Pryor to Try WR?

Will Selva - Terrelle PryorTerrelle Pryor is making noise again, and not the kind of noise he made when he won the Rose Bowl and MVP in 2010 with the Ohio State Buckeyes. Terrelle Pryor, who was signed by the Cincinnati Bengals on May 10th posted videos of himself passing footballs during Bengals minicamp following his release from the team on June 18th. A very controversial move as no player ever posts video of an actual practice. Maybe perhaps he was trying to showcase what he can do as a quarterback, still a wrong move nonetheless. However, a caption to one of the video’s reads, “Going to miss QB but I will make a great WR! Already working !!”

Pryor was claimed on waivers by the Cleveland Browns and appears destined now to play wide receiver in the NFL. Pryor stands at 6’5 235 pounds. He may be a bit too heavy for the position but he has certainly displayed the speed for the position. He was clocked between 4.32 and 4.54 seconds when he ran his 40 yard dash during his Pro Day. He also holds the longest touchdown run by a quarterback in NFL history with a 93 yard run. The speed and size is certainly there, it’ll be interesting to see if he possesses the hands and route running that the position calls for. Cleveland is not necessarily deep at wide receiver with Brian Hartline and Dwayne Bowe slated to start this season. With Hartline 28 years old and Bowe 30, they’re certainly not long term solutions for the Browns. Maybe they keep Pryor as a project for a year and see if he can pick up all the necessary skills to play the position at a high level later in the season or even next.

Why USA Should Feel Good vs Belgium

The U.S. Men’s National Team is playing with house money right now. This is not too say that they should feel content to just make the knockout stage of the World Cup. No, they’ve proven to be rugged, gritty and determined enough to get through the Group of Death, a reality nobody expected to come to fruition in Brazil. That’s why if the Americans fail to get past Belgium on Tuesday, it shouldn’t be seen as a failure, but rather a positive step forward to where it wants to be: an upper echelon soccer power. Now to the actual game versus the Belgians. This was a side considered to be a darkhorse to win the World Cup. A young, talented yet inexperienced bunch. They’ve started off slow in games only to crank things up later. Belgium has relied heavily on Chelsea star Eden Hazard, who has not disappointed, but he is just one player.
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Romelu Lukaku has struggled, failing to score in this World Cup. If you’re the U.S., you hope this pattern continues. The defense has been solid, but could be missing Vincent Kompany, who’s doubtful with a groin issue. Kompany is considered a world-class defender. As for the Red, White and Blue, forward Jozy Altidore could be back on the pitch for the first time since sustaining a hamstring injury early on in the win over Ghana. Boy, is his scoring punch sorely needed. Clint Dempsey is up front as the lone striker and needs the midfield to do something. So far, Michael Dempsey has not gotten the job done despite his tireless energy thus far. Even he admits that he must step up for the U.S. to have a chance to advance. Still, the outlook is bright for the USA, no matter the result on Tuesday. That’s what happens when you play with house money.

(CBS News)

Brain Cramping On LeBron

As soon as LeBron James went to the bench for good toward the end of Game 1 of the NBA Finals, it was on. The Twitter haters were springing up like fast-growing weeds in the backyard. You couldn’t pull them out fast enough as the Crampapocalypse was officially upon us, creating such gems as the Twitter handle @KingJamesCramp, which at last check, had over 100 followers.

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While some of the images and messages admittedly provided a hearty chuckle for their sheer absurdity, what I found astonishing is this snap judgement about LeBron’s desire and motivation. He had a cramp. A really bad one that obviously precluded him from continuing to play. Any athlete will tell you that it is extremely difficult to play through it. I can’t explain why he was the ONLY player to develop a cramp when all the players had to deal with the AC being off.

The Celtics and Lakers, by the way, would always play in sweltering conditions like that at the Garden. What’s lost in all this talk about LeBron’s cramp is that as soon as he went out of the game, Dwyane Wade was invisible. A measly 7 points in the 2nd half on 3 of 10 shooting. That can’t happen. Neither can a relatively silent bench. If this is what happens when LeBron goes out or suffers a major injury, then the Heat are doomed. The Spurs, on the other hand, hold a vibrant bench that is much deeper than Miami’s, helping to end the game on a 16-3 run. Manu Ginobili continues to show that no matter the situation, he’s clutch whether he’s starting or coming off the bench. An true energizer bunny that keeps going. Now we must suffer through countless nauseatingly, gut-wrenchingly long debates on LeBron’s psyche heading into Game 2. No thanks. I’ll just chew on a giant shard of glass until then.

Klinsmann’s Risky Move

Calling it the toughest decision in his career, U.S. men’s manager Jurgen Klinsmann nearly tipped the earth off it’s axis by leaving beloved star Landon Donovan off the final World Cup squad of 23. Klinsmann’s move took, for lack of a better word, stones to make.

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It was highly unpopular among die-hard fans and a head scratcher among the fringe ones. After all, we’re talking about the U.S. men’s national team’s all-time leading scorer, but Klinsmann didn’t just wake-up and make this decision based on one week of World Cup training camp. No, it had been one that was germinating for awhile, ever since Donovan took a sabbatical during CONCACAF World Cup qualifying when a roster spot was anything but solidified. Klinsmann never got over what he perceived as Donovan’s lack of committment and fitness.

In short, the two men simply did not mesh. The painful reality is that at 32, Donovan is not the same player he once was, lacking the burst of speed that was his trademark. Consider this: He hasn’t scored a goal in any professional match since October 6th 2013. With the Donovan omission, there’s now a total of 5 players who have World Cup experience on this roster, while the rest are newbies entering the Group of Death.

However, there is talent with attacking options at Klinsmann’s disposal. Still, a player of Donovan’s ilk would’ve provided a nice spark off the bench. That’s the risky part of this. Klinsmann may have made this move and possibly others with an eye toward 2018, but let’s remember that the German may not even be around then. As the realization of a World Cup without Donovan sets in, take a moment to remember perhaps the greatest memory we have of him. The stoppage time goal against Algeria in the 2010 World Cup, a sequence that for a glorious time, stopped the planet from spinning on its axis.

Michael Sam Still Faces Obstacles in NFL

The Dolphins fining safety Don Jones and excusing him from team activities for comments about Michael Sam on Twitter is a jolting reminder that the former Missouri defensive end enters a culture with certain archaic corners of it largely not accepting of him or his sexuality. Jones has since apologized for his response to Sam kissing his boyfriend after getting drafted. It obviously was jarring for many people like Jones, who were not ready for the public display of affection on national TV between two men. How do you explain this to your kids? Someone on Twitter nailed it perfectly and it was re-tweeted many times over. “You explain Michael Sam as a pass rushing specialist who plays on passing downs and tries to sack the QB.”

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He’s a football player folks. Look beyond his sexuality. It all makes his journey to get to this point all the more admirable considering what potentially lies ahead of him. Something tells me that insensitive tweets will likely be the tamer part of it. Wait until he gets to other stadiums, where the vitriol at times, can be toxic. However, he’s shown that he possesses the right attitude, downplaying the attention and reminding the world that he’s.. wait for it.. a football player! As well as he should.

He says this will only fuel him to be a better player and as it turns out, the Rams were the absolute right match for him. He’s nearby where he once starred in college, will be with a no-nonsense coach in Jeff Fisher and is part of a defense as a situational pass rusher. A very good defense we should add. He couldn’t have asked for a more ideal situation, although you have to wonder, now that we’re a few days removed from the draft, just how high he would have gone had he not announced he was gay. Roto World had him listed in the top 90 or so prospects before his announcement, but fell to 140 after it. You can blame it on his poor combine performance, his small stature at 6 foot 2 or his limited ability in coverage. All salable points that may prove to be stumbling blocks to a long and prosperous career. We’ll never know, but we know this. He’ll attack the quarterback just the way he’s attacked this whole thing.