- Steelers sign Draft Picks-As Rookie Mini-Camps begin, the NFL has started signing their newest additions to contracts, which includes the Pittsburgh Steelers who came to terms with 3rd Round pick James Conner on a 4-year deal, 7th Round pick LB Keion Adams, 6th round pick LS Colin Holba and on Tuesday, they signed 5th round pick CB Brian Allen. To be honest, you can never expect any holdouts from these round of draft picks.
- Steelers Remaining Draft Picks-To no surprise the top draft picks remain simply because it’s just easier to sign the lower rounds. But I can’t see the Steelers having issues out of 1st round pick LB TJ Watt, 2nd Round pick WR JuJu Smith-Shuster, and their second 3rd round pick, CB Cameron Sutton and 4th round pick Joshua Dobbs. Plus, holdouts are a waste of time in my opinion. It’s the rookie who usually ends up looking foolish, not the team in those situations.
- Conner’s Signing-To be honest, everything this kid does will be news, and it’s pretty refreshing because it’s positive news. You can guarantee that he will make the team and serve as the top backup to starter Le’Veon Bell. I think they have a shot of resembling the 1-2 punch of Barry Foster and Bam Morris in 1994 and the 1-2 punch of Jerome Bettis and Duce Staley. That’s pretty exciting.
- Steelers Rookie Numbers-The Steelers issued numbers to their rookies this week, giving Conner #30, Watt #90, Dobbs #5, Adams #99, Allen #29, Sutton #20, JuJu Shuster #13 and #49 to Holba. What does this mean in the month of May? Nothing because they have a chance to change those numbers before the season starts if they like.
- Steelers Start Selling Individual Game Tickets-Haven’t been to a Steelers game yet? Well here’s your chance as the team announced that individual game tickets will be for sale June 9th.
Fans may buy up to eight tickets total per household, in any combination, for any of the eight regular-season games. There is no ticket limit for either of the team’s preseason home contests. And please remember that this is the Steelers we’re talking about: there are only a limited amount of tickets which are expected to sell out quickly.
- NFL Denies Gordon Reinstatement Bid-You think player talent is above suspensions? Think again: The NFL denied former Cleveland Browns WR Josh Gordon’s reinstatement bid which means that he hasn’t played since 2014. Remember: At one point, he was the NFL’s most productive WR, until the failed drug tests came. That alone should keep Steelers WR Martavis Bryant on the straight and narrow road. Gordon can re-apply in the October.
- Cardinals Cut reinstated LB-Another example of how suspensions can prove costly. Arizona Cardinals LB Daryl Washington was suspended in 2014 for multiple violations of the NFL’s substance abuse policy and was conditionally reinstated the same day as Bryant. But the Cardinals chose to part ways with him. Hope he learns.
- Bears Release WR Eddie Royal-The 9-year veteran was cut by Chicago on Thursday. Apparently, he didn’t live up to the success that he had in Denver where he was also a pretty good return specialist. I think a team will give him a look.
- Darelle Revis Status? The veteran still hasn’t been signed to a team yet despite rumors of him possibly returning to the New England Patriots whom he won a Super Bowl with in 2015. It’s also suggested that Revis consider moving to Safety. I think it can work. I still wish the Steelers would get him. Why? Shock Value. The Steelers had a decent secondary in 1994 and they still added veteran Tim McKyer. I think they should do it again.
- Cutler Joins Fox-I didn’t think it would happen, but Fox apparently took the bait and signed former Bears QB Jay Cutler to do media work with Fox. Not sure why folks think it’s easy for players to transition from the football field to the broadcast booth, but it is what it is. I wish Cutler the best.
- Sports Network Mistakes-In a brief flashback, Cutler’s signing reminded me of when Monday Night Football added comedian Dennis Miller to their lineup in 2000 (when they were still on ABC) and when ESPN added Rush Limbaugh to their Football lineup in 2003. Both were downright horrible, especially Limbaugh who was fired for controversial comments to former QB Donovan McNabb. Wow.
- NBA Playoffs-While defending NBA Champ Cleveland and runner-up Golden State await opponents in the Conference Final games, it’s still expected that these 2 teams will meet again in the Finals for a 3rd straight time. I think it’s great for the sport as it proves who the game’s elite teams are. Of course, some folks will complain, but such is life in sports. You can’t please everybody.
- Spurs Leonard out vs. Rockets-First they lost G Tony Parker, now San Antonio loses star F Kawji Leonard will miss Game 6 vs. the Houston Rockets due to an ankle injury. He really must be injured if Leonard will sit this one out. Not a good sign for the Spurs.
- Kobe Bryant reaches out to young players-I really like this as Bryant is setting a true example of how veterans should do it. A year after he retired, he’s remained in contact with several current players, including Boston Celtics G Isaiah Thomas, especially when is sister lost her life in a car accident. Bryant said he was inspired to do this by of all people, Michael Jackson.
- Lavar Ball doesn’t want Bryant speaking to his Son-Seriously, I want this man to be quiet. He reminds me of the annoying parent who is always making noise at their kids games, except Ball is making noise in the media boasting about his son Lonzo Ball who declared for the NBA draft after a college career at UCLA. Ball said he doesn’t want his son to talk to Bryant, but to be his own player. He previously said his son was better than Michael Jordan and LeBron James. I hope this kid gets drafted, maybe then will his father tone it down…
- Pirates get swept by the Dodgers-To no surprise, the Pirates keep losing games. This time they get swept by the Dodgers in Los Angeles. The Pirates are now 14-20 and remain in last place in the NL Central and will now travel to Arizona to face the Diamondbacks, who are looking pretty good in the NL West Division.
- NL Central Standings-Seriously, who would’ve thought that the defending champion Chicago Cubs would be in 5th place in the division? Not me. But they are there with the St. Louis Cardinals in first place, followed by the surprising Cincinnati Reds and the Milwaukee Brewers. Other than the Pirates, it’s still early.
- Penguins eliminate Capitals-I honestly thought they would do this after getting embarrassed by Washington in Game 6. Most thought the Penguins were done, but that’s not how defending champs respond. They played Game 7 and beat the Caps 2-0 to advance to the Eastern Conference Finals where they will play the Ottawa Senators.
- Marc-Andre Fleury-I admit I’m a Matt Murray fan, but Fleury has really impressed me in these playoffs, especially after eliminating the Caps. I guess there’s justification to the Penguins not trading him at the Trade Deadline, especially since Murray got hurt. Impressive.
- Chris Berman’s wife killed in car crash-Very sad news, to say the least as ESPN legend Chris Berman lost his wife Katherine in a 2-car accident earlier this week. Prayers and condolences to the Berman family.
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