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Dec 9, 2012 9:02pm
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EDMONTON - With his team mired in a three-game losing streak, veteran Edmonton
Eskimos receiver Fred Stamps says now is not the time for panic. Von
Miller Jersey
. Now, he says, is the time for players to purge
their minds of the memory of the last five games – four of them losses – and
refocus on the road ahead. “Those losses, thats behind us,” Stamps said as the
5-6 Eskimos prepared this week to meet the CFL west division leading B.C. Lions
tonight. “We have the mentality that its a new season for us. Were going to take
this game versus B.C. And focus on that. Everything else is behind us.” Catch
all the action live on TSN at 7:30pm et/4:30pm pt. The game is also available on
TSN Mobile TV. The Eskimos cant afford any distractions against the Lions, who
enter the game with a league-best 8-3 record. B.C. has the best defence in the
league, leading the CFL in 17 defensive categories and allowing the fewest
points, touchdowns and net yards against of any team. The Lions also boast a
dangerous running back in Andrew Harris, and quarterback Travis Lulay is coming
off a huge performance in last weeks win over Toronto. Staying focused, however,
may be easier said than done, given all thats whirling around the Eskimos these
days. The running game has disappointed despite adding Cory Boyd and Jerome
Messam to compliment Hugh Charles. And except for a few glimpses, none of the
three quarterbacks have given the Eskimos the leadership they need. Stephen
Jyles has been given the starting assignment again. He missed the first two
losses with a calf injury and entered last weeks game in relief, only to throw
an interception on one of his eight passes. The offence ranks last or next to
last in virtually all offensive statistics. That prompted team management to
bring in veteran offensive coach David Kelly as a consultant, which immediately
cast doubt on the future of offensive co-ordinator Marcus Crandell. “Marcus is
our offensive co-ordinator and will be throughout this season,” head coach Kavis
Reed said, insisting there is no controversy and no need for a vote of
confidence. “David will not call a play, David will not be the architect of our
offence, David is not the guy here to replace Marcus. “Were in a valley right
now and were doing everything we need to do to make sure we get out of it very
fast. Airlifting people in halfway through the season and having them be
decision makers doesnt work in football.” Reed is hoping Kellys skill in running
an uptempo offence that “utilizes the passing game as a run weapon” will get the
Eskimos back to playing a quicker offensive game. “He will be working closely
with Marcus on first-and-10 in terms of the quick passing game and in terms of
getting the pass out to receivers as an extended run play. Back to the quick
game. “Run 20 plus times, have a quick passing game and efficient, methodical
drives. When we did that we won football games. When we havent done that we lost
games.” Asked whether it was the running game or the quarterbacks who were more
disappointing, Reed immediately named the running game because its important in
controlling time of possession and presenting a balanced offence. With a badly
struggling offence, the Eskimos lost back-to-back games to Calgary on
last-minute missed field goals and then gave up 51 consecutive points in a
humbling 51-8 loss in Hamilton last weekend. General manager Eric Tillman
pointed out the team also suffered through a three-game losing streak last
season that ended with a 36-1 loss to the Lions. The Eskimos then won six of
their final 10 games to finish tied for first at 11-7. “When you have an
extended season youre going to have situations like this,” Reed said. “Theres
only one team in this league that hasnt gone through a three game losing streak.
The proper perspective is were 5-6, if the playoffs started today were in the
playoffs. We still control our own destiny and I have to do everything I can do
as a leader to make certain this franchise gets out of this slump.” The defence
has also struggled, giving up 102 points in those three losses. It will get some
help with the expected return of explosive defensive end Marcus Howard, who has
missed seven games with a hamstring injury, and defensive back Weldon Brown, who
has been out three games with a groin injury. Linebacker J.C. Sherritt, who
leads the CFL in tackles with 93, hurt his foot in the Hamilton loss and missed
two days of practice but should be ready for the Lions. Peyton Manning Youth Jersey . Webber has won
two races this season, including the British Grand Prix at Silverstone, England,
two weeks ago, and is second in the driver standings, 13 points behind Fernando
Alonso. Willis McGahee Jersey . According to Free
Press writer and TSN Radio 1290 host Gary Lawless, both sides are negotiating at
a methodical pace and want to have the deal – using Phil Kessel and
John Tavaress contracts as comparables – finalized before the start of training
camp. http://www.shopthebroncos.com/knowshon-moreno-jersey
. Since joining the Miami Dolphins, he has been trying to get around town
without using a GPS. Champ Bailey Jersey . Alex Gonzalez hit a
three-run homer in Milwaukees five-run first inning, sending the Brewers to a
7-4 victory over the Chicago Cubs on Tuesday night. The Brewers had no problem
adjusting to the weather on the chilly 40-degree evening. Shannon Sharpe Jersey . Clark was awarded the
kick when Real Salt Lake keeper Nick Rimando fouled Macoumba Kandji in the
penalty area. Brad Davis of the Dynamo failed to convert a penalty kick in the
76th minute. NEW ORLEANS —Drew Brees and the Saints reached a deal on par with
the quarterbacks record-setting play, giving New Orleans fans some news they can
celebrate after an off-season rife with turmoil. The team announced Friday that
it had agreed to a five-year contract with Brees. A person familiar with the
deal said its for $100 million, with $60 million guaranteed. The deal will also
pay the quarterback $40 million the first year, the person told The Associated
Press on condition of anonymity because financial details had not been publicly
announced. Brees posted a note on his Twitter page reading, “Deal is Done! Love
you, Who Dat Nation. See you soon!” He had been tagged as the Saints exclusive
franchise player and could not negotiate with other teams. Had a deal not been
reached, the tender for a quarterback was worth $16.3 million. Brees would have
had to play for that amount or hold out for a better one-year deal, which would
have left his long-term future in New Orleans uncertain. Brees skipped the
Saints off-season practices while holding out for his new long-term contract,
which now gives him the highest average annual pay ($20 million) in NFL history.
Buffalo defensive end Mario Williams also has a $100 million contract, but for
six years. “With a contract like this, people can say theyre paying me what you
earned or what you deserved. In my mind, I always feel like Ive got to go out
every day and earn it and show people why youre at that level,” Brees said in an
interview Friday night with the Saints radio network, WWL-AM. “I can tell you
from the start of this negotiation, I have not thought once about, Hey, I want
to be the highest-paid guy or what have you. ... It was more about trying to
look truly, just objectively, at the numbers the last decade for a top-tier
quarterback and where it has been and where it is going and just trying to do
what is fair and justified.” Now Brees is set to report for the opening of
Saints training camp on July 24, a needed dose of good news for a club whose
off-season has been plagued by the bounty scandal that resulted in the
season-long suspensions of coach Sean Payton and linebacker Jonathan Vilma,
among other sanctions. “What Drew has accomplished in his time with the Saints,
he deserves to be the highest paid player in the league,” Saints general manager
Mickey Loomis said. “We are excited to have this deal done and behind us and
look forward to the next five years with Drew as our quarterback.” Brees
teammates quickly took to Twitter to congratulate him. Safety Malcolm Jenkins
wrote “Congrats bro … Youve changed the game on and off the field!!! No one
deserves it more than you.” Tight end Jimmy Graham tweeted: “Congrats
(at)drewbrees … very happy for you, your family and all the Whodat Nation ….
lets go get the trophy.” Even LSU coach Les Miles chimed in, tweeting: “Its a
great day for New Orleans and the state of Louisiana. Congrats to both
Drew Brees and the Saints on reaching a deal. Who Dat!” The contract, which
includes a $37 million signing bonus, also gives the Saints more flexibility
under the NFLs salary cap. Because bonuses count against the cap on a pro-rated
basis over the life of the contract—$7.4 million per year in Brees case—
the quarterback will cost the club only $10. Eric Decker Jersey. 4 million against the cap
in 2012. That gives Loomis nearly $6 million more in wiggle room to manage the
entire roster than if Brees had played for the franchise tag. His cap number
will rise well above $20 million by the final years of his deal, but Loomis will
at least have more time to plan for that, and the current salary cap of about
$120 million is expected to have risen by then. New Orleans had designated
Brees, 33, its franchise player in March after the club was unable to reach a
new long-term extension before his previous six-year, $60 million contract
expired. Brees, however, was steadfast in not wanting to play for a one-year
deal. During the past six seasons, Brees has not only led the Saints to their
only Super Bowl title, but has completed more passes (2,488) for more yards
(28,394) and more touchdowns (201) than any other quarterback in the NFL. His
67.8 per cent completion rate spanning the past six seasons also tops the
league. In 2011, Brees set NFL single-season records with 468 completions, 5,476
yards passing and a completion percentage of 71.2. His prolific passing numbers
helped the Saints set an NFL high for total offensive yards in a season with
7,474. Brees yards passing record shattered a mark of 5,084 set by Dan Marino
back in 1984. He led the Saints to a 13-3 regular-season record and second NFC
South title in three seasons. New Orleans defeated Detroit in the first round of
the playoffs before falling in the final seconds of its second-round game at San
Francisco. Arriving in New Orleans the season after Hurricane Katrina struck,
Brees has become arguably the most popular sports figure in the citys history.
In addition to leading the club to its lone Super Bowl title for the 2009
season, Brees has become a civic pillar of the community. He and his wife have
worked through their Brees Dream foundation to sponsor about $8 million in
projects primarily aimed at improving the lives of children in the area through
the refurbishing of schools or renovation of athletic fields and facilities. His
foundation also has supported the arts, along with hospital facilities for
cancer patients. In the Big Easy, he enjoys the status of royalty, even being
invited to serve as the honorary “king” of some of the citys biggest Mardi Gras
parades. This off-season marked the first time Brees had the opportunity to
negotiate a major, long-term deal with the leverage provided by a string of
injury-free seasons highlighted by a slew of individual and team statistical
records, in addition to a championship. He commanded only second-round money
when he was drafted by San Diego, and the Chargers placed the one-year franchise
tag on him when that deal ran out in 2005. The right-handed Brees then had an
injury the following season that required major surgery to his throwing
shoulder, and which left him with few major offers during the 2006 off-season.
He wound up signing the six-year deal in New Orleans that left him playing for
well below what the top quarterbacks in the league earned during the past few
seasons. Brees new deal tops the previous benchmark contract for elite QBs set
by the $96 million, five-year deal Denver gave earlier this off-season to
Peyton Manning, who is three years older than Brees and sat out last season
while recovering from neck surgery. ’ ’ ’ 

Jan 15, 2013 11:39pm
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