<![CDATA[NBC Bay Area - Bay Area Sports News, Sports Teams, and Scores for the Sharks, 49ers, Raiders,Giants, Bears and More]]> Copyright 2014 http://www.nbcbayarea.com/news/sports http://media.nbcbayarea.com/designimages/nbc_bayarea_blue.png NBC Bay Area http://www.nbcbayarea.com en-us Wed, 17 Sep 2014 08:31:05 -0700 Wed, 17 Sep 2014 08:31:05 -0700 NBC Owned Television Stations <![CDATA[Charles Barkley Throws "Turrible" First Pitch]]> Wed, 17 Sep 2014 06:55:21 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/Barkley_Cubs.jpg

Everyone knows Hall of Fame NBA player Charles Barkley has an ugly golf swing. Now you can add baseball to the sports Barkley has yet to master.

Barkley threw out the ceremonial first pitch at Tuesday's Chicago Cubs game at Wrigley Field, and let's just say it was a bit outside. Way outside.

One of the MLB announcers couldn't resist using a Barkley-ism to call it: the pitch was just "turrible."

Move over 50 Cent and Carl Lewis, you have company.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Orioles Clinch AL East With 8-2 Win]]> Tue, 16 Sep 2014 20:08:23 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/160*131/455561388.jpg

The Baltimore Orioles won their first AL East crown since 1997, using home runs by Steve Pearce and Jimmy Paredes to beat the Toronto Blue Jays 8-2 Tuesday night before a boisterous crowd of 35,297 at Camden Yards.

With their ninth win in 10 games, the Orioles clinched their second playoff appearance in three years following a run of 14 consecutive losing seasons.

Afterward, the Orioles converged behind second base, fireworks soared in the outfield and streamers sprayed throughout the crowd.

It was Baltimore's ninth AL East title and only its second since 1983, when the Orioles last won the World Series.

The franchise has enjoyed a rebirth under the guidance of manager Buck Showalter, whose 1,254th victory thrust him past mentor Billy Martin into sole possession of 36th place on the career list.

Baltimore is 42-23 in a division that includes the defending World Series champion Boston Red Sox, the free-spending New York Yankees and pitching-rich Tampa Bay. The Orioles led by only four games on Aug. 6 before going on a 27-11 run.

The clinching victory featured an unlikely list of contributors, not at all unusual for a team that often delved deep into its 25-man roster. Ubaldo Jimenez was making his first start in a month; Pearce has morphed from a bit-player to a key starter; and Paredes didn't join the team until Aug. 28.

Pearce provided the Orioles with the lead for good with a three-run drive off Drew Hutchison (10-12) in the first inning. Pearce has 18 home runs this year, one more than he had in 290 games as a part-timer from 2007-13.

Paredes hit a solo shot in the second to make it 4-2. It was his second homer in 10 games with Baltimore.

In addition, newcomer Alejandro De Aza hit a three-run triple in the seventh for a 7-2 lead. De Aza came to the Orioles in an Aug. 30 trade with the Chicago White Sox.

Jimenez (5-9) survived a rocky start to limit the Blue Jays to two runs and two hits over five innings in his third start since July 5. After signing a $50 million, four-year deal in the offseason, Jimenez struggled with his control for much of the season, sprained his ankle in a parking lot before the All-Star break and ultimately lost his place in the rotation.

Pressed into service because the Orioles played a doubleheader Friday, Jimenez issued four walks in the first two innings. But he bounced back to retire his last 10 batters.

Orioles fans have until Friday to register for a ticket lottery online. Winners will be notifed next Wednesday.

Photo Credit: MCT via Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Ward Hopes to Learn From Rough Night]]> Tue, 16 Sep 2014 09:48:31 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/179*120/wardbrned.jpg

Jimmie Ward had an unforgettable night against the Bears on national television. But not in a good way.

There he was, No. 25, giving up a touchdown pass to the Bears’ Brandon Marshall. And then another. And then a third.

It was among the lowlights in a game filled with them for the 49ers, who let a big lead slip away in a 28-20 loss to Chicago in the regular-season debut of Levi’s Stadium.

Yet as bad a night as it was for Ward, the rookie safety-turned-nickel corner, Ward actually wants to revisit it in his mind, again and again, to get the most out of it.

If a rookie year is a learning experience, then Sunday’s was an advanced course.

Though Ward sometimes was in excellent position, the 6-foot-4 Marshall dominated the 5-foot-11 Ward when it counted.

“It’s only gong to get me better,” Ward told Cam Inman of the Bay Area News Group.

Ward knows he’ll have other matchups against other big receivers, and he’d better be able to adapt and overcome. If coaches spot a weakness in the NFL, they go after it.

“I feel like Marshall played like an All-Pro,” Ward told Inman. “I was challenging him. I was trying to press him and get in his face, but he made great catches. He’s good with his body and his height.”

After the game, Marshall and Bears head coach Marc Trestman said the 49ers defense had a great game plan for the game. For the first three quarters of the game, the Niners secondary was pressing the Chicago receivers, sitting on short routes and daring quarterback Jay Cutler to go long.

“They were smart about how they played us,” Marshall told a Chicago reporter. “We knew that if we did end up throwing it deep, it would just be a jump ball.”

In fact, all three of Marshall’s touchdown catches came when he had a physical advantage over ward – a leaping one-handed grab in the end zone, a short catch on which Marshall posted up on Ward to shield him and a fade route in the end zone that was placed perfectly where Ward couldn’t get to it.

San Francisco safety Eric Reid said defensive backs often were in position, but “Cutler made some good throws in the red zone (and) they made some good catches.”

Niners inside linebacker Patrick Willis said Ward actually was playing hard and “doing what we were asking him to do.”

“They just made plays,” he told Inman. “Hat’s off to him (Ward). My thing I said to him was to not get yourself down, to take this game and understand the magnitude of the NFL and the receivers here.”

It won’t get easier. Next up  Sunday for the 1-1 49ers are the 2-0 Arizona Cardinals, with tall standout wide receivers Larry Fitzgerald (6-foot-3) and Michael Floyd (6-foot-3).


Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Patriots Will Run Right at Raiders]]> Tue, 16 Sep 2014 08:11:10 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/178*120/cantstprunn.jpg

Bad news for the Raiders:  The New England Patriots showed last week that they want to run the football.

If there’s one thing Oakland has shown it can’t do so far in going 0-2, it’s stop the run. Through two games, the Raiders have given up 400 yards on the ground. And, according to ESPN Stats and Information, most of those yards have come on straight-ahead rushes through the heart of the Raiders defense. In their loss to the Houston Texans in Week 2, the Raiders gave up 151 yards rushing between the tackles.

As ESPN.com’s Bill Williamson noted this week, the Raiders’ failure to stop the run has been the biggest factor in both losses.

“It affected every aspects of the game,” Williamson wrote about Sunday’s loss to Houston, in which Arian Foster ran for 138 yards on 28 carries. “This is why the Texans held the ball for more than 38 minutes and why the Raiders’ offense couldn’t get in a rhythm. Simply, the Raiders have to get tougher against the run if they want a chance to win.”

Certainly, that means defensive tackles Pat Sims and Antonio Smith need to get more push inside. It also means the Raiders sorely miss middle linebacker Nick Roach, who hasn’t played in the first two games after a solid first season in Oakland in 2013. Roach suffered a concussion in an Aug. 22 exhibition game at Green Bay and has not yet been cleared to play.

The Patriots, meanwhile, leaned on their ground attack in a 30-7 victory over the Vikings in Week 2, often using backup offensive tackle Cameron Fleming (6-foot-6, 325 pounds) as a blocking tight end (in place of Rob Gronkowski, a terrific receiver).

New England rushed 37 times for 150 yards, with Stevan Ridley (101 yards) getting most of the gains.

Offensive tackle Nate Solder told ESPN.com’s Mike Reiss that he and his linemates loved the fact that the coaching staff “put a lot of beef out there” and committed to running the ball.

“We loved the play calling today,” Solder said after the victory. “I don’t know what’s going to happen in the future, but if we can establish a good run game, that’s definitely a goal of ours.”

So expect the Patriots to line up with their extra beef on Sunday and come straight at the Raiders. Until Oakland can show it can plug its leaky ground defense, there’s no reason to expect anything else.


Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Claim Filed After Giants' Native American Heritage Night Incident]]> Tue, 16 Sep 2014 20:38:11 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/183*120/giants45.JPG

Two Native Americans removed from San Francisco's AT&T Park during a Native American Heritage Night at a Giants game in June are filing a claim of police brutality against the city and are urging the Giants to practice cultural sensitivity.

Kimball Bighorse, 35, of San Bruno, who is of Seneca, Cayuga, and Navajo descent, stood outside AT&T Park this morning recounting the incident that occurred inside the ballpark on June 23 that led to police detaining him and a fellow Giants fan who he met that night, April Negrette.

Bighorse said he and Negrette peacefully confronted a man wearing a backwards, plastic Native American-themed headdress.

Bighorse described the headdress as "counterfeit" and said it was being worn in an "offensive" manner on a night that was meant to celebrate Native American heritage.

They expressed to the man that what he was doing was an insult and a highly offensive instance of cultural appropriation.

In a video about the incident posted on the YouTube channel WeCopwatch, Negrette says the man eventually gave the pair the headdress when he saw how upset it was making her.

As the pair was heading back to their seats, San Francisco police officers stopped them, Bighorse said.

San Francisco police officers ejected them from the ballpark, allegedly throwing Negrette to the floor by her hair, violently twisting her arms behind her back and keeping her in a painful compliance hold for an extended period of time, Bighorse said.

Bighorse, a software engineer who works at a San Francisco startup company, said he decided to capture video footage of the police officers' conduct on his phone. He captured much of the incident on his phone before he too was removed from the stadium and handcuffed.

Negrette said in the YouTube video that police were violent and didn't readily supply a female officer to search her despite her request. She said she was "harassed and abused."

Bighorse said he hopes filing the tort claim will remind San Francisco police to think twice before stopping people from expressing themselves and will hold police accountable for their actions.

A letter delivered this week to the Giants' director of special ticketing, Faham Zakariaei, from the pair's attorney, Rachel Lederman, on behalf of the National Lawyers Guild urged the Giants to prevent a recurrence of "racist and culturally insensitive" actions.

Lederman urged the Giants to acknowledge and apologize for the incident and take measures to prevent it from happening again.

She said the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of
Indigenous Peoples was created to protect Native Americans from such abuse, but the laws must be enforced to better "promote respect for all peoples."

Lederman's letter asks the Giants not to allow appropriations of Native American culture, not to display what they say are racist team names or imagery and publicly encourage Bay Area sports teams and Major League Baseball teams to adopt similar policies.

She also urged the Giants to provide cultural sensitivity training to their staff.

The Giants have placed a message on a section of their team website saying, ""Any fan wearing culturally insensitive attire, using obscene or abusive language, engaging in antisocial conduct offensive to those around them or displaying any other offensive behavior is subject to removal from the ballpark."

The message says, "If you observe a fan acting in this manner, please contact Giants security by texting the word 'FOUL' to 69050, followed by your message. Please do not take the matter into your own hands."

Tony Gonzales, director of American Indian Movement West and a liaison to the United Nations, supports the pair's claim, saying that the incident "goes to the heart of racism in America."

Gonzales recommends that the Giants' staff meet with
representatives of San Francisco and Bay Area Native American groups to better understand how certain imagery is harmful to Native Americans and how they can work with Native American representatives to make changes.

Both Gonzales and Bighorse said today that they are longtime Giants fans and said they would like to see the Giants act in an exemplary manner.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC Bay Area

Photo Credit: Facebook: April Negrette]]>
<![CDATA[Radisson Suspends Minnesota Vikings Sponsorship]]> Mon, 15 Sep 2014 19:51:53 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/adrian-peterson-indicted_1200x675_328790083813.jpg

The Radisson hotel chain is suspending its sponsorship of the Minnesota Vikings after star running back Adrian Peterson was charged with child abuse in Texas.

In a statement Monday, Minnetonka-based Radisson said it "takes this matter very seriously particularly in light of our long-standing commitment to the protection of children."

Radisson says it's suspending its limited sponsorship of the Vikings "while we evaluate the facts and circumstances."

Radisson's sponsorship includes a press banner that is behind those speaking at Vikings news conferences.

Peterson is accused of using a wooden switch to spank his 4-year-old son. The running back says he was using a form of discipline his father used on him as a boy.

A Vikings spokesman says the team has "respectfully honored" Radisson's request.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC Bay Area

<![CDATA[31 Arrests at 49ers' Home Opener]]> Mon, 15 Sep 2014 16:32:34 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/levis_stadium_tailgaters_pregame.jpg

Fans were mostly well-behaved at the San Francisco 49ers’ home opener at Levi's Stadium. Still, Santa Clara police arrested 31 people, most of them for alcohol-related offenses.

That's in line with previous arrest totals during games at Candlestick.

Sunday’s game was not the way the 49ers or their fans wanted to start the new era at Levi's Stadium.

Coach Jim Harbaugh talked Monday about the disappointing loss.

“Nobody feels really good about it,” Harbaugh said. “It’s a bad feeling to lose a game, no matter how you lose it, or the circumstances there were.”

Along with the loss, many fans were frustrated leaving Levi's. Some said they waited for three hours to get out of the parking lots. Others took matters into their own hands and drove their SUVs over grass and sidewalk just to get out.

The Bears won the game 28-20.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[In Two Games, Kaepernick Has Peaked and Plummeted]]> Mon, 15 Sep 2014 09:18:26 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/164*120/kappybehrsss.jpg

In leading the 49ers past Dallas in Week 1, quarterback Colin Kaepernick was dynamic.

In leading his team to a loss to the Bears Sunday night in Week 2 – committing four turnovers – he was, in his word, “terrible.”

Kaepernick threw two interceptions in the fourth quarter that led to two Chicago touchdowns in a 28-20 loss on the regular-season opening night of Levi’s Stadium.

In Kaepernick’s relatively short tenure as San Francisco’s starting quarterback, 49ers fans have seen both the good and the bad.

There are times, such as in the first half Sunday night, when he looks like the best in the NFL. His passes have zip and accuracy, he escapes pressure, he makes all the right reads and he’s the most dangerous running quarterback in the league.

And then there are other times – such as late in Sunday night’s defeat – when he suddenly loses his accuracy and those bullet passes bury themselves into defenders’ hands.

After Sunday night’s debacle, scores of memes flooded the Internet, laying blame on Kaepernick and poking fun at his distress, posted by frustrated 49ers fans and diehard 49ers haters. One showed a Bears fan choking with the phrase, “Kaepernicking.” Another had a smiling Kaepernick saying, “I accepted the INT Challenge. Thank you Tony Romo.” And a third showed former 49ers starter Alex Smith, now in Kansas City, with the slogan, “Oh man. Miss me yet?”

Kaepernick mostly has had highs in his career. He has an 18-7 regular-season record and has taken his team to two NFC Championship Games and a Super Bowl and his career QB rating is 93.0.

But every now and then, Kaepernick has a stinker. Sunday night was one of his worst. After posting a QB rating of 125.5 vs. Dallas, he plummeted to 57.0 vs. the Bears. He completed 21-of-34 passes for 248 yards and a TD, and also rushed for 66 yards, but threw three interceptions and lost a fumble.

Wrote longtime Bay Area columnist Tim Kawakami: “Those three interceptions and lost fumble added up to a titanic crash and burn.”

Yet Kaepernick accepted the blame and told the media afterward that his performance was awful. And in the past, Kaepernick has shown he can bounce back.

In 2013, Kaepernick threw three picks in a loss at Seattle in Week 2, completed less than 50 percent of his passes in a loss to the Colts in Week 3 and then was terrific vs. the Rams in Week 4, en route to a strong second half of the season and playoffs.

His propensity for throwing interceptions in bunches can be troubling, but it’s offset by his ability to lead his team from behind, too.

Kaepernick led four game-winning drives in 2013, three in the fourth quarter, including one against the Packers in the playoffs.

Now, Kaepernick needs to get back on track quickly. The Arizona Cardinals – atop the NFC West at 2-0 – await this Sunday.

“You have to come back,” Kaepernick told reporters Sunday night. “That’s your only choice.”


Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA["Not a Child Abuser": Adrian Peterson Apologizes]]> Tue, 16 Sep 2014 13:10:55 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/tlmd_adrian_peterson1.jpg

Adrian Peterson is coming back to the Minnesota Vikings two days after he was charged with child abuse for using a wooden switch to spank his 4-year-old son, and the star running back said Monday he is not a child abuser and wants "everyone to understand how sorry I feel about the hurt I have brought to my child."

Peterson, considered one of the best running backs in the NFL, was benched for Sunday's 30-7 home loss to the New England Patriots. He had not commented publicly since news broke on Friday that he had lashed the boy with the switch earlier this summer, causing an unspecified injuries.

"I am not a perfect son. I am not a perfect husband. I am not a perfect parent, but I am, without a doubt, not a child abuser," Peterson said in a nearly 500-word statement issued through his agency and posted to his Twitter feed. "I am someone that disciplined his child and did not intend to cause him any injury.

"No one can understand the hurt that I feel for my son and for the harm I caused him. My goal is always to teach my son right from wrong and that's what I tried to do that day."

Vikings owners Zygi and Mark Wilf said they had decided to bring back Peterson for practices and Sunday's game at New Orleans "after significant thought, discussion and consideration." The Wilfs said they want to let the legal process play out before making any more definitive decisions on Peterson's future with the only NFL team he has ever played for.

"To be clear, we take very seriously any matter that involves the welfare of a child," the Wilfs said. "At this time, however, we believe this is a matter of due process and we should allow the legal system to proceed so we can come to the most effective conclusions and then determine the appropriate course of action. This is a difficult path to navigate, and our focus is on doing the right thing."

Peterson faces an initial court appearance in Conroe, Texas, on Wednesday on a charge of reckless or negligent injury to a child, which carries penalties of up to two years in prison and a $10,000 fine. His attorney, Rusty Hardin, said he will try to delay the arraignment until next week after Hardin returns from a vacation out of the country.

Corporal punishment is legal in Texas and non-deadly force against a child by a parent or guardian is permissible. But the punishment is abusive if it causes injury. A blow that leaves a bruise, welt or swelling, or requires medical attention, could be judged abusive. The guidelines also say use of an instrument "is cause for concern."

Hardin said Peterson used a switch because that was the way he was brought up by his parents in Palestine, Texas, and the NFL star agreed.

"I have to live with the fact that when I disciplined my son the way I was disciplined as a child, I caused an injury that I never intended or thought would happen," Peterson said. "I know that many people disagree with the way I disciplined my child. I also understand after meeting with a psychologist that there are other alternative ways of disciplining a child that may be more appropriate."

The Vikings decided not to play Peterson against the Patriots, moving swiftly after a week in which the NFL came under heavy scrutiny for its handling of a domestic violence case involving former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice.

The Vikings clearly see Peterson's case as different from the 2011 case involving former cornerback Chris Cook, who was accused of choking his girlfriend. Cook was initially suspended by the team before being reinstated with pay. But the Vikings barred him from all team activities, including games, while the legal process unfolded.

Cook wound up missing 10 games and was eventually acquitted. He never faced discipline from the NFL and played two more seasons with the Vikings before signing with the 49ers.

The NFL is looking into Peterson's case, and if convicted he could face a minimum six-game suspension under the league's new tougher domestic abuse policy that was implemented after Commissioner Roger Goodell admitted he botched Rice's initial punishment.

The Vikings' decision to reinstate Peterson comes on the same day the NFL announced that three experts in domestic violence will serve as senior advisers to the league. Goodell sent a memo to teams Monday announcing that Lisa Friel, Jane Randel and Rita Smith will "help lead and shape the NFL's policies and programs relating to domestic violence and sexual assault."

"I accept the fact that people feel very strongly about this issue and what they think about my conduct," Peterson said. "Regardless of what others think, however, I love my son very much and I will continue to try to become a better father and person."

Copyright Associated Press / NBC Bay Area

Photo Credit: EFE]]>
<![CDATA[Shark Splits Surfer’s Board in Two]]> Tue, 16 Sep 2014 06:00:00 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/surf-th.jpg

A surfer says he had to swim for his life after a 15-foot great white shark took a bite out of his surf board at a popular beach near Watsonville, California.

Beau Browning was surfing about 50 yards from shore at Manresa State Beach Saturday evening when he says the shark knocked him off his surfboard, mid-wave. The shark came out of the water and landed on his board, splitting it in two, then took a bite out of the board.

"I caught my second wave and barely got into it, and out of nowhere, I was popped into the air by probably like 10 feet, looked down, and saw a shark," Browning said.

Browning said he was still tethered to the board, so when the shark began to swim deeper, it pulled him underwater for 5 seconds. When the shark finally let go, Browning was able to get up to the surface.

Browning was not hurt in the attack, but his board is no longer usable. Browning said, the board's maker, Pearson Arrow, has offered him a replacement.

Browning told local NBC affiliate KSBW-TV he doesn't blame the shark.

"They were just doing what they're designed to do," Browning said. "And they thought I was something else. And that's all it is. I got no hard feelings against sharks."

Shark warning signs were posted Monday by state park rangers at multiple beaches in Santa Cruz County, the station reported. California State Parks Supervising Ranger Joe Connors says a shark was spotted attacking a seal in the waters off Seabright State Beach on Sunday.

Shark experts told KSBW great whites don’t have sharp eyesight and can't tell the difference between a surfer's body and board.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Copyright Associated Press / NBC Bay Area

<![CDATA[Allen Now 8-26 as Raiders Head Coach]]> Mon, 15 Sep 2014 08:42:52 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/172*120/ddeeeallynnn.jpg

The numbers aren’t pretty.

Dennis Allen has now been head coach of the Oakland Raiders for 34 regular-season games. His record: 8-26.

Allen entered this season on the hot seat, but hopes within the organization and outside of it were that Allen – after two seasons with not much talent and depth on his roster – finally had some players to work with.

Seemingly, that’s true. Yet Allen’s Raiders are 0-2, with both losses to teams that struggled in 2013.

And now the Raiders will travel this week to play the Patriots in New England – the Eastern Time Zone, where they have lost 14 in a row.

The Raiders’ performance in losing to the Jets in Week 1 and the Texans in Week prompted veteran safety Charles Woodson to tell a reporter that, “We suck.” And columnist Marcus Thompson III of the Bay Area News Group asked this question about Allen after the team’s home-opening loss: “What’s the reason to keep him?”

Unless the Raiders pull of a stunning victory over the Patriots in Week 3, the drumbeat to fire Allen will only get louder.

In Allen’s first two seasons, the Raiders at least started 1-2. A loss to the Patriots will put the Raiders at 0-3 and give them little hope of a 2014 turnaround.

And this comes with a roster with a young quarterback who looks like he can play in Derek Carr, a healthy Darren McFadden, a rebuilt and deeper offensive line, a touted rookie linebacker in Khalil Mack, veteran additions on defense and a draft class that appears talented.

Already there is a petition to fire Allen on Moveon.org, and Raiders fans have gone to Twitter to bash Allen, his coaching staff and general manager Reggie McKenzie. Wrote one late Sunday night: “What’s the earliest a NFL head coach has been fired into a season? Dennis Allen was asking for a friend.”

Meanwhile, those in the media, too, are noting that Allen’s start could get him quickly ousted. Wrote longtime Bay Area columnist Ray Ratto: “Dennis Allen really wants to spend more time with his family.” And Peter King of Sports Illustrated’s Monday Morning Quarterback, when asked on Twitter if Allen survives the season, wrote: “Not at this rate. Could be Sparano time at some point.”

Sparano is assistant head coach and offensive line coach Tony Sparano, a longtime NFL assistant and former Miami Dolphins head coach.

The Raiders performance in two games certainly is baffling. The roster still isn’t among the top echelon in the league, but it’s better than in 2012 and 2013, yet the defense has been flat, the running game has been largely ineffective and the pass rush – billed as potentially terrific – hasn’t materialized.

When a veteran such as Woodson tells the media he’s “embarrassed” this early in the season, it’s not a good thing.

Right now, Allen’s set has gone from uncomfortably warm to fiery.


Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Golfer Wins Trip to Space After Hole-in-One]]> Mon, 15 Sep 2014 05:13:37 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/455429326.jpg

An English golfer scored a trip into space by sinking a rare hole-in-one at a tournament on Sunday.

Andy Sullivan made the shot at the 163-yard, 15th hole at the KLM Open in the Netherlands, The Associated Press reported.

XCOR Aerospace, an Amsterdam-based company that sponsored the tournament, offered a 100,000-euro ($129,238) seat aboard a commercial flight into space to the first player to make an ace on the 15th hole, according to Golf.com.

The reward was aimed at promoting the company's space trips, which are set to open to the public beginning in late 2015.

"I'm not sure yet,” Sullivan said when asked if he would take the trip, Golf.com reported. "I'll see what the missus says."

Sullivan finished third at the KLM Open, two shots behind winner Paul Casey.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Tailgating Tradition Continues at Levi's Stadium]]> Mon, 15 Sep 2014 00:53:26 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/levis_stadium_tailgaters_pregame.jpg Just like at Candlestick Park, 49ers fans treated tailgating very seriously at Levi's Stadium. NBC Bay Area’s Terry McSweeney reports from Levi’s Stadium with reaction from tailgaters.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Mixed Reaction to Traffic in 49ers Levi's Stadium Opener]]> Mon, 15 Sep 2014 16:32:04 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/levis_stadium_parking_smooth.jpg

After months of planning and weeks of preseason dress rehearsals, Sunday night's 49ers Levi's Stadium regular season opener was the real traffic test for the new Santa Clara stadium.

After a disappointing 28-20 loss to the Chicago Bears, it appeared the amount of planning, practice, and preparation into stadium transportation plans paid off coming into the stadium.

Many 49ers fans came in huge crowds in a variety of ways--on foot, on the bus, by VTA, by car, and some rode their bikes. Others hired someone to do the pedaling for them.

Everyone's main goal seemed to be avoiding the traffic, and because they did, traffic was not bad.

"Traffic was perfect," said one fan, who did not reveal her name. "We zipped right in, no problem at all."

With CHP officers at every intersection, getting into the stadium became a non-issue.

And people who took VTA to Levi's Stadium also had no complaints.

"Fast, sustainable, and easy," said another fan, who also did not reveal his name.

Those who did drive seemed to come early, with fans trickling into the parking lots over several hours. If anything, the only traffic jams to speak of were on the sidewalks.

Justin and Bianca Powell rode their bikes from Milpitas.

"We wanted some exercise, and it's close, so why not try it? And it's free," Bianca Powell said. "I think this is the best option."

For drivers leaving the stadium after the game, it was a different story.

Some people traveling by car told NBC Bay Area they were at a standstill for about an hour in the Levi's Stadium parking lot.

"Really frustrating," a passenger said. "We lost the game, and now we're sitting in the parking lot, and we've been here over 45 minutes." "And we were parked three stalls up."

Many drivers and passengers leaving the game also said they were frustrated with the lack of signage and officials directing people toward the exits. NBC Bay Area cameras even showed some cars going over grass and curbs to get out of the mess--in front of pedestrians walking on the sidewalk.

"They have no pedestrian walkways," another passenger said. "People are darting in-and-out of traffic over there. We almost got hit on the way out."

"This is the worst," one driver said. "There's no direction. No signs. No one directing any traffic."

Others were frustrated the gridlock came on a night where many have work and school Monday morning.

"Very frustrating," another driver said. "We have to go to work tomorrow, so this is not good."

The one tweak was handicapped parking, according to parking staff. Several attendants said it had filled completely by about 2 p.m., and they had to turn handicapped fans around to go find other parking.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Niners' Big Night Turns Ugly]]> Mon, 15 Sep 2014 07:16:02 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/chiwins.jpg

It was all stacking up to be a beautiful night for the 49ers.

In the regular-season debut of Levi’s Stadium Sunday night, the Niners jumped out to a 17-0 lead and entered the fourth quarter leading 20-7. With a lead of 13 points or more going into the final period, San Francisco had won 37 straight.

Plus, the 49ers knew even before kickoff in the nationally televised game that the Seattle Seahawks had lost in San Diego, meaning a victory would give the 49ers a 2-0 record and the lead in the NFC West.

But in the fourth quarter, everything unraveled.

The Bears, who had scored a touchdown just before halftime to climb back into the game, scored three touchdowns in about nine minutes to take a 28-20 victory and spoil the Niners’ night.

Two of the scores came after the Bears intercepted Colin Kaepernick on back-to-back 49ers possessions. Wide receiver Brandon Marshall scored two of the TDs on short passes from Jay Cutler and had three for the night, including a spectacular one-handed 17-yard grab just before halftime.

The Niners had had one last chance to tie the game, but a drive into Bears territory ended on a failed fourth-down play with a little more than a minute remaining to end their hopes.

Kaepernick and the 49ers offense began the game on a roll, with San Francisco scoring a quick touchdown after rookie Aaron Lynch blocked a punt. And just like last week in a victory over the Cowboys, the 49ers jumped out to a big lead. Michael Crabtree and Frank Gore had touchdowns and Phil Dawson had a 27-yard field goal.

But Kaepernick soon lost his magic. He lost a fumble while being sacked and wound up throwing three interceptions. And the 49ers committed numerous mistakes, being flagged for almost as many yards in penalties (118) as they had rushing yards (129).

Now 1-1, the 49ers will try to get back on track against the Cardinals iin Week 3.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders No Match for Texans in Home Opener]]> Mon, 15 Sep 2014 07:16:47 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/178*120/fosteroakkk.jpg

Two games into the season, two defeats.

Now comes a cross-country trip to play the Patriots.

It’s time for Raiders fans to start worrying about the 2014 edition of this Oakland team.

After losing a one-score game to the Jets in New Jersey last weekend, 19-14, the Raiders were trounced by the Houston Texans in their home opener Sunday at O.co Coliseum, 30-14.

Though the first two games of the schedule looked winnable against two teams that struggled in 2013 – including the Texans, who finished 2-14 – the Raiders gave up two long touchdown drives to the Texans to start the game, trailed 17-0 at the half and 27-0 at the end of the third quarter before losing by 16 points.

The run defense again was disappointing, as was the lack of a pass rush on Texans quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick. And the Raiders’ ineptitude was epitomized by one play in which Raiders receiver James Jones made a nice catch at the Texans 30-yard line, fumbled, recovered the ball, streaked to about the 12 where he fumbled again – with Houston recovering on its own 3.

By the third quarter, some fans on Twitter were asking for head coach Dennis Allen to be fired.  Several more were skeptical their team would win a game this season. When the Raiders finally punched in a fourth-quarter TD, on Darren McFadden’s 1-yard run with about 14 minutes to play, one frustrated fan tweeted, “Wow #Raiders got on the scoreboard. Congrats guys on finding the end zone and not turning it over.”

Of course, instead of holding the Texans on the next drive, the Raiders promptly gave up a time-eating, 14-play field-goal drive to go down 30-7. When the Raiders added another touchdown on a 9-yard pass to Jones, less than 30 seconds remained in the game.

The Raiders gave the ball up four times, twice on rookie QB Derek Carr’s first interceptions of his career  and twice on fumbles by Jones and Mychal Rivera. The Raiders defense, meanwhile, had no takeaways.

Though Carr made mistakes Sunday, he wasn’t the reason for the Raiders loss. He completed 20-of-31 throws for 193 yards and a score and also ran for a 42-yard gain on an option keeper.

But the Raiders offensive line couldn’t open holes in the Texans defense, so the running game floundered, and the Oakland defense again underperformed, unable to stop Arian Foster (138 yards rushing) or Fitzpatrick (139 yards on 14 completions, with two TDs).

Now comes a long flight to the Eastern time zone – where Oakland has lost 14 straight – to take on the Patriots, who walloped the Vikings Sunday, 30-7.

If the Raiders fall to 0-3 with a loss next Sunday, they would top even the futility of the 4-12 Oakland teams of the past two seasons, who at least won one of their first three games.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Sunday Night Football Bus Parked Outside Levi's Stadium]]> Sat, 13 Sep 2014 23:08:08 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/214*120/snf_bus_outside.jpg

Parking will no doubt be a challenge around Levi's Stadium Sunday during the San Francisco 49ers 2014 home opener, but one signature vehicle already has its parking spot.

NBC's Sunday Night Football bus is parked outside Levi's Stadium with plenty of time to spare before Sunday's 5:30 p.m. start, when the 49ers will take on the Chicago Bears.

The bus is stopping at all 17 Sunday Night Football destinations this season.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[San Francisco 49ers Host Bears at Levi's Stadium]]> Sun, 14 Sep 2014 21:04:58 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/levis3.jpg Here are some photos of the Levi's Stadium San Francisco 49ers regular season opener and pregame festivities.

Photo Credit: LatinContent/Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[49ers Cheerleaders Big Part of Levi's Stadium Fan Experience]]> Sat, 13 Sep 2014 08:58:01 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/49ers_cheerleaders_peggy.jpg As the 49ers prepare for the Levi's Stadium home opener, the fan experience includes the cheerleaders. NBC Bay Area’s Peggy Bunker reports from Levi’s Stadium and talks to some of the 49ers Gold Rush.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Raj Mathai Interviews 49ers President Paraag Marathe]]> Sat, 13 Sep 2014 08:54:54 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/49ers_interview_raj_mathai.jpg NBC Bay Area’s Raj Mathai chats with 49ers president Paraag Marathe, who talks about whether Roger Goodell is coming to the game, the Ray McDonald case, and the regular-season debut of Levi's Stadium.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Levi's Stadium Expected to be Haven for iPads, Smartphones]]> Fri, 12 Sep 2014 19:59:46 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/160*120/levis_stadium_app.JPG At Candlestick Park, high tech meant escalators, but at Levi’s Stadium, it's a nerd’s paradise--and in a good way. Levi’s Stadium is expected to be a haven for iPads and smartphones. Business and Tech reporter Scott Budman reports from Levi’s Stadium.

Photo Credit: Scott Budman]]>
<![CDATA[Tour of Levi's Stadium 49ers Team Store]]> Sat, 13 Sep 2014 01:10:30 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/KNTV_000000008222420_1200x675_328778307813.jpg One thing you can definitely do at Levi's stadium is shop. Chief Meteorologist Jeff Ranieri reports from the team store and explains some goodies you can find there. He also gives your game-day forecast.

Photo Credit: NBC Bay Area]]>
<![CDATA[Giants vs. Dodgers on NBC]]> Fri, 12 Sep 2014 22:30:53 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/178*120/167090621.jpg

It's Giants vs. Dodgers tonight at 7:00 p.m. on NBC Bay Area!

Madison Bumgarner (17-9, 3.02 ERA) takes the mound for San Francisco against Hyun-Jin Ryu (14-6, 3.16 ERA) for Los Angeles.

Be sure to follow us on Twitter as we live-tweet the game on @NBCBayArea and @GiantsCove!

Because tonight's game is airing on NBC Bay Area, you can watch regularly scheduled NBC programming on TV36.

Here's the Friday night primetime schedule:

7:00 p.m. -- San Francisco Giants vs. Los Angeles Dodgers on NBC Bay Area

8:00 p.m. -- "Dateline" on TV36 (Comcast 706)

10:00 p.m. -- "Running Wild With Bear Grylls" on NBC Bay Area (following Giants game -- If the game goes beyond 10:15 p.m., Bay Area viewers can find "Running Wild With Bear Grylls" on NBC Bay Area Sunday at 1 a.m.).

For full Giants coverage, visit The Cove.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Levi's Visiting Locker Room Meant to "Underwhelm" Opponents]]> Fri, 12 Sep 2014 13:45:21 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/KNTV_000000008219175_1200x675_328613955553.jpg

It’s a nice locker room, but not as nice as the 49ers’.

If the Niners beat the Bears in Sunday’s first regular season game at Levi’s Stadium, it might not be just because Kap was the better passer, or Harbaugh the better coach.

One factor not to overlook: the home team has a way better locker room.

Step inside the 49ers side and enjoy plush red carpeting, and be impressed with 90 10-foot-tall walnut-wood lockers in a sprawling 3,600 square-foot open space, created so that Coach Jim Harbaugh can look at his community of players eye-to-eye and speak to them all together.

And for the away team? A divided space so that the team can't connect and communicate the same way Harbaugh and his troops can. Beige walls and carpeting. Lower ceilings.

"I would say mundane finishes," Levi's Stadium Project Executive Jack Hill told NBC Bay Area. "We want these guys to be calm and underwhelmed," referring to the visiting team.

Hill said they couldn’t make the locker room too uncomfortable. After all, the stadium is scheduled to host Super Bowl 50 in 2016.

It's certainly not unheard of in sports to assign the away team the dingier digs.

The Portland Trail Blazers found a snake in their locker room while playing at San Antonio in May. And then there was the 1984 NBA Finals at the Boston Garden, where temperatures inside the visitors’ locker room were sky high. The Lakers complained, so Celtics coach Red Auerbach supposedly gave them an air-conditioner but didn’t bother having it installed.

The most well-known of these visitors' locker rooms, however, is housed at the University of Iowa's Kinnick Stadium, which is decked out with pink walls, pink floors – even pink toilets. The color scheme not only is meant to disarm the visiting team, but recently, it's outraged a group of students and faculty who say the hue is sexist and discriminatory.

Since beige is a neutral color, the 49ers will likely steer clear of any sexism complaints. And, as Hill pointed out, while the room is supposed to disarm the opposing team, the space isn't really all that bad.

"It's still a great locker room," he said. "A lot of teams that see it would take it for their home locker room."

NBC Bay Area's Ian Cull contributed to this report.

<![CDATA[Bears Don't Want Replay of Last Meeting with 49ers]]> Fri, 12 Sep 2014 11:09:12 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/180*120/briggsandkappp.jpg

The last time the 49ers played the Bears, it was a Monday Night Massacre.

In Colin Kaepernick’s first career start, the Niners blitzed the Bears 32-7 in November of 2012.

Bears linebacker Lance Briggs told the Chicago Tribune this week that his lasting memory of that game was the voice of the public-address announcer at Candlestick Park:

“Touchdownnnnnnnn, San Francisco!" he recalled. "Touchdownnnnnnn, San Francisco!”

Added Bears defensive tackle Stephen Paea, speaking of Kaepernick’s national debut: “We made him famous.”

Kaepernick went 16-of-23 for 243 yards and two touchdowns that night, putting up a passer rating of 133.1.

Now the Bears come to California again, this time to face the 49ers Sunday night in the regular-season debut of Levi’s Stadium. Chicago is coming off a surprising loss to the Bills, while the Niners got some momentum with a road victory over the Cowboys. NFL oddsmakers see another loss for the Bears and another win for San Francisco, making the 49ers 7-point favorites.

Kaepernick is coming off a good Week 1 performance against the Cowboys, and the Bears know they’ll have to contain him – and a potent 49ers running game – Sunday night.

But the San Francisco defense faces its own challenges in quarterback Jay Cutler – who was out with in injury in that 2012 matchup – and running back Matt Forte.

Starting cornerbacks Tramaine Brock (toe) and Chris Culliver (concussion) are likely out, meaning Perrish Cox and rookie Dontae Johnson will have to step up to contain Chicago’s big and athletic wideouts Alshon Jeffery and Brandon Marshall. In addition, the 49ers’ usually strong run defense was battered by the Cowboys, so the leaks will have to be plugged so Forte – who rushed for 1,339 yards last season and 82 in Week 1 – doesn’t run wild.

When 49ers defensive coordinator Vic Fangio was asked about his unit’s performance in Week 1, he wasn’t happy.

“It wasn’t good last week,” he told Cam Inman of the Bay Area News Group. “We did not have a good game up front, versus the run and rushing the passer, particularly in the first half. We’re going to need to play the run a whole lot better in this game than we did last game.”

Added Niners linebacker Patrick Willis: “Forte, he’s one of the best all-purpose backs there is in the NFL. We have to make sure we know where he is at all times.”


Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Raiders Offensive Line Needs Big Game]]> Fri, 12 Sep 2014 08:45:46 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/179*120/jayhjayhvraid.jpg

The Raiders offensive line didn’t get a good grade on its first exam.

Now comes a much tougher test.

In facing the Houston Texans Sunday at O.co Coliseum, the Raiders, now 0-1 after losing to the Jets last week, can’t afford to drop to 0-2 with a trip to face the Patriots next week in New England. And one of the big factors in whether the Raiders can get their first win Sunday will be how the rebuilt offensive line can handle the NFL’s best defensive lineman – J.J. Watt – and a terrific defensive front seven.

In a victory over Washington in Week 1, Watt batted down a pass, blocked an extra-point attempt, had three tackles (two for loss), five quarterback hits and a sack of quarterback Robert Griffin III.

If the Raiders are going to have a chance of picking up their first victory and gaining some momentum, the offensive line will need to protect rookie QB Derek Carr and open some holes for Darren McFadden and Latavius Murray.

Oakland offensive coordinator Greg Olson told Bay Area reporters this week that blocking Watt will be a top priority. When he was asked if the offense would have to focus on Watt, Olson said yes.

“If you look to last week’s game, he kind of single-handedly wrecked that football game for the Redskins,” said Olson. “He’s a tremendous player. I hope we don’t see a lot of J.J. Watts down the road. He has the capability to do that to teams.”

Against the Jets, the Raiders could rush for just 25 yards, which put the pressure on Carr to beat the Jets through the air – something the Raiders want to avoid as much as possible in the early going this season.

In assessing the play of the offensive line against the Jets in Week 1, Jerry McDonald of the Bay Area News Group wrote: “The offensive line was beaten consistently at the line of scrimmage and didn’t approach last Dec. 8 when the Raiders got 150 yards rushing against the Jets. The running game failures kept Carr in poor down and distance and played a major role in the Week 1 demise.”

Yet Olson remains convinced the Raiders can run the football – even against Watt & Co.

“I have every belief that we will be able to run the football this year,” he said.

Head coach Dennis Allen, too, believes the line of tackles Donald Penn and Khalif Barnes, guards Gabe Jackson and Austin Howard and center Stefen Wisniewski can be a much more cohesive and effective group than it appeared last week.

Said Allen: “I felt like, and still feel like, the line of scrimmage can be a plus for us. It obviously wasn’t in that game and we’ve got to be better in that area.”

Based on what they saw in Week 1, NFL oddsmakers don’t have faith that the Raiders can get their first victory Sunday. They’ve made the Texans 3-point favorites.


Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Best of NFL: Week 2]]> Sun, 14 Sep 2014 20:47:53 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/455466872.jpg Don't miss the most dramatic images from the second week of the 2014 NFL season.

Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>
<![CDATA[Marlins Slugger Hit in Face by Ball]]> Fri, 12 Sep 2014 10:48:38 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/213*120/AP517762681764.jpg

Miami Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton was taken to a Milwaukee hospital after being hit in the face with an 88 miles per hour fastball Thursday night.

Stanton, who is a top candidate for the National League MVP award, was batting in the top of the fifth inning when a pitch from Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Mike Fiers came up high and hit Stanton just below his left eye.

The Marlins slugger collapsed in the batter’s box and emergency workers carted him off the field. Stanton appeared to be bleeding from the face as he was taken away from the field.

Stanton's father was at the game and came on the field while his son was treated, and left with him in the ambulance.

The Marlins said Stanton had x-rays and a CT scan at a Milwaukee hospital. He suffered facial lacerations requiring stitches, multiple facial fractures and dental damage, the team said. He returned to Miami Friday for further evaluation.

"We’re trying to win games here, we’re not trying to hurt anybody, we’re not going after anybody, you know one pitch got away and ended up hitting him in the face, and I feel terrible," Fiers said after the game.

The player who replaced Stanton, Reed Johnson, came to the plate after a lengthy stoppage of play for Stanton to be cared for and was hit in the hand as he turned to avoid the first pitch thrown at him, which was high and tight.

The benches cleared and the Marlins’ Casey McGehee was visibly angry and had to be restrained on the field. McGehee was ejected and Marlins manager Mike Redmond was also ejected from the game as both teams were on the field.

"I just, for them to think that it was intentional, it’s beyond me and something I would never do," Fiers said.

Stanton tweeted on Friday that he was appreciative of the support he had received from his fans.

Photo Credit: AP]]>
<![CDATA[Bears Defense Vulnerable to 49ers' Running Attack]]> Thu, 11 Sep 2014 09:43:14 -0700 http://media.nbcbayarea.com/images/173*120/hyyddeedebut.jpg

The NFL is a pass-first league now, but when the Bears defense lines up against the host 49ers Sunday night, all the numbers point to one thing:

The Niners should be able pound the ball on the ground and run through the Chicago defense. The regular-season debut of Levi’s Stadium could feature an old-fashioned 49ers running attack.

In their loss to the Buffalo Bills in Week 1, the Bears gave up 176 yards and a touchdown on 28 designed runs, a whopping 6.3 yards per carry.

And though the Bears once were the defensive titans of the NFL, those days are long gone. Last season, the Bears ranked last in the NFL in rushing defense for the first time in their long history, and they’ll be trying to stop a San Francisco offense that ran the ball 52.2 percent of the time in 2013, which was No. 1 in the league.

Though 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick threw the ball well in a Week 1 victory over the Dallas Cowboys, Sunday night’s outcome might depend on how well Chicago can defend the run, not Kaepernick’s wide receivers.

“A lot of people don’t think we can stop the run,” Chicago linebacker Lance Briggs told the Chicago Tribune this week. But he said after watching tape of the loss to the Bills, “We were a couple of plays away from playing the type of defense we really want to play.”

The Bears were vulnerable in Week 1 to the read option, a scheme the Niners have used effectively since Kaepernick became the starting QB. The Bills gave up two long runs on the read option in the opener, including a 47-yarder, and Chicago safety Ryan Mundy told the Tribune that it’s critical that all 11 defenders are in sync against the option. Otherwise, very bad things happen.

“If one guy is out of place, there’s potential for a big play against us,” he said.

The 49ers ran the ball effectively in the victory over Dallas, with veteran Frank Gore getting 66 yards on 16 carries and rookie Carlos Hyde rushing for 50 yards and a TD on seven carries.

Gore is the starter, but head coach Jim Harbaugh and offensive coordinator Greg Roman showed in the season opener that they’re comfortable with Hyde running the ball in key situations. On Sunday night against the Bears, expect the 49ers to again rotate the duo. Harbaugh told reporters Wednesday that coaches haven’t discussed which will be used in specific situations against Chicago.

“I think that’s part of game planning and that’s part of a plan and that’s also fluid in the game,” he said. “I think you can understand why we wouldn’t go into great detail there.”

No matter who carries the ball Sunday, the running backs likely will get the benefit of Alex Boone back in the lineup at right guard. Though Joe Looney played well in the opener vs. Dallas, Boone now is in his second week of practice after a long holdout and says he’s ready and eager to get back in the lineup to start opening holes. Right tackle Anthony Davis still seems unlikely to play at this point, but Boone could be a big boost to the line in Game 2.

Judging by stats and past performances, however, the Bears run defense may be in trouble no matter who plays right guard or carries the football.


Photo Credit: Getty Images]]>