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Chris Harris Jr: Signing extension with Broncos was “greatest decision of my life.”

Denver Broncos’ Chris Harris Jr. (25) smiles with fans after the NFL Super Bowl 50 football game Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016, in Santa Clara, Calif. The Broncos won 24-10. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson) AP

Denver Broncos cornerback Chris Harris Jr. knew he was potentially leaving money on the table when he signed a five-year extension with the team in December 2014 instead of waiting for free agency.

But Harris says that decision to take a “pay cut” and remain with the Broncos was one of the best choices he’s ever made.

“Taking that pay cut, man, was the greatest decision of my life,” Harris said while basking in the glow of the Broncos 24-10 victory over the Carolina Panthers in Super Bowl 50. “To be here and be a Super Bowl champion… man, I probably would have been on the Titans or the Raiders. There’s no telling what team I would have been on, but to here with this great organization. I know (John) Elway is always going to keep a great team here and I just always put my faith in them and my group. I can’t ask for a better group to play with and I’m just thankful for everybody.”

“It was very tough, but I wanted to win,” he continued. “I knew I’d probably for the Titans or Raiders, somebody sorry, but I decided to stay and play with this great group. And the great thing about it is we’re going to be here for a while. We’ve got the same core that’s locked in for a while and it’s going to be scary for the teams to come.”

Harris played with a left shoulder injury throughout the playoffs that made it difficult to be as aggressive as normal.

“It was pretty bad. I was lying to y’all,” Harris said with a laugh about the injury. “…Any hit, my arm just went dead.”

Harris said he doesn’t believe he’ll need surgery but that he needs to get it reevaluated to make sure. He feels he should be good with rest and back in about a month.

“Just to grind through these playoffs, it was a very hard playoffs for me. Was never healthy. To put in that extra work every day to even just come out and play really with my injury you’re supposed to go on (injured reserve), but I fought through it and it makes it feel even more special because I had to play with pain this whole postseason. A lot of pain, and to be able to get this win playing through that makes me even more grateful.”

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Browns announce eight staff additions

Cleveland Browns head coach Hue Jackson, right, laughs as he answers questions during a news conference, Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016, in Berea, Ohio. Jackson has experience as a head coach, knows the AFC North and has fixed quarterbacks. Jackson, who waited four years for his second crack at leading an NFL team, has been hired as Cleveland's next coach, the struggling franchise's eighth since 1999 and sixth since 2008. Browns owner Jimmy Haslam is on the left. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak) AP

The Browns officially announced eight additions to Hue Jackson’s first coaching staff Monday.

Former NFL players Johnny Holland and Rock Cartwright are among the previously reported additions. Louie Cioffi returns as defensive backs coach after serving the last two years under new Browns defensive coordinator Ray Horton in Tennessee and previously under Horton with the Browns in 2013.

Also named to the staff were Ken Delgado, assistant defensive line coach; Cannon Matthews, assistant defensive backs coach; Robert Nunn, defensive line coach; Eric Sanders, defensive quality control coach; and Ryan Slowik, outside linebackers coach.

Holland will coach inside linebackers, while Cartwright will be the offensive quality control coach.

“Johnny Holland is a seasoned, veteran coach,” Jackson said in a statement. “He played in this league and has had success as a player and a coach. He is a very passionate demanding teacher. I know without any question he is going to get the best out of our linebackers.”

Nunn was the defensive line coach with the Giants the last six seasons.

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Police report says McCoy, Curtis Brinkley assaulted three officers

LeSean McCoy, Percy Harvin, Robert Woods AP

The police report from the Sunday morning incident that resulted in two off-duty police officers being hospitalized in Philadelphia said three officers fought with Bills running back LeSean McCoy and former NFL running back Curtis Brinkley.

The report said there was “a dispute over the purchase of champagne” between the men and Brinkley “grabbed the bottle.” Nothing good generally happens after 2 a.m., and the report lists 2:45 a.m. as the approximate time of the incident.

A law enforcement official told CSNPhilly.com that two of the officers suffered broken ribs.

ABC-6 in Philadelphia first reported that McCoy was being investigated for assault. No arrests have been made.

The Bills said in a team statement that they’re aware of the situation and have no further comment at this time. The Bills acquired McCoy in a trade with the Eagles last year.

Brinkley is a native of Philadelphia. He played for the Chargers and Bears between 2009-13.

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What happened to Mike Carey?

Mike+Carey+GBQOfbXEXprm Getty Images

Lost in last night’s Super Bowl was the fact that CBS officiating expert Mike Carey apparently got lost.

Carey contributed only once to the broadcast, in connection with an incomplete pass from Panthers quarterback Cam Newton to receiver Jerricho Cotchery that Carolina coach Ron Rivera challenged.

Before referee Clete Blakeman announced the outcome, Jim Nantz threw it to Carey for an explanation.

“I think this is a good challenge by Carolina,” Carey said. “The receiver goes up, he’s going the ground. So he must maintain control of the ball, which he does. If I was in the booth, I would reverse this to a catch.

“The ball never hits the ground. Even though there’s a bobble inside, maintains good control, up off the ground. He rolls over, keeps it off the ground at the end.”

But the ruling on the field was upheld, because the ball did hit the ground and because there was no indisputable visual evidence that the ruling on the field of the ball moving too much upon hitting the ground was incorrect.

After the play, Carey was never heard from again. Sure, there was only one more replay challenge (a tap-in putt that would have allowed Carey to quickly explain that Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning will be treated as down even with the slightest contact from a Carolina defender), but the game presented other opportunities for explanations from Carey, including an illegal blindside block during a punt return.

Likewise, multiple players had a pair of personal fouls, which Commissioner Roger Goodell has proposed would result in an ejection. Carey could have said something about the dilemma officials face when potentially sending a player to the showers prematurely.

Based on last week’s comments from CBS Sports chairman Sean McManus, it’s obvious that CBS is aware of, and sensitive to, the criticism of Carey. It seems that someone opted to protect Carey and CBS from further fodder for more criticism but putting him on ice for the rest of Super Bowl 50.

CBS has not yet responded to an email sent last night request comment on Carey’s disappearance from the broadcast. There’s at least a chance the disappearance will be something more than temporary, given his body of work.

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Seahawks mum on whether they’ll collect Marshawn’s bonus money

Marshawn AP

Peyton Manning chose not to announce his retirement after last night’s game. Marshawn Lynch chose to announce his retirement during it.

Vague at first, it quickly became clear that Lynch is indeed done, with tweets from Richard Sherman, Russell Wilson, and (most convincingly) owner Paul Allen confirming it.

The one thing the Seahawks haven’t and likely won’t confirm is whether Lynch will be permitted to keep the $5 million in signing bonus money he hasn’t earned yet. The safe guess is that it was understood a year ago that the Seahawks wouldn’t seek reimbursement if he retired after 2015. But the Seahawks would be wise to not publish that, because then other players who retire with unearned signing bonus money may expect the same courtesy.

It’s also unknown whether the Seahawks conditioned Marshawn’s retention of the money on his commitment to remaining retired. If he returns later in the year and plays for another team, the Seahawks would be entitled to be more than a little miffed.

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Report: Eagles haven’t had discussions about Nick Foles return

ST. LOUIS, MO - DECEMBER 6: Nick Foles #5 of the St. Louis Rams is sacked in the second quarter against the Arizona Cardinals at the Edward Jones Dome on December 6, 2015 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Michael B. Thomas/Getty Images) Getty Images

On Sunday, Adam Schefter of ESPN reported that the Eagles are interested in turning back the clock and bringing Nick Foles back to Philadelphia a year after trading him to the Rams for Sam Bradford.

That report also indicated that the Eagles are leaning against using the franchise tag to assure that Bradford, an impending free agent, remains with the team in 2016. Another report from Philadelphia indicates that thoughts of a reversal of course are premature at the moment.

Zach Berman of the Philadelphia Inquirer reports that the Eagles have not had internal discussions about pursuing a Foles return. As of now, any Foles pursuit would require another trade as he is under Rams control. He’s due a $6 million bonus three days into the new league year, which starts on March 9, so that status could change in the coming weeks.

Berman also reports that the Eagles have made no decisions regarding Bradford. New coach Doug Pederson has spoken well of Bradford since getting hired last month, although there’s certainly a big difference between saying nice things and putting yourself on the hook for a salary around $20 million for a quarterback who hasn’t been consistent enough withe either the Rams or Eagles to justify that price.

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Monday morning one-liners

during Super Bowl 50 at Levi's Stadium on February 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, California. Getty Images

The first Bills season tickets went on sale on this date in 1960.

Former Dolphins QB Dan Marino was part of the Super Bowl commercial blitz.

Patriots QB Tom Brady didn’t hear many cheers at Levi’s Stadium on Sunday.

Video games occupied Jets DT Damon Harrison’s attention on Super Bowl Sunday.

Ravens QB Joe Flacco was walking well as part of the celebration of past Super Bowl MVPs.

The Bengals offensive line handled the Broncos defense well this season.

Browns coach Hue Jackson had a good meeting with Memphis QB Paxton Lynch.

A breakdown of the Steelers quarterback play in 2015.

Former Texans TE Owen Daniels and coach Gary Kubiak became Super Bowl champions with the Broncos.

Said Former Colts WR Marvin Harrison of making the Hall of Fame, “It’s always a blessing to have a compliment to the kind of work ethic you bring to the football field.”

Former Jaguars QB David Garrard credits Panthers offensive coordinator Mike Shula with aiding in his development.

Life on Broadway agrees with former Titans RB Eddie George.

Said Broncos PR Jordan Norwood of his 61-yard return in the Super Bowl, “It was a short punt, and a lot of times guys will just run past it. And they didn’t, but I just decided to roll with it.”

Winning comeback player of the year gave some closure to Chiefs S Eric Berry.

Raiders QB Derek Carr could commiserate with Cam Newton when it came to getting sacked by Von Miller.

A look back at when the Chargers drafted Ryan Leaf.

The best and worst running backs drafted by the Cowboys.

Peyton Manning now has as many Super Bowl wins as Giants QB Eli Manning.

Former Eagles defensive coordinators were on both sidelines in the Super Bowl.

Should the Redskins be in pursuit of a big wide receiver?

Gary Kubiak said he inherited a good Broncos team from Bears coach John Fox.

Lions General Manager Bob Quinn was praised by former boss Robert Kraft.

Are Packers fans too critical of the team’s season?

Weighing the chances that the Vikings draft a wide receiver in the first round.

Can the Falcons make the jump to the Super Bowl next season?

WR Jerricho Cotchery’s drops hurt the Panthers against the Broncos.

Saints QB Drew Brees was part of the pregame festivities in Santa Clara.

WR Mike Evans has heard from Buccaneers teammate Vincent Jackson about being more mature in the future.

Cardinals coach Bruce Arians was rooting for Peyton Manning on Sunday.

Will the Rams be a more attractive destination for free agents?

49ers RB Jarryd Hayne’s hometown in Australia was tuned in to the Super Bowl.

Some reaction to Seahawks RB Marshawn Lynch’s retirement announcement.

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Join us at 6:00 a.m. ET for the new PFT Live

pft-live_podcast_600x600

The midnight oil will soon yield to 10 cups of coffee. In fewer than five hours, the first 6:00 a.m. ET edition of PFT Live on NBC Sports Radio will launch.

The last hour of the program will be televised on NBCSN, leading in to The Dan Patrick Show.

For our friends on the West Coast, the entire show re-airs from 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. ET, and producer Rob “Stats” Guerrera promptly will carve up a “best of” podcast for downloading.

Monday’s guests include Peter King of TheMMQB.com and PFT’s Darin Gantt. We’re also hoping to get Super Bowl 50 MVP Von Miller in hour three, our debut hour on NBCSN.

I picked the original 2011 web show logo for the post because I really haven’t been this excited since we launched the program more than five years ago at 12:00 p.m. ET. Hopefully, we’ll be in the new time slot for another five years, and longer.

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Thomas Davis shows how much it meant to him to play

during Super Bowl 50 at Levi's Stadium on February 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, California. Getty Images

Thomas Davis wasn’t going to let three torn ACLs hold him back, nor was a broken arm going to keep him off the field in the Super Bowl.

And he was willing to show what it meant to him after the game.

Davis tweeted out a photo of the stitched-up surgical incision on his right arm, which was broken two weeks ago in the NFC Championship Game. It’s a little graphic, but not overtly. If you’re squeamish about incisions and stitches and swelling, maybe don’t look.

“This post is not about me, or how tough I am,” he wrote. “It’s not to shine any light on me or my injuries. Our team doctors and trainers did an amazing job giving me an opportunity to get back on the field. This post is strictly to show how much love I have for my brothers and #PantherNation. Thank you all for your support and we will #KeepPounding.-TD”

Knowing he broke his arm two weeks ago and had surgery to put a plate and 12 screws in so he could play is one thing.

Seeing a graphic image of what it looks like underscores his commitment to the team, and to playing in the final game of the year.

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Mike Shula: Broncos D came in as best we’ve seen and proved it

SANTA CLARA, CA - FEBRUARY 07:  Cam Newton #1 of the Carolina Panthers is tackled by  DeMarcus Ware #94 of the Denver Broncos in the fourth quarter during Super Bowl 50 at Levi's Stadium on February 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, California.  (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Panthers scored 580 points in their first 18 games this season, an average of 32.2 points per game that they didn’t come close to hitting against the Broncos in Super Bowl 50.

Panthers offensive coordinator Mike Shula said after the game that he’s “not sure” exactly why the team was off on Sunday, but that the Broncos defense had a lot to do with knocking his unit off its game.

“Well, we tried a lot of different things. We knew those guys coming in were the best we’ve seen and they proved it. They’re fast to the ball, they can rush the passer, they do a good job against the run game. A lot of contested catches. They were contesting our receivers. You throw in the fact that we were just off on some things — had a couple turnovers early, just a little bit off on some other things. It can add up, and unfortunately it looked like that.”

When things have gone right for the Panthers this season, they’ve jumped out to early leads and then poured pressure on opponents who had to take risks in order to catch up. They found themselves on the other side of the fence this Sunday and their offense couldn’t handle the pressure that Denver threw their way. You can break things down more minutely than that if you like, but sometimes the simplest answers work best.

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John Elway: Previous Super Bowl loss made this win sweeter

during Super Bowl 50 at Levi's Stadium on February 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, California. Getty Images

Cam Newton may not have handled a bad night at the office particularly well.

But John Elway knows exactly how it feels, having gone through it two years ago.

The Broncos executive vice president said after Sunday’s Super Bowl 50 win, that the memories of their Super Bowl XLVIII thrashing at the hands of the Seahawks made it that much sweeter.

“There is nothing worse,” Elway said of that 43-8 loss. “Everyone crash lands unless you are this team, unless you are the team that wins it. It is always a crash landing for the other 31 teams. Watching [the Seahawks celebrate] and realizing and having looked at that and having been through all that — how special is it to be able to go through that.

“For us to be able to get back here two years from then and get back and have the orange tape flying is much better.”

In some respects, the crash landing for the Broncos was harder because of the different in score. Theirs was never particularly close, and they had to deal with humiliation in addition to a physical beating.

And if Newton and the Panthers want to put the pain of such a loss behind them, the Broncos have laid out the roadmap.

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Seahawks confirm Marshawn’s retirement message

Marshawn Getty Images

A year ago, the post-Super Bowl chatter was dominated by talk regarding the decision of the Seahawks to throw the ball and not give it to Marshawn Lynch with the game on the line. This year, Lynch is still relevant, for different reasons.

He posted a tweet in the fourth quarter suggesting strongly that he’s retiring. To help remove doubt, cornerback Richard Sherman added this on Twitter: “Salute to my guy @MoneyLynch . . . It was an honor sharing the field with you.”

The folks at Skittles also chimed in with this: “Three words. Lifetime. Skittles. Pension.”

Lynch technically owes the Seahawks $5 million if he retires — unless the Seahawks agreed last year when signing him to a new deal or since then that he gets to keep the money if he walks away after one season.

If truly done, Lynch finishes at No. 36 on the all-time rushing list, with 9,112 career yards.

UPDATE 12:29 a.m. ET 2/8/16: Russell Wilson has confirmed it, too. And the Seahawks retweeted Wilson’s message.

UPDATE 12:48 a.m. ET 2/8/16: And now owner Paul Allen has confirmed it.

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Broncos gain fewest yards of any Super Bowl winner

during Super Bowl 50 at Levi's Stadium on February 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, California. Getty Images

For a long stretch of Sunday’s Super Bowl 50, it looked like the Broncos would become the first team to win a championship without scoring an offensive touchdown.

Running back C.J. Anderson’s late touchdown run squashed that possibility, but the Broncos offense still made some history on Sunday night. The 194 total yards of offense that the Broncos generated against the Panthers are the fewest by any team that won the Super Bowl.

That was one of five records set during the game. At 39, Peyton Manning became the oldest quarterback to start and win the Super Bowl while Jordan Norwood’s 61-yard punt return in the first half of the game is the longest in history. The 12 combined sacks by the two teams also set a new Super Bowl mark.

In addition to the new records, the NFL announced that several records were tied during the game. Panthers defensive end Kony Ealy’s three sacks match Reggie White and Darnell Dockett for the most in Super Bowl history while Broncos linebacker Danny Trevathan’s two fumble recoveries also equal the all-time high. No one has ever had more than one fumble recovery for a touchdown or two-point conversion in a game, leaving Broncos Malik Jackson and Bennie Fowler with a piece of history.

The Broncos also tied a record before the game even started by reaching the Super Bowl for the eighth time in franchise history.

 

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Emmanuel Sanders: Hopefully we’re not sending Peyton out

during Super Bowl 50 at Levi's Stadium on February 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, California. Getty Images

The big question for Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning after Sunday’s victory over the Panthers was whether he’ll be retiring from the NFL in the wake of his second Super Bowl title.

Manning’s play on Sunday was in line with what we’ve seen most of the season. The arm strength and command of the passing game was down from what we’ve grown accustomed to seeing, which would seem to make getting a ring and walking away a likely outcome.

Wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders hopes that’s not the case, though.

“Hopefully we’re not sending him out,” Sanders said. “If we are, it’s amazing. It’s a lot of exclamation points to a great career and even crazier season — just dealing with the ups and downs with that one incident coming out, losing the starting spot so to speak — he handled his business and stayed true to his character, stayed true to the person that he is, and it all paid off and now he’s a Super Bowl champ.”

Demaryius Thomas echoed his fellow wideout’s sentiments about hoping Manning is back in Denver for another season and said the win was a good answer to the “naysayers.” With an overwhelming defense and big plays from special teams, the Broncos could win without big performances from Manning. Pulling it off again in 2016 would likely be even more difficult, which makes leaving on a high note look all the more appealing.

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Wade Phillips: This is a special, all-time defense

Wade Phillips, defensive coordinator for the the Denver Broncos, arrives before the NFL Super Bowl 50 football game against the Carolina Panthers, Sunday, Feb. 7, 2016, in Santa Clara, Calif. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum) AP

The Broncos went through the regular season allowing the fewest yards in the league, the fewest yards per rushing attempt and the fewest yards per passing attempt before allowing the Steelers, Patriots and Panthers to score 44 points on their way to the Super Bowl 50 title.

It is the first Super Bowl title of defensive coordinator Wade Phillips’ long coaching career and he was basking in the glow of his unit’s performance after the game. Phillips said that the team “played our defense” while recording seven sacks and four turnovers against a Panthers team that led the league in scoring during the regular season.

Phillips pointed that out when asked about where this Broncos defense should rank historically, a question that he answered by saying that he thinks it is a “special, all-time” unit. Cornerback Chris Harris was asked a similar question when he met the media after the win and said it was an “easy” answer to say that they have “one of the greatest” defenses that’s ever played the game. Harris referenced the Panthers’ offensive success heading into the game while talking about why he thinks they rank so highly.

“We beat [Tom] Brady twice,” Harris said. “We beat Big Ben [Roethlisberger] twice. What QB didn’t we beat?”

Where the Broncos defense ranks on the list of the best in NFL history is going to ultimately reside in the eye of the beholder. After the last three games, it’s hard to come up with much of an argument against their spot at the table.

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