Aug 18, 2021; Thousand Oaks, CA, USA;  Los Angeles Rams defensive tackle Gerald McCoy (61) during a joint practice against the Los Angeles Rams. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Injured Gerald McCoy apologizes for ‘honest mistake’ with banned substance

Injured Las Vegas Raiders defensive tackle Gerald McCoy tested positive for a banned substance, an admission he made Wednesday afternoon with a qualifier.

McCoy, lost for the season in the season with a torn ACL, issued an apology via social media but described his positive test as an “honest mistake.”

“I love the game of football and have nothing but respect for the players, fans and this league,” McCoy said.

“I’ve given my all to this game and worked my entire career to compete, train, and rehabilitate at a high level with integrity. It is with great disappointment that I recently learned I tested positive for a banned substance — something I was prescribed to take to help with scar tissue and tendon strength from a previous injury. In no way would I ever intentionally take anything to help with performance or gain a competitive advantage. This was an honest mistake, but it’s something I take full responsibility for. I apologize to my family, the NFL, my teammates and the fans and ask humbly for your forgiveness.”

McCoy, a former All-Pro who made the Pro Bowl six consecutive seasons with the Buccaneers, signed a one-year, $1.25 million contract with the Raiders on Aug. 21 in an attempt to return to the NFL after a year out of the league. He sustained a quad injury in training camp in 2020 with the Dallas Cowboys.

Tampa Bay selected McCoy with the No. 3 overall pick of the 2010 NFL Draft, and he spent nine seasons there. The Bucs released him in a salary-cap move in May 2019, and he signed a one-year, $8 million deal with the Carolina Panthers.

After starting all 16 games for the Panthers, he signed a three-year $18.3 million contract with Dallas but was released after the injury.

In 140 career games (139 starts), the 33-year-old McCoy has made 334 tackles, 153 quarterback hits and 59 1/2 sacks. He also has recorded six forced fumbles and four fumble recoveries.

–Field Level Media

Nov 22, 2020; Paradise, Nevada, USA; Las Vegas Raiders offensive tackle Denzelle Good (71) against the Kansas City Chiefs at Allegiant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Raiders G Denzelle Good tears ACL in season opener

Las Vegas Raiders right guard Denzelle Good tore the ACL in his left knee during Monday night’s win over the Baltimore Ravens, ESPN reported Tuesday.

Good injured the knee during the first quarter of the 33-27 overtime victory.

The 30-year-old Good signed a two-year, $8.36 million deal in the offseason after making a career-best 14 starts last season while playing 15 games between tackle and guard.

Good, who is in his seventh NFL season, has started 43 of 62 games played. He also played parts of four seasons with the Indianapolis Colts before joining the Raiders in December 2018.

Veteran left guard Richie Incognito (calf) missed the opener and it remains unclear when he will be ready to play.

Las Vegas also is awaiting test results for defensive tackle Gerald McCoy. The 33-year old injured his right knee during the fourth quarter.

McCoy is in his first season with the Raiders. He was a six-time Pro Bowler with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers from 2010-18 and spent the 2019 season with the Carolina Panthers.

He missed the entire 2020 season after injuring a quadriceps during a training camp practice with the Dallas Cowboys.

The Raiders visit the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday.

–Field Level Media

Nov 29, 2020; Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones (8) is injured during the third quarter against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joseph Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports

Giants to make decision on Jones (hamstring) later in week

A decision on whether New York Giants quarterback Daniel Jones can return from a hamstring injury will be decided later in the week, coach Joe Judge said Wednesday.

The Giants host the Arizona Cardinals on Sunday and Judge said he hopes to make a decision on Friday. The team held a walkthrough on Wednesday so how Jones looks in Thursday’s practice will be significant in the eyes of Judge.

“We’re going to give him every opportunity to go on the practice field this week and show that he can defend himself on the field properly,” Judge said during a press conference. “If that’s the case, then we obviously want him to play. But we’re going to make sure we do the right thing by him … and make the best decision for him going forward.”

Jones sat out last Sunday’s 17-12 upset win over the Seattle Seahawks. He was ruled out on game day as New York opted to go with journeyman Colt McCoy as the starter.

“I had to kind of protect him from himself,” Judge said of the decision. “I didn’t want to put him in a position where I wasn’t 100 percent certain that he couldn’t defend himself on every single play.”

Jones was injured during a victory over the Cincinnati Bengals on Nov. 29. McCoy finished up that contest and then guided the upset of Seattle by completing 13 of 22 passes for 105 yards, one touchdown and one interception.

Jones has passed for 2,335 yards and eight touchdowns against nine interceptions.

The Giants (5-7) have won four straight games and are tied with the Washington Football Team for first place in the NFC East.

–Field Level Media

Nov 7, 2020; Los Angeles CA, USA; Southern California Trojans wide receiver Tyler Vaughns (21) is defended by Arizona State Sun Devils defensive back Chase Lucas (24) in the second quarter at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

No. 20 Southern California rallies past Arizona State

Bru McCoy caught a desperation, fourth-down heave for a touchdown, and followed it up by recovering an onside kick, and No. 20 Southern California rallied from down 13 points in the final 2:52 to defeat Arizona State 28-27 on Saturday at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

Sloppy play shaped the season opener for both teams, but particularly so for the host Trojans (1-0, 1-0 Pac-12 Conference). USC committed four turnovers, three of which were coughed up in scoring territory.

But after going scoreless for more than 33 minutes of game time and falling behind 27-14, quarterback Kedon Slovis struck for a pair of fourth-down touchdown passes.

Twenty-six of Slovis’ 381 passing yards came on the first of those scores, a desperate toss into the end zone on fourth-and-13. The pass was tipped up, but McCoy was there to snag the carom for USC’s first points since the middle of the second quarter.

McCoy then came up with the ensuing onside kick, and Vavae Malepeai ran for 33 of his 60 yards to power the drive. Slovis capped the drive on a fourth-and-9 play — pushed back on five of USC’s 59 penalty yards — when he fired a strike through a tight window to a streaking Drake London for the 21-yard score with 1:20 to play.

Malepeai’s contributions to the game-winning drive made up for one of the critical turnovers that dug USC into a hole. The Trojans recovered a muff punt after their first possession, but Malepeai fumbled short of the goal line.

It was the first of two fumbles Arizona State defensive back Evan Fields forced, and one of two USC possessions to end inside the 10-yard line without producing points.

The Sun Devils (0-1, 0-1) also forced a turnover-on-downs in the second half with a pair of stuffed runs, and linebacker Merlin Robertson intercepted a Slovis pass at the 10-yard line just before halftime.

The last of USC’s four turnovers came on Fields’ second forced fumble. He jarred the ball loose from Markese Stepp with 11:23 remaining, putting the Sun Devils in position to run down the clock.

Their ensuing possession lasted just 1:36 and four plays, however, and they did not get possession back until they were trailing. Arizona State’s last-ditch effort fell short when quarterback Jayden Daniels threw four straight incompletions.

Daniels went 11-of-23 passing for 134 yards, playing without top target Frank Darby. He threw a 55-yard touchdown to Rachaad White. Freshman running back DeaMonte Trayanum rushed for two touchdowns and 84 yards on 12 carries, complementing Daniels’ 111 yards on 11 rushes.

London caught eight passes for 125 yards to lead all players. Teammate Amon-Ra St. Brown added 100 yards on seven catches, and McCoy finished with 51 yards on five receptions.

–Field Level Media

Oct 4, 2020; Tampa, Florida, USA;  Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans (13) celebrates a touchdown against the Los Angeles Chargers in the second quarter of a NFL game at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Bucs’ Godwin out, Evans questionable vs. Bears

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be without one of their Pro Bowl wide receivers for Thursday’s game against the host Chicago Bears, while the other is listed as questionable.

Chris Godwin was ruled out Wednesday and will miss his second game with a hamstring injury for the Bucs (3-1), who also ruled out running back LeSean McCoy (ankle) and wide receiver Justin Watson (shoulder).

Wide receiver Mike Evans was listed as questionable to face the Bears (3-1) after working through an ankle injury sustained in the first quarter of Sunday’s 38-31 win over the Los Angeles Chargers.

Evans, 27, leads the team in catches (17) and touchdowns (five), while fellow wideout Scotty Miller — who is questionable with hip and groin injuries — has a club-best 250 yards receiving.

Godwin, 24, has 11 catches with 143 receiving yards and a touchdown this season. He’s coming off a breakout season that saw him haul in 86 passes for 1,333 yards and nine touchdowns.

Running back Leonard Fournette (ankle) was listed as doubtful for Tampa Bay, which likely will rely on Ronald Jones II and rookie Ke’Shawn Vaughn out of the backfield.

Jones leads the team in carries (57) and rushing yards (253), while Vaughn had a touchdown reception versus the Chargers.

Chicago safety Deon Bush was ruled out against Tampa Bay after sustaining a hamstring injury in Sunday’s 19-11 loss versus Indianapolis.

Fellow safety and special teams player Sherrick McManis is listed as doubtful with an ailing hamstring.

Rookie wide receiver Darnell Mooney has been declared as questionable for Thursday’s game with a shoulder injury.

–Field Level Media

Wait, what?: McCoy/Alonso trade

Is there a more exciting offseason transaction than a star player for star player, straight-up trade with your team involved? When the words hit my screen, every word of the headline on ESPN raised my heart rate just a little bit.

MCCOY! TO BILLS! IN BLOCKBUSTER!?!?!?
How? Who? What? Is this real life?
This is a paradox. Not because it doesn’t make sense for either team. It’s actually perfect for both of them. It’s the kind of trade you’d talk through with football cards when you were 10, but rarely see executed. When was the last time you saw all three of the following in one NFL trade?:
-Good player-for-good player on opposite sides of the ball
-No draft picks involved
-Both teams improve as a result
It doesn’t happen. Ever. The stars so rarely align with situations equal enough to get a deal like this done without additional compensation, even if it’s an extra 7th thrown in.
WHY BUFFALO WINS:
Rex Ryan wants to run the ball. A lot. C.J. Spiller never developed into the 20 carry back that merits a first round pick. Fred Jackson is in perennial, “He’s probably got another year in him” mode. Kiko Alonso had a sensational rookie year, but Buffalo didn’t exactly miss him in 2014 when he missed the entire season with a torn ACL. It was the most ferocious defense in years. And it may get even better under Ryan.
WHY PHILLY WINS:
McCoy just wasn’t working in Philly. Part of it might have been Chip Kelly wanting to spread it around conflicting with McCoy’s preseason quest for 2000 yards. Part of it might have been the beleaguered line throughout 2014. Who knows. And the Eagles’ defense, which saw great improvement in 2014, can take a step towards the elite with the addition of Alonso, whose versatile skillset shores up a suspect linebacking corps. Not to mention the cap implication for the Eagles, now on the hook for $1 million with Kiko as opposed to $11.95 million for McCoy.
Now if we can only talk them into a Foles for EJ Manuel trade…
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