Jay-Z reportedly turns down Super Bowl 52 halftime gig

Don’t expect to see Jay-Z on the field at halftime of Super Bowl 52.

The rapper turned down the opportunity to headline the halftime show, according to The Source.

NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy didn’t dispute that the league asked Jay-Z to perform, but also didn’t reveal who else is under consideration.

It’s not the first time a big name has turned down performing at the the Super Bowl. Last year, Adele declined. Instead, Lady Gaga stepped in and put on an elaborate show.

Other recent performers include Bruno Mars, Coldplay and Jay-Z’s wife, Beyonce.

“I have respect for the military. I have family in the military. I know we’re in a military town in Jacksonville. I love all the people that go out there and fight for our country. I love the family members, the brothers, the sisters, the mothers, the fathers, the sons, the daughters, those are at home not knowing what’s going to happen to their family members, but I also have respect for those people, whether they’re black, white, Mexican, whatever, who done lost their child or somebody else to a police officer. And that’s what it’s all about.” Bouye was one of at least 13 Jaguars players to kneel during the anthem.

Derek Wolfe, Broncos defensive end: “[There’s no split in the locker room] because we give each other a chance to speak and we listen to each other when we speak. Most people, whenever somebody’s talking they already have an idea in their head of what they’re saying, they’re not listening to what’s being said, they’re thinking about what they want to take from it.” Wolfe stood for the anthem after vocalizing his opinion on national anthem protests. More than 32 of his teammates participated in some form of social protest.
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The Texans offense was still iffy at times.

He didn’t stuff the box score with a bunch of stats, but he was good when the Texans needed him to be. Watson finished the game completing 15 of his 24 passes for 125 yards. He also had five carries for 67 yards and his first rushing touchdown of his career.

But there were flashes where you could see the potential in Watson and what he brings to that side of the ball. Bill O’Brien felt he couldn’t get those things out of Tom Savage, saying this about Watson after the game: “He wasn’t perfect, but he did some good things. It will be a lot to learn from.”

Geno Atkins is a 6’1, 300 pound two-time All-Pro. He’s been one of the most fearsome defensive linemen in the NFL going back to 2011 when he made his first of five Pro Bowls. That’s not exactly a guy you’re eager to get hit by.

The former first-round pick had 14.5 sacks and earned a spot in the Pro Bowl in 2015, but only two sacks in 2016. He topped his 13-game total from last season in a little over a half against the Giants.

The game was only the second three-sack game of Ansah’s career, and it would be a big deal for the Lions defense if he could return to form.

The biggest positive for the Giants was the rookie tight end who already appears to be developing a rapport with Manning. He caught four passes for 49 yards, including the team’s only touchdown of the day.

He was also the player targeted most by Manning on Monday and could be a big part of the team’s offense moving forward.
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The Falcons looked a whole lot worse than the Packers did in Week 1

They struggled mightily against a Chicago Bears team that few expect will amount to anything this season. Mike Glennon did some damage to the Atlanta secondary, and Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan had to lead two fourth-quarter scoring drives for Atlanta to pull out the win.

Atlanta is relatively healthy going into Sunday’s matchup, with only Duke Riley and Alex Mack as the notable limited participants in practice earlier in the week. The Packers, though, have Bryan Bulaga, the starting right tackle, and David Bakhtiari, the starting left tackle, questionable for Week 2.

Green Bay was without Bulaga in Week 1, and Rodgers was sacked four times for a loss of 25 yards. They also couldn’t run the ball very well. In addition to those two, defensive tackle Mike Daniels is also questionable for Green Bay.

Cooks and the Patriots swamped the Saints, but the biggest victory for the former Saint was that he was the only New England receiver who didn’t wind up limping by the fourth quarter. Injuries kept players like Rob Gronkowski, Phillip Dorsett, and Rex Burkhead from the field in the second half, but Cooks kept trucking, emerging as the team’s top target.

Cooks earned only four targets and caught two after being shadowed by rookie cornerback Marshon Lattimore all afternoon. He added a pair of carries — one a 7-yard loss as the Patriots ground down the clock late in the fourth quarter — to play a minor, but important, role for the winning team. It may not have been the comeback performance he’d hoped for, but Cooks’ ability to stay healthy may have been his greatest contribution for the Patriots.
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Fowler pushes his arm back to ward off King.

The latter is probably going to be disregarded because they were both making a bona fide play on the ball and the responsibility of the holding was not clear. Their arms got tangled, but is that a hold? Maybe.

Fowler pushes his arm back to ward off King. Did that cause the entanglement? From the angle of the covering official it’s tough to see and assess cause and responsibility. The best position to see the arm tangle is from the former position of the umpire behind the defensive line, but he’s no longer there.

And if Keenum gets hurt? Minnesota’s backup — technically its fourth-string passer — is Kyle Sloter, a Southern Mississippi wide receiver who spent exactly one season as a starting quarterback after transferring to FCS Northern Colorado.

Panic index: This is fine — if Bradford is back soon. But it’s understandable if Vikings fans are concerned about a knee injury to their quarterback, especially one who has torn his ACL twice. But Zimmer, for one, isn’t ready to concede anything:

As for the restriction at the top of the route, given the push-off by Fowler and the amount of hand-fighting that goes on between receivers and defenders at the snap, it’s more than understandable why any official would look off of this less than two yards deep.

Yet there’s one more element to this play that no one has talked about. As the ball is in the air, tight end A.J. Derby blocks King in the back.
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Week 2 takeaways on Chris Carson, J.J. Nelson, Derrick Henry and more

The Seattle Seahawks have found their No. 1 back in rookie Chris Carson after watching him post 100 total yards on 21 touches against the San Francisco 49ers. But what should fantasy owners expect out of Carson, and how does he fit the offensive identity in Seattle? Let’s break down what Carson brings to Pete Carroll’s team and also take a look at Javorius Allen’s value in Baltimore, J.J. Nelson as a must-add this week and the expected boost in volume for Carolina Panthers wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin. Here are my Week 2 fantasy takeaways.

Jay Cutler completed 73 percent of his passes and threw zero interceptions in his debut with the Dolphins. He might not have racked up yardage, but he also didn’t make the big mistake. With Jay Ajayi continuing to power through defenses, Cutler playing it safe might be all Miami needs.

The offense is struggling right now, but if the Giants can fix their protection issues, Eli Manning could get going quickly. Manning is completing 77 percent of his passes when he isn’t pressured this season, and that’s without the help of Odell Beckham Jr. at 100 percent. Just give it (and Eli) time.

Deshaun Watson’s rushing ability could be enough to keep the Texans’ offense moving as he develops his passing skills. The rookie has scrambled for a league-high 82 yards so far this season, including a game-changing 49-yard score Thursday night.
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