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Dirk Shadd/Tampa Bay Times/TNS

Jalen Ramsey says Rams must have everything covered against Tom Brady, Buccaneers

Sports / Football /

LOS ANGELES — Jalen Ramsey has faced Tom Brady only once in the postseason, and it was a game Ramsey chose to put out of his mind.

In the 2017 playoffs, Brady led the New England Patriots to victory over Ramsey’s Jacksonville Jaguars in the AFC championship game at Gillette Stadium.

“That game was disappointing, so I just tried to forget...Read more

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Why this week's 49ers-Packers game could help shape the NFL's next decade

Sports / Football /

To the naked eye, the 2011 Washington Football Team was a wholly unremarkable collection of talent that stumbled to a forgettable 5-11 record and last-place finish in the NFC East.

A decade later, fans aren't exactly clamoring to see Rex Grossman throw deep to Jabar Gaffney again, but it's increasingly clear that team has an outsized impact on ...Read more

Dirk Shadd/Tampa Bay Times/TNS

Revenge is a dish best served cold for Bucs in the postseason

Sports / Football /

TAMPA, Fla. — It’s become a common exercise for the Bucs to exorcise demons, to be more concerned with avenging previous losses than merely seeking revenge for them.

A year ago, they lost twice to the Saints in the regular season but won the game that counted in the division round of the playoffs. The Bucs also lost to the Chiefs in the ...Read more

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Greg Cote's NFL divisional round playoff picks

Sports / Football /

We went 4-2 straight-up and 3-3 against the spread in the wild-card round to begin our playoff run. Two of our wins were near Exactos. Bengals won 26-19; we had it 27-20. And Bucs won 31-15; we had 31-13. But we misfired badly on picking an upset by Cardinals, and did not see the Cowboys home loss coming. Headed for 4-0 overall and ATS this ...Read more

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Cowboys RB Ezekiel Elliott will not need knee surgery to repair torn PCL

Sports / Football /

FRISCO, Texas — Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott, who had been playing on a partially torn posterior cruciate ligament in his right knee since October, will not require surgery to correct the issue, the Cowboys Wednesday.

Elliott admitted after Sunday’s season-ending loss to the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC wild-card game that ...Read more

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Cowboys QB Dak Prescott fined $25,000 by the NFL for comments on officials

Sports / Football /

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott has been fined $25,000 by the NFL for his comments condoning fans throwing debris at officials following Sunday’s loss to the San Francisco 49ers, sources confirmed.

Prescott initially said, “Credit to them then. Credit to them” when told that fans were throwing things at the officials as they ...Read more

49ers-Packers injury report: Jimmy Garoppolo, Nick Bosa, Fred Warner all poised to play

Sports / Football /

SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Jimmy Garoppolo's sprained shoulder and thumb will not keep him from his Lambeau Field debut Saturday night, when the streaking 49ers visit the top-seeded Packers.

"He threw the ball great. He looked as good as he did the week before," coach Kyle Shanahn said after Thursday's practice. "Jimmy's been playing through ...Read more

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Vahe Gregorian: Until more is known on Willie Gay's arrest, let's no more condemn than shrug

Sports / Football /

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — So, here's the scant amount anybody removed from the immediate situation knows when it comes to the arrest of Chiefs linebacker Willie Gay (which as of Thursday afternoon remained an entirely fuzzy and incomplete picture):

Not much, really.

And even less about the most salient details.

What happened isn't clear, no matter...Read more

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Chiefs linebacker Willie Gay Jr. pleads not guilty to property damage charge

Sports / Football /

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Willie Gay Jr. pleaded not guilty to misdemeanor criminal property damage before a Johnson County judge Thursday following his arrest during in an incident involving an ex-partner late Wednesday inside an Overland Park apartment.

Gay was expected to be released from jail sometime Thursday ...Read more

Dirk Shadd/Tampa Bay Times/TNS

Running back Leonard Fournette suited up for Bucs practice

Sports / Football /

TAMPA, Fla. — The bay area’s most scrutinized hamstring apparently is nearing a game-ready level.

Bucs tailback Leonard Fournette, still technically on injured reserve, was spotted at the portion of Thursday morning’s practice open to reporters. Afterward, offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich conveyed cautious optimism about his leading ...Read more

Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune/TNS

'Thorough, diligent and exhaustive': Inside Bears' search for new coach and GM -- and why the ever-growing candidate list could be a concern

Sports / Football /

CHICAGO — Let’s get something out of the way up front. The Chicago Bears are not playing musical chairs in their searches for a new general manager and head coach. There are enough impressive candidates available for both roles. The hunt need not be guided by suffocating deadline pressure.

It’s not as if, when the NFL’s search music ...Read more

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Mike Preston: With so many NFL openings, it's past time for more Black coaches to be hired

Sports / Football /

BALTIMORE — Black coaches are good enough to be coordinators in the NFL, but not head coaches.

That’s the message the league has been sending, with hopes that it will change this year.

There were eight openings soon after the regular season ended Jan. 9, leaving the Pittsburgh Steelers’ Mike Tomlin as the only Black head coach among the ...Read more

Patrick Tehan/San Jose Mercury News/TNS

A look back at each game in 49ers-Packers playoff history

Sports / Football /

When the 49ers and Packers kick off their divisional-round playoff matchup on Saturday night in Green Bay, it'll put their rivalry up at the top of the record books.

It'll be the ninth time San Francisco and Green Bay have played in the playoffs, tying the Rams-Cowboys matchup for the most-played showdown in NFL playoff history. All of the ...Read more

Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times/TNS

This is what Rams envisioned: Matthew Stafford vs. Tom Brady

Sports / Football /

LOS ANGELES — A season of firsts continues for Matthew Stafford.

For the last 12 years, when the NFL playoffs moved to divisional-round games, Stafford was relegated to interested observer. The Rams quarterback rooted for friends and former Detroit Lions teammates on teams trying to advance to NFC or AFC championship games and beyond.

"I've ...Read more

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Melvin Ingram open to Chiefs return for '22 but says focus right now is Super Bowl

Sports / Football /

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — As a three-time Pro Bowl defensive end who reached double-digit sacks twice in his career, Melvin Ingram may have been accustomed to doing things a certain way.

But when the Chiefs traded a sixth-round pick to the Steelers for Ingram, he arrived in Kansas City simply ready do whatever was asked of him.

"I just came in and ...Read more

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49ers tight end George Kittle calls Lambeau aura 'dream come true'

Sports / Football /

SANTA CLARA, Calif. — The 49ers moved practices later closer to Saturday's start time of 5:15 p.m. PT kickoff, and they've worked not on their normal training grounds but under Levi's Stadium's lights.

Nothing can replicate what awaits them in Green Bay, however.

"Lambeau is going to be awesome," tight end George Kittle said. "Historic ...Read more

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Historically fast healer Cam Akers hopes to put hurt on Bucs defense

Sports / Football /

TAMPA, Fla. — Only a couple of months back, the notion of Cam Akers walking to the postgame podium — much less juking and jump-cutting through the midsection of the Cardinals defense — with nary a limp seemed preposterous.

Yet there he was Monday night, bedecked in a hoodie and humility, addressing his staggering evolution from a ruptured...Read more

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'I know how to win': Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy isn't worried about his job

Sports / Football /

FORT WORTH, Texas — Dallas Cowboys coach Mike McCarthy readily admits that his team grossly underachieved in the 2021 season.

A sweet 12-5 regular season came to a bitter end in a frustrating 23-17 home loss to the San Francisco 49ers in an NFC wild-card game last Sunday.

He said the Cowboys were nervous to start the game and were mistake-...Read more

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Browns QB Baker Mayfield calls shoulder surgery 'complete success,' step 'to get back to my true self'

Sports / Football /

Four months after Baker Mayfield's left shoulder popped out when he attempted a tackle on an interception return in Week 2, the Browns quarterback had surgery on the completely torn labrum he suffered.

Dr. Orr Limpisvasti performed the surgery Wednesday at Cedars-Sinai Kerlan-Jobe Institute in Los Angeles. Limpisvasti provided second opinions ...Read more

Luis Santana/Tampa Bay Times/TNS

Bruce Arians fined $50,000 by NFL for slapping helmet of Bucs safety Andrew Adams

Sports / Football /

TAMPA, Fla. — Bucs coach Bruce Arians has been fined $50,000 by the National Football League for slapping the helmet of safety Andrew Adams during Sunday’s 31-15 win over the Eagles in an NFC wild-card playoff game.

Arians said he was trying to prevent Adams from getting a penalty for pulling Eagles players off the pile following a muffed ...Read more