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29mKevin Seifert

J.J. Watt injury means it's time for Bill O'Brien to do work

Pressure shifts off of the defense and onto Bill O'Brien. Can he be the offensive guru the Texans thought they were getting when they hired him?

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Kellerman: The J.J. Watt era is over (2:01)
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How a ring catastrophe turned into a happy ending in New York (1:23)
Mike DiNovo/USA TODAY Sports
2hJohn Clayton

NFL executives predict Jay Cutler's future

The clock is ticking on Jay Cutler's time in Chicago. The Bears can release the QB this offseason with minimal impact on their future cap. They don't, however, have a ready-made replacement.

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1mBill Barnwell

Breakout picks from small-sample-size studs

Lions RB Theo Riddick and Broncos pass-rusher Shane Ray have shined in limited snaps. Which other part-time standouts could grow into larger roles? Bill Barnwell breaks it down.

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Belichick indifferent to Rex Ryan's antics (0:38)
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Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press via AP
9hJoe McDonald

Stamkos says Canada's win 'wasn't our best'

Don't be fooled by the 3-1 score. Canada needs to make better decisions with the puck, limit its turnovers and win more puck battles in Game 2 against Europe at the World Cup.

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Mike Golic tackles the ghost pepper challenge (1:39)
AP Photo/Seth Wenig
18hAdam Rubin

Matz to undergo season-ending elbow surgery

New York Mets left-hander Steven Matz has elected to undergo surgery to remove bone spurs from his pitching elbow and will not return this season, the team announced Tuesday.

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LeBron looks ahead to final stage of career (0:36)
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Jim Mora goes on another epic rant (1:45)
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1dAdam Rittenberg

What in the world is going on at USC?

Clay Helton billed himself as the no-Hollywood coach, but his first year at USC has had more drama and plot twists than expected, leaving many to wonder about his future with the Trojans.

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Curry schools teammate in practice (0:15)
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Co-Anchorman: The Legend of His & Hers (7:34)
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15hIain Macintosh

Allardyce saga with England is sad

After waiting so long for the job he felt he deserved, Sam Allardyce's world unravelled. And that, writes Iain Macintosh, is sad for several reasons.

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Kellerman: The J.J. Watt era is over
NFL 

Max Kellerman believes the production J.J. Watt will provide when he returns to action won't be the same as a result of his back injury, although Kellerman believes Watt will still come back to play.

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NFL 

Sarah Barshop ESPN Staff Writer 

The Texans have announced they placed DE J.J. Watt on injured reserve and signed free agent DE Antonio Smith to the active roster. Watt will have to miss at least eight games before he is eligible to return to the field.

NFL 

Jared Shanker ESPN Staff Writer 

Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher as rumors about the LSU opening swirl: "I love this university and I plan on being here for a long time." On Monday he said he was unwilling to talk about the LSU opening but that he had not been contacted.

Jerry Crasnick ESPN Senior Writer 

Miami Marlins people say Marcell Ozuna has been amazing throughout the mourning period since Jose Fernandez's death. During a gathering Sunday, Ozuna spent much of his time with his arms around Fernandez's mother and grandmother, trying to comfort and console them. It's just one of many displays of strength shown by Miami players this week.

MLB 

Jason Sobel ESPN Senior Writer 

U.S. Ryder Cup captain Davis Love III said he "might mix it up" with pods today. Zach Johnson and Brooks Koepka swapped spots. Other than that, same foursomes practicing at Hazeltine as yesterday. They are: Group 1: Rickie Fowler, Brooks Koepka, Phil Mickelson, Jimmy Walker Group 2: Dustin Johnson, Matt Kuchar, Patrick Reed, Jordan Spieth Group 3: J.B. Holmes, Zach Johnson, Ryan Moore, Brandt Snedeker

Golf 

Bob Harig ESPN Senior Writer 

Phil Mickelson cleared the air today on a 12-year-old issue that has continued to fester: his pairing with Tiger Woods at the 2004 Ryder Cup. They played together twice on the opening day, the only time the two have done so. They lost both matches and captain Hal Sutton was heavily criticized. Mickelson said it was an example of a captain "putting us in a position to fail, and we failed monumentally, absolutely.'' That led to the worst U.S. Ryder Cup defeat. Mickelson is playing in his 11th Ryder Cup this week.

Golf 

David Newton ESPN Staff Writer 

Panthers owner Jerry Richardson is a stickler for keeping the grounds at Bank Of America Stadium filled with fresh flowers. The grounds crew plants between 15,000 and 20,000 a year. Maybe more. It's not a stat that will help protect quarterback Cam Newton, but if you are into landscaping ....

NFL 

Westbrook, KD don't have a relationship
NBA 

Mike & Mike share their thoughts on Russell Westbrook's comments saying he hasn't spoken with Kevin Durant recently.

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NBA 

Mike Reiss ESPN Staff Writer 

Patriots punter Ryan Allen was named AFC Special Teams Player of the Week. Allen punted seven times for 333 yards (47.6 average) and placed six of his punts inside the opponent 20-yard line in a 27-0 win over Houston.

NFL 

Jake Trotter ESPN Staff Writer 

Since joining the Big 12, West Virginia has defeated every member of the Big 12, with the exception of Oklahoma and Kansas State. The Wildcats are 4-0 against the Mountaineers in Big 12 play.

NCAAF 

Jake Trotter ESPN Staff Writer 

Saturday's matchup between Oklahoma State and Texas figures to be a massive swing game for both teams. Oklahoma State has never started out 2-3 under Mike Gundy. Texas is currently an FPI in three of its next four games, not including its trip to Stillwater.

NCAAF 

Chris Low ESPN Senior Staff Writer 

Increasingly, you hear references to the "Nick Saban effect" and the way his four national championships in the past seven years has ratcheted up pressure on coaches like never before. Well, with Les Miles' firing at LSU, that means there have been a staggering 24 head coaching changes in the SEC since Saban arrived at Alabama in 2007. And seven of the coaches leaving or being fired had won either a national title or SEC title during their career.

NCAAF 

Jake Trotter ESPN Staff Writer 

In four meetings as Big 12 opponents, the average margin of victory between Oklahoma and TCU is 3.8 points. No team has won by more than a touchdown, either.

NCAAF 

Mike Rodak ESPN Staff Writer 

Bills have signed offensive lineman Michael Ola from the Giants' practice squad to fill their vacant 53-man roster spot.

NFL 

John Keim ESPN Staff Writer 

Redskins placekicker Dustin Hopkins was named the NFC's Special Teams player of the week after making all five of his field goals in a 29-27 win over the New York Giants on Sunday. Hopkins has made all 11 of his field goal attempts this season. It's his first such award.

NFL 

Mike Rodak ESPN Staff Writer 

Bill Belichick on Rex Ryan's impression of him Monday: "I'm just focused on getting ready for the Bills. I'm not really in tune to all that. I'm sure it's important to all you guys."

NFL 

Mike Rodak ESPN Staff Writer 

Bill Belichick says Bills' offense under Anthony Lynn "looks pretty much the same," but notes they played "a little faster, a little more aggressively with the same plays."

NFL 

Tim McManus ESPN Staff Writer 

Eagles rookie quarterback Carson Wentz has been named NFC Offensive Player of the Week. He threw for over 300 yards and a pair of touchdowns against the Steelers Sunday. Has 5 TDs, 0 INTs through three games.

NFL 

Jeff Borzello ESPN Staff Writer 

Texas Tech will host two ESPN 100 prospects for visits, beginning tomorrow: Trae Young (No. 15) and Victor Bailey Jr. (No. 90).

NCAAM 

Gruden: Playing Watt would be a tough call
NFL 

Jon Gruden offers his take on how he would handle J.J. Watt's back injury from a coach's perspective.

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NFL 

Yankee Stadium proposal nearly goes wrong
MLB 

Fans at the Red Sox-Yankees game frantically looked for, and eventually found, the engagement ring that was dropped and momentarily lost by a man proposing to his girlfriend.

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MLB 

Fan trolls Alvarez; McGregor amused

Conor McGregor was more than happy to see a fan heckle UFC featherweight champion Eddie Alvarez during a news conference to announce their fight at UFC 205 in November.

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Jesse Rogers ESPN Staff Writer 

Watch Joe Maddon discuss John Lackey's final reg season start and his team's 6-4 win over Pittsburgh on Tuesday.

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MLB 

ESPN Stats and Information  

Noah Syndergaard beat the Marlins in a different way than he usually does. Syndergaard won with called strikes. He got called strikes on 47 percent of taken pitches, the 2nd-highest called strike rate in his career. Syndergaard repeatedly painted the outside corner (52 percent called strike rate, best in any start in his career). Marlins hitters went 2-for-14 against his fastball (opponents were 13-for-37 in his previous 3 starts)

MLB 

ESPN Stats and Information  

Justin Verlander looked sharp on Tuesday. He had a season-high 12 strikeouts, dominating the Indians with a fastball that averaged 94.8 MPH (his 4th-highest average this season). Verlander got 7 swinging strikeouts on fastballs in the upper third of the zone, his most in a game since the 2009 season. His 33% miss rate on pitches in the upper-third of the zone this season ranks 3rd in the majors. His .120 opponents' batting average on those pitches ranks 2nd.

MLB