Tag Archives: Baltimore Ravens

HBO SPORTS AND NFL FILMS RETURN WITH HARD KNOCKS: LOS ANGELES, CHRONICLING THE PRESEASON OF THE CHARGERS AND RAMS

HBO SPORTS® AND NFL FILMS RETURN WITH AN UNPRECEDENTED EDITION OF TELEVISION’S MOST ACCLAIMED SPORTS REALITY FRANCHISE

WHEN HARD KNOCKS: LOS ANGELES,

CHRONICLING THE PRESEASON OF THE CHARGERS AND RAMS

DEBUTS AUGUST 11, EXCLUSIVELY ON HBO

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HBO Sports, NFL Media And NFL Films 

Announce Multi-Year Renewal Of The Franchise

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HBO Sports, NFL Films and the two Los Angeles-based NFL franchises are teaming up for an unprecedented and unfiltered all-access look at what it takes to make it in the National Football League when HARD KNOCKS: LOS ANGELES kicks off its five-episode season this summer. One of the fastest-turnaround programs on TV, the 15th edition of the 18-time Sports Emmy®-winning series debuts TUESDAY, AUG. 11 (10:00-11:00 p.m. ET/PT), with other hour-long episodes of the first sports-based reality series debuting subsequent Tuesdays at the same time, culminating in the Sept. 8 season finale.

HARD KNOCKS will have encore plays Wednesday nights and will be available to stream on HBO via HBO Max and partners’ platforms.

In an unprecedented programming move, the 2020 edition of the venerable series will spotlight both Los Angeles NFL teams: The Los Angeles Chargers of the AFC West and the Los Angeles Rams of the NFC West. The two franchises are set to share the spectacular new 70,000-seat SoFi stadium that is nearing completion in Inglewood, California.​

The arrival of HARD KNOCKS each August is a unique NFL tradition and NFL FILMS and HBO Sports are making plans for an all-new season of the most acclaimed serialized sports series on television. 

One of sports television’s most successful and enduring partnerships, HBO Sports, NFL Media and NFL Films have reached agreement on a multi-year extension of the HARD KNOCKS franchise. 

“The HARD KNOCKS franchise continues to excel as the preeminent sports reality series,” says Peter Nelson, Executive Vice President, HBO Sports.  “Our partnership with NFL Films, which dates back to 1977, consistently produces groundbreaking television programming. We are grateful to the Chargers and Rams organizations to be able to present the 2020 training camp experience.”

“NFL Films cherishes the relationship we’ve had with HBO for over four decades, and specifically with the HARD KNOCKS franchise since 2001,” says NFL Films senior executive Ross Ketover. “To be able to announce this extension as we embark on an unprecedented two team series this summer brings us incredible pride and only heightens our excitement for the return of football.”

Camera crews will head to southern California in the next few weeks to begin filming, with the action heating up in August when the cinéma vérité show focuses on the daily lives and routines of players and coaches.

Under fourth-year head coach Sean McVay, the Rams are just a season removed from a Super Bowl appearance and have a roster featuring an intriguing mix of high-profile players, established veterans, and free-agent acquisitions. 

After an injury-plagued 2019 campaign, the Los Angeles Chargers are looking for a return to the winning formula that helped them finish tied for the AFC’s best record in 2018. Led by fourth-year head coach Anthony Lynn, the Chargers overhauled roster features young, rising stars on both sides of the ball, a new quarterback behind center and an influx of veteran talent added this offseason.

Both franchises will also be debuting new logos and uniforms when they open their new, state-of-the-art SoFi Stadium home later this year. 

Los Angeles Chargers Head Coach Anthony Lynn said, “Having been part of Hard Knocks before when I was with the New York Jets, my biggest takeaway from that whole experience was that you get out of it what you put into it. There’s a reason that season was probably the most popular Hard Knocks ever. If you’re going to do a show, do it right. You can’t fake it. We didn’t have a problem providing access because we built a relationship with the crew. There was a mutual trust that exists to this day with those people, and many of them will actually be working on this year’s show. Broadcasting your internal business all over the world isn’t something you regularly want to do, but in a year with as many challenges as this one has had, I’m glad we can be part of bringing football back to the fans this summer.”

“We are looking forward to having Hard Knocks in our camp this year,” said Los Angeles Rams Head Coach Sean McVay.  “Hard Knocks always offers a rare opportunity for our fans to see our players’ hard work to prepare for the season, as well as gives them a peek behind the curtain to observe these guys off the field, too.  This year will be special because the show will also get an unprecedented look at SoFi Stadium, Stan Kroenke’s vision for professional football in L.A.”

Dedicated NFL Films production crews will be in both southern California training camps, shooting more than 2,300 hours of footage over the course of the series, offering an inside look at the daily rigors of an NFL training camp. With access to players’ and coaches’ meeting rooms, training rooms, living quarters and practice fields, HARD KNOCKS will document hours of conditioning practices and meetings, chronicling players as they compete for a roster spot and bond off the field.

HBO has aired 72 memorable episodes and one anniversary special in its first 14 seasons.  No other sports reality series can match the production excellence, critical acclaim, awards and audience numbers posted by HARD KNOCKS. Episodes have averaged four million viewers over the past four years. 

Winner of 18 Sports Emmy® Awards to date, HARD KNOCKS launched with the Baltimore Ravens in 2001, followed by the Dallas Cowboys in 2002, and resumed in 2007 with the Kansas City Chiefs, subsequently spotlighting the Cowboys (2008), Cincinnati Bengals (2009), New York Jets (2010), Miami Dolphins (2012), Bengals (2013), Atlanta Falcons (2014), Houston Texans (2015) and Los Angeles Rams (2016). The 2017 edition chronicled the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and captured the Sports Emmy® for Outstanding Serialized Documentary. The widely acclaimed 2018 series with the Cleveland Browns earned two Sports Emmy® Awards for production excellence. HARD KNOCKS has won a Sports Emmy® every year it has aired since 2008.​

Eight of the last ten teams featured on HARD KNOCKS have equaled or improved their win-loss record in the regular season. The Cleveland Browns launched the transformation of their organization on HBO and went from a winless 2017 season to coming within half a game (7-8-1) of a .500 campaign.  The 2019 season saw the Raiders improve their record to 7-9 from the previous year’s 4-12 mark.  The series featuring the iconic Raider franchise averaged 4.3 million viewers per episode, generating the highest viewership for the show since 2015 and the second-best viewership numbers for HARD KNOCKS in the past ten years.

Washington Post wrote, “Turning football players into people is what HBO’s HARD KNOCKS series does so well. The massive scope, meticulous editing and time-hopping special effects that highlight a production under massive time constraints are all impressive, but it’s the film crew’s access to NFL players that makes the program special.”  USA Todaysaid, “Players’ lives and their hopes and dreams play out each NFL preseason on HARD KNOCKS. It’s that month-long human drama that makes the show so profoundly compelling.”

Winner of 129 Sports Emmy® Awards, NFL Films remains a gold standard in sports television, providing unprecedented access to and legendary storytelling about the sport of professional football. NFL Films is a part of NFL Media, the owned and operated media division of the National Football League, which is comprised of NFL Network, NFL Films, the NFL App, NFL.com and NFL RedZone.

HARD KNOCKS: LOS ANGELES will be narrated by Liev Schreiber, marking his 14th season with the show.

Press Release Courtesy of the NFL Communications Media Relations

NFL WILD CARD AND DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF SCHEDULE ANNOUNCED

Commissioner ROGER GOODELL announced tonight the schedule of sites, dates and times for the National Football League Wild Card Playoffs on January 4-5 and Divisional Playoffs on January 11-12.

NFL WILD CARD PLAYOFFS

Saturday, January 4

AFC:    4:35 PM (ET)  Buffalo at Houston (ESPN, with simulcast on ABC)

AFC:    8:15 PM (ET)  Tennessee at New England (CBS)

Sunday, January 5

NFC:    1:05 PM (ET)  Minnesota at New Orleans (FOX)

NFC:    4:40 PM (ET)  Seattle at Philadelphia (NBC)

NFL DIVISIONAL PLAYOFFS

Saturday, January 11

NFC:    4:35 PM (ET)  Philadelphia/Seattle/Minnesota at San Francisco (NBC)

AFC:    8:15 PM (ET)  Houston/Buffalo/Tennessee at Baltimore (CBS)

Sunday, January 12

AFC:    3:05 PM (ET)  New England/Houston/Buffalo at Kansas City (CBS)

NFC:    6:40 PM (ET)  New Orleans/Philadelphia/Seattle at Green Bay (FOX)

In the Divisional Playoffs, the division champion with the best record in each conference will host the lowest-seeded Wild Card survivor. Once teams are seeded for the playoffs, positions do not change:

American Football ConferenceNational Football Conference
1.Baltimore (14-2), AFC North champion1.San Francisco (13-3), NFC West champion
2.Kansas City (12-4), AFC West champion2.Green Bay (13-3), NFC North champion
3.New England (12-4), AFC East champion3.New Orleans (13-3), NFC South champion
4.Houston (10-6), AFC South champion4.Philadelphia (9-7), NFC East champion
5.Buffalo (10-6)   5.Seattle (11-5)
6.Tennessee (9-7)  6.Minnesota (10-6)

The AFC (CBS, 3:05 PM ET) and NFC (FOX, 6:40 PM ET) Championship Games will be played on Sunday, January 19.

The 2020 Pro Bowl (ESPN, with simulcast on ABC, 3:00 PM ET) will be played on Sunday, January 26, at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Florida, and Super Bowl LIV will take place on Sunday, February 2 (FOX, 6:30 PM ET), at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami.

Press Release Courtesy of the NFL Communications Media Relations

Oakland Raiders’ Darren Waller Wins Craig Long Award

ALAMEDA, Calif. – TE Darren Waller was named the recipient of the sixth-annual Craig Long Award, the team announced Friday. 

Chosen by a select group of local media and facilitated by the Oakland Raiders’ media relations department, the Craig Long Award is presented annually to the player who best exemplifies professionalism and collaboration with the media at large.

Waller, who was named an alternate for the Pro Bowl last week, enters the regular-season finale with a team-high 84 receptions for 1,038 yards and three touchdowns. He became the first Raiders tight end since Todd Christensen in 1986 to eclipse 1,000 receiving yards in a season and his reception total ranks third in franchise history among tight ends. He currently ranks third among NFL tight ends in catches and second in receiving yards. Originally a sixth-round draft pick out of Georgia Tech by the Baltimore Ravens in 2015, Waller was signed by the Raiders from the Ravens practice squad prior to Week 13 in 2018. 

Long, who passed away in 2007 at age 36, was a valuable member of the Raiders’ public relations staff from 1997-2004. A native of Iowa, Long fulfilled his childhood dream of working in the front office for his favorite team.

Craig Long Award Winners

2019 – TE Darren Waller

2018 – DE Frostee Rucker

2017 – RB Jalen Richard

2016 – T Donald Penn

2015 – S Charles Woodson 

2014 – DL Antonio Smith

Press Release Courtesy of the Oakland Raiders Media Relations

WHAT TO LOOK FOR – WEEK 17

PLAYOFF PUSH: All 16 games are division contests in Week 17 and there are still 15 teams in contention for a trip to Super Bowl LIV.

In 15 of the past 16 years, at least two teams have won their division the season after missing the playoffs. With a win over Minnesota on Monday Night Football in Week 16, the GREEN BAY PACKERS (12-3) clinched the NFC North

If the SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS (12-3) defeat the SEATTLE SEAHAWKS (11-4) on Sunday Night Football (8:20 PM ET, NBC), the 49ers would clinch the NFC West, marking the 16th time in the last 17 seasons at least two teams have won their division the season after missing the playoffs.

For the full Week 17 playoff scenarios, click here.

In the AFC, five teams have already punched their tickets to the postseason, including all four division winners: the BALTIMORE RAVENS (13-2, AFC North and homefield advantage), HOUSTON TEXANS(10-5, AFC South), KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (11-4, AFC West), NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (12-3, AFC East) and BUFFALO BILLS (10-5, playoff berth). 

Five teams have also locked up playoff berths in the NFC: the GREEN BAY PACKERS (12-3, NFC North), NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (12-3, NFC South), MINNESOTA VIKINGS (10-5, playoff berth), SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS (12-3, playoff berth) and SEATTLE SEAHAWKS (11-4, playoff berth).

 — NFL —

WILSON WINNER: Seattle’s RUSSELL WILSON has led the Seahawks to the postseason for the seventh time in eight seasons as the team’s starting quarterback and is the first quarterback to lead his team to a winning record in each of his first eight seasons in NFL history.

With a win over San Francisco on Sunday Night Football (8:20 PM ET, NBC), Seattle will capture the NFC West division title and Wilson will earn his 87th regular-season win, surpassing TOM BRADY (86 wins) for the most regular-season wins by a quarterback through his first eight seasons in NFL history.

— NFL —

SAINTS GO MARCHING INTO RECORD BOOKS: New Orleans quarterback DREW BREES passed for 279 yards with three touchdowns and zero interceptions in a Week 16 victory, as the Saints earned at least 12 wins in consecutive seasons for the first time in franchise history.  

With another performance of at least three touchdown passes and zero interceptions on Sunday at Carolina (1:00 PM ET, FOX), Brees will become the fourth player with at least three touchdown passes and zero interceptions in at least four consecutive games in a single season in NFL history. 

The players with the most consecutive games with at least three touchdown passes and zero interceptions in a single season in NFL history:

PLAYERTEAMSEASONGAMES 
Russell WilsonSeattle20155 
Aaron RodgersGreen Bay20144 
Tom BradyNew England20074 
     
Drew BreesNew Orleans20193* 
*Active streak 

​​Brees also leads the league with a 75.3 completion percentage in 2019 (among qualified passers) and is on pace to break his own single-season completion percentage record for the second-consecutive season. The 19-year veteran entered 2019 with four of the top five single-season completion percentages in league annals. Oakland quarterback DEREK CARR (71.1 percent) and Tennessee quarterback RYAN TANNEHILL (70.7) also each own completion percentages over of at least 70 percent entering Week 17.​

The players with the highest single-season completion percentages in NFL history among qualified passers:

PLAYERTEAMSEASONCOMP. PERCENTAGE
Drew BreesNew Orleans201975.3*
Drew BreesNew Orleans201874.4
Drew BreesNew Orleans201772.0
Sam BradfordMinnesota201671.6
Drew BreesNew Orleans201171.2
Derek CarrOakland201971.1*
Ryan TannehillTennessee201970.7*
*Entering Week 17   

New Orleans wide receiver MICHAEL THOMAS leads the NFL with 145 receptions in 2019 and surpassed Pro Football Hall of Famer MARVIN HARRISON (143 in 2002) for the most receptions in a single season in NFL history. Both Thomas and Houston wide receiver DEANDRE HOPKINS have recorded at least five receptions in all 15 games this season. 

If Thomas has at least five receptions at Carolina and Hopkins has at least five receptions on Sunday against Tennessee (4:25 PM ET, CBS), they would become the fifth and sixth different receivers with at least five receptions in all 16 games of a regular season since 1978, when the 16-game schedule was implemented.

The players with at least five receptions in all 16 games of a regular season since 1978:

PLAYERTEAMSEASON
Jarvis LandryMiami2017
Antonio BrownPittsburgh2014
Antonio BrownPittsburgh2013
Pierre GarconWashington2013
Jimmy SmithJacksonville2001
   
DeAndre HopkinsHouston2019*
Michael ThomasNew Orleans2019*
*In 15 games  

Additionally, with at least 12 receptions on Sunday, Thomas would become the first player with at least 12 receptions in three consecutive games in NFL history. 

— NFL —

DUAL-THREAT BACKS: Carolina running back CHRISTIAN MCCAFFREY registered 173 scrimmage yards (119 receiving, 54 rushing) last week, his ninth game with at least 150 scrimmage yards this season.  

With at least 150 scrimmage yards on Sunday against New Orleans (1:00 PM ET, FOX), McCaffrey, who leads the league with 2,294 scrimmage yards in 2019, would tie CHRIS JOHNSON (10 games in 2009) for the most games with at least 150 scrimmage yards in a single season in NFL history. 

The players with the most games with at least 150 scrimmage yards in a season in NFL history:​

PLAYERTEAMSEASONGAMES
Chris JohnsonTennessee200910
Marshall FaulkHOFSt. Louis Rams20019
Marshall FaulkHOFSt. Louis Rams19999
Christian McCaffreyCarolina20199*
*Through 15 games 

With at least 216 scrimmage yards on Sunday, McCaffrey would surpass Johnson (2,509 scrimmage yards in 2009) for the most scrimmage yards in a single season in league annals.

Additionally, McCaffrey ranks second among all running backs this season with 933 receiving yards, trailing only the Los Angeles Chargers’ AUSTIN EKELER (950). If McCaffrey has at least 67 receiving yards against New Orleans and Ekeler has at least 50 receiving yards at Kansas City (1:00 PM ET, CBS), they would become the fourth and fifth running backs with at least 1,000 receiving yards in a single season since 1970. 

The running backs with at least 1,000 receiving yards in a season since 1970:

PLAYERTEAMSEASONRECEIVING YARDS
Marshall FaulkHOFSt. Louis Rams19991,048
Lionel JamesSan Diego19851,027
Roger CraigSan Francisco19851,016
    
Austin EkelerLos Angeles Chargers2019950*
Christian McCaffreyCarolina2019933*
*Through 15 games 

McCaffrey, who ranks second in the NFL with a career-high 1,361 rushing yards this season, can join ROGER CRAIG (1985) and Pro Football Hall of Famer MARSHALL FAULK (1999) as the only players with at least 1,000 rushing and 1,000 receiving yards in a single season in NFL history.

— NFL —

HISTORY DOWN SOUTHIn his 125th career game, Atlanta wide receiver JULIO JONES, who has 12,047 career receiving yards, had 10 catches for 166 yards in the Falcons’ Week 16 victory and surpassed Pro Football Hall of Famer JERRY RICE (142 games) as the fastest player to reach 12,000 career receiving yards in NFL history. 

Jones, who ranks third in the league with 1,316 receiving yards in 2019, needs at least 84 receiving yards on Sunday at Tampa Bay (1:00 PM ET, FOX), to tie Rice (six seasons) for the most seasons with at least 1,400 receiving yards in NFL history. 

Tampa Bay quarterback JAMEIS WINSTON leads the league with a career-high 4,908 passing yards entering the season’s final week and has thrown for at least 375 yards in five different games in 2019.

With at least 375 passing yards on Sunday against Atlanta, Winston would tie PEYTON MANNING (six games in 2013) for the most games with at least 375 passing yards in a single season in NFL history.  

The players with the most games with at least 375 passing yards in a single season in NFL history:

PLAYERTEAMSEASONGAMES WITH 375+ PASSING YARDS 
Peyton ManningDenver20136 
Drew BreesNew Orleans20135 
Jameis WinstonTampa Bay20195* 
*Through 15 games 

— NFL —

REMARKABLE ROOKIE RECEIVERSTennessee’s A.J. BROWN (927 receiving yards) and Washington’s TERRY MCLAURIN (919) lead all rookies in receiving yards this season and each have a chance to reach 1,000 receiving yards in their first NFL seasons. 

If Brown has at least 73 receiving yards at Houston (4:25 PM ET, CBS) and McLaurin has at least 81 receiving yards at Dallas (4:25 ET, FOX), the 2019 season would join 2014 and 1986 as the only seasons featuring multiple rookies with at least 1,000 receiving yards in NFL history. 

The seasons featuring multiple rookies with at least 1,000 receiving yards in NFL history:

SEASONROOKIESTEAMRECEIVING YARDS
2014Odell Beckham Jr.New York Giants1,305
 Mike EvansTampa Bay1,051
 Kelvin BenjaminCarolina1,008
    
1986Bill BrooksIndianapolis1,131
 Ernest GivinsHouston Oilers1,062
    
2019A.J. BrownTennessee927*
 Terry McLaurinWashington919*
*Entering Week 17 

Press Release Courtesy of the NFL Communications Media Relations

​BALTIMORE QB LAMAR JACKSON TOPS PRO BOWL VOTING BY FANS​

Rosters to be announced Live on NFL Network’s  Pro Bowl Special on Tuesday, December 17 at 8:00 PM ET –  

Baltimore Ravens quarterback LAMAR JACKSON received 704,699 total fan votes to lead all NFL players in balloting for the 2020 Pro Bowl presented by Verizon. Fan voting ended on Thursday, December 12.

Seattle quarterback RUSSELL WILSON (539,768 votes) ranked second overall, while Kansas City quarterback PATRICK MAHOMES (468,838 votes), Minnesota running back DALVIN COOK (431,748 votes) and Carolina running back CHRISTIAN MCCAFFREY(406,477 votes) rounded out the top five.

Four of the top five vote-getters – Jackson, Mahomes, Cook and McCaffrey – are under the age of 25. Additionally, nine first or second-year players led their conference in votes received at their respective positions.

The BALTIMORE RAVENS led all clubs in total votes received. The SAN FRANCISCO 49ERSNEW ORLEANS SAINTSGREEN BAY PACKERS and SEATTLE SEAHAWKS rounded out the top-five teams to receive the most fan votes.

Pro Bowl rosters will be announced on Tuesday, December 17 live on NFL Network’s Pro Bowl special “NFL Total Access: Pro Bowl Players Revealed” at 8:00 PM ET. 

Players for the game are determined by the consensus votes of fans, players and coaches. Each group’s vote counts one-third toward determining the 88 All-Star players who will be selected to the Pro Bowl. The NFL is the only sports league that combines voting by fans, coaches and players to determine its All-Star teams. It was also the first professional sports league to offer online all-star voting in 1995.

The 2020 Pro Bowl presented by Verizon, which kicks off at 3:00 PM ET, will be televised live on ESPN, ESPN Deportes and simulcast on ABC and Disney XD – the third time the game will be available on both broadcast and cable networks. 

Pro Bowl tickets start at just $45 and are on sale at NFL.com/ProBowlOnSale. Get Access to Awesome as fans in attendance can watch and cheer on the Pro Bowl players as they enter the stadium on the Pro Bowl Red Carpet, bringing them closer than ever to the NFL’s all-stars. Concession deals and “Kid Zone” activities will be available inside the stadium. Additionally, fans will be able to enjoy post-game fireworks to conclude the celebration.

NFL PRO BOWL TOP-FIVE VOTE-GETTERS

POS.NAMETEAMVOTES
QBLamar JacksonBaltimore Ravens704,699
QBRussell WilsonSeattle Seahawks539,768
QBPatrick MahomesKansas City Chiefs468,838
RBDalvin CookMinnesota Vikings431,748
RBChristian McCaffreyCarolina Panthers406,477


NFL PRO BOWL TOP VOTE-GETTERS BY TEAM

TEAM
Baltimore Ravens
San Francisco 49ers
Green Bay Packers
New Orleans Saints
Seattle Seahawks

AFC & NFC LEADING VOTE-GETTERS BY POSITION

POS.CONF.NAME, TEAMVOTESPOS.CONF.NAME, TEAMVOTES
QBAFCLamar Jackson, Baltimore704,699DEAFCJoey Bosa, L.A. Chargers252,555
QBNFCRussell Wilson, Seattle539,768DENFCNick Bosa, San Francisco358,911
RBAFCNick Chubb, Cleveland316,008DTAFCCameron Heyward, Pittsburgh221,693
RBNFCDalvin Cook, Minnesota431,748DTNFCArik Armstead, San Francisco273,403
FBAFCPatrick Ricard, Baltimore152,877OLBAFCT.J. Watt, Pittsburgh251,248
FBNFCKyle Juszczyk, San Francisco384,200OLBNFCPreston Smith, Green Bay166,347
WRAFCDeAndre Hopkins, Houston275,684ILBAFCDevin Bush, Pittsburgh150,548
WRNFCMichael Thomas, New Orleans371,365ILBNFCBobby Wagner, Seattle207,026
TEAFCMark Andrews, Baltimore331,796CBAFCMarcus Peters, Baltimore231,601
TENFCGeorge Kittle, San Francisco340,624CBNFCRichard Sherman, San Francisco259,476
TAFCOrlando Brown, Baltimore188,787SSAFCJamal Adams, N.Y. Jets186,068
TNFCDavid Bakhtiari, Green Bay194,207SSNFCVonn Bell, New Orleans98,449
GAFCMarshal Yanda, Baltimore192,580FSAFCMinkah Fitzpatrick, Pittsburgh209,245
GNFCZack Martin, Dallas121,529FSNFCMarcus Williams, New Orleans93,593
CAFCMaurkice Pouncey, Pittsburgh152,128PAFCBrett Kern, Tennessee93,586
CNFCTravis Frederick, Dallas140,449PNFCMichael Dickson, Seattle101,965
KAFCJustin Tucker, Baltimore187,814STAFCTyler Matakevich, Pittsburgh87,863
KNFCWil Lutz, New Orleans106,747STNFCRaheem Mostert, San Francisco113,638
RSAFCMecole Hardman, Kansas City91,358    
RSNFCDeonte Harris, New Orleans84,085    

For the fourth consecutive year, Pro Bowl Week festivities will take place at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex at Walt Disney World Resort and across the Orlando area, bringing free experiences and activities to fans as well as an extraordinary number of events focused on commemorating all levels of football – from youth to high school to the NFL’s best. Some of the Pro Bowl Week events include: Pro Bowl PracticesPro Bowl Skills ShowdownNFL FLAG Championships and Pro Bowl Experience.

Additionally, NFL Pro Bowl players will give back to the local Orlando community by participating in the Pro Bowl Community Huddleas part of the NFL Huddle for 100. To learn more about Huddle for 100 and how to get involved, visit www.nfl.com/100/huddlefor100

Press Release Courtesy of the NFL Communications Media Relations

Winner to be Announced at NFL Honors the Night Before Super Bowl LIV

The NFL announced today the 32 nominees for the WALTER PAYTON NFL MAN OF THE YEAR AWARD PRESENTED BY NATIONWIDE. Representing the best of the NFL’s commitment to philanthropy and community impact, each player was selected as his team’s Man of the Year and is now eligible to win the national award. Considered one of the league’s most prestigious honors, the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award presented by Nationwide recognizes an NFL player for outstanding community service activities off the field, as well as excellence on the field. First established in 1970, the national award was renamed in 1999 after the late Hall of Fame Chicago Bears running back WALTER PAYTON.

“Every day, in cities and towns across America, NFL players give of themselves to make our communities better. This year, as we celebrate our 100th season and the 50th year of the Walter Payton NFL Man of Year Award, NFL players have continued to raise the bar on community engagement and impact,” said NFL Commissioner ROGER GOODELL. “The 32 nominees for this year’s award are the best of the best and truly embody the spirit of Walter and his legacy of leaving the world better than he found it.”

For the second year in a row, all 32 team winners will be highlighted as nominees and recognized for their important work during the weekend leading up to Super Bowl LIV.

The 2019 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year will be announced during NFL Honors, a two-hour primetime awards special to air nationally on Feb. 1, the eve of Super Bowl LIV on FOX. NFL Honors will be at the Adrienne Arsht Center in downtown Miami.

All 32 nominees will receive a donation of up to $50,000 in their name to their charity of choice. The winner of the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year award will receive a $250,000 donation to the charity of their choice. All donations are courtesy of the NFL Foundation and Nationwide. 

“Nationwide congratulates this year’s Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year nominees,” said Nationwide’s Chief Marketing Officer RAMON JONES. “Year after year, we’re amazed at the amount of time, talent and resources the NFL players give to their communities. This year’s best of the best from each team—these 32 men—recognized a need, took action and energized those around them to do more. It’s our privilege to help share their stories  about making positive differences for  others.” 

Fans are encouraged to participate in Nationwide’s 5th annual Charity Challenge, a social media campaign designed to support and promote team nominees. Fans can vote on Twitter by using #WPMOYChallenge followed by their favorite nominee’s last name. The player whose unique hashtag is used the most between Dec. 12 and Jan. 12 will receive a $25,000 contribution to their charity of choice, while the second and third place finishers will receive $10,000 and $5,000 donations, all courtesy of Nationwide. Hashtag information and official rules can be found at nfl.com/manoftheyear.

Beginning in 2017, the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year trophy silhouette came to life in uniform elements to further recognize past award winners and current nominees. The six current players who have won the award—DREW BREES, THOMAS DAVIS, LARRY FITZGERALD, JASON WITTEN, ELI MANNING and J.J. WATT—continue to wear a Man of the Year patch on their jerseys to recognize their outstanding contributions to the game and to their communities. All 2019 nominees will wear a Man of the Year helmet decal beginning Week 15 and continuing through the end of the season in recognition of their accomplishments on and off the field.

For more information on the nominees and the award, visit NFL.com/manoftheyear.

Below is a list of the 2019 nominees:

TEAMNOMINEE
Arizona CardinalsDavid Johnson
Atlanta FalconsRicardo Allen
Baltimore RavensBrandon Carr
Buffalo BillsLorenzo Alexander
Carolina PanthersCam Newton
Chicago BearsAllen Robinson II
Cincinnati BengalsGiovani Bernard
Cleveland BrownsJarvis Landry
Dallas CowboysTravis Frederick 
Denver BroncosJustin Simmons
Detroit LionsDevon Kennard
Green Bay PackersBlake Martinez
Houston TexansD.J. Reader
Indianapolis ColtsPierre Desir
Jacksonville JaguarsCalais Campbell
Kansas City ChiefsDustin Colquitt
Los Angeles ChargersUchenna Nwosu
Los Angeles RamsAndrew Whitworth
Miami DolphinsDavon Godchaux
Minnesota VikingsKyle Rudolph
New England PatriotsKyle Van Noy
New Orleans SaintsTerron Armstead
New York GiantsNate Solder
New York JetsJonotthan Harrison
Oakland RaidersTahir Whitehead
Philadelphia EaglesMalcolm Jenkins
Pittsburgh SteelersMaurkice Pouncey
San Francisco 49ersRichard Sherman
Seattle SeahawksBobby Wagner
Tampa Bay BuccaneersMike Evans
Tennessee TitansBen Jones
Washington RedskinsNick Sundberg

Press Release Courtesy of the NFL Communications Media Relations

THURSDAY NIGHT PREVIEW: NEW YORK JETS (5-8) AT BALTIMORE RAVENS (11-2)​

Week 15 of the NFL’s 100th season kicks off on Thursday, December 12 (8:20 PM ET, FOX/NFL Network/Amazon Prime), as the New York Jets travel to M&T Bank Stadium to take on the Baltimore Ravens. The Ravens hold the all-time series advantage, 8-2, with the Jets winning the last meeting, 24-16, in Week 7 of the 2016 season. Each team enters Thursday night coming off a win in Week 14, with Baltimore clinching a playoff berth for the second-consecutive season – the first time the club has accomplished the feat since appearing in five consecutive postseasons from 2008-12. 

Baltimore currently holds the top seed in the AFC and with a win on Thursday will clinch the AFC North division title. In Week 14, the Ravens won their ninth consecutive game, the longest active streak in the league, defeating the Bills on the road, 24-17. Quarterback LAMAR JACKSON passed for three touchdowns and a 102.5 rating, while rushing for 40 yards. Jackson now has 1,017 rushing yards in 2019, joining MICHAEL VICK (1,039 rushing yards in 2006) as the only quarterbacks in NFL history with at least 1,000 rushing yards in a single season. With 23 rushing yards against the Jets, Jackson will surpass Vick for the all-time single-season rushing title among quarterbacks. The second-year quarterback has 21 touchdowns (17 passing, four rushing) and one interception for a 130.3 rating in his past six games and looks to improve to 4-0 in his career as a starter in primetime games. The Ravens, with Jackson and running back MARK INGRAM (807 rushing yards in 2019), have the leading rushing attack in the league, averaging 200.9 yards on the ground per game.  

Tight end MARK ANDREWS aims for his third home game in a row with a touchdown reception, and his seven touchdown catches in 2019 tie for the league lead among tight ends. Baltimore tight ends NICK BOYLE and HAYDEN HURST each recorded touchdowns last week, and the Ravens tight end trio is the only tight end group in the league with three players each recording multiple touchdown receptions this season. On the defensive side of the ball, safety EARL THOMAS had a sack and his first forced fumble of the season in Week 14, and has an interception in two his past three career games against the AFC East. His 30 career interceptions are the most among active safeties since entering the league in 2010. 

The Jets enter Thursday night as winners of four of their past five after defeating the Dolphins last week, 22-21, on a game-winning 44-yard field goal by SAM FICKEN as time expired. Quarterback SAM DARNOLD passed for 270 yards, connecting with wide receiver ROBBY ANDERSON for 116 yards and a touchdown reception. Over the past three games, Anderson has 303 receiving yards (101 per game) and two touchdowns. Running back LE’VEON BELL aims for his fourth consecutive game against Baltimore with at least 125 scrimmage yards and two touchdowns. Overall, Bell has 10 touchdowns (seven rushing, three receiving) in nine career games against Baltimore, the most touchdowns he has against any opponent in his career. Safety JAMAL ADAMS has 6.5 this season, the most among all defensive backs in 2019 and the most in a season by a defensive back since ROMAN HARPER registered 7.5 sacks in 2011. Linebacker JORDAN JENKINS registered two sacks last week, and has three sacks and two forced fumbles in two career games on Thursday Night Football.

Press Release Courtesy of the NFL Communications Media Relations

NFL ENTERS FINAL QUARTER WITH KEY GAMES ON TAP

Week 14 NFL Preview

To help celebrate the NFL’s 100th season, each week will feature an NFL 100 Game of the Week. Each game is a nod to a momentous game played, a fierce rivalry that spans decades, a matchup of original teams and/or a game in which history was made . The NFL has designated Sunday’s CINCINNATI BENGALS-CLEVELAND BROWNS matchup as the NFL100 Game of the Week because the contest includes the teams closest to the birthplace of the NFL. In 1920, the NFL formed in Northeast Ohio, where CANTON BULLDOGS owner RALPH HAY organized the first meeting of fellow owners. Four years later, at nearby Massillon Washington High School, quarterback and future Pro Football Hall of Famer PAUL BROWN discovered the sport that would shape his life. By 1946, as the first coach of the Cleveland franchise when it launched as part of the All-American Football Conference, Brown was so synonymous with success that by popular demand he became the team’s namesake, despite his humble objections. After entering the NFL in 1950, Brown’s team won three league championships (1950, 1954-55). When the AFL placed an expansion franchise in Cincinnati during the mid-1960s, Brown joined the team as general manager and head coach, then named his new team the Bengals in time for the club’s inaugural 1968 season. One of Brown’s first Cincinnati assistant coaches was Pro Football Hall of Famer BILL WALSH.  

BRADY, BREES IN RACE FOR HALLOWED MARK: As NFL teams jockey for position in the 2019 playoff race, New England quarterback TOM BRADY and New Orleans quarterback DREW BREES have one of the league’s most significant all-time records in their sights: Most career touchdown passes, currently held by PEYTON MANNING (539). Entering Week 14, Brady (535) and Brees (532) have Manning on their radar screens.

The players with the most career touchdown passes in NFL history:​

PLAYER, TEAM(S)YEARSTD PASSES
Peyton Manning, Indianapolis-Denver1998-2015539
Tom Brady, New England2000-535
Drew Brees, S.D. Chargers-New Orleans2001-532
Brett FavreHOF, Atlanta-Green Bay-N.Y. Jets-Minnesota1991-2010508
Dan MarinoHOF, Miami1983-99420
Philip Rivers, S.D./L.A. Chargers2004-391
Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh2004-363
Eli Manning, N.Y. Giants2004-362
Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay2005-360
Fran TarkentonHOF, Minnesota-N.Y. Giants1961-78342

Brady, whose Patriots host the KANSAS CITY CHIEFS Sunday (4:25 PM ET, CBS), is 47-12 (.797) during his career in starts following a regular-season loss. 

EASTERN ILLINOIS CONNECTIONS IN THE BIG EASY: When the SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS travel to meet the NEW ORLEANS SAINTS on Sunday (1:00 PM ET, FOX) in a matchup of 10-win teams, one former Eastern Illinois quarterback, the 49ers’ JIMMY GAROPPOLO, will square off against another former Eastern Illinois field general, Saints head coach SEAN PAYTON. Also, the father of 49ers head coach KYLE SHANAHAN, former Raiders, Broncos and Redskins head coach MIKE SHANAHAN, also played at Eastern Illinois, where a serious injury ended his playing career but helped him discover his passion for coaching. The school also produced former Dallas quarterback TONY ROMO.

  • If San Francisco this week clinches a playoff berth, the 49ers would become the first NFL club that didn’t qualify for the playoffs last season to earn a postseason invitation. In every season since the 12-team playoff format began in 1990, at least four teams have qualified for the playoffs that were not in the postseason the year before.

DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR’S NIGHTMARE: In one of Week 14’s premier games, the BALTIMORE RAVENS put the league’s longest winning streak, eight games, on the line when they face the BUFFALO BILLS on Sunday (1:00 PM ET, CBS). The contest not only matches two of the AFC’s best teams, it also matches two of the NFL’s best dual-threat quarterbacks. Baltimore’s LAMAR JACKSON, whose 977 net rushing yards are more than five NFL teams this year, also ranks fourth in the NFL with a 109.6 passer rating. Buffalo’s JOSH ALLEN, who ranks third among NFL quarterbacks with 430 rushing yards, has a fourth-quarter passer rating of 114.0.

  • Sunday’s game will have more combined rushing yards (1,407) by starting quarterbacks than any contest in NFL history.
  • Additionally, Jackson needs 23 rushing yards to become the second quarterback in NFL history with a 1,000-yard rushing season, and 63 to post the most rushing yards in a single season by an NFL quarterback, surpassing MICHAEL VICK, who had 1,039 in 2006. 

  • As a team, the Ravens are on pace for one of the most prolific rushing campaigns in the NFL’s 100 seasons. Since the league moved to a 16-game schedule in 1978, Baltimore’s 207.8 net rushing yards per game are on pace to finish 10 yards better than any other team in that span.

The teams with the most net rushing yards per game since 1978:

TEAMSEASONGMATTYARDSYDS/GM
Baltimore Ravens2019124452,494207.8
New England Patriots1978166713,165197.8
Kansas City Chiefs1978166632,986186.6
Chicago Bears1984166742,974185.9
Atlanta Falcons2006165372,939183.7

​​

THE FOURTH QUARTER: As the NFL makes its final turn toward the regular-season finish line, each club has just four games remaining, and 26 teams remain in contention for a trip to Super Bowl LIV. Two of those teams, the TENNESSEE TITANS and OAKLAND RAIDERS, battle in a key AFC contest Sunday (4:25 PM ET, CBS).

  • The game features several of the NFL’s top rookies. Oakland’s JOSH JACOBS leads all NFL rookies in rushing yards (1,061), rushing touchdowns (seven) and scrimmage yards (1,207). Tennessee wide receiver A.J. BROWN leads AFC rookies with 626 receiving yards. On defense, Oakland’s MAXX CROSBY (7.5) and CLELIN FERRELL (3.5) are the NFL’s only pair of rookie teammates with three-or-more sacks each.

ROOKIE QUARTERBACKS CONTINUE TO WIN GAMES: Arizona’s KYLER MURRAY, the No. 1 overall selection in the 2019 NFL Draft, leads the ARIZONA CARDINALS at home against the PITTSBURGH STEELERS on Sunday (4:25 PM ET, CBS). Murray and the Steelers’ DEVLIN HODGES, an undrafted rookie, are two of the six rookie quarterbacks to win a game this season. Last week, Denver’s DREW LOCKjoined a group that includes Washington’s DWAYNE HASKINS, the Giants’ DANIEL JONES and Jacksonville’s GARDNER MINSHEW. That group of six represents the second-highest number of rookie quarterbacks to win an NFL start in league history, trailing only the 1987 season (seven). Detroit’s DAVID BLOUGH, who plays at Minnesota Sunday (1:00 PM ET, FOX), gives the 2019 rookies an opportunity to tie the single-season league record. ​

BATTLE OF OHIO: When the CINCINNATI BENGALS make the cross-state trip to play the CLEVELAND BROWNS on Sunday (1:00 PM ET, CBS), the teams will meet for a 92nd time. Sunday marks the first Bengals-Browns game in 35 years in which each club has a first-year head coach. Cincinnati’s ZAC TAYLOR and Cleveland’s FREDDIE KITCHENS are the first rookie head-coaching pair in the series since December 2, 1984, when the Bengals’ SAM WYCHE beat the Browns’ MARTY SCHOTTENHEIMER on an overtime field goal, 20-17.

NFL SCHEDULEDECEMBER 5, 8-9

(All times Eastern)​

ThursdaySunday (cont.)
Dallas Cowboys at Chicago Bears8:20 PMFOX/NFLNAMAZONMiami Dolphins at New York Jets1:00 PMCBS
Sunday  Indianapolis Colts at Tampa Bay Buccaneers1:00 PMCBS
Carolina Panthers at Atlanta Falcons1:00 PMFOXLos Angeles Chargers at Jacksonville Jaguars4:05 PMFOX
Baltimore Ravens at Buffalo Bills1:00 PMCBSPittsburgh Steelers at Arizona Cardinals4:25 PMCBS
Cincinnati Bengals at Cleveland Browns1:00 PMCBSKansas City Chiefs at New England Patriots4:25 PMCBS
Washington Redskins at Green Bay Packers1:00 PMFOXTennessee Titans at Oakland Raiders4:25 PMCBS
Denver Broncos at Houston Texans1:00 PMCBSSeattle Seahawks at Los Angeles Rams8:20 PMNBC
Detroit Lions at Minnesota Vikings1:00 PMFOXMonday  
San Francisco 49ers at New Orleans Saints1:00 PMFOX New York Giants at Philadelphia Eagles8:15 PMESPN

Press Release Courtesy of the NFL Communications Media Relations

2019 NFL PLAYOFF SCENARIOS FOR WEEK 14

AFC

CLINCHED: None

BALTIMORE RAVENS (10-2) (at Buffalo (9-3), Sunday, 1:00 PM ET, CBS)

Baltimore clinches AFC North division title with:

  1. BAL win + PIT loss or tie OR
  2. BAL tie + PIT loss

Baltimore clinches playoff berth with:

  1. BAL win OR
  2. BAL tie + HOU loss or tie OR
  3. BAL tie + TEN loss or tie OR
  4. HOU loss + IND loss or tie + OAK-TEN tie

BUFFALO BILLS (9-3) (vs. Baltimore (10-2), Sunday, 1:00 PM ET, CBS)

Buffalo clinches playoff berth with:

  1. BUF win + OAK loss or tie + HOU loss + IND loss or tie

KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (8-4) (at New England (10-2), Sunday, 4:25 PM ET, CBS)

Kansas City clinches AFC West division title with:

  1. KC win + OAK loss

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (10-2) (vs. Kansas City (8-4), Sunday, 4:25 PM ET, CBS)

New England clinches playoff berth with:

  1. NE win OR
  2. NE tie + PIT loss OR
  3. NE tie + HOU loss or tie OR
  4. NE tie + TEN loss or tie OR
  5. HOU loss + IND loss or tie + OAK-TEN tie

NFC

CLINCHED: New Orleans Saints – NFC South Division

SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS (10-2) (at New Orleans (10-2), Sunday, 1:00 PM ET, FOX)

San Francisco clinches playoff berth with:

  1. SF win + LAR loss or tie OR
  2. SF tie + LAR loss

SEATTLE SEAHAWKS (10-2) (at L.A. Rams (7-5), Sunday, 8:20 PM ET, NBC)

Seattle clinches playoff berth with:​

  1. SEA win or tie

Press Release Courtesy of NFL Communications Media Relations

Oakland Raiders Sign Dorleant And Holsey; Waive Cheevers and Townsend

NAPA, Calif. – The Oakland Raiders have signed free agents DB Makinton Dorleant and CB Joshua Holsey, the club announced Tuesday.

Dorleant re-joins the Raiders having spent the offseason program with the team after signing as a reserve/future free agent this past January. Dorleant originally joined the club as a member of the practice squad ahead of the team’s regular season finale in 2018. The 5-foot-11, 182-pound defensive back also made stops with the Baltimore Ravens and Kansas City Chiefs last season while spending his first two years (2016-17) in the NFL with the Green Bay Packers. Over his career, Dorleant has appeared in four contests.

A native of Naples, Fla., Dorleant played three seasons (2013-15) at Northern Iowa, starting 39-of-40 games with the program. As a Panther, he compiled 138 tackles (104 solo), two interceptions, 30 passes defensed, six forced fumbles and two fumbles recoveries. 

Holsey, a former seventh-round selection (235th overall) in the 2017 NFL Draft by the Washington Redskins, joins the Raiders for his third year in the NFL after spending his first two with the Redskins. Over his first two years, Holsey has appeared in 13 games, seeing action primarily on special teams while adding two tackles and one fumble recovery on defense.

A native of Fairburn Ga., the 5-foot-11, 195-pound Holsey appeared in 44 games and made 31 starts during his career (2012-16) at Auburn. With the Tigers, he compiled 118 tackles (96), four interceptions and 19 passes defensed.

In corresponding moves, the Raiders have waived CB Hamp Cheevers and P Johnny Townsend.

Townsend was drafted by the club in the fifth round (173rd overall) of the 2018 NFL Draft. In his lone season with the team, Townsend appeared in all 16 contests and punted 70 times for 3,022 yards (43.2 avg.) while recording a 38.3 net average and pinning the opponent inside the 20-yard line 17 times.

Press Release Courtesy of the Oakland Raiders Media Relations