NFL tight end rankings 2020: George Kittle rules, Rob Gronkowski returns to top 10

  • NFL American Football

    The NFL tight end landscape welcomes back Rob Gronkowski in 2020. "Gronk" returns for his age 31 season with a new team, the Buccaneers, after taking a year off from the end of his Patriots tenure.

    Reunited with Tom Brady in a loaded passing offseason, Gronkowski can be a refreshed, highly impactful player. But while he was gone, a younger wave of tight ends started to flex more in 2020. In the same blocking, receiving and fun-loving spirit is George Kittle, catching passes and making big plays for Gronk's former teammate, Jimmy Garoppolo.

    As a future Hall of Famer, Gronk is worthy of going right back into the top 10. But with the position in a state of more promising transition, he doesn't land back near the top with both some established and emerging younger options.

    MORE: The best and worst starting QBs for the 2020 season

    Here's ranking the best tight ends in the league, from Kittle to a potenital comeback player of the year:

    NFL tight end rankings 2020

    (Getty Images) https://images.daznservices.com/di/library/sporting_news/95/95/george-kittle-021919-getty-ftrjpg_17gtmc6hgvfvf187ndnhn5j0pk.jpg?t=1876051818&w=500&quality=80

    1. George Kittle, 49ers

    Kittle being on the losing side of Super Bowl 54 doesn't change the fact he's the game's best all-around tight end, better t[......]

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    Dolphins OC Chan Gailey takes fall for Tua Tagovailoa's tough end to 2020

  • NFL American Football Dolphins

    Miami Dolphins offensive coordinator Chan Gailey has resigned, the team announced on Wednesday.

    Gailey, previously a head coach with the Dallas Cowboys and the Buffalo Bills, was hired as an assistant to Brian Flores in January 2020.

    It gave Gailey the opportunity to work with former Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa in his rookie NFL season.

    The Dolphins missed out on the playoffs thanks to their heavy defeat to the Bills in Week 17, but Flores suggested earlier this week his entire coaching staff would return next year.

    A subsequent statement confirmed Gailey's departure, however, and Flores said: "I want to thank Chan for all of his hard work and dedication in what was a unique year.

    "He played an important role on the staff and in the development of our young roster. I wish him all the best."

    Tagovailoa, the fifth overall pick in the 2020 draft, had seen his college career ended prematurely due to a dislocated hip and started the year a夜网论坛s backup to Ryan Fitzpatrick.

    The QB made his debut off the bench against the New York Jets in Week 6 before starting for[......]

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    LSU sophomore Jordan Mickey declares for NBA Draft

  • NBA NCAA Basketball Basketball

    LSU sophomore Jordan Mickey announced Tuesday that he is entering the 2015 NBA Draft.

    The 6-8 forward was a first-team All-Southeastern Conference selection this season. He averaged 15.4 points and 9.9 rebounds for the 22-11 Tigers. He will finish his college career with 219 blocked shots, second in school history behind Shaquille O'Neal's 412. He led the nation with 3.64 blocks per game in 2014-15.

    MORE: Latest Mock Draft | Top 11 NBA careers by NCAA Tournament MOPs

    "Today I will be announcing that I will forego (sic) my final two years of eligibility here at LSU and enter my name in the 2015 NBA Draft," Mickey said in a text message to media outlets that was published by the university's sports information department. "After discussing my options with my family, I believe this is the time to move on and accept new challenges at the 夜网论坛next level."

    LSU is in position to recover quickly from Mickey's exit. It has the sixth-ranked recruiting class for 2015 according to ESPN, led by by the No. 1 overall prospect, 6-9 forward Ben Simmons.

     

    [......]

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    Blind teenager Marlana VanHoose inspires with national anthem stardom

  • NBA

    Marlana VanHoose stands at center court of Quicken Loans Arena before Game 6 of the NBA Finals, ready to perform “The Star-Spangled Banner.” The spotlight reflects off her sunglasses. She is wearing a customized No. 1 Cavaliers jersey, with her last name on the back.

    Marlana has done this before. You can tell.

    MORE: Watch her tear the house down at Game 6 | Must-see NBA Finals photos

    She calls the national anthem her favorite song to sing. Her powerful rendition at University of Kentucky basketball games in 2012 went viral and presented many similar opportunities to perform. She’s sung at several NBA and MLB games, and she will sing the national anthem before the Home Run Derby at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati on July 13.

    Marlana is an expert on the anthem because she’s been singing it her whole life, a story the 19-year-old and her mother, Teresa VanHoose, recently shared with Sporting News. It's her trust in God, she says, that made it all possible.

    'Gospel music was my lullaby'

    Marlana was born with a virus, Cytomeglovirus, which left her blind. She was given a year to live. The virus healed when she was 1, which was shortly before she started humming “Jesus Loves Me,” which was shortly before she could talk. 

    At 2 years old, she was diagnosed with mild cerebral palsy. 

    “Gospel music calmed me down when I was a baby,” Marlana says. “Gospel music was my lullaby and it sparked my love. I could hear it in[......]

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    Ty Lawson says Stephen Curry coasted on defense in playoffs

  • NBA Basketball

    If the Rockets meet up with the Warriors in the playoffs again, Ty Lawson plans on making Stephen Curry work on defense.

    Houston’s point guard says he plans on making the reigning MVP work harder on defense than he had to last season when Golden State beat his new squad 4-2 in the Western Conference finals. 

    MORE: NBA Utopia: Should we crown more than one champ? | Curry discusses free agency

    “Steph Curry needed someone to go back at him,” Lawson told Yahoo Sports. “I thought Steph was just chillin’ on defense – and then going crazy on offense. He looked like he was just putting shots up and not working so much on the defensive end. He would just come down and hit three or four 3s. He can shoot when he’s got his legs under him."

    Lawson arrived in Houston via a July trade from Denver after off-the-夜网论坛court troubles and the selection of Emmanuel Mudiay made him expendable. He joins a backcourt that already includes James Harden, last year’s runner-up for MVP to Curry. 

    “I’m not saying, ‘Oh, I’m going to stop Steph,' but just make him work harder at the other end. I saw that in the Cavs series too," Lawson said. "He wasn’t really working at the other end."

    Lawson averaged 15.2 points to go with 9.6 assists per game last year, so he has the stats to back up his claim. 

    [......]

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    President Barack Obama to attend Bulls-Cavs season opener

  • NBA null Basketball null 夜网论坛

    Barack Obama, a devoted Bulls fan, has reportedly flexed his presidential muscles and landed tickets to the Bulls vs. Cavaliers season opener Tuesday night, ESPN.com reported.

    Obama’s plans haven’t been officially disclosed, but the players are already talking about playing in front of the country’s most powerful basketball fan.

    MORE: Predictions for 2015-16 NBA season

    "Tonight it'll be cool to see the president there," Kevin Love said. "I don't know who he'll be with, but you can tell he's going to be in the building by all the suits running around."

    Obama, who met with the World Cup champion U.S. women’s soccer team earlier Tuesday, is flying to Chicago to to deliver a speech at the annual conference for the International Association of Chiefs of Police.

    LeBron James partnered[......]

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    Warriors outlast Celtics in double overtime to stay perfect

  • NBA null null Basketball

    The streak was threatened, but is still intact.

    The Warriors beat the Celtics 124-119 in double overtime Friday, improving to 24-0 on the season and winning their 28th consecutive regular-season game.

    MORE: Bold predictions for Warriors | Deep bench big reason for unbeaten record

    Stephen Curry finished with a game-high 38 points and added 11 rebounds while going a career best 14 of 14 from the free-throw line for a Warriors team playing without Klay Thompson (sprained ankle). Draymond Gre夜网论坛en scored 24 points, grabbed 11 rebounds, dished out eight assists and came up with five blocks and five steals in nearly 50 minutes of court time. 

    "It's just pressure-packed and intense every possession. It was just about who wanted it more," Curry said after the game. "It was a huge win for us. Most people probably thought we were going to lose." 

    MORE: Globetrotters have fun with Warriors' streak

    Curry's 3-point basket with 46 seconds remaining in regulation tied the game at 103, forcing the first overtime. He later scored to force a second overtime. 

    Kelly Olynyk led the Celtics with 28 points.

    Golden State has not lost a regular-season[......]

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    Grizzlies' Matt Barnes suspended for fight with Derek Fisher over estranged wife

  • NBA

    The scuffle was in October, but the punishment finally has come for Matt Barnes.

    The Grizzlies forward will be suspended two games for a physical altercation with Knicks coach Derek Fisher, Yahoo Sports reports. The 35-year-old likely will miss games against the Heat and Jazz as a result.

    MORE: 15 most overpaid players in the NBA | Bad timing for Derek Fisher

    The incident occurred during training camp at the home of Barnes' estranged wife and Fisher's girlfriend, Gloria G夜网论坛ovan. Fisher was at Govan's house in Southern California, having flown in for a day off during Knicks training camp. Barnes reportedly received a text message from one of his children and went to the house to investigate.

    What resulted, according to the New York Post, was a scuffle that included Barnes spitting on Govan and shoving Fisher. 

    "What happened Saturday is a personal matter at this point," Barnes told reporters after the incident. "Being around this league long enough, I know that my personal concern is always my kids, their health, happiness and safety. Outside of that, I'm here to focus on basketball."

    MORE: Grizzlies' Tony Allen explains why Kobe calls him toughest defender

    Fisher and Barnes played together for the Lakers for two seasons and were friends at one point, Barnes said.

    [......]

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    ESPN's Sage Steele tells Arcade Fire singer what to do with his political opinion

  • NBA

    Sage Steele is my new hero.

    The ESPN anchor totally shut down Arcade Fire frontman Win Butler after the self-absorbed singer tried to lecture us American rubes on the glories of the Canadian health care system.

    The fun started when Butler, lead singer for the Montreal-based band, won Celebrity MVP honors after scoring 14 points for Team Drake in Toronto. The singer immediately launched into his anti-American screed.

    MORE: Ranking every player in the All-Star Game | History of Canadian hoops

    “I just wanted to say, it’s an election year in the U.S., the U.S. has a lot it can learn from Canada, health care, taking caring of people,” said Butler, who was born in California and raised in Texas before heading north.

    Steele was having none of it. She didn't stand there with a dopey smile plastered to her face and allow Butler to hijack ESPN's air. She pulled the microphone away -- and ended the interview. 

    “We’re talking about celebrity stuff, not politics,” said Steele.

    I say Bravo.

    Steele's trying to wrap up a live broadcast for a feel-good event — and here comes another pampered celebrity pushing his own political views. She should have taken back his trophy for being a horse's ass.

    Isn't this why TV ratings keep falling for Hollywood and music awards shows? Aren't we all sick of insanely rich, spoiled actors, singers and celebrities ripping a country that's been better to them than almost anybody else? And acting like[......]

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    NBA Draft bust once came off the bench for his prison team

  • NBA Basketball

    Chris Washburn was the third overall pick in the 1986 NBA Draft, which was likely one of the highest points of his life. But problems with drugs would derail his basketball career — and his life.

    The former NC State standout told his story on the  Brown and Scoop podcast earlier this week and provided an insight as to what went wrong. If you're not aware, Washburn received a lifetime ban from the NBA in 1989 after failing three drug tests in three years.

    MORE: Every team's worst NBA Draft mistake

    “I kind of lost focus," he said on the podcast. "When you’re in the NBA, you can’t lose focus. I started to enjoy the party life more than the practice life. Sad to say my stint was very short. That was the part where I lost the edge to compete again when I got to the NBA.”

    Very short, indeed. Washburn played in only 72 games over two seasons and averaged 3.1 points and 2.4 rebounds per game. He faded into obscurity, playing for minor-league basketball teams before eventually being out of the sport completely.

    That's when life got really rough.

    Washburn said he ended up living in abandoned buildings and crack houses, eating out of trash cans. But rock bottom would come when he faced 12- and 13-夜网论坛month sentences for drug-related offenses from 1991-94.

    “My lowest came when I was in prison," he said. "They asked me to play on[......]

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