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deal w O via the NFL Players Inc. licensing- unit. "Since partnering in 2013, and have helped nearly 1,000 players connect with hundreds of brands to share campaigns, reaching more than 1 billion fans worldwide."

• The has named Shenzhen, as the host city for 2019-2028, a deal that includes the building of a 12K-seat venue, and doubling the prize money to $14M for the Top 8 singles players and Top 8 doubles teams.

• Overwatch League said that its first week of competition drew more than 10 million viewers via Twitch, MLG, and Chinese streaming partners ZhanQi TV, NetEase CC and Panda TV. Opening day had an average audience per minute of 408,000.

• Coca-Cola, International Speedway Corp. and Nascar have signed an extension to their partnerships under which Coca-Cola, would "continue its deep-rooted history in the sport by engaging racing fans across Nascar’s three national series and 12 ISC-operated race tracks" and events including the Coca-Cola 600 and the Coca-Cola 400. Coca-Cola-sponsored drivers include Austin Dillon, Denny Hamlin, Kyle Larson, Joey Logano, Ryan Newman, Daniel Suarez and Darrell “Bubba” Wallace Jr. Coca-Cola said it "has been involved with stock car racing for 50 years," and became an official partner with Nascar in 1998.

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Most Popular NBA Jerseys (Oct.-Dec. 2017)
1. Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors
2. LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers
3. Kevin Durant, Golden State Warriors
4. Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks
5. Kristaps Porzingis, New York Knicks
6. Joel Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers
7. Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder
8. Ben Simmons, Philadelphia 76ers
9. Kawhi Leonard, San Antonio Spurs
10. James Harden, Houston Rockets
11. Lonzo Ball, Los Angeles Lakers
12. Kyrie Irving, Boston Celtics
13. Klay Thompson, Golden State Warriors
14. Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers
15. Jimmy Butler, Minnesota Timberwolves

Most Popular Team Merchandise
1. Golden State Warriors
2. Cleveland Cavaliers
3. Philadelphia 76ers
4. Los Angeles Lakers
5. New York Knicks
6. Milwaukee Bucks
7. Boston Celtics
8. San Antonio Spurs
9. Chicago Bulls
10. Oklahoma City Thunder
Source: NBAStore.com

The 67th NBA All-Star Game will take place on Sunday, Feb. 18 at Staples Center in Los Angeles. TNT will televise (8 PM ET)

BUY SELL

2018 NBA All-Star Game

East Starters: Giannis Antetokounmpo, DeMar DeRozan, Kyrie Irving, LeBron James, Joel Embiid
West Starters: Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry, Anthony Davis, James Harden, DeMarcus Cousins
The All-Star teams will still feature 12 players from each conference, but the captains — James and Curry — will select the team rosters without regard for conference affiliation.

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Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#46Ul8rBF4XpB4lo0.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#JZxA5jXY4rCwemgZ.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#JZxA5jXY4rCwemgZ.99
Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/j/johnfkenn121400.html#46Ul8rBF4XpB4lo0.99

Entries in NFL (1)

Thursday
Apr202017

ESPN’s Jon Gruden: Saints, Cards, Giants Need To Draft Young QBs, Plan Ahead

By Barry Janoff

April 20, 2017: Jon Gruden may not be the foremost expert on quarterbacks, but after heading up ESPN’s Gruden’s QB Camp, now in its eighth season, plus working as an analyst on Monday Night Football since 2009 — which followed 11 years as a head coach in the NFL — he certainly has seen a lot of them up-close and personal.

And he had a message for teams as they head toward the NFL Draft next week: Even if you have an established quarterback, take one of these young guys and get ready for the future.

"These guys are very talented. Some of them might be a year away," said Gruden during a media conference call on Wednesday (April 19). "But you have to start the developmental process quickly if you need a quarterback.

"When you look at some of the NFL teams, the New Orleans Saints, for instance, who is the heir apparent to Drew Brees? Who is the heir apparent to Carson Palmer (Arizona Cardinals)? Eli Manning (New York Giants)? You have to look at it from that regard.

"Wouldn’t it be wonderful to get one of these guys you really like and put him in (your) program where they can watch a great player play for a year and then potentially take the keys and run with it," said Gruden.

Gruden talked about the next crew of quarterbacks ready to enter the NFL, breaking off from the majority of draft pundits by claiming that three and as many as four quarterbacks would be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft on April 27 in Philadelphia.

"I’ve had a lot of fun with these quarterbacks, five of them are underclassman. An interesting group. A very under-estimated group. We’ll see four of them go in the first round," said Gruden.

"The four quarterbacks I like in the first round potentially are Deshaun Watson (Clemson, pictured above), he’ll be gone. Patrick Mahomes (Texas Tech). Mitch Trubisky (North Carolina). Who’s the fourth? There will be a sleeper somewhere along the road. Could be DeShone Kizer (Notre Dame), could be Nathan Peterman (Pittsburgh)," said Gruden.

All five of the players named have appeared or will appear on Gruden’s QB Camp this season, along with Joshua Dobbs (Tennessee) and Brad Kaaya (Miami, Fla.).

Gruden has worked with nearly 60 quarterbacks during the course of the ESPN show, including the likes of Russell Wilson, Cam Newton, Robert Griffin III, Teddy Bridgewater, Derek Carr and Tim Tebow.

Gruden said that of the incoming group, he has been most impressed with Watson, the two-time Heisman Trophy finalist who led Clemson to the 2017 College Football Playoff National Championship after losing to Alabama in 2016.

"Who is the heir apparent to Drew Brees? Who is the heir apparent to Carson Palmer (Arizona Cardinals)? Eli Manning (New York Giants)?"

"Deshaun Watson’s body of work impressed me the most,” Gruden said during the media call. "Back-to-back national championship games. He beat the best teams in college football. I love his poise. He plays his best football when he’s behind and all the chips are one the table. He’s got thick skin. He’s mentally tough. I like his overall game. He’s athletic. He’s got the intangibles everyone craves."

Gruden said that there will be a lot of teams looking at the incoming class of QBs, and not just those in immediate dire need of filling the position.

Gruden, an NFL head coach for 11 seasons with the Oakland Raiders (1998-2001) and Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2002-08), with a career record of 100-85, five division titles and a win with the Buccaneers in Super Bowl XXXVII, offered some advice to teams who might consider the crop of QBs to be under-developed.

"You have to have the foresight, the confidence and the coach in place to help get this done," he said. "But I’m all for taking some occasional risks in the draft. You don't know which players will turn it around."

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