New York Jets at New England Patriots Earlier this week, Jets defensive coordinator Mike Pettine put the NFL on notice : Guys, your officials need to enforce the rule that allows defenses to substitute their personnel when offenses do the same in no-huddle offenses. Problem is, the Jets can’t substitute in Darrelle Revis at any point in time, and though Antonio Cromartie is playing out of his mind right now, New England provides too many matchup options for an average defense — which is what Pettine has right now — to deal with under any circumstances. Well, at least the Jets have “threatened” to unleash Tim Tebow as a running back in an awesome response to their offensive issues. Pick: Patriots 42, Jets 16 Jacksonville Jaguars at Oakland Raiders Jags head coach Mike Mularkey has said that he wants second-year quarterback Blaine Gabbert to scramble more often. That’s what happens when your signal-caller averages 5.45 yards per attempt, the worst figure in the league, and you have to put him on the field anyway. Rookie punter Brian Anger, who leads the NFL in gross average, should get many chances to add to that number. The Raiders are coming off a bye and a humiliating defeat at the hands of the Denver Broncos before that. They’re not that good, but they’ve got the advantage on the Jags, and their defense should be able to validate Gabbert’s new scrambling ideal. Pick: Raiders 23, Jaguars 7 Pittsburgh Steelers at Cincinnati Bengals Both teams go into Sunday Night Football looking to recover from surprising losses. The Steelers will take the field against Andy Dalton and A.J Green with an injury-depleted defense, but the primary issue in the Steel City seems to be Ben Rothlisberger’s inability to buy into new offensive coordinator Todd Haley’s offensive schemes.
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Week 7 Picks (The Late Games): Big Ben looking to find belief in his own offense (Shutdown Corner)
According to Jay Glazer of FOXSports.com, the National Football League is investigating the San Diego Chargers for possibly using an illegal “Stick ‘em”-like substance during their 35-24 loss to the Denver Broncos last Monday night. “NFL Security has already begun investigation as SD equipment man was hiding illegal sticky substance and giving to players. Line judge saw it and had it confiscated and sent to Broncos and league”, Glazer posted on Twitter . The equipment manager had the substance hidden in hand towels and the line judge (Jeff Bergman) noticed it during a timeout and made the equipment manager in question empty his pockets. The NFL takes issues of competitive advantages seriously and Glazer adds that sanctions by the NFL could range from a substantial fine to the possible forfeiture of draft picks, the latter of which may depend on how many individuals were involved in using or distributing the illegal substance.
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NFL investigating Chargers for possible illegal use of Stickum-like substance (Shutdown Corner)
The New York Jets reportedly have complained to the NFL that the New England Patriots’ hurry-up offense does not allow the mandated time for defenses to make substitutions.
Report: Jets say Patriots’ no-huddle offense violates rules (The SportsXchange)
The NFL says it is looking into a report that the San Diego Chargers used a banned sticky substance during Monday night’s loss to the Denver Broncos.
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San Diego Chargers being investigated for use of banned sticky substance
The NFL is investigating the San Diego Chargers for possibly using the banned substance Stickum during the team’s loss to the Denver Broncos last Monday night, FoxSports.com reported Sunday.
San Diego Chargers being investigated for use of banned substance Stickum — report
By Rich Kurtzman There’s an age-old saying in the NFL; It’s not how you start, but how you finish. The Denver Broncos are proving it true so far this season. Denver’s gone through a ton of changes this year—a new quarterback, his complicated offense and a new cast of characters to work with, a different defense with a new coordinator, draftees and free agents trying to find their niche—and the result have been some bumps in the road. Most recently, the newest Bronco—Trindon Holliday—fumbled away the Chargers’ first punt while rookie Omar Bolden fumbled a kickoff and handed San Diego 10 free points. On the ensuing drive, Eric Decker tripped himself up instead of scoring a touchdown and Peyton Manning tossed a pick-six to put the Broncos behind 17-0. But it’s a trend that’s run throughout the 2012 season. Three early interceptions by Manning and a fumble by Knowshon buried the Broncos in Atlanta. Against Houston, huge pass plays burned Denver early, while Demaryius Thomas’ fumble on a 43-yard pass play stole the Broncos’ momentum against New England. In those games, they fought hard and came close, but were unable to come all the way back and win. They stand as the Broncos’ only three losses of the year, to teams with a combined record of 14-4. In those losing efforts, Denver came up short by an average of 7.3 points per game, showing they can hang with some of the best teams in the league. Versus the Steelers and Chargers, Manning and Co. did come back to win, while they devastated the Raiders early and often in the biggest blowout of Oakland in 50 years. The numbers are somewhat astounding. The AFC West leading Broncos have been beaten 38-15 in the first quarter and bludgeoned 61-27 in the second. It amounts to being blown out 99-42 in the first half, or an average deficit of 9.5 points per game at halftime. It’s truly the tale of two teams—of two halves—and Denver is domineering, out-scoring opponents 79-6 in the all-important fourth quarter. The stat is telling of a team that knows how to finish games, one that can mount a comeback against all odds, just as we saw Monday night. This is a team that won’t quit, no matter how slowly they start or how many turnovers they commit. If the Broncos can find a way to come out with a sense of urgency and consistency to start games, they could find themselves on the positive end of more blowouts this season. It seems probable considering the team is growing as cohesive units, both offensively and defensively. Yes, Manning and have gotten most of the credit for the comebacks, but most of them couldn’t have happened without Denver’s D stepping up when it mattered most. The prime example was last week’s win against San Diego, and the team will need both squads playing well if they want to overcome those top-tier teams.
As the last slivers of the day tumble below the horizon and night stretches across the sky, it’s easy to see the light. The light is at the end of a long, grueling tunnel of fear and the unknown, the light of hope, the light that is a simple reminder of whose desk it shines on and why.
Chuck Pagano finds groundswell of support as he battles leukemia
It all started when Peyton Manning was fired. The Indianapolis Colts reviewed his four NFL MVP awards, his 11 playoff berths, his 12 wins a year in the nine-season span from 2002-2010, his two Super Bowl appearances and his one world championship and then released him.
Broncos sit in good position