Sports Archives - Page 6 of 306 - SaintPetersBlog

Bucs add former Dallas safety J.J. Wilcox to free agent signings

The Tampa Bay Bucs added safety J.J. Wilcox to their free agent signings Saturday.

Wilcox, 26, is a former third-round draft pick of the Dallas Cowboys who should compete for former safety Bradley McDougald’s old job.

He has started 38-of-58 regular season games played for the Cowboys over the past four seasons (2013-16), totaling 196 tackles, 15 passes defensed, five interceptions, three fumble recoveries and two forced fumbles.

 A native of Cairo, Georgia, Wilcox played collegiately at Georgia Southern. He played only one year of college football.

 

Share On Facebook
Share On Twitter
Share On Google Plus
Share On Linkedin
Share On Pinterest
Share On Reddit
Share On Stumbleupon
Share On Youtube
Contact us

Signing of DeSean Jackson puts Tampa Bay Bucs in NFL’s top half

How much did the free-agent signing of DeSean Jackson help the Tampa Bay Bucs?

Well, according to Bleacher Report, it vaulted them into the top half of the league.

Bleacher Report did its latest power-rankings Friday, and the Bucs came in at No. 13. Not bad, when you consider that Super Bowl runner-up Atlanta was No. 12.

“There are free-agent signings I really like. And there are free-agent signings I absolutely love,” wrote Chris Simms, the former Bucs’ quarterback.

New England led the Power Rankings at No. 1, which should surprise no one. Following are Kansas City, Pittsburgh and Dallas.

In the NFC South, Carolina was No. 17 and New Orleans was No. 21.

Share On Facebook
Share On Twitter
Share On Google Plus
Share On Linkedin
Share On Pinterest
Share On Reddit
Share On Stumbleupon
Share On Youtube
Contact us

FSU’s Derrick Nnadi assumes leadership role for Seminole team

It’s a transitory thing, leadership.

One day, you’re looking around the huddle, and other guys are pointing out the direction.

The next day, the rest of the huddle is looking at you, and it’s up to you to plot the course.

In college football, where the faces change so often, it’s especially true.

And so has learned Derrick Nnadi, leader of the FSU Seminoles.

“I’ve probably said this a lot before,” Nnadi told the Orlando Sentinel. “I’m not one who’s like ‘I’m going to be a leader.’ I just want to make sure what I’m doing is right.

“But as I’m getting older, being a senior, I have to take certain types of responsibilities. I have to do it. If it’s for the good of the team, I’m not going to deny it.”

Oh, the Seminoles need it. From last year’s team, they lost Dalvin Cook and DeMarcus Walker.

Last year, FSU lost two of its first five games, as Nnadi was hampered by a bad ankle. But the Seminoles won seven of their last eight games.

“(I’m) just trying to give them some sort of motivation in drills even though I don’t talk that much,” Nnadi said. “Every now and them, I’ll be like ‘come on bro, you’ve got this. Come on, just keep it moving.’ Or just leading by example.

“I just want to prove I’ve gotten better year in and year out, and overall just be an elite tackle,” Nnadi said.

Share On Facebook
Share On Twitter
Share On Google Plus
Share On Linkedin
Share On Pinterest
Share On Reddit
Share On Stumbleupon
Share On Youtube
Contact us

After a year’s delay, Will Power has his sights on third Grand Prix title

For Will Power, it all seemed destined.

He had won the pole for the St. Petersburg Grand Prix. Again. A lot of analysts thought he was going to win it for the third time. It was going to be smooth sailing, right?

And then it wasn’t.

After a crash in practice, Power was held out of last year’s race with concerns about a possible concussion (he didn’t have one) just before the race and had to sit and watch as Juan Pablo Montoya won for the second straight year. Only Helio Castroneves has won more often.

But Power doesn’t have a grand scheme of winning. He prefers a laid-back approach.

“I’ve just said it’s going to be what it’s going to be,” Power said. “The year I won the championship, I just did a race-by-race thing. I’ve tried everything, but I think what works is just focusing on each little bit at a time.”

Power, who has 25 wins on the circuit, still figures to be one of the men to beat in the event.

“I’m just looking forward to this season,” Power said. “I’m just doing my normal thing heading into it. I haven’t really thought about it too much. It’s been a long time since then, a lot of races since then. I’m just working through the things I need to do in order to be quick there.”

The Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg weekend opens with a pair of 45-minute practices Friday, beginning at 11:15 a.m. and 3 p.m. ET. A third practice is scheduled for 10:50 a.m. Saturday, with knockout qualifying beginning at 2:55 p.m. The final warmup practice takes place at 9 a.m. Sunday, with the green flag waving for the 110-lap event on the 1.8-mile temporary street circuit at 12:30 p.m.

Share On Facebook
Share On Twitter
Share On Google Plus
Share On Linkedin
Share On Pinterest
Share On Reddit
Share On Stumbleupon
Share On Youtube
Contact us

Injuries mar big victory by Tampa Bay Lightning over Stars

The Tampa Bay Lightning is learning one of the oldest lessons in hockey.

Every time it gets a little bit of a gain, it finds itself in a little more pain.

The Bolts took a big victory Thursday night, beating the Minnesota Wild 4-1 at home. The Wild, 32-17-6, has been the best team in the Western Conference, while the Bolts are still struggling to make the playoffs.

As big as the win was, however, it came with a sting. The Bolts lost Tyler Johnson, Vlad Namestnikov and Cedric Paquette — all centers — to injuries to their left legs. Coach Jon Cooper had no further information on the injuries.

“It doesn’t sound encouraging for any of them,” Cooper said. “If we got one of them back for Saturday, it would be a blessing.”

Nikita Kucherov scored two goals for the Lightning, one on a power play (the first in 12 games for the Stars). Victor Hedman had a goal and an assist. Andrej Sustr also scored a goal for Tampa Bay.

Goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy won for the Bolts, continuing his play since the trading deadline.

“He’s definitely holding down the fort,” said Anton Stralman. Vasilevskiy stopped 32 of 33 shots.

“You’ve got to put that one up there (with the Lightning’s best wins),” Cooper said. “Especially that last 12 minutes when were limited in our players. We were responsible, gritty, gutty, getting in shot lanes.”

The Lightning is home Saturday night against Florida.

Share On Facebook
Share On Twitter
Share On Google Plus
Share On Linkedin
Share On Pinterest
Share On Reddit
Share On Stumbleupon
Share On Youtube
Contact us

Bucs add speed, strength in free agency to try to improve their team

The Tampa Bay Bucs, trying to improve their team for the coming season, have added strength and speed from the nation’s capital.

The Bucs signed the defensive tackle and wide receiver DeSean Jackson Wednesday on the first day of free agency.

The big catch, so to speak, is Jackson, who led the NFL last year with an average 17.9 yards per catch. He will immediately slot opposite Pro Bowler Mike Evans, and immediately promises to help the rest of the offense.

Quarterback Jameis Winston has had trouble with his deep ball; Jackson gives him a game-breaker who can separate from a corner. It will be harder to double-team Evans, and tight end Cameron Brate should be able to work underneath.

“It is rare to find a player in free agency with the combination of speed and natural playmaking ability of a DeSean Jackson,” said Buccaneers General Manager Jason Licht. “DeSean is a smart, gifted athlete who has averaged more than 17 yards per reception throughout his nine-year career and brings the type of veteran experience and deep threat receiving ability that will have an immediate impact on our offense.”

Baker should move into the starting lineup opposite Gerald McCoy.

Per Stats, Inc., Baker has 64.5 combined quarterback knockdowns and hurries over the past two seasons. Dating back to 2015, Baker is one of six NFL players to post 100+ tackles, 9+ sacks, and 5+ forced fumbles, joining Khalil Mack, Von Miller, Carlos Dunlap, Melvin Ingram and Brandon Graham.

“Chris has excellent size and what really jumps out at you is his ability to flash dominance at times during games and his explosive quickness,” said Buccaneers coach Dirk Koetter. “His versatility will make him a great complementary player alongside Gerald McCoy and Clinton McDonald on our interior defensive line.”

Share On Facebook
Share On Twitter
Share On Google Plus
Share On Linkedin
Share On Pinterest
Share On Reddit
Share On Stumbleupon
Share On Youtube
Contact us

Hey, Rookie! Mets’ Tim Tebow takes practice swings on wrong side

Tim Tebow made his first rookie mistake even before stepping into the batter’s box.

The New York Mets newcomer walked behind home plate and took his practice swings near Boston’s on-deck circle.

“I didn’t know who that was back there. I thought it was the ball boy,” AL Cy Young Award winner Rick Porcello said.

Tebow’s debut as a big leaguer didn’t go much better Wednesday.

The former NFL quarterback went 0 for 3, twice looking at strike three and also grounding into a double play with the bases loaded in a spring training exhibition against the Red Sox.

Tebow did safely reach when he was hit by a pitch in the right shoulder. But his stay on base was brief — he got doubled off first on a line drive.

“It was a first day for me getting to compete. I’ll learn a lot from it. It’s kind of what I expected from a competition level,” he said.

The 29-year-old Tebow batted eighth as the designated hitter. Signed last fall, he’s in camp on a minor league contract, hoping to make it as an outfielder. He’s next scheduled to play for the Mets in a split-squad game Friday against Houston, and manager Terry Collins said Tebow would be in the field.

Tebow’s day started out with a fun-filled morning stretch. He was loudly welcomed by slugger Yoenis Cespedes and kidded by Pittsburgh native Neil Walker — the second baseman barbed Tebow for once leading the Denver Broncos over the Steelers in the playoffs. Tebow warmed up by swatting a few home runs in batting practice.

To say Tebow’s first game was a success, however, would be a stretch. He did, at least, get to slap high-fives on the field after an 8-7 win in front of 6,538 fans.

“With almost anything I do, I get a little nervous because I care about it, the outcome and my teammates,” Tebow said. “But I’d also get nervous if I was going to talk to a high school football team before a game.”

Tebow was set to lead off the third inning for his first at-bat. The lefty hitter emerged from the Mets’ dugout on the third base side and crossed over to the Boston side, drifting toward the Red Sox on-deck circle and inching his way into Porcello’s view.

“I thought you walked around because you’re a left-hander. I found out you don’t do that,” he said.

The 2007 Heisman Trophy winner then faced Porcello, prompting some to figure out another matchup between Heisman and Cy Young winners — Bo Jackson versus Frank Viola, for example.

Tebow drew a nice cheer when he stepped in wearing a No. 97 jersey with no name on the back. He swung late on a fastball to fall behind and was caught looking at a 92-mph heater on a 1-2 count. He had a friendly word and smile for plate umpire Ryan Additon after being called out.

Tebow came up next with the bases loaded and bounced into a double play against Noe Ramirez. A run scored on the grounder, but Tebow didn’t get credit for an RBI.

The third time up, Tebow was plunked in the right shoulder by a pitch by fellow University of Florida alum Brian Johnson.

“Come on, where’s the love?” Tebow kidded. “No, it’s fine.”

“I’ve been good at taking hits most of my career. That might come easier than anything else,” he said.

L.J. Mazzilli followed with a line drive to second baseman Deven Marrero, whose throw to first beat Tebow. Righty reliever Brandon Workman fanned Tebow on three pitches in the eighth, getting him looking with a curveball.

Before the game, Boston manager John Farrell watched from the top step of the visitors’ dugout as Tebow hit some long drives, the majority the opposite way at First Data Field.

Farrell said Tebow’s attempt to make it in baseball, which he last played as a junior in high school before joining the Mets last August, is a bold ambition but reveals plenty about his character.

“It says he’s not afraid of failure, and that’s great for any athlete,” Farrell said. “Athletes are all going to become vulnerable in their performance at some point, and for who’s been such a high profile in another sport come in and say, ‘Hey, I’m willing to take a run at this,’ I think it’s a pretty cool thing.”

“When you look at the raw power in BP, it’s pretty evident. It says you’ve got some pretty good hand-eye coordination. (Baseball’s) hard for a guy who plays every year,” he said. “When you have that kind of gap, I think it’s a window into the mindset that anything is possible. Why not take a run with it?”

NOTES: Mets starter Noah Syndergaard said he’s trying to work on a softer landing in his delivery and wasn’t happy with his outing. He gave up three hits and a walk in 2 1/3 scoreless innings. “I’m not pleased how erratic I was and how nitpicky I am around the zone right now with my pitches.” OF Jay Bruce connected off Porcello for his first homer of the spring in the fourth inning, a shot that caromed off a light pole. The Mets held a moment of silence for longtime team broadcast director Bill Webb, who died Tuesday at 65 after a bout with cancer.

Republished with permission of The Associated Press.

Share On Facebook
Share On Twitter
Share On Google Plus
Share On Linkedin
Share On Pinterest
Share On Reddit
Share On Stumbleupon
Share On Youtube
Contact us

NFL Free agent period the start to the answers for the Bucs

The Tampa Bay Bucs need answers. At the moment, all they have are questions.

What are they to do with Doug Martin?

Who will be the wide receiver opposite Mike Evans?

Is there help on the defensive line? Is there a safety? Another linebacker? Protection for quarterback Jameis Winston?

The Tampa Bay Bucs enter their offseason when free agency begins Thursday. Between that harvest, and the draft, there is an opportunity for the 9-7 Tampa Bay team to get better.

But where to start?

How about wide receiver? The Bucs, supposedly, are hot after Washington receiver DeSean Jackson, who has averaged more than 17 yards a catch for three years. Jackson would be expensive, of course. But you know that going in. And if not Jackson, the team might be interested in Chicago’s Alshon Jeffery or Los Angeles’ Kenny Britt.

Then there is running back, which is complicated by Martin’s positive test for PEDs last year. Martin still owes three games to the Bucs, if he he’s here. It isn’t as good a crop in free agency, of course. Adrian Peterson and Jamal Charles are coming off injury, and Eddie Lacy has had weight problems. Latavius Murray might be a possibility.

On the defensive line, the Bucs have linked to Calais Campbell of Arizona and Washington’s Chris Baker.

Of course, free agency just leads to the draft, another starring vehicle for Jason Licht. Last year, Licht was able to sign one defensive end in free agency and draft another, then sign one cornerback in free agency and draft another. This year, the positions might be receiver, back and safety.

Time for the Bucs to go to work.

Share On Facebook
Share On Twitter
Share On Google Plus
Share On Linkedin
Share On Pinterest
Share On Reddit
Share On Stumbleupon
Share On Youtube
Contact us

Colors represent effort level for the Florida State football team

The colors say it all at the FSU spring practice these days.

It isn’t always good, either.

FSU coach Jimbo Fisher has assigned three different colored jerseys for his players during spring drills. The colors signify the type of effort given by the players.

Those in garnet practice jerseys, the best level, are presented to Seminole players who give “championship effort.”

White jerseys? Those are for those who give average effort.

And the orange jerseys? Those are reserved for players who aren’t given any effort at all. “Ridiculous,” Fisher says of the orange.

Why Orange? Rivals Florida, Miami and Clemson all wear orange.

“That’s not always a good color around here, is it?” Fisher told the Orlando Sentinel.

By the end of the winter, “85 to 90 percent” of the players were wearing garnet jerseys, and no players were wearing the orange ones.

“It means we’ve got a long way to go,” Fisher said with a smile.

The jerseys were a daily routine for the team.

“The fine line between winning and losing is always those inches,” Fisher said. “That’s what we’ve tried to really emphasize. We rated them every day.”

The jersey decision was one made by the coaches, Fisher said. It’s something he said he’s done in past offseason camps.

“Back in the day, they told you when you were wrong, showed you when you were wrong. That’s what we’re trying to do,” Fisher said. “Educate the kids on the effort, the discipline, the toughness, all the things with what you want to do and how we want it done. Define it.”

“I’ve done it in the past,” he said. “I’ve done it with different teams I’ve been on and different schools I’ve been at and it was very helpful.

“Guys are here for business. They understand they can be friends, on the field they want (to know) who you can count on. I want to show the guys on the field who you can count on every play. I thought (the jerseys) were very helpful and educational.”

The message of accountability is spreading throughout the team, Fisher said. Even returning starters are on notice.

“Sometimes the worst springs I’ve been a part of in the past, we had a lot of guys back,” Fisher said. “They all think they can take it off. We’re going to make sure we get better in every aspect.”

Share On Facebook
Share On Twitter
Share On Google Plus
Share On Linkedin
Share On Pinterest
Share On Reddit
Share On Stumbleupon
Share On Youtube
Contact us

Rowdies sign forward Deshorn Brown, adding to offense

The Tampa Bay Rowdies hope they have added a bit more offense with the signing of Deshorn Brown.

Brown, 26, has been on a trial with the Rowdies. He most recently played for Shenzen in China League One, where he scored seven goals in 14 matches.

A Major League Soccer veteran, Brown scored 20 goals in 62 appearances for the Colorado Rapids from 2013-2015 before departing for Valerenga in Norway’s Tippeligaen, where he played from 2015-2016. He scored 13 goals in 37 appearances for Valerenga.

“Everyone saw the impact Deshorn made on our team in recent matches, scoring a goal and adding an assist,” Rowdies’ coach Stuart Campbell said. “As a coaching staff, we’ve seen much more of him in training, and he’s been impressive throughout. He brings a lot of quality and experience to our front line, and we’re excited to sign him. He’s another veteran voice in our locker room to guide younger players.”

“I am excited to join the Rowdies,” commented Brown. “The environment and the setup at the club is really professional, which is one of the reasons why I decided to sign here. I like to work hard and help the team, with the main goal of doing my job, which is scoring goals.”

Brown trained with the Rowdies as a guest player in February and March, playing in three matches, including Rowdies’ Suncoast Invitational matches. Brown tallied a goal and an assist in the 2-1 win over the Montreal Impact on February 25.

Factoring in his amateur career with the Des Moines Menace (nine goals in 10 appearances) and Reading United (13 goals in 13 appearances), Brown has averaged 0.32 goals-per-game or better at every club he’s played for.

Brown attended the University of Central Florida and has made 14 appearances for the Jamaican National Team.

The Rowdies play their home opener March 25 against Orlando City B.

Share On Facebook
Share On Twitter
Share On Google Plus
Share On Linkedin
Share On Pinterest
Share On Reddit
Share On Stumbleupon
Share On Youtube
Contact us
Show Buttons
Hide Buttons