

Outlining McNamee’s seesaw career with the Yankees, Cashman said the team’s late owner George Steinbrenner agreed to the star pitcher’s request. McNamee was taken on as an assistant strength coach in 2000 to work with Clemens, who agreed to pay his $30,000-a-season salary.

“I didn’t think we had the need to hire Brian McNamee,” Cashman said in U.S. District Court.

McNamee, who is central to charges that Clemens lied to Congress about using performance-enhancing drugs, had worked for Yankees in the early 1990s as a bullpen catcher and pitcher. He then went to the Toronto Blue Jays as strength coach, where he met Clemens.

Moving up from warmup catcher with the Yankees “was a pretty big leap,” Cashman said, but Clemens “clicked with Brian McNamee.”

McNamee has alleged he injected Clemens with anabolic steroids in 1998, 2000 and 2001 and human growth hormone in 2001. Clemens’ lawyers have labeled McNamee a liar.

Clemens is being tried for a second time on federal charges of lying to the House of Representatives’ Committee on Oversight and Government Reform in 2008 about whether he used performance-enhancing drugs. His first trial ended in a mistrial last year.

Clemens, a record seven-time winner of the Cy Young Award, baseball’s highest annual honor for a pitcher, is among the game’s biggest names linked to alleged drug use.


Cashman said Clemens made his locker room plea to hire McNamee while the third game of the 1999 American League play-offs between the Yankees and Boston Red Sox was still going on at Fenway Park.

Clemens had started for the Yankees but left in the third inning after giving up six runs and injuring his right hamstring.

“He was frustrated. He thought he had let the team down, he thought he had let himself down,” Cashman said.

The Yankees won the American League pennant and went on to beat the Atlanta Braves in the 1999 World Series, with Clemens winning the final game.

McNamee was released by the Yankees in late 2001 after complaints of insubordination and that he was “bleeding into everybody else’s responsibilities,” Cashman said.

He was let go after police investigating a Florida rape case said the trainer had lied to them. McNamee was never charged in the case.

The Florida case in October 2001 came just days before Cashman was called away from his dinner to McNamee’s Seattle hotel room following a barroom incident involving the trainer, the general manager said. He did not detail the incident.

After leaving the Yankees, McNamee continued as personal trainer to Clemens and Yankees pitcher Andy Pettitte, who has admitted injecting human growth hormone.

Cashman called Clemens “the greatest” and praised his dedication, work ethic and ability to lead a team by example.

“Could you use a 50-year-old ballplayer who can still throw 90 miles an hour?” defense attorney Rusty Hardin asked.

“Maybe,” Cashman replied.

The trial recessed until Monday, when McNamee is expected to take the stand.

(Reporting By Ian Simpson; Editing by Eric Walsh)

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New York Giants Sign Rookie DT Markus Kuhn

The New York Giants have rounded up their final rookie, signing seventh-round pick Markus Kuhn, defensive tackle out of NC State, to an undisclosed deal.

Following their first practice on Friday, head coach Tom Coughlin told reporters he had been informed all seven picks had been signed. The Giants later confirmed that via Twitter.

Because of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), rookies are now able to be signed much more seamlessly. There’s no longer a threat of a holdout because their contracts are pre-determined. As a result, all draftees for Big Blue are now under contract long before they have ever been previously.

Earlier this week, Kuhn expressed his excitement and anticipation to battle for a spot on the Giants’ depth chart.

“I don’t really set myself too many long-term goals, I always say if you work hard, good things are going to happen. As of right now, the next goal is to get there, be good in rookie minicamp and work hard during the strength and conditioning. Hopefully, I’ll get a chance and make the 53-man roster,” Kuhn said.


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Josh Beckett In Golf-Gate: Like Chicken-and-Beer-Gate, But With Less Calories

Seeing that deep, high loft makes Beckett want to golf

It’s been a tough year to be a Boston Red Sox fan. Last August, the team looked like a lock to make the postseason, but staged a historical collapse in September that saw them bounced out of the wild card on the last day of the season. Then there were reports that some starting pitchers were drinking beer and eating fried chicken in the clubhouse on their days off and suddenly the collapse all made sense to Sawx nation. It wasn’t about the aging Red Sox lineup or inflated expectations from the fans…it was about beer and chicken and how the team had lost their “grittiness” by the team allowing for the general “grittitude” to wane. Heads were called for and general sweeping out happened that jettisoned manager Terry Francona and saw GM Theo Epstein leave for Chicago. Surely that fixed everything!

Turns out, not so much. The average age of the roster is still hovering around “ancient,” and the Sawx have stumbled out of the gate this season and currently sit 12-19, five games back of the New York Yankees…who sit in fourth place of the AL East. They are just 2-8 over their last 10 games, including currently riding a three game losing streak. The hitting has been good, with the team in the top-5 of runs scored, batting average, and slugging percentage while also being in the top-10 for on-base percentage. Their pitching on the other hand….not so much.

The team is currently in the bottom five of baseball in team earned run average, quality starts, walks and hits per inning pitched, and batting average against. Possibly their biggest disappointment in the pitching staff has been Josh Beckett, their supposed ace. The 31-year old righty, who was one of the culprits in last season’s “Chicken-and-Beer-Gate,” has been struggling with injuries this season and has posted a very pedestrian 2-4 record with an ERA hovering around six. He was skipped over in the rotation prior to his last start due to a sore lat muscle and came back to get chased in the third inning by the Cleveland Indians after giving up seven runs on seven hits. Even better, though, is the fact that Beckett apparently spent an off day playing golf just one day after being scratched from his scheduled start. Red Sox fans obviously responded by booing and jeering their own team and demanding that Beckett explain his lack of solemn rehabilitation so he could come back and humbly serve Sawx Nation by striking out a dozen. Beckett’s reply: “Mmmm, nopes,”:

“I spend my off days the way I want to spend them,” he said. “My off day is my off day. We get 18 days off a year. I think we deserve a little bit of time to ourselves.”

Oh Josh….nooooo. If there’s one thing Boston fans can forgive, it’s an act of sabotage flavored with beer and chicken, as long as you say you’re sorry (no matter how much you don’t really mean it). What they can’t forgive is you telling them to mind their own business. They have lines that you just don’t cross.

This latest PR snafu on Beckett’s part could be another sign that he may be on his way out of Boston. While he endeared himself with his gutsy and dominating performances when he first arrived in Fenway, the injuries have cost him a lot of his effectiveness, which has made everyone look more closely at the way he spends his free time, which is obviously harshing Beckett’s mellow. Beckett obviously is not as gung-ho about bringing Boston out of the cellar single-handedly with nothing but grit as Sawx fans, so this relationship is probably only going to get more tense…but if he takes up Guitar Hero, Sawx fans are going to burn Fenway to the ground.

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Jets coach confirms Tebow will be used on special teams

Although new offensive coordinator Tony Sparano wouldn’t reveal what he’s got in store for Tim Tebow, another of Gang Green’s coaches opened up about his plans for the polarizing backup quarterback.

According to the New York Daily News, longtime Jets special teams coach Mike Westhoff revealed that he’s planning to incorporate Tebow into his unit’s packages, even going so far as calling him a “more potent Brad Smith” without divulging further.

Smith, now a member of the Bills, was a favorite of Westhoff’s and an integral part of New York’s typically league-leading specials squad.

While it’s extremely doubtful we’ll see Tebow returning kicks, something Smith excels at, there’s been speculation that he may be used as the personal protector on punts. Sparano said last week that Tebow “can play anywhere from one to 20 snaps” on offense, primarily in the “Tebow Package,” a variety of read-option plays designed to maximize his skillset.

Of the roles Tebow could be thrust into, the likeliest include: Wildcat quarterback, H-back/fullback, and, now, whatever Westhoff, one of the game’s most respected coaches, has in mind for the 24-year-old.

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Fantasy Feast Closer Report – 5/12/12

By Brandon Berg
Hector Santiago is out as the closer for the White Sox. Chris Sale is being moved back to the ‘pen to help keep his elbow healthy. Sale is a moot point fantasy-wise, the only way you could get him is by trading for him, but I don’t advise that. Drop Santiago.
Andrew Cashner gave up three earned in .2 innings last night, but should still be the Padres’ closer while Huston Street is out. I wouldn’t bother with Cashner in standard leagues, given that he plays for
the Padres and isn’t a solid option, but in deeper leagues, he’s worth a look for the short term if you’re desperate.
With Kyle Farnsworth moved to the 60 day DL, he won’t be eligible to return until June 5 th. Fernando Rodney is pitching lights out and I’m not sure he’ll have to relinquish his closer role when Farnsworth returns. Obviously hold on to Rodney over the next month and we’ll revisit him when Farnsworth starts throwing again.
David Robertson has pitched exceptionally well over the past couple years and appears to be in line to split save opportunities with Rafael Soriano. Many believe Robertson will run away with the job, which could happen, but I’m having a hard time believing that the Yankees are going to keep Soriano in more of a setup role after they handed him a 3 year, 35 million dollar deal last year. Honestly, take your pick and hope for the best if you’re in a deep league, but neither should really be owned until we figure out who has the upper hand.
Keep Scott Downs on your roster for now, but with LaTroy Hawkins getting placed on the DL and Walden pitching a scoreless eighth inning a couple nights ago, his job is far from secure. If Walden can string together some decent innings, he should regain the closer role before too long.
Grant Balfour is starting to play well again and should stave off Brian Fuentes for the closer duties in Oakland. Hang onto him.
I suppose you could say Rafael Dolis is the closer for the Chicago Cubs, but there really is no sure guy to get the chances on any given night. Don’t bother with Dolis… yet.
With Heath Bell demoted to a non-closer role, Edward Mujica got the save chances for the Marlins the last couple times, but Steve Cishek should see the opportunities from here on out. Go ahead and give
him a look.
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