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    Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson has apologized “to all the women I have impacted” after he was accused of sexual misconduct during massage therapy sessions in Texas. Watson is facing a potential year-long suspension. He spoke before Cleveland’s exhibition opener in Jacksonville, his first game since Jan. 3, 2021, with the Houston Texans. Watson was suspended six games by independent arbiter Sue L. Robinson, who concluded he violated the league’s personal conduct policy and lacked remorse. Watson acknowledged he's made mistakes and that there are decisions he would like to have back.

      New York Jets quarterback Zach Wilson injured his right knee in the first quarter in Friday night’s preseason game against the Philadelphia Eagles. After going back to pass, Wilson was flushed out of the pocket and scrambled to his right for 7 yards, but went down after the play. He appeared to injure his knee when planting to cut on Philadelphia’s grass field. After being checked by trainers, Wilson limped to the sideline on his own power before heading to the locker room.

        Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins has tested positive for COVID-19 and won't play in the team’s first preseason game. Coach Kevin O’Connell confirmed the diagnosis at practice. Cousins was absent for a second straight day after feeling ill and being sent home. Cousins has “very minimal” symptoms, according to O’Connell. Sean Mannion and Kellen Mond will split time in the exhibition Sunday at Las Vegas. Cousins was unlikely to play much if at all if he wasn’t sick. There are no other quarterbacks on the roster.

          The Patriots used their first exhibition outing on Thursday night to evaluate the new faces on their roster with most of their starters watching from the sideline after being given the night off. After struggling to find productive contributors via the draft in recent years, the top two picks of the Patriots' 2022 rookie class seem poised to end that streak. Left guard Cole Strange and receiver Tyquan Thornton had solid debuts during New England’s 23-21 loss to the New York Giants, a positive sign for an offense that is still evolving after former offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels’ offseason departure.

            One of the biggest surprises of the first two weeks of the New York Giants’ training camp has been the running game. Saquon Barkley is once again close to returning to his top form. The ACL injury is almost two years removed and the No. 2 pick overall in the 2018 draft is running with conviction and confidence. The running game has shown depth and it has a line to run behind. New York ran for 177 yards on 33 carries in its 23-21 preseason win over the Patriots on Thursday night in Brian Daboll’s debut as head coach.

              The Tennessee Titans have a competition for the job backing up Ryan Tannehill. They also want to see rookie Malik Willis throwing more. Coach Mike Vrabel pulled Willis two plays into their first drive of the third quarter after the quarterback scrambled instead of throwing in a 23-10 loss Thursday night to Baltimore. Willis showed off his legs running for a touchdown. He also had a 48-yard pass play. Vrabel said Friday they wanted Willis to throw and the rookie didn't. Vrabel says he's sure Willis will rip it the next time he has a chance.

                Bobby Wagner is still getting used to the fact he’s now working with Sean McVay, not against him. After five years of trying to shut down McVay’s offense two or three times per season for the Seattle Seahawks, Wagner is now making the Los Angeles Rams better. The Rams signed the 32-year-old Wagner to be the game-changing inside linebacker they’ve decidedly lacked in recent years. But they also signed the six-time All-Pro for the impact he’ll have across the organization, and the signs are already showing.

                Ken Dorsey has the self-awareness to appreciate the role of being a first-time offensive coordinator taking over a high-powered Josh Allen-led Buffalo Bills offense. Dorsey laughs while saying there's some pent-up angst he likes to release in constantly pacing the sidelines between calling plays during practice. The 41-year-old is accustomed to the challenges of being in and sharing the spotlight since college. He went 38-2 in quarterbacking a star-studded Miami Hurricanes team that won the 2001 season national championship. Dorsey is also familiar with Buffalo, having spent the previous three years as the team's quarterbacks coach before being promoted after Brian Daboll was hired to coach the New York Giants.

                Las Vegas Raiders rookie running back Zamir White has been fighting since before he was born. Affectionately known as Zeus, the 225-pound power back weighed 1 pound when his mother was six months pregnant when doctors wanted to terminate the pregnancy. White was born with a cleft lip and cleft palate and was given two weeks to live. He tore his right ACL as a senior in high school and then his left ACL after arriving in Georgia, all within a year. He's now in a competition for a final spot on the Raiders' opening day roster after being drafted with the 122nd pick. White opened the preseason with 52 yards on 11 carries and 23 yards from three receptions in a 27-11 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars in the Hall of Fame Game.

                Tyler Huntley went 16 of 18 for 110 yards and a touchdown in the first half, and the Baltimore Ravens extended their record streak of preseason victories to 21 with a 23-10 win over the Tennessee Titans. Rookie quarterback Malik Willis ran for a touchdown for the Titans, but Huntley put Baltimore ahead to stay with a 14-yard scoring strike to Shemar Bridges in the final minute of the second quarter. Lamar Jackson and Derrick Henry were among the standouts who didn’t play.

                Graham Gano hit a 24-yard field goal as time expired, Daniel Jones was solid in limited work and the New York Giants beat the New England Patriots 23-21 on Thursday night to open the preseason. The Giants gave Brian Daboll a victory in his head coaching debut against his predecessor and the team he started his NFL career with.  Despite some breakouts by the offensive line, the Giants moved the ball well, with Jones completing 6 of 10 passes for 69 yards. Brian Hoyer and Bailey Zappe each threw touchdown passes for New England

                Baker Mayfield and Sam Darnold will each play one series Saturday night when the Carolina Panthers face the Washington Commanders in their preseason opener, according to coach Matt Rhule. Rhule would not say who’ll start at quarterback. Rhule said he wants to get Mayfield and Darnold about six to eight plays each. Rookie Matt Corral and P.J. Walker are expected to see most of the reps at quarterback. Rhule said most of the team’s starters will play between eight and 15 plays.

                Michael Davis went into last year’s preseason games knowing that he was going to be one of the starting cornerbacks for the Los Angeles Chargers. As the sixth-year defender prepares for Saturday’s contest against the defending Super Bowl champion Los Angeles Rams, his spot on this year’s team is very much up in the air. Davis had the worst season of his career last year on a Chargers’ defense that had trouble getting off the field and keeping teams out of the end zone after halftime. Coach Brandon Staley and general manager Tom Telesco revamped the defense during the offseason, including signing cornerbacks J.C. Jackson and Bryce Callahan.


                Content by Brand Ave. Studios. The annual Amazon Prime Day is coming July 12 and 13, and per usual will offer discounts on many of your favorite things.

                Content by Brand Ave. Studios. The annual Amazon Prime Day is coming July 12 and 13, and per usual will offer discounts on many of your favorite things.

                Police in Las Vegas say former NFL running back Marshawn Lynch was asleep and smelled of alcohol when he was found in his damaged sports car this week and arrested on suspicion of driving while intoxicated. Lynch’s attorneys responded Thursday with a statement saying Lynch was in a parked car, not driving, and a DUI charge won't stick. The arresting officer says police found markings suggesting Lynch’s black Shelby GT500 hit sidewalks before stopping in an industrial part of downtown Las Vegas. The 7:30 a.m. Tuesday arrest came after the Seattle Seahawks announced Monday that Lynch had been hired as a team broadcast special correspondent. In 12 NFL seasons, Lynch also played for the Buffalo Bills and Oakland Raiders.

                The Seattle Seahawks' preseason opener at Pittsburgh could go a long way toward determining who begins the season as their starting quarterback. Geno Smith and Drew Lock are battling to replace Russell Wilson, who was traded to Denver in March. Lock seemed to gain some momentum during a scrimmage last weekend. But Smith remains the leader in the competition, in part because of his history filling in for Wilson. Coach Pete Carroll says he's interested to see what both do with their preseason opportunities.

                The Dallas Cowboys and Denver Broncos got chippy in their joint practice ahead of their preseason opener Saturday night. There were a half dozen skirmishes between Denver's defensive players and Dallas' offensive players. But nobody got kicked out of practice and most of the tensions only led to pushing and shoving. Dak Prescott and Russell Wilson both had big moments during the dual workout but neither quarterback is expected to play Saturday night.

                A person with direct knowledge of the decision tells The Associated Press that Cleveland Browns quarterback Deshaun Watson would accept an eight-game suspension and $5 million fine to avoid missing the entire season. Watson is facing a potential year-long ban for sexual misconduct. He would agree to a lesser penalty, said the person who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the case. An independent arbitrator suspended Watson, accused of lewd sexual behavior during massage appointments with two dozen women, six games for violating the league’s personal conduct policy. The league appealed, seeking a longer ban. Watson is scheduled to start the Browns preseason opener Friday in Jacksonville.

                Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin announced Mitch Trubisky as the starting quarterback Thursday for the team’s preseason opener Saturday at home against Seattle. Trubisky, the No. 2 overall pick in 2017, is in a battle with veteran holdover Mason Rudolph and Kenny Pickett, the Steelers’ first-round selection in 2022. The group is tasked with replacing retired two-time Super Bowl winner Ben Roethlisberger.

                New Orleans Saints first-round draft choices Chris Olave and Trevor Penning are looking to parlay standout performances in their first NFL training camp into promising preseason debuts. Olave was taken 11th overall out of Ohio State. Penning was selected 19th overall out of Northern Iowa. Their first live action against another team comes Saturday night in Houston. Olave says he senses the combination of speed and sudden change of direction that served him well in college will translate at the pro level. Penning says he loves the idea that fans may be inclined to zero in on the way he plays against the Texans instead of merely following the ball.

                Minnesota Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins has been sidelined by an unspecified illness. He was sent home after reporting he wasn’t feeling well and held out of practice on Thursday. Coach Kevin O’Connell confirmed the Vikings were evaluating Cousins for COVID-19. Minnesota’s first exhibition game is Sunday at Las Vegas. It’s possible Cousins would skip the trip considering established starters are not expected to play much, if at all. The coaches were still determining their playing time plan for the game.

                The contract standoff between the Chicago Bears and Roquan Smith continued Thursday with the star linebacker watching practice from the sideline and new coach Matt Eberflus saying he expects healthy players participating on the field. The Bears removed Smith from the physically unable to perform list on Wednesday a day after he went public with a trade request. The move by the team opened up the possibility of fines for missing practices. Eberflus declined to discuss what actions the team might take. But he made it clear he expects healthy players to practice. Smith has accused the Bears of using bad-faith tactics during negotiations for a contract extension.

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