Skip to content

Alfonzo Dennard says he did not intentionally hit a police officer

Indianapolis Colts v New England Patriots Getty Images

Patriots cornerback Alfonzo Dennard testified in his own defense today at his trial for assaulting a police officer, and he said that while it was possible he hit the officer with his right arm while trying to pull away, he did not intentionally punch the officer.

I had no idea I hit the officer with my right fist,” Dennard said, according to the Omaha World-Herald.

Dennard acknowledged that he resisted when Officer Benjamin Kopsa attempted to arrest him, but Dennard said that he was confused when Kopsa grabbed him after a brief skirmish with another man.

“I turned around and I saw it was a police officer,” Dennard said. “He said, ‘You’re under arrest.’ . . . I said, ‘No I’m going to go home.’ He kept trying to grab my arm, I kept pulling it away.”

Kopsa testified that Dennard punched him in the jaw, and if Dennard is convicted of that felony charge, he could be sentenced to as much as five years in prison. The case is expected to go to a jury on Tuesday, after the three-day Presidents Day weekend.

Permalink 42 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: New England Patriots, Rumor Mill, Top Stories

Jordan Matthews: Wentz-Prescott could be new Manning-Brady

DENVER, CO - JANUARY 24:  Peyton Manning #18 of the Denver Broncos and Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots speak after the AFC Championship game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on January 24, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. The Broncos defeated the Patriots 20-18.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) Getty Images

Members of the Eagles organization haven’t been shy about dropping big names when making comparisons between Carson Wentz and other quarterbacks during the impressive start to his rookie season.

Wentz hasn’t been the only impressive rookie quarterback in the NFC East, of course. There’s also Dak Prescott of the Cowboys, who will be on the other side of the field from Wentz in Dallas this weekend. It’s the first meeting between the two quarterbacks and it led to a question for Eagles wide receiver Jordan Matthews about whether this could be the replacement for the last great quarterback rivalry in the league.

“Peyton [Manning] and [Tom] Brady, that’s an extremely high honor to be mentioned with those guys,” Matthews said, via “I have spoken highly of Carson and know that he could be named with those guys just with more years of playing. And I have a high respect for Dak, too. … You’re talking about a guy who is a poised quarterback, he knows what it means to be a leader, he knows what it means to be game-planned for. And I feel like Carson is the same way. The thing I love about Carson is he has that same ability but he also has a chip on his shoulder. So you’re talking about two guys that could potentially be like a Brady and Peyton rivalry. The only difference is, you’re going to get this two times a year, and possibly playoffs.”

Going from the first two months of a career to anything approaching Manning-Brady proportions is obviously a pretty big stretch, but it would make for a lot of happy people in both Dallas and Philadelphia because it would mean there’s no reason to look for a quarterback for the next decade or so.

Permalink 0 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Thursday morning one-liners

Julio Jones, Tramon Williams AP

Bills S Aaron Williams has a neck injury but not a concussion.

The Dolphins are continuing to help victims of Hurricane Matthew.

The Patriots are in no need to rush RB Dion Lewis as he comes back from knee surgery.

Some think the Jets are just like the Cubs, without the lovable part.

Ravens return man Devin Hester hopes bye week gives his groin injury time to heal.

Bengals LT Andrew Whitworth remains in the concussion protocol, but practiced.

The Browns haven’t always made good football, but they have created art.

Steelers K Chris Boswell is kicking himself over last week’s misses.

Texans G.M. Rick Smith says he’s seen “flashes” from their offense.

Colts WR Donte Moncrief expects to play this week.

The Jaguars hope to take advantage of a depleted Titans secondary.

Titans return man Marc Mariani might be better than Deion Sanders, in one respect.

Friends remembered Jason Coy as a family man and a Broncos fan after his death from a stadium fall.

The Chiefs hope WR Tyreek Hill continues to develop as a deep threat.

The Raiders remain focused on their football, despite their week away in Florida.

The Chargers are creating some believers.

Cowboys WR Dez Bryant says he hasn’t lost a step.

The Giants think their defense can be scary (and that has nothing to do with dressing up like a creepy clown).

Eagles WR Josh Huff isn’t worried about reports of a possible trade for a veteran WR.

Washington rookie Su’a Cravens had a more limited role against the Lions than expected.

The Bears are still working on that whole RB-by-committee thing.

The Lions got some key parts back to practice.

The Packers are hoping for divine intervention in their efforts to slow down Julio Jones.

Not everyone thought the Vikings’ rotating tackles were a good idea.

The Falcons want to keep pass-rusher Dwight Freeney fresh.

Panthers left tackle Michael Oher remains in the concussion protocol and out of practice.

The Saints hope CB Sterling Moore’s absence isn’t a long one.

The Buccaneers are finally getting healthy up front.

The Cardinals are running low on WRs (fortunately the Panthers aren’t deep in CBs).

The Rams hope the offensive line can get better in the run game.

The 49ers have a week to search for answers (can they find a stable, cohesive organization in that time?)

Seahawks CB Richard Sherman in a Harry Potter suit? Seahawks CB Richard Sherman in a Harry Potter suit.

Permalink 0 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Marcell Dareus ready to finally get back on the field

WATKINS GLEN, NY - AUGUST 07:  Marcell Dareus of the Buffalo Bills speaks to the media prior to the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Cheez-It 355 at Watkins Glen International on August 7, 2016 in Watkins Glen, New York.  (Photo by Josh Hedges/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Bills have gotten off to a decent start this year, even without their most expensive player.

But whether the results change or not, defensive tackle Marcell Dareus vows to his maker to be on the field, finally.

“Oh my god. I’m playing Sunday, man,” Dareus said, via Nick Veronica of the Buffalo News. “I can’t wait. I’m ready to enjoy myself. Just happy to be out there with the guys. Running around, feeling good. We’re ready to go pull it off, man, we’re going to make it happen.”

Dareus missed the first four games because of his suspension, and the last three because of a hamstring injury. But he said he didn’t feel like he began his comeback out of shape.

“I did whatever the team needed me to do,” Dareus said. “Whatever our trainers requested of me, whatever our strength coaches felt was best, stuck to a strict plan and hopefully this time it works because I don’t need any more minor setbacks. I’m ready to play, man. Sitting on the bench isn’t even fun.”

Nor for the Bills, who committed a lot of money for him to not contribute this season.

Permalink 0 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Richard Sherman: Cardinals have predictable cadence on field goals

GLENDALE, AZ - OCTOBER 23: Head coach Bruce Arians of the Arizona Cardinals reacts on the sidelines durings the game against the Seattle Seahawks at University of Phoenix Stadium on October 23, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images) Getty Images

At a time when Cardinals coach Bruce Arians is complaining about the rule that allows defensive players to leap over the long snapper on field-goal attempts as long as the leaper doesn’t land on the snapper, Seahawks cornerback Richard Sherman has a more pragmatic suggestion for Arians.

Stop making it so easy to know the right time to leap.

“They have a predictable cadence and it’ll happen to them again if they keep doing it the same way,” Sherman told reporters on Wednesday, during a weekly press conference that featured Sherman in Harry Porter garb.

But what about Arians’ view that the rule allowing leaping as long as there’s no landing on the snapper is bad for football?

“It’s bad for his team,” Sherman said. “If he means bad for his team, it’s bad for football, I can see that. . . . So are pick routes and they run pick routes. Pick routes are bad for football. Throwing the ball to a receiver while your linemen are 10 yards down the field is bad for football but they do it. There are a lot of plays that are bad for football that I’m sure he has yet to acknowledge.”

Arians nevertheless has a point. If the prohibition on landing on the snapper flows from safety-related concerns, it would seem that leaping without landing on the snapper also would be barred given the possibility of landing on the snapper and injuring him. Still, plenty of NFL rules don’t make a lot of sense; teams tend to complain publicly only about the rules that they have yet to find a way to use to their advantage — and/or that others are using to their disadvantage.

Permalink 1 Comment Feed for comments Back to top

Jared Goff on reps with ones: “More comfortable than I’ve ever felt”

DETROIT, MI - OCTOBER 16: Jared Goff #16 of the Los Angeles Rams warms up prior to the start of the game against the Detroit Lions at Ford Field on October 16, 2016 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images) Getty Images

Since the Rams don’t play anyone this weekend, there’s no one for starting quarterback Case Keenum to get ready for.

So they’re giving No. 1 overall pick Jared Goff some work with the ones this week, to help accelerate his education, and he said he feels more prepared than ever.

“I feel tremendously more comfortable than I’ve ever felt,” Goff said, via Gary Klein of the Los Angeles Times. “I feel confident that if my number’s called, I’ll be ready to go. Just waiting for that time.”

That time’s not coming just yet, however.

Coach Jeff Fisher said he’s sticking with Keenum, even though they’ve lost three in a row to dip to 3-4, with the last one including four Keenum picks. And while other rookies are playing (and flourishing elsewhere), Goff’s also smooth enough to not start complaining about his timeline now.

“It’s part of the process part of what’s going on,” he said. “I’m not going to sit here and complain or gripe.

“I’m going to support Case and continue to get ready and be ready and continue to be confident in myself and be ready when the time comes.”

Whenever that time may be.

Permalink 0 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Mike Tomlin benched Eli Rogers over discipline issue

LANDOVER, MD - SEPTEMBER 12: Wide receiver Eli Rogers #17 of the Pittsburgh Steelers celebrates with teammates tight end Jesse James #81 and center Maurkice Pouncey after scoring a second quarter touchdown while inside linebacker Will Compton #51 of the Washington Redskins looks on at FedExField on September 12, 2016 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) Getty Images

Steelers receiver Eli Rogers has emerged from a little-known undrafted rookie who spent last year on injured reserve to a starter this year. So when Rogers didn’t play at all on Sunday against the Patriots, it raised eyebrows.

The Steelers haven’t explained why Rogers didn’t play, but the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports that Rogers was being disciplined by coach Mike Tomlin.

There’s no word on what Rogers did to draw Tomlin’s ire, but Tomlin has a history of benching players for not working hard enough in practice or getting in trouble off the field. Even important starters like Santonio Holmes and Rashard Mendenhall have been benched by Tomlin. Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger said in a radio interview that Rogers needs to “stay focused,” suggesting that poor work habits may have been the reason for Tomlin’s decision.

Pittsburgh could have used Rogers on Sunday, as receiver Markus Wheaton missed the game with a shoulder injury, receiver Sammie Coates has been limited by a hand injury and receiver Antonio Brown suffered an injury late in the game. But Tomlin had made his decision, and Rogers was planted firmly on the bench.

Permalink 1 Comment Feed for comments Back to top

Sheldon Adelson playing hardball with Raiders over Las Vegas

HEMPSTEAD, NY - SEPTEMBER 26:  Businessman Sheldon Adelson attends the Presidential Debate between Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump at Hofstra University on September 26, 2016 in Hempstead, New York.  The first of four debates for the 2016 Election, three Presidential and one Vice Presidential, is moderated by NBC's Lester Holt.  (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images) Getty Images

Raiders owner Mark Davis seems intent on moving his NFL team to Las Vegas. But despite a deal to secure public financing for a new stadium in Sin City, Davis may be running into a sizable road block that could scuttle chances of bringing the Raiders to town.

According to Ari Rabinovitch of Reuters, casino owner Sheldon Adelson said he’s willing to walk away from the commitment to the Raiders unless he’s able to secure better terms on a deal with the franchise.

They want so much,” Adelson said. “So I told my people, ‘Tell them I could live with the deal, I could live without the deal. Here’s the way it’s gonna go down. If they don’t want it, bye-bye.”

Adelson has played a significant role in getting legislation passed to raise $750 million in public money for the construction of a new stadium in Las Vegas. Additionally, he’s pledged $650 million of his own funds to the project.

Davis has spoken glowingly about Las Vegas. He’s referred to the city as the “new home for the entire Raider Nation”  and lamented Oakland’s inability to provide a successor venue to the Oakland Coliseum. However, the path to southern Nevada may not be as free and clear as he once hoped.

Permalink 0 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Russell Wilson limited in practice with pectoral injury

GLENDALE, AZ - OCTOBER 23:  Quarterback Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks reacts after being hit during the NFL game against the Arizona Cardinals at the University of Phoenix Stadium on October 23, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. The Cardinals and Seahawks tied 6-6.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) Getty Images

For the first time in five seasons as quarterback of the Seattle Seahawks, Russell Wilson did not fully participate in a regular season practice.

Wilson was listed as a limited participant in Wednesday’s practice due to knee and right pectoral injuries.

The knee injury isn’t anything new. It’s the same injury Wilson sustained in a Week 3 win over the San Francisco 49ers. Neither the knee issue or a high-ankle sprain suffered in the regular season opener against Miami forced Wilson to miss any practice time.

However, the pectoral injury is a new issue for Wilson. Wilson may have suffered the injury while being sacked by Chandler Jones of the Arizona Cardinals in Sunday night’s 6-6 tie. Chandler slammed down on Wilson’s right arm as Wilson attempted to throw a pass early in the fourth quarter. Jones forced a fumble on the play and Wilson was shown moving his throwing arm around after the play.

Seattle signed former Vikings quarterback Joel Stave to their practice squad on Wednesday to allow Wilson’s workload to be reduced.

Wilson never missed a play against the Cardinals and likely isn’t in any danger of being unable to play Sunday in New Orleans.

Permalink 0 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

How often do you want to see Thursday games?

JACKSONVILLE, FL - NOVEMBER 19: Jacksonville Jaguars and Tennessee Titans players line up before a snap during the first half of the game at EverBank Field on November 19, 2015 in Jacksonville, Florida.  (Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images) Getty Images

I personally like Thursday Night Football, because I prefer watching one and only one football game at a time. Plenty of people don’t, especially since the every-week nature of it now involves forgettable matchups like this week’s Jaguars-Titans barnburner.

So that’s the inspiration for Thursday’s question of the day on PFT Live: How often do you want the NFL to stage Thursday games?

For a long time, the only Thursday football came on Thanksgiving with maybe one other special occasion elsewhere in the season. (At one point, the NFL avoided playing a Sunday night game against the World Series, moving that week’s game moving to Thursday night.) Now, nearly every week has a Thursday night game, with every team in the NFL at one point every season playing on a Sunday and then only four days later on a Thursday.

Is that what you, the fan, wants? The NFL assumes you do, under the theory that if one aspirin is good, the whole bottle is better.

But is it? Cast your ballots, drop a comment, and enjoy Thursday’s battle for the basement of the AFC South.

Before that, tune in for PFT Live, which features visits from former Eagles great Brian Westbrook and PFT’s Darin Gantt.

Permalink 19 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Aaron Rodgers denies calling Brett Favre “grandpa” when they met

GREEN BAY, WI - OCTOBER 19:  A Packer fan holds a sign supporting Aaron Rodgers over Brett Favre during the game between the Green Bay Packers and the Indianapolis Colts on October 19, 2008 at Lambeau Field in Green Bay Wisconsin. The Packers won 34-14.   (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images) Getty Images

I’ve been working my way through Jeff Pearlman’s excellent Brett Favre bio, hoping to experience it one page at a time without picking up any of the entertaining nuggets lurking in the latter pages. But I couldn’t avoid learning about one specific anecdote regarding the first time Favre met Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay’s first-round pick in 2005.

According to the book, Rodgers said this to Favre the first time they ever met: “Good morning, Grandpa.”

On Wednesday, Rodgers denied the claim.

“I’ll just say this: The first time I met Brett was on the practice field, and I could barely get a sentence out of, ‘Hello, my name is Aaron,'” Rodgers said, via Rob Demovsky of “Did I call him ‘Grandpa’ at any time during the three years together? Probably. But it’s in the same joking way that my man Brett Hundley called me ‘Grandpa’ three weeks ago on the field when we were doing a competitive drill.

“The story that was out there that I saw is completely 100 percent false, and I would dare anybody to test my memory on that. You guys know how my memory works. The end.”

It’s hardly the end, given some of the other stories told in Pearlman’s book. For example, Pearlman writes that, as a rookie, Rodgers bragged that he got a 35 on the Wonderlic test.

“Brett, what did you get?” Rodgers eventually asked Favre during a quarterbacks meeting.

“I have no idea,” Favre said.

“I do,” Rodgers replied. “I looked it up. You got a 22.”

After Rodgers left the room, Favre said to position coach Darrell Bevell and quarterback Craig Nall, “F–king Wonderlic score. Do you believe that sh-t? I run circles around his ass.”

At one point, receiver Donald Driver pulled Rodgers aside and said, “Aaron, we get it. You’re smart. Now shut the f–k up.”

We’ll see whether he does in response to the other contentions contained in the book.

Permalink 14 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

After four weeks away, Brandon Flowers returns to practice

SAN DIEGO, CA - DECEMBER 06:  Wide receiver Demaryius Thomas #88 of the Denver Broncos carries to the three yard line on a 21 yard pass play to set up the Broncos's first quarter touchdown against cornerback Brandon Flowers #24 of the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on December 6, 2015 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images) Getty Images

Chargers cornerback Brandon Flowers returned to practice Wednesday.

Flowers, who’s missed the last four games with a concussion, was listed by the team as a full practice participant.

His return would be a boost for a Chargers defense that’s been thin in the secondary since top cornerback Jason Verrett was placed on injured reserve earlier this month. Craig Mager, a second-year player, has been starting in Flowers’ absence.

Flowers, 30, is in his third season with the Chargers. He played his first six seasons with the Chiefs, who drafted him in the second round in 2008.

He’s been a starter when healthy for his entire career, and he has 20 career interceptions.

Permalink 0 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

DeMarcus Ware returns to practice

SANTA CLARA, CA - FEBRUARY 07:  DeMarcus Ware #94 of the Denver Broncos stands on the field during pregame warmups prior to Super Bowl 50 against the Carolina Panthers at Levi's Stadium on February 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, California.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images) Getty Images

DeMarcus Ware got a double dose of good news on Wednesday. First, they caught the Wet Bandits. Second, he returned to practice after suffering a Week Two forearm fracture.

Ware practiced on a limited basis in advance of Sunday’s game against the Chargers. Also limited were receiver Demaryius Thomas (hip) and fullback Andy Janovich (hand).

Absent from practice were running back C.J. Anderson, who has a bone bruise in his knee that reportedly will keep him out for several weeks at a minimum, linebacker Brandon Marshall (hamstring), center Matt Paradis (hip), defensive tackle Sylvester Williams (ankle), and cornerback Aqib Talib (low back).

Fully participating despite injuries were linebacker Shaquil Barrett (elbow), quarterback Trevor Siemian (left shoulder), and defensive end Billy Winn (low back).

The Broncos lost to the Chargers 13 days ago in prime time. Both teams won in Week Seven.

Permalink 0 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Moncrief back at practice, aiming to return Sunday

NASHVILLE, TN - SEPTEMBER 27:  Donte Moncrief #10 of the Indianapolis Colts celebrates after scoring a touchdown against the Tennessee Titans in the second half at Nissan Stadium on September 27, 2015 in Nashville, Tennessee.  (Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images) Getty Images

Colts wide receiver Donte Moncrief was back at practice on a limited basis Wednesday.

Moncrief has been out since Week Two due to a shoulder injury. He’s proven to be both a big target and a reliable one for Andrew Luck, and his return would boost a Colts’ receiving corps that’s been hit hard by injuries.

Colts Coach Chuck Pagano said Moncrief would wear a no-contact jersey in his return to practice and would be monitored through the week. Moncrief has been recovering from a fractured scapula.

Pagano said he’s hopeful that Moncrief will play this week, and Moncrief told reporters he’ll “be surprised if [he] doesn’t play Sunday.”

Permalink 2 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Lions’ Glover Quin is rich, but doesn’t spend like it

Glover Quin AP

NFL players who make millions of dollars only to go broke shortly after retiring are commonplace. They wouldn’t be if more players lived like Lions safety Glover Quin.

Quin is in the fourth year of a five-year, $23.5 million contract, but he’s still driving the same car he bought before he signed that contract, and he and his family live on just 30 percent of his take-home pay, with the other 70 percent going toward investments.

“You see so many guys around you buying cars, buying jewelry, doing this, spending money, talking about the money that they spend,” Quin told ESPN. “And you’re sitting there like, ‘Man, I’m living off this much money every month, and this cat spending this much money every day.'”

Quin invests 50 to 60 percent of his take-home pay in blue-chip stocks, and 10 to 20 percent in higher-risk private equity. He estimates that his investments have earned about as much for him as he’s earned from his NFL contracts.

“I’ve played for eight years and made this much money, I was in a couple investments for five years and kind of made the same amount of money,” Quin said. “It’s kind of like having a double NFL career.”

Quin said that early in his career, some of his teammates accused him of being cheap. By living comfortably if not lavishly, Quin is setting himself up to be rich for the rest of his life, long after some of those teammates have gone bankrupt.

Permalink 29 Comments Feed for comments Back to top

Denver police apprehend suspects in DeMarcus Ware burglary

DENVER, CO - SEPTEMBER 08:  Outside linebacker DeMarcus Ware #94 of the Denver Broncos reacts in the second half while taking on the Carolina Panthers at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on September 8, 2016 in Denver, Colorado.  (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images) Getty Images

Broncos linebacker DeMarcus Ware returned home from the team’s Monday night game to find that his home had been burglarized, something he announced on social media along with a mention of the cameras he has installed in his house.

Since the burglars opted not to use masks while helping themselves to Ware’s belongings, the Denver Police Department was able to use clear pictures of their faces and the promise of a reward to solicit help from the public in identifying the suspects. It didn’t take long for their efforts to bear fruit.

The Denver P.D. announced on Wednesday that they have apprehended the suspects and that the property stolen from Ware has been recovered.

Ware said earlier on Wednesday, via Cameron Wolfe of the Denver Post, that his Super Bowl ring was among the items taken and said he’d already started an insurance claim to deal with its loss. Now that he has it back, Ware need only worry about getting back on the field after breaking his forearm so he can help the team’s effort to hold another ring ceremony next year.

Permalink 12 Comments Feed for comments Back to top