Saints axe WR Morgan; Sean Payton calls 10 players into office
Per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, Saints head coach Sean Payton is starting to audit the underachieving roster following a 41-10 home loss to the Carolina Panthers that dropped the Saints to 5-8.
Morgan is a big-play threat, but he is also a threat to the team's delicate chemistry. He has had repeated run-ins with the team, including a suspension earlier this season. The Saints apparently felt one threat outweighed another.
Any team can put in a waiver claim for Morgan, who had a 67-yard run and a 62-yard reception in Week 12 and has shown flashes of ability in his three-year span with the team. Perhaps a receiver-needy contender (New England?) might put up with Morgan's distractions for the home stretch in exchange for a few explosive plays.
2014 NFL Draft: McCarron unable to shed 'game manager' label
Instead, the Tide finally turned.
Auburn's Chris Davis returned a field goal attempt an improbable 100+ yards for the game-winning touchdown to shock the college football world, ending any chance at Alabama's return to the BCS championship and McCarron winning the Heisman.
Lost in insanity following the game was another solid, if somewhat unspectacular performance from McCarron, among the more polarizing NFL prospects in the country.
McCarron's stat-line against the Tigers was impressive. He completed 17 of 29 passes for 277 yards and three touchdowns without turning the ball over. Further, though he's not known for his athleticism, he twisted and spun his way to critical first downs on scrambles as the Tide's offense struggled with consistency throughout this game.
And yet, while McCarron's production looks good on paper, NFL scouts likely noted that several of the senior quarterback's passes were late and inaccurate in this game.
On the 99-yard bomb to Amari Cooper, for example, McCarron lofted the pass deep up the right sideline, giving his sophomore receiver an opportunity to make a play on the ball. The pass was thrown into double coverage and Cooper had to slow down and leap to make the play. His ability to make the grab and run through an arm-tackle by the Auburn defender was more impressive, frankly, than McCarron's pass.
It was one of a handful of vertical throws attempted by McCarron in which Alabama receivers had to wait on the ball.
McCarron had an opportunity to hit senior wideout Kevin Norwood on a quick post for a touchdown in the fourth quarter but waited too long and his far riskier attempt to drill the ball with the defender near fell incomplete.
This isn't to suggest that McCarron, NFLDraftScout.com's No. 4 rated senior quarterback prospect, didn't make NFL-caliber throws in this contest. His second touchdown, a beautifully lofted pass over the middle to senior wideout Kevin Norwood, for example demonstrated great poise, touch and accuracy. Further, McCarron also showed enough arm strength to rifle a deep out down the left sideline in the fourth quarter to put the Tide in position for a field goal attempt that would have given them a commanding 10 point with just a few minutes remaining.
Further, whereas many of his teammates seemed rattled by the pressure of this game, McCarron played with composure, traits that every NFL team values at the quarterback position.
With Davis running away with McCarron's opportunity to play the hero role, however, the quarterback was robbed of the chance to answer his critics with another game-winning (rather than game-managing) performance.
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NFL revised drug and banned substances penalties
Player conduct is one of the most important things that the NFL is concerned about. Following this, no mercy is given a player is deemed to be behaving contrary to the set of regulation. Apart from maintaining league discipline in the national football league, the drug rules are part of the most welcome amongst the players although criticism cannot be hidden. Drug rules were conceived when many players were suspected to be playing under influence and apart from just being indiscipline and ineffective players, their health was being weakened and this could translate to very bad criticism and fall of reputation to the league as a whole.
The national football league introduced drug rules long ago but was revised in the year 2007 with more tough requirements and penalties this time round. One of the repercussions was that players would dig deeper into their pockets for their misconducts in relation to the drug policy. Performance enhancement drugs and especially steroids were quite inevitable among many players. In the same year, the NFL made it clear that EPO, a blood boosting substance to their list of banned substances. this was after intensive discussions and negotions between the officials of the players union and those of the league.
Among the agreed penalties of misconducct and use of banned substances among plyers included suspension to players who would be evidenced as using the drugs. Apart from this, players should be forfeited off their bonuses by an a determined percentage and even more tough, such players in their first time of testing positive cannot be paid during the time they are away on suspensions. Formerly, the salaries would be cut down but the bnusess maintauined yet in most instances, players get bonuses that are mopre fat than their salaries.
The NFL commissioner on behalf of the league Roger Goodell while announcing these changes in the drug and banned substances policy had expressed concern that its programs were being affected because of the wide usage of drugs among players. And this was not only the end because this regulation can be amended in future either to toughen it further or make it more use-friendly.
To make the players more responsible, this policy was implemented with tougher actions such that the testing of drug users would be done weekly and that any ten team players would selected randomly for the samples and EPO test as taken more seriously. Previously only seven members would be selected for the test and a total of about 10000 would undergo the test in the league which means that from 2007, this of players tested in each season is about 12000. In the United States by then, there was no other league that would carry EPO test at that close interval.
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