Sport 5 struggling teams that can still make NFL playoffs
Harden thrilled with improved Rockets defense: 'We're getting after it'
The Houston Rockets aren't struggling to score while averaging 120.1 points through the first nine games of the 2019-20 campaign. However, their inability to prevent baskets has been well-documented in the early going, which is why James Harden was thrilled after the Rockets' 117-94 win over the Chicago Bulls on Saturday. "Our talk, our aggressiveness, we're getting after it," Harden said of the Rockets' defense, according to ESPN's EricHowever, their inability to prevent baskets has been well-documented in the early going, which is why James Harden was thrilled after the Rockets' 117-94 win over the Chicago Bulls on Saturday.
The NFL playoffs are starting to round into shape, but with just under half the season remaining there is still time for struggling teams to get in.
Heading into Sunday’s Week 10 action, the AFC currently has seven teams above .500, while over in the NFC there are nine teams playing winning football.
Looking at the teams that would be out if the NFL playoffs started today, we’re highlighting five of them that have struggled this season but still have a real shot to get in with strong play down the stretch.
Pittsburgh Steelers (4-4)
It seems unlikely that the Steelers will catch the Baltimore Ravens and win the AFC North. The Ravens are two games ahead and have beaten the Steelers once already this year. Still, given the way Pittsburgh plays defense, and given how competitive this team has been all year, it would not be shocking whatsoever to see the Steelers get into the NFL playoffs as a wild-card team.
Chicago teachers ok tentative agreement but strike goes on
CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago's teachers union voted to approve a tentative contract agreement with city officials, Wednesday, but have refused to return to work pointing to the failure of the city's mayor to agree to additional days in the school year to makeup days lost during the strike. The Chicago Teachers Union tweeted late Wednesday that while they have a tentative agreement with Chicago Public Schools, they "do not have a return to workThe Chicago Teachers Union tweeted late Wednesday that while they have a tentative agreement with Chicago Public Schools, they "do not have a return to work agreement.
Looking at the schedule, the Steelers have very winnable games coming up against Cleveland (twice), Cincinnati, Arizona and the New York Jets. More difficult opponents include the Los Angeles Rams, Buffalo and Baltimore to close out the season. If the Steelers can finish with nine wins or more (a very reasonable goal), they can get into the playoffs.
Philadelphia Eagles (5-4)
The NFC East is still very much up for grabs. Despite losing handily to the Dallas Cowboys a few weeks ago, the Eagles are still hunting for the top spot in the division. They have some significant challenges to overcome offensively because the receiving corps has been a big disappointment this year and DeSean Jackson is on injured reserve. But if the run game and defense keep playing the way we’ve seen recently, this team can absolutely win the NFC East.
After summer moves, Jazz not worried about offensive stumbles to start season
"We’ve got to not think the game too much, just go out there and play." —Jeff GreenDoes that mean Utah’s offense is on track after a couple of rough games to start the season? Or, does it mean Utah can still carve up a not-very-good defense Sacramento that relies heavily on rotations (that the Kings were slow to make), but will still struggle against tougher teams?
Philly has New England in Week 11, but after the Pats the Eagles have a softer schedule that includes four games against teams near the bottom of the league standings (Miami, New York Giants twice, and Washington). They also have one more matchup against the Cowboys (at home this time), and could reasonably finish the season with 10 wins.
Jacksonville Jaguars (4-5)
The AFC South is wild. If the NFL playoffs were to start now, both the Houston Texans and Indianapolis Colts would be in, but only two games separate the top team (Houston) from the bottom two, who both have seven games left to play.
The Jaguars are undergoing a change offensively. Despite injecting the team with much-needed life, rookie quarterback Garner Minshew is out and. The franchise paid Foles a lot of money to start. Now that he’s healthy, and following Minshew’s , it’s time for Foles to live up to the contract. If he does, we’d expect Jacksonville to be in every game it plays down the stretch.
Dennis Seidenberg retires after 15 seasons
Defenseman Dennis Seidenberg announced his retirement on Wednesday. "Physically, it just does not work anymore; my shoulder and wrists are pretty much done after 15 years in the NHL," Seidenberg told German outlet EIS Hockey News, according to NBC Sports via Google Translate. Seidenberg played a pivotal role in the Boston Bruins' Stanley Cup title in 2011. He recorded 11 points during those playoffs and averaged 27:38 minutes of ice time per game.The 38-year-old dressed for six teams after being drafted by the Philadelphia Flyers in the sixth round in 2001. He last played for the New York Islanders in 2017-18.
The Jags have two games against Indy yet to play. They also have Tennessee, Tampa Bay, the Los Angeles Chargers and Oakland Raiders on their upcoming schedule. So by no means will this be an easy path. But there is a way to salvage the season and make the NFL playoffs.
Carolina Panthers (5-3)
The Panthers have a couple of really big things working in their favor as they attempt to move up in the NFC and make the NFL playoffs. First, they feature Christian McCaffrey, who is on pace to challenge 2,500 yards from scrimmage this season (currently averaging 155.5 yards per game). Secondly, the Panthers are playing outstanding defense and, particularly, defend the pass very well.
Currently the No. 8 seed, they are only one-half game behind the current No. 6 seed (Minnesota) but have a difficult schedule during the second half of the season with games against Green Bay, New Orleans (twice), Seattle and Indianapolis looming. However, this team has gone 5-1 since Cam Newton was, and so far only the undefeated San Francisco 49ers have cracked the code.
Report: Teams believe Cubs' Contreras will be available in trade
A new era is about to begin for the Chicago Cubs and it might not include catcher Willson Contreras. Multiple teams in search of catching help believe Contreras will be available this winter, according to ESPN's Jeff Passan, who reports the Cubs will get creative this winter and could trade the 27-year-old All-Star as they begin to retool under new manager David Ross. The Contreras trade rumor comes a month after Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein wouldn't rule out dealing one of the catcher's teammates in Kris Bryant or Javier Baez with the organization "at a transition point.
Tennessee Titans (4-5)
The Titans have been a different teamformer No. 2 overall pick Marcus Mariota in favor of former Miami Dolphins first-round pick, Ryan Tannehill. The offense has taken off since that move, with Tannehill proving significantly more effective at getting the ball into the hands of his playmakers. Defensively, Tennessee is dangerous. The Titans rank eighth in total sacks (25) and are fifth in the league with nine interceptions.
Looking ahead to the remaining schedule, it’s clear the Titans have their work cut out to overcome their sub-.500 record and get into the NFL playoffs. They have games against Kansas City, Indianapolis, Houston (twice) and Oakland — all featuring winning records. But if they can get Tannehill to take care of the ball, and if Tennessee’s defense keeps creating turnovers, this team has a chance to go on a late-season run and get into postseason play.
Related slideshow: The most intimidating players in the NFL (Provided by Yardbarker)
Aaron Donald, Los Angeles Rams
J.J. Watt, Houston Texans
Ndamukong Suh, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Calais Campbell, Jacksonville Jaguars
Myles Garrett, Cleveland Browns
Jadeveon Clowney, Seattle Seahawks
Khalil Mack, Chicago Bears
Von Miller, Denver Broncos
Luke Kuechly, Carolina Panthers
Jalen Ramsey, Los Angeles Rams
Quenton Nelson, Indianapolis Colts
Taylor Lewan, Tennessee Titans
Richie Incognito, Oakland Raiders
Leonard Fournette, Jacksonville Jaguars
Saquon Barkley, New York Giants
Travis Kelce, Kansas City Chiefs
George Kittle, San Francisco 49ers
Julio Jones, Atlanta Falcons
Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City Chiefs
Tom Brady, New England Patriots
Sports teams are using Signal to duck deflategate-like scandals .
Facebook isn't the only company struggling over the prospect of end-to-end encryption in messaging apps, as a report from Yahoo Sports cites examples from "every level of sport" turning to encrypted messaging. While Whatsapp and iMessage provide encrypted communications, increasingly the app of choice is turning out to be Signal, which not only protects their message from MITM spying, but can also auto-delete them based on rules. If you're aIf you're a college coach or athletic director and someone makes a FOIA request, that could reduce the amount of information they get about contacts with recruits and boosters.
Which Struggling Teams Can Still Make a Late Playoff Push? | Move The Sticks | NFL Network
Move the Sticks podcast hosts break down which teams can still make a late playoff push for the 2018 season. Subscribe to NFL Network: http://goo.gl/4GOLwY ...
The 2010 Seahawks were the first losers to win an NFL division
The 2010 Seahawks made NFL history by winning their division with a losing record. Which is bad. One might argue it's the worst. However, their season hit a ...