New York Giants: Corey Coleman gone again as practice squad signs TE

New York Giants, Corey Coleman

Corey Coleman hasn’t been the luckiest wide receiver in the NFL, and he was cut for a second time from the New York Giants after missing the 2019 season with an ACL tear.

Following his recovery from that injury, Coleman was cut from the team in September despite reaching a one year deal with the team around the end of March. He did make it back into the organization in October by landing himself a spot on the practice squad, but the Giants moved on from Coleman once again on Tuesday.

The team’s decision accompanies the addition of tight end Nakia Grififn-Stewart, who was on the Minnesota Vikings roster during training camp and spent part of the season so far with the Green Bay Packers. Griffin-Stewart, however, isn’t exactly a well known name within the league and there’s not that much that makes him stand out compared to others at the position. It’s safe to say the Giants are making a depth signing here rather than picking up someone that has a fast track to getting on the active roster.

Coleman, who was released to make room for Griffin-Stewart, has frequently been discussed as a player in the mix over the course of the past two offseasons but has failed to actually make it onto the field and make an impact. In 2019, that failure to get onto the field was because of injury. This year, Coleman simply wasn’t able to beat out the competition to avoid ending up on the practice squad.

After already signing for the Browns, Bills, and Patriots before making it to the Giants, it remains to be seen if Coleman will have another chance in the league after this or if New York was his last chance to make it onto the field.

New York Knicks add ‘Baby Thibodeau’ Darren Erman to coaching staff

Tom Thibodeau has plucked one of his disciples from the Boston Celtics’ G League affiliate Maine Red Claws to join him at New York Knicks.

Darren Erman, who coached Tacko Fall in the Red Claws last season, is set to join the Knicks coaching staff, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Erman, a former lawyer-turned coach, has worked his way into the NBA.

He started as an assistant to legendary coach Bob Hurley in St. Anthony High School in Jersey City. A chance meeting with former Boston Celtics’ forward Brian Scalabrine in one of the NBA player’s camps paved the way for his entry to the league.

In 2005, Scalabrine brought Erman with him to Boston as his skills trainer. After Erman’s late-night sessions extended to Rajon Rondo and Tony Allen, where Thibodeau was also a regular fixture, the Celtics hired him to join their staff. Erman and Thibodeau’s bond became rock solid that Rondo described the former as “Baby Thibodeau.”

“He (Erman) is the best guy in the league to me as far as scouting reports. I call him Baby Thibodeau. Thibs is the best at it, to me, defensively. He’s the best defensive coach I’ve ever played for. (Erman is) pretty much a miniature Thibodeau,” said Rondo in a 2014 masslive.com story.

Erman and Thibodeau won a championship together under Doc Rivers in 2008 in Boston.

Erman earned a reputation as a defensive savant, learning from Thibodeau and Rivers.

(Erman) does the same thing, he works just as hard,” Rondo added. “You can’t really beat him to the gym. When Thibs was here, you couldn’t. I’d try to get to the gym at 7 in the morning; the only guy there was Thibs in his office. And (Erman is) pretty much the same way. It’s paid off for Thibs, and it’s only a matter of time before (Erman) becomes a head coach.”

In 2011, he left the Celtics and joined the Golden State Warriors as an assistant coach. But his tenure there ended in controversy. He was fired in 2014 for secretly recording conversations between coaches and players.

Erman survived the ordeal and returned to the Celtics as director of scouting. He later left again and became an associate head coach of the New Orleans Pelicans.

But last season, taking a cue from the success of former G League coach Nick Nurse with the Toronto Raptors, he left the Pelicans to coach the Red Claws.

He led the Red Claws to a G League fourth-best 28-14 record (third in the Eastern Conference). Under his watch, Fall was selected to the G League’s All-Defensive team, while Tremont Waters was named Rookie of the Year. Romeo Langford also credited his stint with Erman’s Maine Claws in becoming a rotation player for the Celtics.

Erman will join a Thibodeau coaching staff with a strong player development background.

Meanwhile, the Knicks have also hired Gabriel Snider as an assistant video coordinator. Snider has spent the last season with the Milwaukee Bucks in the same capacity. Prior to his Bucks stint, the former Indiana Bloomington graduate assistant has interned for the Detroit Pistons.

Follow this writer on Twitter: @alderalmo

New York Jets: Should the Jets re-sign Breshad Perriman?

New York Jets, Breshad Perriman

This season has been very tough for the New York Jets. With the Jets already out of playoff contention for this season, they need to start working for next season. Should the Jets lockdown Breshad Perriman to a long-term deal and keep him with Sam Darnold?

Perriman has been battling injuries this season, missing four games this season. Before Week 9, Perriman only averaged 2.75 catches a game, with only 29.5 yards per game in the other four games he started in. With his poor performance at the beginning of the season, why should the Jets re-sign him?

Why should the New York Jets re-sign Perriman?

Pros

Perriman signed a one-year deal with the Jets this past offseason for $6.5 million. Perriman in the past two weeks has been the deep threat the Jets have needed. Perriman has caught seven out of his 11 targets for 155 yards and three touchdowns in the last two weeks. Perriman has easily been the bright spot of this poor Jets offense.

Think about this trio of receivers, if they all can be healthy. Perriman, rookie Denzal Mims, and Jamison Crowder. That is a solid trio that can stay with Darnold for years. With all three receivers all playing at once, the Jets’ offense average 27.5 points in all three of their games. Gang Green needs to keep these three together.

Cons

Perriman has only been successful in two games this season. He has been terribly inconsistent. If you want a multi-year extension, you have to play consistently week in and week out. Perriman has only tallied at least four receptions or 60 yards only twice this season. Perriman consistency is going to have to change for the last six games for the Jets if he wants that contract.

Not only Perriman has not been the best player on the field earlier in the season, but he has also missed a bunch of games. Perriman missed four games this season due to ankle, knee, shoulder, and concussion injuries. Perriman needs to stay healthy for the next six games if he wants that multi-year deal.

The New York Jets have a lot to think about this offseason. Perriman is a player that needs to be thought about for the Jets and personally a player that the Jets need to bring back. To have that trio of Perriman, Mims, and Crowder could be solid for Darnold in years to come.

Buffalo Bills Week 15 game at Denver moved to Saturday night

The Buffalo Bills will play on a Saturday in December for the second straight season, with their visit to Denver being the shifted tilt.

The Buffalo Bills earned another prime time date on Tuesday afternoon, as the NFL announced that the team will be a part of a late-season doubleheader on Saturday, December 19. Buffalo will battle the Denver Broncos at Empower Field at Mile High at 4:30 p.m. ET, with the game broadcast nationally on NFL Network, as well as simulcast on local stations in the Buffalo and Denver areas. It will be the first of two Saturday battles, the latter being an 8:15 p.m. ET nightcap between the Carolina Panthers and Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field.

These two matchups were part of the NFL’s original Week 15 slate, part of a group of six that was nominated to play a late Saturday game. The NFL avoids scheduling games on Saturday night due to the Sports Broadcasting Act of 1961, which ruled that the league’s broadcasting practices, which often staged Saturday night games, violated antitrust laws. Such an act more or less outlaws the NFL from staging games on Friday and Saturday during high school and college football seasons respectively, though exceptions are granted later in the year when the college regular season ends. Five more games are likewise up for a Saturday shift on the Week 16 slate, including a matchup between the New York Jets and Cleveland Browns at MetLife Stadium.

This marks the second straight season that the Bills have been moved to a Saturday night in the late stages of the season. Last year’s instance decided the AFC East division race, as the Bills battled the New England Patriots in Foxboro. New England took the game 24-17 to capture their 11th straight division title. Buffalo (7-3) may have a chance to flip the script this holiday season, as they currently own a one-game lead on the Miami Dolphins for the division lead.

The resurgence of the Bills has led to an increase in national television appearances. With this shift, the Bills will now play on a national broadcast in four of their final six games, and their Week 17 tilt against Miami could well move to the Sunday night slot if postseason seeding is on the line. Buffalo also has two appearances on ESPN’s Monday Night Football ahead (December 7 at San Francisco and December 28 at New England), their first season with multiple MNF visits since 1997. The Bills are also set to partake in Week 14’s Sunday night game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on December 13 at home. It will mark only their third appearance on the premiere national slot since NBC took over the package in 2006 and the peacock network’s first visit to Buffalo since 2007. The Bills’ first nationally televised game, part of NFL Network’s Thursday night package, was moved to a Monday after several other teams endured difficulties with the ongoing health crisis.

Buffalo will next battle the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday afternoon (1 p.m., CBS).

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags

New York Giants: Comparing Daniel Jones’s turnovers to the rest of the league’s quarterbacks

New York Giants, Daniel Jones

Over the past two years, one major criticism has surrounded New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones: he is a turnover machine. Jones simply could not stop putting the ball in harm’s way in his rookie 2019 campaign. He threw 12 interceptions in 13 games and fumbled the football an absurd, league-high 18 times in that same span.

Daniel Jones suffered from a severe case of “fumble-itis” in his rookie season. In 2020, though, Daniel has still been criticized for his tendency to turn the ball over. He is still regarded as a turnover machine just a little over halfway through his sophomore season.

But is this a fair criticism of Daniel Jones in 2020? Has he really been turning the ball over at an extreme rate when compared to the rest of the NFL’s quarterbacks?

The NFL’s biggest turnover machines in 2020

This year’s top turnover machine is not Daniel Jones. Instead, it is another NFC East quarterback: Carson Wentz of the Philadelphia Eagles. Carson Wentz not only leads the league in interceptions (14 in 10 games), he also leads the league in fumbles (10 in 10 games). While Daniel Jones fumbled the ball at an extreme rate last season, he never threw interceptions at the rate that Wentz has this season.

There have been plenty of other, more-talented quarterbacks turning the ball over at a high rate in 2020. MVP-candidate Russell Wilson is fourth in the NFL with 10 interceptions. The G.O.A.T., Tom Brady, has thrown 9 interceptions, already surpassing his interception total from 2019 (8).

Many of the league’s top turnover-committing quarterbacks in 2020 are widely considered some of the best players in the sport. But they do not get trashed and disregarded the way that Daniel Jones does. The biggest reason why: wins. Jones has struggled to win football games in his career. But, coming off of a two-game win streak with no turnovers, Jones has an opportunity to flip this narrative.

Daniel Jones turnovers in 2020

Daniel Jones still ranks towards the top of the NFL in total interceptions + fumbles. But with all of these highly-talented quarterbacks turning the ball over at a higher rate than Jones, it is confusing to see why he faces so much criticism that other quarterbacks do not.

Daniel Jones has thrown 9 interceptions in 10 games. He has also fumbled the football 7 times in that span. Only 5 of those fumbles have been lost, though, meaning Jones has turned the ball over a total of 14 times in 10 games.

Turning the ball over more than once per game is not a sustainable winning formula. The Giants have learned this in recent weeks. Jones has gone two straight weeks without turning the ball over and won both of those games. If he can continue to play at this level, Daniel Jones can get rid of this bad reputation and begin to establish himself as a legitimate quarterback in the NFL.

New York Yankees: Buck Showalter recommends that the rotation should “go young”

New York Yankees, Deivi Garcia

On YES Network’s “Hot Stove”, analyst Buck Showalter suggested that the New York Yankees rotation should “go young”. The Yankees rotation is in a roster turnover, with many of their arms from 2020 hitting the free agency market this winter. They could choose to go to free agency to staff the rotation, or focus on in-house options.

Some of those in-house options include Jordan Montgomery, Deivi Garcia, and Clarke Schmidt. All three of these guys have had opportunities in the majors, with Montgomery being on the roster since 2017.

Montgomery pitched to a 9-7 in 2017, his rookie season. He had a 3.88 ERA 144 strikeouts and a 1.230 WHIP over 155.1 innings, finishing sixth in Rookie of the Year voting.

He would make six starts in 2018 before injuring his arm and being forced to undergo Tommy John surgery, sidelining him until the end of the 2019 season. Montgomery appeared twice leading up to the 2019 postseason to shake-off the rust, beginning his 2020 comeback.

His first full-season back saw him finish with a 2-3 record and a 5.11 ERA in 10 starts, slowly returning back to his normal self and showing glimmers of success.

Garcia and Schmidt, on the other hand, have far less experience. While Garcia made six starts in 2020, Schmidt appeared just three times. Garcia posted a 4.98 ERA, while Schmidt held a 7.11 ERA to his name.

If the Yankees were to focus on in-house options filling the rotation, it would be a high risk, high reward scenario. The team would save a lot of money by pitching young guys who have a lot of potential. On the other hand, the Yankees are one of the best teams in all of baseball, and not going after veterans could hurt their postseason chances.

Veterans provide experience with proven talent, something you won’t see in young pitchers. For the Yankees to have the most success, they may be better off mixing in-house guys with veteran free-agents.

Showalter’s proposal of the Yankees rotation going young sounds like a good idea, but won’t work. With how competitive the Yankees are, the can’t afford to stay away from high-profile, proven veterans. Having a mix of young pitchers may help the team, but focusing solely on young-guns will hurt the Yankees.

FOCO releases limited edition Mets Tom Seaver bobble-head

FOCO has released a brand-new New York Mets’ Tom Seaver bobblehead, and it’s truly one of a kind.

Seaver spent 20 seasons in the big leagues and 12 came with the New York Mets. He was inducted into the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame in 1992, with what was at the time the highest vote percentage any inductee at 98.8%.

Seaver was the greatest Met of all time and earned the nicknames “Tom Terrific” and “The Franchise” from Mets fans. He was a 12-time All-Star, won three Cy Young awards, three ERA titles, and the 1969 World Series with the Mets. His number 41 is one of the five retired by the franchise.

New York Jets: 3 positives in a season of negatives

The New York Jets remain the lone winless team in the NFL after their loss to the Los Angeles Chargers on Sunday. Aside from the 0-10 record, the season has been riddled with negative occurrences. Whether it’s incompetent play-calling, injuries, or having the last-ranked offense, it hasn’t been pretty.

However, funny enough, it hasn’t been solely negative. Some parts of the team, and some players, have been bright(er) spots for the Jets. Here are three of those positives that deserve some notice:

Denzel Mims

The second-round pick for the Jets has shown some real promise, already. Through his first four games, after missing the first six due to injury, he’s totaled 13 receptions for 217 yards. That’s an average of 16.7 yards per reception. Now, he doesn’t qualify for league-leading stats because he’s only played four games. However, if he did, he’d be the eighth-ranked wide receiver in terms of yards per reception.

Mims has shown solid route-running, ability after the catch and the capability to make tough catches.

The small sample size we’ve gotten from him so far is cause for some excitement. He definitely has some areas that need improvement, but overall, seeing him on the field has been a major positive the past few weeks.

Marcus Maye

Marcus Maye has definitely been one of the bright(er) spots on the Jets. Additionally, after the departure of Jamal Adams, he is now playing strong safety for the first time.

Through 10 games, Maye is on track for a career year. Here are his stats thus far:

  • 54 total tackles
  • 5 passes defended
  • 1 interception
  • 2 forced fumbles*
  • 2 sacks*
  • 3 tackles-for-loss*
  • 2 QB hits*

*Career-high

Already reaching career-highs in four areas, he is definitely having a nice year for the Jets. Sure, it may be aided by his increased usage, but he still has to go out there and produce, and he is.

Kickers

This one may come as a shock to some people, but the Jets kickers have quietly been much better than in previous seasons so far. Sam Ficken and Sergio Castillo have shared the kicking duties this season, and both have been pretty accurate. Ficken has played in seven of the ten games, so let’s take a look at his stats first:

  • 9-10 FG
  • 90% FG*
  • 8-10 XP
  • 80% XP

*Career-high

His numbers aren’t mind-blowing by any sense, but, quietly, he has been a positive player. Now, he has missed three games, though. His replacement, Sergio Castillo, has been pretty solid as well. Here’s how he has fared so far:

  • 6-7 FG
  • 85.7% FG
  • 4-4 XP
  • 100% FG

Those are all career-highs, technically, because this is his first NFL season. The former CFL kicker was a nice fill-in for the Jets over those three weeks and may be getting another starting job chance in the future. However, at this moment, he, Ficken, Maye and Mims have been positive aspects of this negative season.

 

 

 

Derrick Lewis looks to extend heavyweight knockout record at UFC Vegas 15

Back in August at UFC Vegas 6, Derrick Lewis (24-7, 1NC) became the promotion’s heavyweight knockout king. He earned that honor when he knocked out Alexey Oleynik in the second round of their heavyweight main event.

The victory was Lewis’ 11th knockout victory inside the UFC which pushed him passed Cain Velasquez and Junior Dos Santos for soul possession of first. Quite the impressive honor for the heavyweight from Houston.

Lewis has become a fan favorite in the UFC for a number of reasons. Whether it’s his post-fight interviews which featured him taking his fight shorts off or his fighting style, The Black Beast has become must see TV.

Lewis will enter the octagon on Saturday night as the fourth ranked heavyweight in the UFC. He’s also on a three fight win streak and a victory on Saturday night could put him next in line after top contender Francis Ngannou. However, that task will not be easy.

UFC Vegas 15’s Tough Matchup

In order to secure his fourth straight win in the UFC, Lewis will have to take out the promotions second ranked heavyweight, Curtis Blaydes (14-2, 1 NC). There has only been one man to have derailed Blaydes in the UFC and that was Francis Ngannou.

Ngannou was able to finish Blaydes both times they’ve fought. However, outside of Ngannou, Blaydes has been a nightmare for the guys he’s fought. He’s used his wrestling and grappling skills to maul his opponents.

However, he’s also shown that his hands have gotten better. The Dos Santos knockout is proof of that. Still, Blaydes leans heavily on his wrestling attack and his vicious top game to neutralize and defeat his opponents.

Lewis is going to have to really show on Saturday that his takedown defense has gotten better. We’ve seen Lewis struggle inside the UFC against guys who want to take the fight to the ground.

The Black Beast struggled in his lone title shot against Daniel Cormier. He also struggled in the first round against Alexey Oleynik. However, with Lewis, he only needs one shot with the fight on the feet.

That’s what makes Saturday night so intriguing. On paper, you’d have to favor Blaydes because of the styles. However, it doesn’t matter how late we get into the fight, the heavyweight knockout king is always just one shot away from turning out the lights.

Steve Novak loves New York Knicks lottery pick: ‘Obi Toppin is a sure thing’

The New York Knicks haven’t been relevant since signing Amar’e Stoudemire and trading for Carmelo Anthony in the early decade.

Steve Novak saw first-hand how the Madison Square Garden was rocking and buzzing in those years where the Knicks last tasted a playoff appearance.

Novak, who played for the Knicks from 2011-13, hopes that the arrival of hometown kid Obi Toppin could rekindle that fire back in New York.

“I think it was a great pick. Obi Toppin is a sure thing – Naismith Player of the Year. He’s gotten better from his junior year of high school until now. So we’ve seen him develop,” Novak said on MSG Network’s new morning show MSG A.M.

“You know that you are getting a guy who went 29-2 at Dayton his last year. He is a winner.”

Toppin fell on the Knicks’ lap at No. 8 after frantically trying to trade up, fearing that he’ll be gone by then. But a shakeup in the draft handed them the best player in college basketball last season and whom scouts project to be the most NBA-ready rookie.

Toppin’s remarkable rise from the playgrounds — Dyckman and Rucker Park — of New York to become a lottery pick has given so much hope for the moribund franchise.

Amar’e 2.0?

And Toppin’s hops and bounce have reminded Novak and most scouts of the player who once rocked New York.

“He is a guy that has compared himself to Amar’e Stoudemire. He’s born in Brooklyn. You saw the emotion and the excitement to be with a franchise like the New York Knicks. There are some guys you can tell they didn’t want to be in certain places. They’re not as happy to be drafted somewhere. But Obi Toppin is going to live every moment and breathe every breath in order to play his best basketball at Madison Square Garden. You can already tell that,” Novak added.

Toppin didn’t shy away from the spotlight. After he got drafted, he declared he’ll help to bring the Knicks back to basketball relevance.

“New York has been down a couple of years, and I feel like with the guys they have now, and myself added to that, we’re going to win a lot of games, and we’re going to put New York back on the map, for sure,” said Toppin after being selected eighth overall in last week’s NBA Draft.

Can Toppin bring the excitement back to The Garden?

Maybe when the pandemic is over.

Follow this writer on Twitter: @alderalmo