Super Bowl 2020 injury reports: Travis Kelce misses practice with illness, Tevin Coleman still sidelined

Tevin Coleman and Travis Kelce were the two notable inactive players on the Chiefs and 49ers‘ Thursday injury reports

Coleman, who sustained a dislocated right shoulder during San Francisco’s win over the Packers in the NFC Championship Game, was sidelined for a second straight day. Coleman did, however, do some individual running as his teammates practiced on Thursday, according to NBC Sports’ Matt Maiocco. Maiocco also reported that the 49ers “remain hopeful” that Coleman, who rushed for 544 yards and six touchdowns during the regular season, will be able face the Chiefs in Super Bowl LIV. 

The other other 49ers player that was inactive on Thursday was receiver Dante Pettis, who missed his second straight practice with an illness. Linebacker Kwon Alexander (pec) was limited for a second straight day, while DE Dee Ford was also limited for a second

Drew Brees addresses future in New Orleans as he approaches free agency: 'I'll always be a Saint'

Drew Brees has spent the past 14 years with the New Orleans Saints, and plans to spend at least one more year with the franchise. Making his 13th Pro Bowl appearance this week, the 41-year old Brees has no intention on leaving the Saints, even though he will be a free agent this offseason. 

Brees expects to be back with the franchise. 

“I never been in the situation where I was mulling over the thought of (returning),” Brees said to Jane Slater of NFL Network. “To me, each one of these contracts … it’s not a matter of if it gets done, it’s when. At this stage of my career, it’s not a given if I come back every year. When that time comes, I’ll always be a Saint.”

Brees is coming off one of his best seasons in

Oklahoma assistant coach Ruffin McNeill stepping away from program for family reasons

One of Lincoln Riley’s mentors and longtime co-workers is leaving the Oklahoma football staff for some time. Ruffin McNeill, the Sooners’ outside linebackers coach and assistant head coach, announced Thursday that he is returning to North Carolina to help his family as his father deals with health issues.

“This was one of the hardest decisions I’ve had to make,” McNeill said in a statement. “But in the end, being near my dad was a necessary choice. Right now I need to be a son again and I need to help my brother and other family members take care of my dad, who is battling significant health issues. This is not retirement for me. I still want to coach in some form or fashion. But right now that can’t be the case. My focus needs to be on my dad

In tight race, Suns' Booker pushes into All-Star discussion

PHOENIX (AP) — Devin Booker has produced the kind of all-around numbers for the past few seasons that suggest he should be an NBA All-Star. He usually commands the respect of opposing defenses like an All-Star. His teammates and coach believe there is no doubt that he’s an All-Star.

Yet the fifth-year Phoenix Suns guard has never been an All-Star.

That could change fairly soon.

The 23-year-old looks like he’ll be caught in quite a battle for the final spots in the Western Conference when the reserves are announced next week. The league’s coaches will likely have several good players to choose from, including Russell Westbrook, Chris Paul, Damian Lillard, Donovan Mitchell and Brandon Ingram.

If he makes it, Booker would be the Suns’ first All-Star since Steve Nash in 2012.

“I’ve said it for a couple years — my main focus is to turn around this franchise and get

Zion feeling fine after stellar debut, Gentry says

4:29 PM ET

Andrew LopezESPN

METAIRIE, La. — It was business as usual for the New Orleans Pelicans on Thursday.

The team went through a normal practice the day after Wednesday’s 121-117 loss to the San Antonio Spurs as they prepped for a Friday showdown against the Denver Nuggets.

But the extra eyes in the practice facility were focused on Zion Williamson, who had a sensational debut capped by a scoring stretch of 17 consecutive points in the fourth quarter.

2 Related

Williamson was pulled at the 5:23 mark of the fourth quarter as a part of the medical team’s plan to keep his playing time limited. Williamson didn’t want to check out, but Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry stuck with the team’s game plan despite the rookie’s scorching stretch.

On Thursday, Gentry said Williamson went through a complete practice without restrictions.

“He is fine, really,” Gentry

The Steelers defensive goal in 2020? Get more “zeroes”

NFL: Pittsburgh Steelers at San Francisco 49ersKyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Steelers defense took a huge step forward in 2019, but they aren’t satisfied.

Sacks and takeaways were the Pittsburgh Steelers’ modus operandi, or M.O., in 2019. The team had the league’s highest marks in both categories, and quickly became a top tier defense throughout the season.

But they aren’t satisfied with what they’ve done.

As Cam Heyward, Minkah Fitzpatrick, T.J. Watt and Joe Haden convene together in Orlando, FL for the annual Pro Bowl, they are already talking about 2020, and how the defense could be even better.

What else could they do? They want to add more “zeroes”.

“I think to fully take over a game, to completely shut teams out,” Watt told Teresa Varley of “We didn’t get any zeroes on the board. We want to be able to shut teams out and control the game defensively. That is what sets defenses apart, especially once you get the takeaways. You want to be able to lay the goose egg on teams and make sure they aren’t scoring any points and help the offense out as much as you can.”

Shut outs are rare in today’s NFL, but it doesn’t mean the team won’t be doing everything they can to secure victory in the upcoming season. After a year where everyone who followed the team knew if the offense could somehow put up 20 points, they would likely win.

By the end of the year, if the offense could just hang 17 on the opposition it would likely mean victory. But the season ended on a 3-game losing streak where the Steelers scored just 10 points in every contest down the stretch.

Despite the way the season ended, players are already excited for the upcoming season, and seeing just how good this defense can be.

“I am excited about it,” said Fitzpatrick. “I had a whole lot of fun this year. It’s a young group of guys. We have a bright future together, we’ll be able to grow together. That is the most important thing, and go out there and have fun.”

“We just have a lot of fun,” said Watt. “We’re young and have a lot of confidence. We play with a lot of swagger. Just having a lot of fun. This past year we had so much fun just flying around. It’s a lot better when you are able to create those turnovers. We just want to continue to build on that stuff.”

The Steelers defenders who are at the Pro Bowl plan on using their time wisely and picking each other’s brains on what they can change to make sure they do their part the 2020 season doesn’t end abruptly after Week 17.

“These last couple of weeks after the season we had time to think about it, what I can do better, what we can do better as a team,” said Fitzpatrick. “Me, Joe and T.J. are going to get together and talk and pick each other’s brains and think about what we can do better as leaders, teammates and a defense to improve our season, make the playoffs next year and continue to grow.”

It is hard to fathom the Steelers defense being any better than what it was last year, especially with expected departures for players like Javon Hargrave, but if this core nucleus of players can continue to thrive it will only lead to bigger and better things for the Steelers in 2020.

Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the black-and-gold as they progress through another long offseason.

5 Steelers players who hurt the salary cap if they are released in 2020

Cincinnati Bengals v Pittsburgh SteelersPhoto by Joe Sargent/Getty Images

Due to signing bonuses and guarantees on contracts with multiple seasons still remaining, some players would actually create more of a cap issue if they were released

With the Pittsburgh Steelers up against the salary cap for the 2020 season, much discussion has been made about which players may become cap casualties this off-season. While there are several players who can save the Steelers a significant amount of space under the salary cap, there are several players on the team which would cost more against the cap than to keep them for the season.

Here is a list of the five Steelers who would be more beneficial to stay on the roster than it would be to release them for the 2020 season. Granted, most of these players the Steelers would not consider moving on from anytime soon based on their on-field production. But even though their departure would be highly unlikely even without their salary cap situation, it never hurts to know the numbers. All figures listed are courtesy of and reflect if the player was a pre-June 1 cut.

Devin Bush


Only a fool would suggest a team who traded up in the first round of the draft to select a player should release them after just one season. Devin Bush is not going anywhere with the Steelers for a long time. Not only would it cost just over $11 million in 2020, it would cost over $6 million in 2021. In fact, there would be no cap savings for cutting Bush in the next three seasons. It’s a good thing the Steelers wouldn’t even consider the notion of moving on from Bush.

Stephon Tuitt


With the second largest salary cap number for 2020 only behind quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, some fans have asked how much the Steelers would save if they moved on from Tuitt. With injuries becoming a factor, many wonder if to it is worth his high salary. At least for the 2020 season, releasing Tuitt would actually hurt his cap number. If the Steelers considered moving on from Tuitt in 2021, they would at least save a little bit on the cap (about $3 million) but would still be taking a huge dead money hit. It would not be until the 2022 season where to it would actually save a larger amount of money ($9 million) then it would be as a dead money hit if Tuitt were to stay ($6 million).

Part of the reason Tuitt’s contract is outlined in this way is because of the restructure that was done in 2019. In order to save some money for last year’s salary cap, most of his 2019 base contract was converted to a bonus so it was spread out over the next three seasons. And with special rules governing the final year of a CBA where only 30% of a player’s salary can be extended out each year beyond the current season, restructuring Tuitt’s contract again is not realistic.

Minkah Fitzpatrick


Given the various factors of the Steelers giving up a first-round pick for Fitzpatrick, his recent All-Pro status, and the fact he is on his rookie deal which costs the Steelers minimally towards the salary cap, Fitzpatrick may be the most stable player to remain on the Steelers the next two seasons. Not only is he an extreme value as a rookie, there is no salary cap savings to be had through the remainder of his rookie deal.

Terrell Edmunds


Edmunds is in a very similar situation as Fitzpatrick as they were taken in the first round of the same draft. The biggest difference with the Steelers is they are still have Edmunds’ initial signing bonus going towards the salary cap for the remainder of his contract where Fitzpatrick’s is only on the books of the Miami Dolphins. While some fans have grown frustrated with Edmunds play, the notion of cutting him would actually cost the Steelers more than $2 million against this year’s salary cap. As a general rule, cutting a player on their rookie deal is not a wise financial move unless the player is simply never going to see the field. But for those screaming for Edmunds to no longer be on the Steelers, 2021 would give the Steelers just over $1 million in cap relief if he were to be released then. But I wouldn’t count on it.

Chris Boswell


Of all the players listed who would cost the Steelers more against the salary cap if they were released, Boswell is by far the lowest amount. With only $25k added to the salary cap, the Steelers could move on from Boswell realistically. But this is 2020 and not 2019. After Boswell’s 2018 performance, his future with the Steelers was in question. But in a fantastic bounce back year, there’s no reason to think Boswell won’t be the Steelers first option moving forward.

So these are the only five players where it would not benefit the Steelers salary cap by releasing them prior to June 1. While there are plenty of other players who would carry a large dead-money value which would detract to the team for moving on, actually costing the Steelers cap space by their departure means these five players won’t be going anywhere. Of course, this is strictly from a numbers perspective. When factoring on-the-field performance, it would be foolish for the Steelers to cut ties with any of these five players.

In Paris, Hornets look for ways to stop Antetokounmpo

PARIS (AP) — Different continent, same challenge for the Charlotte Hornets: How to stop Giannis Antetokounmpo?

When the Hornets played Milwaukee in December, the league’s MVP scored 26 points in just 20 minutes in a blowout win for the Bucks.

As they prepare for rematch in Paris on Friday, Charlotte’s French forward Nicolas Batum said there is no obvious answer when it comes to preventing Antetokounmpo from dominating again.

“It’s been two years now that no one has the answer,“ Batum said ahead of the NBA’s first regular-season game to be played in France. “He’s becoming more reliable with his shooting and he’ll become an unstoppable machine soon. For me he’s the MVP so far this season.“

Antetokounmpo is coming off his fourth triple-double of the season on Monday night against the Chicago Bulls. In that game he also reached a milestone of 10,000 points.

According to Bucks coach Mike

Giannis and the Bucks hang out at PSG ahead of NBA Paris game

6:30 AM ET

Giannis Antetokounmpo and his brother Thanasis got to play keep-ups on the Parc des Princes pitch as they visited Paris Saint-Germain with their Milwaukee Bucks teammates ahead of Friday’s NBA Paris match against Charlotte Hornets

The Toe Poke Daily is here every day to bring you all the weirdest stories, quirkiest viral content and top trolling that the internet has to offer, all in one place.

Jump to: PSG unveil new Jordan kit with Hornets | Dele debuts NBA2K goal celebration | Young belts out Bob Marley for Inter initiation song | Real’s Carvajal leaves sweet smell of success at Salamanca

2 Related

Paris Saint-Germain have been playing host to some high-profile guests this week with the NBA rolling into the French capital.

The Bucks are due to play Hornets in Paris on Friday, and in the meantime, the basketball stars have been enjoying hospitality

Ben Roethlisberger deserves to try to go out on his own terms

Pittsburgh Steelers v New York Jets

With two years remaining on his contract, Rothlisberger has every right to finish his NFL career his way as long as he keeps a realistic view of the situation.

As I’ve shared previously, Ben Roethlisbergeris the reason I am the Steelers’ fan that I have become. He has done so much for the organization and the fan base in his time in Pittsburgh. He is, by no means, a perfect player or a perfect person, but in bringing two Super Bowls to the Steelers he has given fans of my generation and younger their only experiences of witnessing a championship in the NFL. For those reasons, I feel Ben Roethlisberger has earned himself some special privileges as he comes to the twilight of his career.

Some may wonder why I am even bringing up the topic, but I’ve heard some very interesting suggestions as to what the Steelers need to do moving forward into the 2020 season. From moving Devin Bush to safety to cutting Cameron Heyward in order to save money on the salary cap, I’ve heard some suggestions which I have deemed unthinkable. One suggestion I’ve heard several times since his season ended in Week 2 was the Steelers should either release or trade Ben Roethlisberger.

While I do not believe the Steelers would ever consider anything of the sort, it did cause me to think about how Ben Roethlisberger’s time in Pittsburgh will ultimately come to an end. After signing an extension before the 2019 season, Roethlisberger is under contract for two more years through 2021. The contract is done in a way where if either Ben or the Steelers decided it was the end after 2020, it would not kill the salary cap. For these reasons, many have wondered if Big Ben play out the remainder of his contract.

My first instinct is yes, he will. Coming off of elbow surgery and his first time ever landing on the Reserve/Injured List, Roethlisberger has more question marks for 2020 than he has had in a long time. Even when he’s missed games to start the season via emergency surgery or suspension, his ability has never been in question. And while I hesitate to question his ability even at this point, to say it isn’t a factor would be foolish. Ben’s future in the NFL may come down to one thing: his elbow.

If Roethlisberger’s elbow is unable to recover to where he can still be a successful NFL quarterback, both he, the team, and the entire fanbase will be struck with some major disappointment. How exactly the situation would play out remains to be seen as the Steelers would be crippled by having to pay Ben’s salary while not having him available in 2020. I’m not sure what both sides would be able to do for each other, so more than anything I am hoping the situation does not arise. Purely a guess, I would assume Ben would be with the Steelers in 2020 but not beyond as the Steelers would save $19 million towards the salary cap in 2021. Just as important, I don’t think Ben could fault the Steelers for moving on if he is unable to perform next season.

If Roethlisberger’s elbow comes back strong for 2020, how is the end of his career in Pittsburgh going to play out? I, for one, think there is too much love and respect between Ben and the organization for it to not play out in everyone’s best interest.

Even if they were aware of any potential elbow problems, the Pittsburgh Steelers organization believed in Rothlisberger enough to sign him through the 2021 season. If Ben is physically able to play, I see both sides honoring the agreement before having to make an ultimate decision. What if Ben decides he wants to keep playing? What if the Steelers decided they can’t afford to sign him to another deal? I think the two sides may have to work on some middle ground as it would be difficult for the Steelers to invest even more of their salary cap into a player who may be trying to play longer than his body will allow him. In fact, they were plenty of fans who felt this way before his last extension.

I may be naïve, but I believe the Steelers know what they’re doing with Ben Roethlisberger. I also believe Ben Roethlisberger knows what he wants to do with the Steelers. Neither side wants to see Ben playing with somebody else. As a fan, do not want to see him some else either. I can’t believe some people would even entertain the notion of trading Ben away just to try to get some value out of him. Hasn’t he been valuable enough with his two Super Bowl victories? It’s not how the Steelers do business.

There are ways to do a player right and ways to do a player wrong. The Steelers are constantly doing their best to do the right thing. Yes, it was a difficult situation with Troy Polamalu when his health kept him from the same on field production he had seen throughout his career. But I still feel the Steelers tried to do things the right way.

When it comes to Ben Roethlisberger, handling the end of his career will be tricky. I’m hoping it’s something which will not need to be discussed for at least two more seasons. But coming off of the season in which Ben did not complete two games or throw a touchdown pass, the idea has to start to creep into the back of every fan‘s mind. Unfortunately, things don’t last forever. But when the end must come, I want to see Ben Roethlisberger go out in the way he wants to go out while keeping the franchise in a good position beyond Ben’s tenure.