We are just one day into the regular season and there is a lot to recap in the NFL.
From Antonio Brown’s continued drama in his first season with the Oakland Raiders, to a few extension updates.
We run through all that is happening around the league in this edition of NFL news and notes.
Three things that matter
Brown, Gruden speak out after more drama
Well, the drama in Oakland might not be over yet but at least one saga seems to be done. After 24 hours of uncertainty around Brown’s status, head coach Jon Gruden said the plan is for Brown to play in the Raiders’ season opener against the Denver Broncos on Monday. Gruden’s comments were a change of pace, considering just hours before it had been reported that Oakland planned to suspend the receiver after he got into a verbal altercation with general Mike Mayock.
“Antonio is back today. We’re really excited about that,” Gruden told reporters. “We’re ready to move on. He’s obviously had a lot of time to think about things and we’re happy to have him back and Raider nation is excited about that too.”
Brown spoke to reporters briefly at Friday’s practice, saying, “I’m excited to be out here with my team. I apologised to my team-mates, the organisation. Enough talk. I’ve decided to be out here with my team-mates, grateful for all the fans. I’m excited to be a part of the Raiders.”
Rams running back Gurley won’t be limited
The Los Angeles Rams are not planning to limit Todd Gurley in week one, even though the running back is coming off a knee problem that hampered his performance last season. When asked whether Gurley would be playing a limited number of snaps against the Carolina Panthers on Sunday, coach Sean McVay simply said: “Nope.”
After missing last term’s final two regular-season games because of inflammation and soreness in his left knee that was later reported to be arthritis, Gurley had a special training schedule during camp. He practiced every other day to ease back into a full workload and did not play in any preseason games.
“I’m excited to see Todd Gurley continue to do his thing,” McVay said. “He looks good, he’s feeling good and we’re looking forward to Sunday.”
Chiefs, wideout Hill agree to big extension
Tyreek Hill is not planning to leave the Kansas City Chiefs anytime soon. The Chiefs receiver agreed to a contract extension that was reported to be for three years and worth $54million. He was set to enter the final year of his rookie contract that will pay him a little more than $2m this season.
“I’m grateful for the opportunity to continue my playing career here in Kansas City,” Hill said in a statement on Friday. “Kansas City is my home, and I appreciate the love and support from [owner] Clark Hunt, Coach [Andy] Reid and Brett Veach along with my coaches and team-mates. To Chiefs Kingdom, you’re the best fans in the world.”
Hill has dealt with multiple off-the-field incidents overshadowing his playing career with the most recent being a leaked audio recording of him and his fiancee, Crystal Espinal, talking about alleged abuse of their three-year-old son.
Hill has 223 catches for 3,255 yards with 25 receiving touchdowns throughout his three-year NFL career. He also has rushed 63 times for 477 yards with four touchdowns.
Two things that don’t matter
Cowboys, Cooper aren’t far in extension negotiations
After signing Ezekiel Elliott to a new contract to end the running back’s holdout, the Dallas Cowboys still have Amari Cooper hoping for an extension. But it looks like it may take some time before the wideout has a new contract.
Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones provided a brief update on how negotiations have been going when it comes to the 25-year-old receiver.
“There haven’t been a lot of negotiations with Amari, period,” Jones said. “And I’m not free to be able to share why. I think at some point we’ll start that. I don’t know what their parameters will be.”
This is not a huge concern because Cooper has not held out and there is plenty of time to get a deal done this season. Cooper said he would rather be with the team “running routes, catching balls from Dak” instead of sitting out. He addressed his contract status earlier this week, saying: “I don’t know, to be honest.”
Dallas acquired Cooper through a trade with the Raiders in October last season in exchange for a 2019 first-round draft pick, which gives reason to believe the two sides will eventually reach an agreement.
Nagy concerned about Bears offense
Chicago Bears coach Matt Nagy was clearly frustrated with his offense after his team scored just three points against the Green Bay Packers in their season opener on Thursday, but he was willing to take most of the blame.
“Obviously unacceptable,” Nagy told reporters after the loss. “Starts with me, so this — I just told the guys in there, this is not who we are. I was proud of our defense. I thought they played their a** off tonight. Offensively, not good enough. And we’re going to fix it. Our guys know that.”
The Bears fell 10-3 and finished with just 254 total yards, averaging just 3.9 yards per play and going three for 15 on third-down conversions. They also were penalised 10 times for a loss of 107 yards.
One glaring concern for the Bears was quarterback Mitchell Trubisky, who struggled as he completed 26 of 45 passes for 228 yards with no touchdowns and a red zone interception. Trubisky said after the game he let a lot of his team-mates down and could have been better, but Nagy admitted he did not help the QB enough.
While the Bears’ week one play was concerning, it is still early in the season so Nagy and Trubisky have time to figure it out.
One video you have to see
The Atlanta Falcons put together a video compiling the reactions that offensive and defensive linemen would have if they moved positions and scored a touchdown. Their reactions are pretty priceless.
— Atlanta Falcons (@AtlantaFalcons) September 6, 2019
Friday’s tweet of the day
In case you got lost with all the Brown news, here is a recap.
To recap the Antonio Brown drama …
» Wednesday: Complained on IG about fines
» Thursday: Report says he got in heated exchange with GM Mike Mayock
» Thursday: Report claims he’ll be suspended and miss Week 1
» Friday: He apologizes
» Friday: He won’t be suspended pic.twitter.com/3rF7Kf1Egz
— Sporting News (@sportingnews) September 6, 2019