Courtesy of PNC

Hot Button: Carli Lloyd kicks from 55 … Baker rips Giants draft … AB cont.

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FLY, CARLI, FLY

Tuesday, 5:48 p.m.: Carli Lloyd was a guest at Eagles practice today, and the USWNT star did not disappoint. Lloyd stepped back with the help of kicker Jake Elliott holding, ran up and booted a 55-yard strike between the uprights. Just in case Chris Boswell needs some relief kicking this season as well. -- Sunday

BAKER BAKES, BAKER UNBAKES

Tuesday, 3:25 p.m.: Talk about a deconstructed dish. Baker Mayfield told all in a GQ interview, including his thoughts on the Giants drafting Daniel Jones. "I can not believe the Giants took Daniel Jones," he said in the interview. "Blows my mind."

Since GQ posted the story, Baker has walked back his comments -- claiming they were taken out of context by the reporter. He posted on Instagram to vent his frustrations: -- Sunday

COCO'S STORY

Tuesday, 2:49 p.m.: Remember Coco Gauff? The 15-year-old sensation who blew minds at Wimbledon? ESPN's The Undefeated, quickly becoming one of my favorite reading destinations, published a nice longform piece on how she got to be where she is at 15. Spoiler alert: It's a multigenerational story. -- Sunday

AB ON ... HELMET OFF

Tuesday, 2:13 p.m.: It appears as though Antonio Brown walked off the field when it was time to put the helmets on for today's Raiders practice ... but he came right back to stretch with the team. The difference? Everyone else had helmets on and stretched as a team. AB had his off, and worked alone. That concluded the media's availability out there. -- Sunday

CANES GO DIAGONAL

Tuesday, 10:20 a.m.: The Hurricanes revealed their new road jerseys on Tuesday, and they're pretty sweet. -- Taylor

NO TOMMY JOHN FOR SALE

Monday, 5:47 p.m.: Chris Sale is a terror on the mound. Fastest to 2,000 strikeouts in MLB history, etc., etc. So, when the Red Sox announced he was put on the Injured List dealing with elbow inflammation detected in an MRI, and he'd need a second look, it was concerning. Luckily for the Red Sox, Sale and fans of the game, there's no Tommy John surgery required. Unluckily, he underwent a platelet-rich plasma injection and will be shut down for the rest of the season. -- Sunday

RETURN INCOMING? 

Monday, 11:29 a.m.: A day after Mike Mayock issued Antonio Brown an ultimatum (see that entry just below), Brown's agent Drew Rosenhaus is doing some damage control for his client. He thinks Brown will be back on the field soon, despite having a "major issue" with the current situation. Read our full report here. -- Hunter

'ALL IN OR ALL OUT'

Sunday, 6:35 p.m.: Welp. Raiders GM Mike Mayock has had enough Antonio Brown drama for one year. Listen to Mayock's ultimatum for Brown in our full report right here.

CEDRIC BENSON DIES

Sunday, 12:02 p.m.: Longhorns legend and former NFL running back Cedric Benson has died at the age of 36. Benson was in a late night motorcycle accident in Austin, Texas when his motorcycle "slammed into a minivan" while Benson was riding with a passenger, unidentified, who was also killed.

Benson played eight seasons in the NFL. Three were with the Bears, the team that drafted him, four with the Bengals, which Steelers fans will remember best, and a single season with the Packers.

CREW VS. NATS FOREVER

Sunday, 4:31 a.m.: It's a shame when one of the best baseball games of the year is played on a random Saturday of the year, not for a pennant or World Series title. Shame or not, it happened with the Brewers' 15-14 outlasting of the Nationals over 14 innings. That's ... a lot of innings and a lot of runs, both of which made possible by Christian Yelich's 40th and 41st home runs of the season. It made him the fastest Brewer to 40 and he became the first 40 home run, 20 steal guy in the league since Ryan Braun did it in 2012. Imagine if the guy hadn't missed any time! -- Sunday

AQUINO ... JUST STOP

Sunday, 4:24 a.m.: Aristides Aquina, aka The Punisher ... I'm asking you to stop hitting home runs because people will get tired of reading about you. I'm a fan since I jumped in on you early in fantasy baseball, but those who didn't ... they won't want to read much more. That, or, keep hitting home runs and I'll keep adding them. 11 in 17 games now. See you at PNC Park this weekend. -- Sunday

McCOWN RETIRES ... THEN NOT

Saturday, 5:42 p.m.: Josh McCown's 40 years old. He was just about to become an ESPN analyst upon returning from 10 years as an NFL quarterback. And then the Eagles called and offered $2 million guaranteed. -- DK

URIAS SUSPENDED FOR ABUSE

Saturday, 5:35 p.m.: Dodgers pitcher Julio Urias was suspended 20 games for domestic violence by Major League Baseball. He'd already served five of those when the incident became known in May. He won't appeal and, in fact, issued a statement through the MLB Players Association that accepted full responsibility. -- DK

WORLD CUP RETURNS?

Saturday, 2:55 p.m.: NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly spoke to Sportsnet about the future of the NHL-sanctioned World Cup tournament. If the league and NHLPA can renew or extend the current CBA before it expires, the likely plan would be to hold the next World Cup in February 2021. It would replace the All-Star Game, and the break in the league's schedule would be "about a week." -- Taylor

PUNISHER KEEPS PUNISHING

Friday, 10:29 p.m.: This is getting ridiculous. Aristides Aquino is no longer getting "beginner's luck," or whatever you'd like to call it. He's now the fastest player in MLB history to hit 10 home runs, doing it in 16 games for the Reds. Seriously, this guy is sickening at this point. If you didn't own him in a fantasy league 10 days ago, you're too late now.

The way this dude is hitting the ball, it started me wondering if he'd end up with more dingers than Vlad Guerrero Jr. -- one of recent history's most touted call-ups -- by season's end. He might if he keeps cutting balls in half like he is, but Vlad felt the pressure and turned into his dad for a minute tonight.

Watch that again, and try and figure out how the kid goes inside to take this ball off of his shins and into the stands. Then click this link and watch the angles MLB has. The one from the side? Absurd. He flinches and changes his stance in the last moment to go get it and send it. -- Sunday

INJURY BUG BITES CHARGERS

Friday, 6:40 p.m.: Per Ian Rapoport, Chargers safety Derwin James suffered a foot injury and was "spotted in a boot today."

James started all 16 games as a rookie last year, registering three interceptions, 13 passes defended, three-and-a-half sacks and 105 tackles (75 solo), earning Pro Bowl and first-team All-Pro honors in the process. This is not what the team needs, especially with star running back Melvin Gordon holding out over a contract dispute. -- Hunter 

GORDON'S BACK ... AGAIN 

Friday, 6:36 p.m.: Patriots receiver Josh Gordon has been reinstated, per Adam Schefter.

Gordon was suspended last season in late December after violating the terms of his reinstatement under the league's substance abuse policy. That forced him to miss the Patriots' final two regular-season game as well as all three of their playoff games, including their 13-3 Super Bowl LIII win over the Rams. In all, Gordon started 11 games for the Patriots in 2018, catching 40 passes for 720 yards and three touchdowns. -- Hunter 

LAINE'S CONTRACT

Friday, 5:49 p.m.: Restricted free agent Patrik Laine spoke on his contract negotiations with the Jets. -- Taylor

HARPER'S MEGA-SLAM

Thursday, 11:40 p.m.: One of baseball's best moments all summer came tonight in Philadelphia, with Bryce Harper's walkoff grand slam capping a six-run rally to cut down the Cubs, 7-5. One he apparently enjoyed just a little:

Way better than that, though, was this digital tracker illustrating the Cubs' right fielder, Jason Heyward, conceding that he wasn't about to catch a 413-foot bomb to the upper deck:

Baseball can be awesome.

Oh, and those victimized Cubs are in town next. -- DK

AB (ALMOST) PARTAKES

Thursday, 11:11 p.m.: Antonio Brown didn't suit up for the Raiders' in their preseason game tonight in Oakland, but he did run through routes and drills beforehand that had Jon Gruden sounding almost defianty encouraged, if that makes any sense. The team's next preseason game is next Thursday in Winnipeg. And no, I'm not going. -- DK

XFL LANDS LANDRY

Thursday, 3:12 p.m.: The XFL has landed a former Steelers quarterback as its first official player for 2020. No, not the return of Tommy Maddox, but Landry Jones. There hasn't been an official roster announcement yet for the quarterback, but his college coach -- from a standout career at Oklahoma -- Bob Stoops is running the show for Dallas' XFL side. I'm no mathsman, but I'd put my chips on that being the case. -- Sunday

BILLBOARD BELL 

Thursday, 10:20 a.m.: So Le'Veon Bell wants to be the best at football ... and at music. In a recent interview with The Associated Press, Bell discussed his love of hip-hop and his lofty goals in that space.

"For real, I want to be No. 1,” Bell said. “I want to hit the No. 1 song, the No. 1 Billboard (song), that’s what I want to do. I want to eventually get better and get to those music shows, making songs with the great ones and things like that.”

Look, I've heard Bell rap. Once. Never again. I'll just put it that way. -- Hunter 

JIMMY G'S NO GOOD, VERY BAD DAY

Wednesday, 5:38 p.m.: This is not the type of performance the 49ers want to see from Jimmy Garoppolo. According to NBCSportsBayArea.com's Matt Maiocco, Garoppolo threw five interceptions at practice Wednesday — on five straight plays.

“The defense did great today, and obviously he [Garoppolo] struggled,” 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said. “You hope to never have a day like ... So when you do that, you hope that you practice long enough to give him a chance to play out of it.” -- Hunter 

VRABEL, BRADY TRADE JABS

Wednesday, 1:57 p.m.: Titans head coach Mike Vrabel and Tom Brady have a bit of a history — like three Super Bowl wins with the Patriots. The two were once teammates and they remain close friends, but now that dynamic has evolved to include some trash talk. During a joint practice between the Titans and the Patriots, Vrabel slung some heat toward Brady as he took the field:

Side note: Vrabel is 44. Brady is 42. Kinda nuts to see them in two wildly different positions as the 2019 season begins, eh? -- Hunter 

STEALING SIGNS

Wednesday, 1:38 p.m.: New England Region's representative in the Little League World Series, Barrington Little League of Rhode Island, has been accused of stealing signs to 'earn' their spot in Williamsport, Pa. Players on second base can reportedly be seen giving signs to their teammate swinging the bat at home plate. Although considered unsportsmanlike at all levels, it's not outlawed at the big league level. It is, however, in Little League. -- Sunday

FOUR-DOUBLE DEVERS

Wednesday, 1:16 p.m.: Red Sox third baseman Rafael Devers is the latest MLB young gun to set records. Home runs are impressive, as we've seen, but how about going 6-for-6 with four doubles? Devers was the first batter in history to accomplish the feat. -- Sunday

 

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