Browns claim Anthony Fabiano, Avery Gennesy

The Browns claimed offensive linemen Anthony Fabiano and Avery Gennesy off waivers Tuesday. Cleveland waived punter Michael Carrizosa and offensive lineman Christian Schneider in corresponding moves.

The Colts waived Fabiano on Monday. He originally entered the NFL with the Ravens as an undrafted free agent in 2016 out of Harvard.

Fabiano appeared in four games with one start with the Browns in 2016 before they waived him during final roster cuts in 2017. He saw action in five games with one start with the Colts last year. Fabiano also has spent time on the practice squads of Washington, the Giants and the Patriots.

Clarkson rolls up his sleeves. Tristan Thompson accessorizes, putting his stamp on the outfit the way Will Smith’s character once did to his Bel Air Academy uniform on “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.”

“Will turned his blazer inside out,” Thompson said. “Just because the suit covers a lot — we got the cardigan part, the pants and the blazer — so the way you can make your own style is with your sunglasses or with our shoes now. Now that we’re wearing our own shoes, that’s how we kind of bring the ‘Fresh Prince.'”

That rule, and every other NFL rule regarding gambling, will need to be revisited given that the U.S. Supreme Court has opened the door to legalized gambling. Once teams are benefitted directly and indirectly from wagers on games, the traditional do’s and don’ts regarding gambling will need to be gutted.

Whatever it was, this young supporting cast for the Capitals were like featured players on “Saturday Night Live”: unrecognizable at first, unappreciated in contrast with established cast members, but at the end of the season you couldn’t imagine the show happening without them.

And then you begin wondering who they bring back for another season. Because as Capitals owner Ted Leonsis bellowed after the Game 6 win in Pittsburgh, the first time they eliminated the Penguins in the Ovechkin Era, the kids, er, young players, would be an indication Washington isn’t done yet.ravens_010

Report: Eagles visit with Derrius Guice sparked “shouting match”

Running back Derrius Guice slid to pick No. 59 for a variety of reasons. One specific problem arose from Guice’s team visits, which as Ian Rapoport of NFL Media said earlier in the hour on NFLN did not always go well.

Guice has the power to change that, and maybe his unexpected slide to No. 59 will be the catalyst. Multiple sources have told PFT that, as to his claim that he was asked during the Scouting Combine whether he likes men, Guice told conflicting stories to NFL investigators, preventing them from concluding that the question had been asked.

During a pre-draft visit to PFT Live, I pressed Guice on the question of whether it was a miscommunication, a misunderstanding, or something else. Guice chose to avoid the topic, other than to acknowledge that he had been interviewed three times by NFL Security.

Based on everything that has emerged regarding Guice, Washington’s relationship with Guice may involve more than a few sit-downs and heart-to-hearts in the coming weeks and months. Maybe the switch will flip; maybe he’ll mature.

If he does, Guice could have a long and fruitful career in the NFL. If he doesn’t, he’ll be one of the guys who inevitably is replaced by another draft pick in two or three years.

Obviously, he has proved that he is very accurate with the football. I really think he is a tremendous leader. He has a lot of qualities that we look for. It is somewhat coming out, I think a lot of people had him as their best quarterback. We are very excited to have him and very glad that he is going to be here in this organization.”

General Manager John Dorsey said the Browns staff reached unanimity on Mayfield early this week. But Dorsey and Jackson were sold on the Heisman Trophy winner more than a month ago.

Still, Mayfield will begin his Browns’ career third on the depth chart behind Tyrod Taylor and Drew Stanton.

“He has got to work his way up,” Jackson said. “He has to earn it. We are not going to give anybody anything. Draft status is just that. You still got to earn the right to play for the Cleveland Browns, and that is what we are going to create here.”broncos_061_d6ba102d513d1c9f-180x180

Cobra Kai Forbath may soon be trying to sweep the league of Daniel-(Carl)son.

According to Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press, the incumbent Vikings kicker hung up when reached by phone after the Vikings made Carlson a fifth-round pick in the 2018 draft.

When a team takes a kicker in the middle rounds of the draft, that’s a fairly clear message that the kicker will be the kicker right away. Teams typically don’t have backup kickers or punters; when making that kind of move, the decision has been made to make the rookie the kicker.

McDaniels falls from a Bill Belichick coaching tree that has produced several bad apples, while Reich comes to town fresh off a two-year stretch with the Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles. While there, the quarterback whisperer helped turn raw North Dakota State product Carson Wentz into an MVP candidate in less than 18 months. And then when he lost Wentz, his offense didn’t miss a beat with Nick Foles en route to Super Bowl LII.

He played 67 snaps on defense and 57 on special teams last season.

NFL: Matt Patricia denies 1996 allegation More “As someone who was falsely accused of this very serious charge over 22 years ago, and never given the opportunity to defend myself and clear my name, I find it incredibly unfair, disappointing, and frustrating that this story would resurface now with the only purpose being to damage my character and reputation,” Patricia said in a statement issued by the Lions. “I firmly maintain my innocence, as I have always done.”

Thankfully, the truth is on my side, he added. I find it upsetting that someone would bring up this claim two decades later with the intent of trying to damage my credibility.

Robert Snell of the Detroit News revealed details of the 1996 case, which saw the then-21-year-old Patricia charged with a violent sexual assault of an unnamed woman. The then-21-year-old college student said Patricia and another man barged into her hotel room and took turns assaulting her when they were on spring break at South Padre Island, Texas.broncos_127_6e9afbd98ca7b8f6-180x180

Why Jets’ Kelvin Beachum isn’t ready to rave about Sam Darnold just yet

Jets rookie quarterback Sam Darnold has gotten a lot of praise recently, including acting owner Christopher Johnson saying Tuesday that the Jets drafting Darnold will eventually be seen as a turning point in the team’s path to greatness.

But the Jets’ veteran left tackle, Kelvin Beachum, isn’t ready to heap praise on Darnold just yet.

He was such a dependable player for us during his time here, missing only three games over nine seasons, and he was always among our leading tacklers, Strunk said in a statement. His play earned him two Pro Bowl selections and the respect of his teammates. Michael also was invested in our community, finding ways to make a difference.

If you think the Detroit Lions are in for another mediocre season, well, Vegas agrees.

The Lions’ opening over-under win total for the 2018 season is eight, according to odds released by Bovada on Tuesday.

That places the Lions third in the NFC North, behind the Green Bay Packers (10 wins) and Minnesota Vikings (10) and ahead of the Chicago Bears (six).

The New England Patriots have the highest projected total at 11, while the Arizona Cardinals and Cleveland Browns are tied for the lowest at five.

The reigning Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles are one of four teams listed at 10 wins.

You have to hit the open market to get that kind of money, said former agent and salary cap expert Joel Corry. But in the meantime, you have to risk getting hurt on the [franchise] tag, and players like the illusion of security that comes with long-term deals. ‘Rodgers will get more,’ which means a lot for Carson Wentz Ryan’s deal effects a few quarterbacks who are due for new contracts soon, starting with Green Bay star Aaron Rodgers, who isn’t slated to be a free agent until 2020 but has historically done his extensions with the Packers two years early.sharks-006

Pirates-Tigers become 28th postponement in majors this year

The weather keeps wreaking havoc on the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Detroit Tigers.

Steady rain at PNC Park on Tuesday forced the clubs to postpone a game for the third time in the first month of the season.

Pittsburgh’s offense has cooled off during its current slide and manager Clint Hurdle believes his team’s struggles are part of a somewhat larger trend, one the weather is impacting. There could be more strikeouts than hits across the majors in a month for the first time, and Hurdle pointed to frigid temperatures as an issue.

“This has been the most challenging weather I’ve ever been a part of, and I’m not playing,” said Hurdle, who spent a decade in the majors as a player from 1977-87 before going into coaching. “It’s hard to hit when it’s cold.”

Pittsburgh had more strikeouts than hits in each game while dropping a four-game set with Philadelphia last week. Hurdle pointed to his own experiences as a player as proof that when conditions aren’t ideal, hitting can become painful.

“Sometimes, you can only have one bad at-bat, the first at-bat of a game, in this kind of weather, (and) that can re-arrange your mental furniture,” he said. “I know if I hit a ball right off the end of the bat, that first at-bat, I knew I didn’t want to do it again. Some of my aggressiveness might have leaked out of me.”

Kluber was charged with three runs. He walked three and threw 116 pitches.

Lindor, Michael Brantley and Edwin Encarnacion homered in the first, and Yonder Alonso and Yan Gomes hit consecutive drives in the sixth for a 6-0 lead against Erasmo Ramirez (0-2), who made his second start this season. Brantley added a sacrifice fly in the third and hit the Indians’ first triple this season in the fifth. Brantley and Lindor each had three hits.

Kluber retired 11 in a row after two singles in the third. Haniger hit a two-run homer in the seventh.

Ramirez, who began the season on the disabled list with a strained lat, has allowed seven home runs in 9 2/3 innings.

On a night when the start was delayed by rain for 10 minutes, the Indians hit three homers in the first inning for the first time since Carlos Santana, Kipnis and Lonnie Chisenhall connected against the New York Yankees’ Chad Green on July 8, 2016.dolphins_007

Mike Budenholzer, Hawks agree to part ways after five years

Budenholzer spent 17 years as an assistant under Spurs coach Gregg Popovich before his hiring in Atlanta in 2013. He won four NBA titles as a member of the Spurs’ staff.

Colts general manager Chris Ballard told reporters, “You win games up front. Y’all are gonna love him.”

The Colts gave up a league-high 56 sacks last season. Asked whether quarterback Andrew Luck would like the pick, Ballard said, “I’m sure he will. I think we see now the importance of the entire offensive line, not just tackles.”

Nelson told reporters: “I would say that I’m a very nasty offensive lineman. I wanna play for the best offensive line in the NFL and protect the best quarterback in the NFL.”

The 49ers also put a premium on protecting quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo.

McGlinchey is expected to take over at right tackle in place of Trent Brown, then possibly transition to left tackle when Joe Staley retires.

The pick came as a surprise to McGlinchey, who did not take a pre-draft visit to the 49ers.

“I had no idea,” McGlinchey said. “It’s definitely a shock but I’m absolutely thrilled to be part of the San Francisco 49ers organization. It has a lot of great history with a lot of great quarterbacks and a lot of great Super Bowls.”

Mike Minor (2-1) allowed four runs on nine hits in six innings to win for the first time in three starts. He walked none and struck out four.

Kevin Jepsen got two outs and Alex Claudio got one, Chris Martin worked the eighth and Keone Kela finished for his fifth save in five opportunities.

Justin Smoak had four hits but was thrown out twice on the bases for the Blue Jays, who have lost six of eight.

Stroman allowed six runs and eight hits in 5 1/3 innings, and has given up at least four earned runs in all five starts this season. His ERA rose from 8.55 to 8.88.

The Rangers jumped on Stroman with a four-run first. Mazara hit a two-run single and Gallo followed with a drive to left, his eighth.

Smoak hit an RBI single in the bottom half, but the inning ended when Smoak was thrown out at the plate trying to score on Kevin Pillar’s two-out double. Smoak was also thrown out in the third when he tried to go from first to third on Yangervis Solarte’s single.sl_cardinals_049

Jonny Venters, after three Tommy John surgeries, returns to pitch for Rays

Jonny Venters has made a successful return to the majors after enduring three Tommy John surgeries and a six-year absence.

Pitching for the Tampa Bay Rays in his first big league appearance since the 2012 NL wild-card game, Venters entered in the sixth inning against the Baltimore Orioles on Wednesday night. He retired Chris Davis on a grounder, the only batter he faced.

Dickerson rounded third base, rolled his helmet toward the plate and was mobbed by teammates, with Adam Frazier dumping a jug of Gatorade over him. Nearly two minutes later, the home-run call was upheld, and the Pirates exchanged more hugs. It was just the second home run of the season for Dickerson, who was obtained from Tampa Bay during spring training.

“These guys in the clubhouse have been great,” Dickerson said. “I feel really comfortable here. The guys have treated me wonderfully and we get along really good together.”

Felipe Vazquez (1-0) escaped a bases-loaded, no-outs jam in the ninth created by two singles and a walk. Third baseman Colin Moran fielded a hot shot from James McCann and threw home for a force out, Victor Martinez popped out and Jose Iglesias hit a ground ball that was snagged on a diving play by shortshop Sean Rodriguez, who tossed it to second to end the inning.

“I thought our defense showed up extremely well today,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said.

The Rangers placed Beltre on the 10-day disabled list Wednesday with a strained left hamstring. Beltre got hurt in the eighth inning of a 3-2 home loss to Oakland on Tuesday night when he pulled up limping on his way to first base and then gingerly walked off the field after his 3,075th career hit.

Fister had been on the DL since April 10 because of a right hip strain.

The entire Rangers starting infield has changed from the lineup that took the field for the season opener less than a month ago.

Wade, a three-time NBA champion, had no interest in addressing his future after the Heat were eliminated in Game 5 of their first-round series against the Sixers.

“I love Philly, but ain’t gonna be no breaking news here in Philly,” Wade said lightheartedly. “I’m sorry. I appreciate [the concern], but let me worry about that later.”

Wade’s wife, actress Gabrielle Union, addressed the topic in a tweet after Miami’s loss.sl_cardinals_006

Avila leads Diamondbacks in 8-4 win over Phillies

Alex Avila broke out of his slump in a big way.

Avila homered among his three hits and drove in two runs, Robbie Ray struck out 11 while pitching into the fifth inning and the Arizona Diamondbacks beat the Philadelphia Phillies 8-4 on Tuesday night.

Avila started his big night by leading off the third with a towering homer to deep right-center off Vince Velasquez (1-3) that caromed off the base of the second deck. Avila began the at-bat in a 4-for-35 slump with 18 strikeouts.

“He’s the guy you saw today,” Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said. “Nothing fazes him. There’s an ease to his game. In his mind, he feels like he’s going to hit.”

Dyson followed with a long drive to right to put Arizona ahead 2-0. He was batting .160 before going deep for the first time this season.

The Phillies went ahead in the bottom of the inning. After Aaron Altherr’s one-out, bases-loaded double to right scored two to tie the score, Maikel Franco’s sacrifice fly to left gave Philadelphia a 3-2 lead.

The advantage was short-lived though as David Peralta hit a two-run double down the right-field line in the fifth after Velasquez loaded the bases with no outs by sandwiching a pair of walks around a single by Avila.

Arizona then went ahead 5-3 in the sixth on Avila’s one-out RBI single to right.

“TD Garden is going to be great. As a basketball player or fan, one of the places you want to enjoy and be, it’s TD Garden for a Game 7,” said Horford, whose first postseason trip, with the Atlanta Hawks, ended with a Game 7 loss to Boston’s most recent Big Three during the team’s 2008 title run.

Added Horford: “I’ve been on both sides. It’s tough about [Thursday’s loss], but I’m definitely looking forward to Saturday.”

Celtics players lamented their offensive inconsistency during Thursday’s 97-86 loss at the BMO Harris Bradley Center. Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Bucks turned bad Boston offense into easy transition baskets while building a double-digit first-half lead, then fended of some second-half surges.

Now the Celtics need a win Saturday to extend their season.

“The result is our guys get to experience a Game 7, which, again, we didn’t want,” Celtics coach Brad Stevens said. “Game 7 in TD Garden is what you play for. It should be what you’re excited most about. What you worked for all summer, what you worked for all year. It’s a blast.”

The Bucks expect a frenzied atmosphere in Boston.jets_050

Penguins erase 2-goal deficit, beat Capitals 3-2 in Game 1

After the Capitals scored early, the Penguins scored often to stun their rivals with yet another comeback.

Patric Hornqvist, Sidney Crosby and Jake Guentzel scored in a 4:49 span to help Pittsburgh erase a two-goal deficit in the third period and the Penguins beat Washington 3-2 on Thursday night in Game 1 of the second-round series.

“I thought he was locked in all night long,” coach Mike Sullivan said. “He made some big saves for us, especially when they were pressing down the stretch there. … When you get those types of saves, it’s easy to play with some confidence in front of him.”

Murray couldn’t predict a furious comeback, but he wasn’t shocked, either. Not after Pittsburgh has won nine consecutive playoff series dating to 2016, including two against these Capitals.

They provided background about the case, shared information about the parties involved and familiarized the 12-member jury — whose understanding of the NCAA and college football was treated as minimal or nonexistent — with the background needed to understand what will be presented.

In 2010, the NCAA Committee on Infractions issued a report that concluded that McNair “knew or should have known” that former Heisman Trophy-winning running back Reggie Bush was engaged in violations with a would-be agent while playing for USC and McNair “provided false and misleading information to the enforcement staff.” As a result, it issued McNair a one-year show-cause penalty and one-year recruiting ban that McNair’s lead attorney, Bruce Broillet, said effectively ended his career as a high-level coach.

Broillet called the NCAA’s process “a botched investigation that produced a recklessly constructed record upon which a committee of the NCAA, having been inappropriately influenced in violation of its own rules, rendered a report published everywhere that defamed and misrepresented the facts based on that recklessly constructed record.”

Much of what was presented has been reported at length over the past several years, but what had been less clear before Monday is what McNair has done to pursue employment in coaching in the years since.jets_102

Down at half, Lowry’s 24, bench help Raps top Wiz 102-92

For a team that had been 0-23 when trailing at halftime in road playoff games, the Toronto Raptors sure went about ending that drought and advancing in the playoffs in an usual way: The second unit, led by Fred VanVleet, created the comeback.

Using a tremendous effort at both ends of the court from reserves, and 24 points from Kyle Lowry, the Raptors came back to beat the Washington Wizards 102-92 in Game 6 on Friday night and end their Eastern Conference first-round series.

“On the road, in a hostile environment, I just wanted to be another support guy out there, that can ease the starters a bit,” VanVleet said. “You know, me running the team and playing defense and stuff, I can do those things in my sleep.”

It allowed DeRozan to play only 33 1/2 minutes total, and Lowry 31 1/2, compared with more than 40 each for Washington’s All-Star guards, John Wall and Bradley Beal, who looked tired by the end.

Indiana has double-teamed James on only 16 plays in the first five games, according to ESPN Stats & Information tracking, which is less than 4 percent of the 449 plays in which he has been involved on offense. The Pacers brought only one double-team in Game 5 and it was in the first quarter.

McMillan clearly doesn’t favor using an extra defender to force the ball out of James’ hands because it leaves others open. When the double has happened, though, James and the Cavs have struggled, mostly because the Cleveland roster has been in a collective slump throughout the series, shooting just 38 percent overall and 32 percent from 3-point range.

The sample sizes are limited, but over the past four games the Cavs are 1-of-10 shooting with a turnover in the possessions when James has seen a double-team. The data at least makes a strategy adjustment worth considering.

“They’ve changed their lineup and put 3-point shooters around him,” McMillan said. “Basically what they’re saying is if you help, we’re going to shoot the 3-ball. Which is what they want to do anyway. If you don’t help, he’s going to drive the ball to the basket.”jets_138