Report: Meyer’s wife was told of abuse by Buckeyes assistant

The ex-wife of former Ohio State assistant coach Zach Smith says she told Buckeyes coach Urban Meyer’s wife in 2015 that her husband had assaulted her, an incident Meyer said last week he was unaware of.

Courtney Smith gave an interview to Stadium and provided text messages to former ESPN reporter Brett McMurphy between her and Shelley Meyer and with the wives of other Buckeyes coaches. Courtney Smith also provided threatening texts she claims came from her ex-husband.

Messages left with Ohio State on Wednesday were not returned.

Zach Smith was fired last week after an Ohio court granted a domestic violence protective order to Courtney Smith.

Patriots QB Brady (calf) limited at practice

Patriots QB Brady (calf) limited at practice

Patriots QB Brady (calf) limited at practice

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was limited at Wednesday’s practice due to a calf issue, according to the team’s injury report.

The nature of the injury or when Brady sustained it is unclear, but the Boston Herald reports it’s not “anything to worry about going forward.”

Asked if there was any concern with having his quarterback limited in practice, special teams ace Matthew Slater told reporters, “Not when your quarterback is Tom Brady.”

Also limited were offensive tackle Marcus Cannon (shoulder), newly signed offensive lineman Caleb Benenoch (calf) and tight end Matt LaCosse (ankle). Fullback James Develin (neck) sat out practice.

Meanwhile, Miami Dolphins linebacker Raekwon McMillan raised a few eyebrows when he told reporters Wednesday that an official told him to “stay off Tom” after he delivered a legal hit on Brady during Sunday’s game in Miami.

McMillan hit Brady as he was releasing a throw early in the second quarter, avoiding Brady’s head and pulling up rather than taking the quarterback to the ground. Brady remained down on the ground for a few seconds afterward, and referee Bill Vinovich and umpire Bruce Stritesky walked over toward him as he got up.

No penalty was called on McMillan. There were offsetting penalties for offensive and defensive holding elsewhere in the play.

–Field Level Media

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McIlroy shoots 63 to lead WGC-Mexico

McIlroy shoots 63 to lead WGC-Mexico

McIlroy shoots 63 to lead WGC-Mexico

Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy continued his strong form with an 8-under-par 63 at the WGC-Mexico Championship on Thursday to build a one-shot lead over Dustin Johnson after the first round in Mexico City.

Johnson is in solo second place, with Justin Thomas and Matt Kuchar tied for third at 5 under. Charles Howell III, South Africa’s George Coetzee and England’s Tyrrell Hatton are another shot off the pace at 4 under.

Playing in Mexico for the first time as a professional, Tiger Woods recovered from a double bogey after hitting his drive out of bounds on his first hole to birdie three consecutive holes from Nos. 4-6. He finished the day tied for 25th at even par.

Defending champion Phil Mickelson fared far worse, struggling to an 8-over 79. He is tied for 70th in the 72-player, no-cut event after playing in weather-affected tournaments in California each of the past two weeks.

Starting on the back nine of the Club de Golf Chapultepec, McIlroy birdied four of his first eight holes. He made the turn and promptly eagled No. 1 after nearly holing out from 307 yards. He carded three birdies against a lone bogey on his way in to the clubhouse.

McIlroy, who has tied for fourth twice and fifth once over his past three tournaments, hit 17 of 18 greens in regulation in tying his lowest round of the season.

He is also trying to enjoy playing at more than 7,000 feet above sea level this week. He said he’s hitting his 3-iron around 300 yards and can carry his driver upwards of 370 if he gets it up in the right air.

“Literally it’s a 100-yard difference between some shots,” McIlroy told the Golf Channel of the comparison to playing the Genesis Open in Los Angeles last week. “It’s fun. I’m glad we don’t have to do it every week, but while we’re here, we might as well make the most of it.”

As hot as McIlroy was, he couldn’t put much distance between himself and Johnson, who posted his eighth consecutive round in the 60s at the Club de Golf Chapultepec. The lowest elevation is 7,603 feet above sea level, with the highest point being at 7,835 feet.

“It’s tough,” Johnson admitted to the Golf Channel when asked about the elevation. “It’s an adjustment, but we figure out our numbers on the range and we go with them the best that we can.”

Johnson, who is known for his even-keeled temperament on the course, also said he didn’t concern himself with trying to keep pace with McIlroy on a Thursday.

“There’s way too much going on to worry about what anyone else is doing,” said Johnson, who turned in the only bogey-free card Thursday. “I’m very pleased with the round.”

NOTES: Woods, who holds the record with 18 World Golf Championships victories, is two wins shy of Sam Snead’s all-time PGA Tour record of 82. He said he will skip next week’s Honda Classic in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. … Thomas drove the 415-yard, par-4 12th hole but three-putted for par. … England’s Justin Rose is not in the field and could lose his No. 1 ranking this week depending upon who wins.

–Field Level Media

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NFL notebook: League seeks info on Gurley’s injury

NFL notebook: League seeks info on Gurley's injury

NFL notebook: League seeks info on Gurley’s injury

A revelation from running back C.J. Anderson that Todd Gurley’s knee injury was more severe than the Los Angeles Rams thought — and disclosed — triggered an NFL request for more information from the team, a league source told Field Level Media.

Gurley was not on the Super Bowl injury report. He largely gave way to Anderson in the postseason, but the company line from the Rams centered around head coach Sean McVay taking the blame for not getting Gurley more involved.

Gurley missed the final two regular-season games, dealing with an undisclosed knee problem, then played on a limited basis in the first two playoff games. After the Rams went through their final on-field workout Friday, two days before the Super Bowl, McVay labeled Gurley “100 percent.”

A league source told FLM that the NFL office routinely seeks more information from teams in situations such as Gurley’s. Rams spokesman Artis Tyman did not confirm or deny a request for information was made regarding Gurley’s injury since Anderson’s comments, instead directing queries on the matter to the NFL.

–The Cincinnati Bengals hired New York Giants secondary coach Lou Anarumo as their defensive coordinator.

Bengals head coach Zac Taylor worked with Anarumo when both were with the Miami Dolphins.

Anarumo, 52, spent last season coaching the Giants and was in Miami from 2012-17. Anarumo and Taylor were made interim coordinators after the dismissal of head coach Joe Philbin with 12 games to go in the 2015 season.

–Put Denver quarterback Case Keenum atop the list of people surprised by the Broncos’ trade for Joe Flacco earlier this month.

Keenum, who signed a two-year, $36 million deal with Denver in March 2018, appeared on The Sports Spectrum podcast with his wife, Kimberly.

“(GM John) Elway called me that morning and we had a great conversation, which he didn’t have to do, and I appreciated that,” Keenum said. “It was definitely a shock. It was a surprise for us. … For us, we’re definitely disappointed. It’s not something we wanted to happen. I know everybody is doing their job and John feels like it was a chance to help the Broncos out.”

–The Baltimore Ravens agreed to a three-year contract extension with cornerback Tavon Young, multiple outlets reported.

Young, a 2016 fourth-round draft pick, turns 25 next month. He had one year remaining on his four-year rookie contract.

ESPN reported the extension is a three-year, $25.8 million deal with a max value of $29 million, making him the NFL’s highest-paid nickel back. NFL Network valued the extension at three years and $27 million.

–The New Orleans Saints are planning to release safety Kurt Coleman and clear more than $4 million in cap space, NFL Network reported.

Coleman signed a three-year, $16.3 million deal with the Saints last offseason and was due $5.5 million in total compensation in 2019.

A source told NFL Network that New Orleans was open to bringing the nine-year veteran back at a reduced rate.

–Former Detroit Lions wideout Calvin Johnson Jr. was granted preliminary licensing approval to launch a medical marijuana business in Michigan, according to mlive.com.

Johnson plans to open a chain of provisioning centers in the state under the brand name “Primitive,” according to his attorney, Michael D. Stein.

This was the second time Johnson had sought approval for a provisioning center license. The Medical Marijuana Licensing Board denied his request with former Lions teammate Robert Sims two months ago, citing Johnson’s traffic violations.

–The Broncos have informed free agent nose tackle Domata Peko they don’t intend to re-sign him, 9News Denver reported.

Per the report, the Broncos would like to seek a younger option at the position, though they won’t rule out Peko if he remains on the market in the later stages of free agency.

Peko, 34, spent the past two years with the Broncos on a two-year, $7 million deal, excelling in a run-stopping role. The 13-year veteran, who spent his first 11 seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals, has missed just six games in his career, and only two since 2009.

–The Chicago Bears officially released veteran tight end Dion Sims, clearing $6 million in cap space.

Sims, who turned 28 on Monday, will count only $333,334 in dead money for 2019.

Sims signed a three-year, $18 million deal with Chicago as a free agent in 2017.

–The NFL conditionally reinstated former Buffalo Bills running back Karlos Williams after a lengthy suspension for substance abuse, according to multiple reports.

Williams, 25, hasn’t played in the league since his rookie season in 2015.

The fifth-round draft pick from Florida State showed promise when he appeared in 11 games for Buffalo, rushing for 517 yards and seven touchdowns and adding 11 catches for 96 yards and two scores.

–Field Level Media

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Patriots owner Kraft faces solicitation charges

Patriots owner Kraft faces solicitation charges

New

Patriots owner Kraft faces solicitation charges

New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft has been charged with two counts of solicitation of prostitution in Florida.

Kraft is one of 25 individuals facing similar charges in connection with an investigation into a Florida spa allegedly tied to an international human trafficking ring.

Kraft, 77, is alleged to have paid for sex at Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter, Fla., one of 10 shut down in the region after a long investigation showed the women in the spas were sex servants, according to authorities. Kraft allegedly visited the spa on two occasions, according to law enforcement.

He has not been arrested on the charges, both classified as misdemeanors. An arrest warrant will be issued.

Kraft, who also owns the New England Revolution MLS franchise, denied the accusations on Friday afternoon.

“We categorically deny that Mr. Kraft engaged in any illegal activity,” a spokesman for Kraft said in a statement. “Because it is a judicial matter, we will not be commenting further.”

Authorities at a news conference on Friday said much of their evidence in the investigation comes from cameras worn on officers’ uniforms and from surveillance that was conducted via hidden cameras inside the day spa. The cameras captured the alleged sexual acts being committed inside the spa, including those involving Kraft.

“We’re as deeply stunned as anyone else,” Jupiter, Fla., Police Chief Daniel Kerr said of Kraft’s alleged involvement.

–Field Level Media

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Bucs’ playbook safe despite theft of player’s tablet

Bucs' playbook safe despite theft of player's tablet

Bucs’ playbook safe despite theft of player’s tablet

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers took fast action to disable potential access to their playbook when a player’s team-issued tablet was stolen from his car.

Running back Peyton Barber, who was visiting Atlanta, told police his SUV was broken into early Saturday morning. His tablet, passport and other items were taken, according to Atlanta police.

Police said there was playbook information on the tablet, but the Buccaneers told WSB-TV that only videos were on it.

“We were able to remotely disable the Surface tablet once we were informed. There was no playbook info on the computer, just some self scout videos, etc… nothing of much importance, ” the team statement said.

Barber, an Alpharetta, Ga., native, was in Atlanta Friday night to visit a friend. His SUV was one of several vehicles broken into Saturday morning, police said, adding surveillance video showed five men committing the acts.

The Buccaneers signed Barber as an undrafted free agent from Auburn in 2016. In three seasons, he has gained 1,751 yards from scrimmage and scored 10 touchdowns.

–Field Level Media

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Bears clear cap space by releasing TE Sims

Bears clear cap space by releasing TE Sims

The Chicago Bears released veteran tight end Dion Sims

Bears clear cap space by releasing TE Sims

The Chicago Bears released veteran tight end Dion Sims on Thursday, clearing $6 million in cap space.

Sims, who turned 28 on Monday, will count only $333,334 in dead money for 2019, according to NBC Sports’ Pro Football Talk.

Sims signed a three-year, $18 million deal with Chicago as a free agent in 2017.

Regarded more as a blocking tight end, he played in 22 games (18 starts) with the Bears in the past two seasons, catching 17 passes for 189 yards and one touchdown. His 2018 season was cut short because of concussion issues.

Sims, a fourth-round pick by Miami in 2013, caught 74 passes for 699 yards and eight touchdowns in four seasons with the Dolphins.

–Field Level Media

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Former DE Bryant waiting for kidney transplant

Former DE Bryant waiting for kidney transplant

Former NFL defensive end

Former DE Bryant waiting for kidney transplant

Former NFL defensive end Armonty Bryant disclosed he has end stage renal failure, is undergoing dialysis and needs a kidney transplant.

In a lengthy interview with Michael Rothstein of ESPN, Bryant, a seventh-round draft pick by Cleveland in 2013, described how he learned of the disease.

He signed with Oakland last spring after he was cut by the Detroit Lions. He spent three seasons with the Browns, then parts of two years with the Lions, who cut him following his third suspension for violating the league’s substance abuse policy.

After a physical with the Raiders, team doctors called and told him to go to the emergency room after reviewing the results of his blood test. He had an elevated potassium level and at the ER, his blood pressure was almost 200.

He eventually was diagnosed with kidney disease. The Raiders released him last May with a non-football illness designation and he announced his retirement in July.

“They say the kidney is a silent killer,” Bryant said. “It’s true because I can tell you right now, I had nothing wrong with me. I had a little back issues, but that’s about it. I never thought that this could end my career, basically.”

Bryant, 28, is awaiting a transplant at home in San Diego. He has the support of the local John Brockington Foundation, named for the former Green Bay Packers running back who also needed a transplant.

Brockington received a kidney in 2001 from his wife, Diane, before they were married. Diane Brockington said they have spoken to Bryant and his wife.

“We tried to instill hope, because that is the single thing they need most at that stage and it’s not a false hope,” Diane said. “So I think we kept saying what we like to say, ‘Believe that there is a kidney transplant in your future. There is a kidney for you. It’s a matter of locating it.'”

Bryant had 11.5 sacks and three forced fumbles in 36 career NFL games.

–Field Level Media

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Trainer takes Puerto Rico Open for 1st PGA win

Trainer takes Puerto Rico Open for 1st PGA win

Trainer takes Puerto Rico Open for 1st PGA win

Martin Trainer finished his final round with a 5-under 67 on a windy day at Coco Beach Golf and Country Club to win the Puerto Rico Open on Sunday, the 27-year-old’s first career PGA Tour victory.

The PGA Tour rookie completed his four rounds at 15-under 273 to best four others by three strokes, firing four birdies over the final 10 holes to pull away from the pack. Trainer, who earned $540,000 with the win, earned a spot on the Tour this season by finishing fourth on the Web.com money list in 2018.

Australia’s Aaron Baddeley led after three rounds, but his final-day 72 dropped him into a second-place tie at 12 under with Daniel Berger (66), Canada’s Roger Sloan (67) and Johnson Wagner (69). Defending champion D.A. Points shot a 69 on Sunday to finish in a tie for 42nd.

–Field Level Media

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Johnson to five-shot win at WGC-Mexico

Johnson to five-shot win at WGC-Mexico

Johnson to five-shot win at WGC-Mexico

Dustin Johnson has made his fame and fortune on the PGA Tour by being one of the longest hitters in the world, but it was his all-around game that was on display this week as he posted a five-shot victory at 21-under-par 263 after the final round of play Sunday at the World Golf Championships-Mexico Championship at Club de Golf Chapultepec in Mexico City.

Johnson had six birdies and a bogey, his first of the week thought he did have a double-bogey in the third round, while carding a 5-under 66 on Sunday as he was never seriously threatened after sleeping on a four-shot lead.

Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy finished second after a 67 on Sunday while three players — Paul Casey (65) and Ian Poulter (68), both of England, and Thailand’s Kiradech Aphibarnrat (68) — finished in a tie for third at 11 under.

Johnson did a little bit of everything and did it all really well while winning this event for the second time in three years; he finished tied for seventh in 2018 when the tournament was won by Phil Mickelson.

It was the eighth time in 16 events that Johnson has won when leading after 54 holes. The victory extended Johnson’s streak of winning at least one PGA Tour event to 12 consecutive seasons, dating to his rookie season in 2008, the longest active streak on the circuit.

McIlroy, who — along with Patrick Reed — played in the final group with Johnson, never got closer to the lead than two strokes early in the round as he forged a seven-birdie, three-bogey round. Any chance McIlroy had to make a run at Johnson died after bogeys on the fourth and sixth holes.

Johnson began the final 18 holes at 16 under and well clear of McIlroy. Reed, Patrick Cantlay, Australia’s Cameron Smith and Spain’s Sergio Garcia were seven shots back of Johnson at 9 under. No one in that group made any kind of real charge, and Johnson rolled to the win.

Cantlay, Garcia, and Smith all shot 70s on Sunday and finished in a tie for sixth at 10 under. Reed shot 73, finishing in a tie for 14th at 7 under.

Justin Thomas had the week’s best round with a 62 on Sunday that allowed him to move up 28 spots to a solo ninth at 9 under.

Tiger Woods, playing competitively in Mexico this week for the first time, managed a 69 on Sunday to finish in a tie for 10th at 8 under along with Joost Luiten (64) of the Netherlands, Keegan Bradley (65), and David Lipsky (69).

The 34-year-old Johnson became just the fifth player to win 20 times on the PGA Tour before turning 35, joining Tom Watson, Johnny Miller, Woods, and Phil Mickelson.

Johnson joined Woods as the only players to win the same WGC event three times. It was his sixth WGC title, putting him just 12 behind Woods. Johnson is the only player to win all four WGC events.

–Field Level Media

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Richardson’s 3 TDs lead Iron to 3-0 start

Richardson's 3 TDs lead Iron to 3-0 start

Trent Richardson

Richardson’s 3 TDs lead Iron to 3-0 start

Trent Richardson rushed for three touchdowns, doubling his season total, and the visiting Birmingham Iron moved to 3-0 with a 28-12 victory over the Atlanta Legends on Sunday.

A 2012 first-round pick of the Cleveland Browns who last played in the NFL in 2014, Richardson had 17 carries for 46 yards with scores of 5, 1 and 6 yards. He is averaging just 2.5 yards per carry (59 carries, 145 yards) through three weeks of play, but his six rushing TDs lead the league by four.

Iron quarterback Luis Perez, who went undrafted in 2018 out of Texas A&M-Commerce and spent training camp with the Los Angeles Rams, finished 17 of 31 for 160 yards and an interception. Birmingham and Orlando, both 3-0 atop the East Division, are the AAF’s only undefeated teams.

Legends signal-caller Matt Simms, formerly of the New York Jets, went 28 for 48 for 328 yards, a touchdown and three picks. Atlanta joined Memphis as the only winless teams through three weeks.

–Field Level Media

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NFL updates stance on embattled Kraft

NFL updates stance on embattled Kraft

NFL updates stance on embattled Kraft

An arrest warrant for Patriots owner Robert Kraft is expected Monday, which prompted the NFL to release an updated statement on the status of the pillar of the New England franchise.

Kraft is facing two counts of misdemeanor solicitation of a prostitute connected to a sting at a massage parlor in Jupiter, Fla.

“Our personal conduct policy applies to everyone in the NFL. We will handle this allegation in the same way we would handle any issue under our policy. We are seeking a full understanding of the facts, while ensuring that we do not interfere with an ongoing law enforcement investigation. We will take appropriate action as warranted based on the facts,” read the NFL statement.

Kraft and NFL commissioner Roger Goodell have had a frosty relationship at times, notably during the infamous Deflategate investigation that led to a four-game suspension for quarterback Tom Brady, but they also powered the labor negotiations and CBA deal signed with players amid a lockout in 2011.

Kraft, 77, is alleged to have paid for sex at Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter, Fla., one of 10 massage parlors shut down in the region after a long investigation showed the women in the spas were sex servants, according to authorities. Kraft allegedly visited the spa on two occasions, according to law enforcement.

If convicted of the misdemeanor charges, he would face a maximum of 60 days in jail and a $500 fine as a first-time offender. He also could be subject to disciplinary action by the NFL.

Kraft, who also owns the New England Revolution MLS franchise, denied the accusations on Friday afternoon.

“We categorically deny that Mr. Kraft engaged in any illegal activity,” a spokesman for Kraft said in a statement. “Because it is a judicial matter, we will not be commenting further.”

The NFL also released a statement.

“The NFL is aware of the ongoing law enforcement matter and will continue to monitor developments,” the league said Friday afternoon.

Authorities at a news conference on Friday said much of their evidence in the investigation comes from cameras worn on officers’ uniforms and from surveillance that was conducted via hidden cameras inside the day spa. The cameras captured the alleged sexual acts being committed inside the spa, including those involving Kraft.

“We’re as deeply stunned as anyone else,” Jupiter, Fla., Police Chief Daniel Kerr said of Kraft’s alleged involvement.

–Field Level Media

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Kraft officially charged with solicitation

Kraft officially charged with solicitation

Kraft officially charged with solicitation

New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft was charged with first-degree solicitation of a prostitute in Florida on Monday.

Kraft has a court date scheduled for April 24. He doesn’t need to appear, and a lawyer can represent him instead.

Kraft, 77, is facing two counts of misdemeanor solicitation connected to a sting at a massage parlor in Jupiter, Fla.

According to court documents, one of Kraft’s visit to Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter was on Jan. 20, prior to the Patriots playing the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game in Missouri. Kraft allegedly visited the spa on two occasions, according to law enforcement.

Orchids of Asia Day Spa is among the 10 massage parlors shut down in the region after a long investigation showed the women in the spas were sex servants, authorities said.

Palm Beach County State Attorney Dave Aronberg didn’t specifically discuss Kraft’s case during a Monday press conference, in which he called human trafficking “evil in our midst.”

Earlier Monday, the NFL released an updated statement on the status of the pillar of the New England franchise.

“Our personal conduct policy applies to everyone in the NFL. We will handle this allegation in the same way we would handle any issue under our policy. We are seeking a full understanding of the facts, while ensuring that we do not interfere with an ongoing law enforcement investigation. We will take appropriate action as warranted based on the facts,” read the NFL statement.

Kraft and NFL commissioner Roger Goodell have had a frosty relationship at times, notably during the infamous Deflategate investigation that led to a four-game suspension for quarterback Tom Brady, but they also powered the labor negotiations and CBA deal signed with players amid a lockout in 2011.

If convicted of the misdemeanor charges, Kraft would face a maximum of 60 days in jail and a $500 fine as a first-time offender. He also could be subject to disciplinary action by the NFL.

Police said Kraft, who owns a home in nearby West Palm Beach, was seen at the spa in Jupiter on Jan. 19 and that he “was positively identified by Massachusetts driver’s license.”

According to police, video surveillance caught Kraft arriving at the spa the following day at 10:59 a.m. ET — the day of the AFC title game — and said he paid cash to an “Asian female.”

Police said Kraft pulled up at the spa in a blue 2015 Bentley and was dressed in blue shorts, a dark long-sleeved shirt and a blue baseball cap.

Hidden cameras in the room displayed an encounter that lasted less than 15 minutes. The woman helped Kraft get dressed and Kraft gave her at least $100, according to police.

Kraft, who also owns the New England Revolution MLS franchise, denied the accusations on Friday afternoon.

“We categorically deny that Mr. Kraft engaged in any illegal activity,” a spokesman for Kraft said in a statement. “Because it is a judicial matter, we will not be commenting further.”

The NFL and MLS also released statements Friday afternoon.

“The NFL is aware of the ongoing law enforcement matter and will continue to monitor developments,” the league said.

The MLS had a similar comment.

“Major League Soccer is aware of reports regarding the case in Florida and will continue to follow any developments,” according to its statement.

–Field Level Media

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Panthers re-sign RB Hood to one-year deal

Panthers re-sign RB Hood to one-year deal

Running

Panthers re-sign RB Hood to one-year deal

Running back Elijah Hood has signed a one-year contract with the Carolina Panthers, the team announced Monday.

Contract terms were not announced.

The Panthers claimed Hood, a Charlotte native, off waivers last May, but he tore an ACL in the final preseason game and spent the season on injured reserve.

He was a seventh-round draft pick by Oakland in 2017.

“Obviously it’s a blessing. I’m excited. I thank God that I’ll get the opportunity to keep playing here,” Hood, who turns 23 in April, said per the team’s website.

The 5-foot-11, 230-pound back played in one game in 2017 with the Raiders and was on the practice squad the rest of the season.

Hood will have a chance to compete to back up Christian McCaffrey. Four running backs on the roster could become free agents next month.

“They’re putting their faith in me,” Hood said. “I’m expecting to deliver something.”

–Field Level Media

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Ex-Florida T Taylor to sit out combine drills

Ex-Florida T Taylor to sit out combine drills

Ex-Florida T Taylor to sit out combine drills

Former Florida offensive tackle Jawaan Taylor, a projected first-round draft pick, won’t take part in various drills at the NFL Scouting Combine this week under the advice of renowned orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweeted a copy of the letter Andrews sent to NFL teams earlier this month to inform them of Taylor’s mild distal hamstring strain.

“I expect this injury to be resolved quickly,” Andrews wrote in the Feb. 14 letter, “and Jawaan should be able to return to normal activity in the near future.”

Andrews said Taylor should not participate in timed drills or the long and broad jumps. The 6-foot-5, 328-pound tackle is expected to be available for team interviews.

In three seasons at Florida, Taylor played in 37 games, starting 35 of them, and worked at both the left and right tackle spots.

The combine begins Tuesday in Indianapolis and runs through March 4.

–Field Level Media

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Panthers part ways with DBs Munnerlyn, Adams

Panthers part ways with DBs Munnerlyn, Adams

Looking to get younger and

Panthers part ways with DBs Munnerlyn, Adams

Looking to get younger and faster in the secondary, the Carolina Panthers on Monday cut cornerback Captain Munnerlyn and told safety Mike Adams that he won’t be re-signed.

Munnerlyn, a 10-year veteran who turns 31 in April, had two years remaining on a four-year contract he signed before the 2017 season.

Munnerlyn played all 16 games with five starts in 2018, tallying 47 tackles, nine passes defensed, two sacks and one interception.

Adams, a 15-year NFL veteran who turns 38 next month, signed a two-year deal in 2017 and was set to become a free agent in March.

Adams started all 16 games last season, contributing 75 tackles, six passes defensed and three picks.

Carolina, which re-signed safety Eric Reid earlier this month, plans to give 2018 third-round pick Rashaan Gaulden and 2017 fifth-round pick Corn Elder a shot at more playing time.

–Field Level Media

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Report: Ravens to release WR Crabtree

Report: Ravens to release WR Crabtree

The Baltimore

Report: Ravens to release WR Crabtree

The Baltimore Ravens will release veteran wide receiver Michael Crabtree after one year with the team, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Monday.

The team owed Crabtree a $2.5 million roster bonus next month and $7.5 million for the 2019 season, according to ESPN. His release will give Baltimore $4.67 million in additional salary cap space.

Crabtree, 31, signed a three-year, $21 million contract last March.

A product of Texas Tech, Crabtree was the No. 10 overall pick by the San Francisco 49ers in the 2009 NFL Draft. He spent the first six seasons of his career with the Niners, followed by three seasons in Oakland before joining Baltimore.

Last season, Crabtree started 16 games and caught 54 passes – his fewest in a full season since 2009 – for 607 yards and three scores. He caught 19 passes in just five games in 2013 because of a torn Achilles tendon.

For his career, he has played 141 games, starting all but three, gaining 7,477 yards and scoring 54 touchdowns.

–Field Level Media

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Reports: Venture capitalist sues AAF, wants half ownership

Reports: Venture capitalist sues AAF, wants half ownership

Reports: Venture capitalist sues AAF, wants half ownership

Three weeks into the Alliance of American Football’s inaugural season, the upstart league is reportedly being sued by a venture capitalist who says he should possess half of the entire operation.

According to multiple reports, Robert Vanech, the current CFO of Trebel Music, filed suit in Los Angeles Superior Court against the AAF and co-founder Charlie Ebersol. Vanech contends in his lawsuit that he had a handshake agreement to partner in the AAF and it was ignored, according to the reports.

Vanech is asking for equity in the AAF and recognition of his “co-founding role.” The Action Network’s Darren Rovell, first to report the story, tweeted that Vanech is asking for a 50-percent ownership in the AAF.

“Mr. Vanech’s claim is without merit,” an AAF statement read in part. “There was never any agreement, oral or written, between Mr. Vanech and Mr. Ebersol relating to the Alliance.”

News of the lawsuit comes a week after Carolina Hurricanes owner Tom Dundon made a $250 million investment in the league. Reports claimed that the league might not have been able to make payroll beyond its second week without Dundon’s investment. The AAF disputed that account.

The AAF consists of eight teams: Atlanta Legends, Birmingham Iron, Memphis Express, Orlando Apollos, Arizona Hotshots, Salt Lake Stallions, San Antonio Commanders and San Diego Fleet.

The AAF made its debut on Feb. 9. The regular-season schedule will run until April 14 with a championship game scheduled for April 27 in Las Vegas.

–Field Level Media

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Browns re-sign OT Robinson

Browns re-sign OT Robinson

Browns re-sign OT Robinson

The Cleveland Browns re-signed offensive tackle Greg Robinson on Monday, the team announced.

Terms of the deal weren’t announced but spotrac.com lists the contract as a one-year deal.

Robinson, the No. 2 overall pick in 2014 by the then-St. Louis Rams, wasn’t affiliated with any NFL organization when the Browns signed him last June.

He ended up starting Cleveland’s final eight games of last season despite having penalty issues. Robinson was called for 10 holding penalties — three were declined — while in the starting role.

Robinson, 26, started 42 of 46 games played over three seasons with the Rams before the club traded him to the Detroit Lions in June of 2017 for a sixth-round pick in 2018. He started six games for the Lions in 2017 before suffering an ankle injury and was released in November.

–Field Level Media

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NFL notebook: Kraft charged with soliciting prostitute

NFL notebook: Kraft charged with soliciting prostitute

NFL notebook: Kraft charged with soliciting prostitute

New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft was charged with first-degree solicitation of a prostitute in Florida on Monday. Kraft has a court date scheduled for April 24. He doesn’t need to appear, and a lawyer can represent him instead.

Kraft, 77, is facing two counts of misdemeanor solicitation connected to a sting at a massage parlor in Jupiter, Fla. If convicted of the misdemeanor charges, Kraft would face a maximum of 60 days in jail and a $500 fine as a first-time offender.

According to court documents, one of Kraft’s visit to Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter was on Jan. 20, hours before the Patriots played the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game in Missouri. Kraft allegedly visited the spa on two occasions, according to law enforcement.

Earlier Monday, the NFL released an updated statement on Kraft, saying that the league’s “personal conduct policy applies to everyone in the NFL. … We will take appropriate action as warranted based on the facts,” read the NFL statement.

–The Baltimore Ravens released veteran wide receiver Michael Crabtree after he spent one year with the team.

The team owed Crabtree a $2.5 million roster bonus next month and $7.5 million for the 2019 season, according to ESPN. His release will give Baltimore $4.67 million in additional salary cap space. Crabtree, 31, signed a three-year, $21 million contract last March.

Last season, Crabtree started 16 games and caught 54 passes — his fewest in a full season since 2010 — for 607 yards and three scores. He caught 19 passes in just five games in 2013, when he missed time due to a torn Achilles tendon.

–Looking to get younger and faster in the secondary, the Carolina Panthers cut cornerback Captain Munnerlyn and told safety Mike Adams that he won’t be re-signed.

Munnerlyn, a 10-year veteran who turns 31 in April, had two years remaining on a four-year contract he signed before the 2017 season. He played all 16 games with five starts in 2018.

Adams, a 15-year NFL veteran who turns 38 next month, signed a two-year deal in 2017 and was set to become a free agent in March. He started all 16 games last season.

–Former Florida offensive tackle Jawaan Taylor, a projected first-round draft pick, won’t take part in various drills at the NFL Scouting Combine this week under the advice of renowned orthopedic surgeon Dr. James Andrews.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweeted a copy of the letter Andrews sent to NFL teams earlier this month to inform them of Taylor’s mild distal hamstring strain, saying Taylor “should be able to return to normal activity in the near future.”

In three seasons at Florida, Taylor, listed at 6-foot-5, 328-pounds, played in 37 games, starting 35 of them, and worked at both the left and right tackle spots.

–Running back Elijah Hood has signed a one-year contract with the Carolina Panthers, the team announced. Contract terms were not announced.

The Panthers claimed Hood, a Charlotte native, off waivers last May, but he tore an ACL in the final preseason game and spent the season on injured reserve. He was a seventh-round draft pick by Oakland in 2017.

“Obviously it’s a blessing. I’m excited. I thank God that I’ll get the opportunity to keep playing here,” Hood, who turns 23 in April, said per the team’s website.

–The Cleveland Browns re-signed offensive tackle Greg Robinson, the team announced.

Terms of the deal weren’t announced but spotrac.com lists the contract as a one-year deal.

Robinson, 26, the No. 2 overall pick in 2014 by the then-St. Louis Rams, wasn’t affiliated with any NFL organization when the Browns signed him last June.

–Field Level Media

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Prescott’s dog bites woman, authorities say

Prescott's dog bites woman, authorities say

Police in suburban Dallas seized

Prescott’s dog bites woman, authorities say

Police in suburban Dallas seized a dog owned by Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott after the pet escaped on Monday morning and bit a woman, sending her to a hospital with injuries that were not believed to be life-threatening.

No charges were filed against Prescott by Monday afternoon, although a misdemeanor count of allowing a dog at large could bring a fine of up to $500, according to the Dallas Morning News.

Police in Frisco, Texas, just north of Dallas, said a woman called them at about 10:50 a.m. local time when her dog and a loose dog were fighting through a fence outside her home. When she went outside to try to stop the fight, she saw a second loose dog, and one of the two bit her.

Authorities said they seized the dog that bit her, an American Staffordshire terrier, and took the other dog back to Prescott’s home. Police said the dogs escaped through an open door.

The seized dog will be kept in quarantine at Collin County Animal Shelter for up to 10 days, according to the Morning News.

A Cowboys representative declined to comment on the case, according to the Morning News.

–Field Level Media

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