Thursday Night Lights
Football is back and what a way to kick off (sorry, I had to) the 2021 season, as Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat the Dak Prescott and the Dallas Cowboys, 31-29, in a Thursday Night Football matchup for the ages (ok, that’s a little dramatic, but it was a great game).
With 1:24 to go in the fourth quarter, the Bucs were down by a point, as Brady proceeded to lead the 49th regular-season, game-winning drive of his career. Kicker Ryan Succop made a 36-yard field goal with two seconds left. Game. Set. Match.
Brady was 32-of-50 for 379 yards, four touchdowns and two interceptions. The Brady to Gronk connection is alive and well, as tight end Rob Gronkowski had eight receptions for 90 yards and two touchdowns, complete with Gronk spikes.
For the Cowboys’ part, the good news is that quarterback Dak Prescott looked healthy AF, finishing the night 42-of-58 for 403 yards, three touchdowns and one interception. The bad news is Mike McCarthy still makes bad coaching decisions, and kicker Greg Zuerlein was in doink-mode missing two field goals and an extra point.
Also, ESPN’s Adam Schefter is reporting that Cowboys’ OT La’el Collins has been suspended five games for Violation of NFL Policy and Program on Substances of Abuse.
The good news for all of us – the NFL is back, and it feels great, baby.
Before stepping onto the field for their first game of the 2021 season, the Baltimore Ravens have had a disastrous string of injuries. Running back Gus Edwards tore his ACL on Thursday, making him the third, yes third, Ravens running back to suffer a season-ending injury since August 28.
It started when J.K. Dobbins tore his ACL in his left knee during Baltimore’s preseason finale against the Washington Football Team. Then, Justice Hill tore his Achilles at practice on September 2, and then Edwards on Thursday. Adding insult to injury, literally, CB Marcus Peter suffered a season-ending torn ACL at Thursday’s practice as well.
Per ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Baltimore and running back Latavius Murray reached an agreement on a one-year deal, making Murray the fourth running back the team has signed this week. The others are Trenton Cannon, Le’Veon Bell and Devonta Freeman, with the latter two on the practice squad.
Baltimore opens the season in Las Vegas against the Raiders on Monday Night Football.
Major League Baseball and the MLBPA have agreed to extend Los Angeles Dodgers’ pitcher Trevor Bauer’s leave of absence through the end of the season. This is now the ninth time the leave has been extended. Jon Heyman of the MLB Network was the first to report this latest extension.
Trevor Bauer is expected to remain on administrative leave through the season and playoffs and not pitch for again this season. With things in a holding patter, time short and him understanding it’s better not to be a distraction for the Dodgers, he is prepared to wait til 2022.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) September 10, 2021
Bauer has not pitched for the Dodgers since June 28 and was first placed on administrative leave on July 2, after a woman accused him of sexual assault and obtained a temporary restraining order against him. Bauer denies the assault claims, with his legal team saying that the encounters were consensual. Possible criminal charges are still pending.
For the first time since being released by the New England Patriots 10 days ago, Cam Newton took to YouTube for a live video Friday morning to talk about it, saying that he was surprised by the turn of events. The video was a sit-down with Newton’s father, Cecil.
Newton, who missed five days of practice due to a COVID-19 protocol “misunderstanding” a couple of weeks back, said he didn’t think that was the main reason he’s not on the Patriots anymore. He did, however, say, “…Do I think this would have happened without me being away from the team for five days? Honestly, yes. It was going to happen. Did it help ease the decision? Yes.”
Newton also said he was willing to backup rookie quarterback Mac Jones, but he didn’t think Jones would have been comfortable with that. “…The reason why they released me is because, indirectly, I was going to be a distraction, without being a starter. Just my aura. That’s my gift and my curse…” Newton said.
The 32 year-old Newton said he is not retiring, so stay tuned for the next chapter.
Week 1 NFL Schedule
Thursday, September 9th:
Cowboys @ Buccaneers, 29-31 Bucs
Sunday, September 12th:
Jaguars @ Texans- 1:00pm ET/10:00am PT
Chargers @ Washington- 1:00pm ET/10:00am PT
Seahawks @ Colts- 1:00pm ET/10:00am PT
Jets @ Panthers- 1:00pm ET/10:00am PT
Vikings @ Bengals- 1:00pm ET/10:00amPT
Cardinals @ Titans- 1:00pm ET/10:00am PT
49ers @ Lions- 1:00pm ET/10:00am PT
Steelers @ Bills- 1:00pm ET/ 10:00am PT
Eagles @ Falcons- 1:00pm ET/10:00am PT
Browns @ Chiefs- 4:25pm ET/1:25pm PT
Packers @ Saints- 4:25pm ET/1:25pm PT
Broncos @ Giants- 4:25pm ET/1:25pm PT
Dolphins @ Patriots- 4:25pm ET/1:25pm PT
Bears @ Rams- 8:20pm ET/5:20pm PT
Monday, September 13th:
Ravens @ Raiders- 8:15pm ET/5:15pm PT