Monday, December 18, 2017
Sports

Ex-Gator Harvin making NFL return with Bills

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — Retirement proved to be temporary for Percy Harvin, the once-dynamic playmaker and former Florida star who is back in the NFL and returning to Buffalo to reinforce the Bills' injury-depleted group of receivers.

Using the past six months to rest his mind and rehab numerous injuries that led him to walk away from football in April, Harvin was back on the practice field Tuesday, shortly after signing a one-year contract.

"It felt good, just the smell of the grass again, the smell of the pads when I walked in the locker room," he said. "Man, when you're away from it, you miss so much of those things."

Then, breaking into a smile as beads of sweat dribbled down his forehead, he added: "The time I took, it was well needed. But it was time to go back to work."

Harvin returns to the team he essentially walked out on a year ago, when he elected not to travel overseas for Buffalo's game at London. He blamed that decision on the frustrations he felt being in constant pain from a knee injury that was also affecting his hip. He has had trouble staying healthy, including issues with migraines, dating to his days with the Gators.

Limited to five games last season, Harvin, 28, had 19 catches for 218 yards and a touchdown before being placed on the season-ending injured reserve .

He said he had knee surgery in January and spent much of his time off working out. The only question mark is when Harvin might be ready to play.

"We'll see. I think I could," Harvin said, when asked if he might be available to play Monday night, when the Bills travel to play Seattle. He cautioned he wasn't going to rush back and risk being hurt, even if it meant missing a game against one of his former teams.

Replay controversy: A replay malfunction prevented a review of a fumble that resulted in the Panthers' first touchdown against the Cardinals, the Associated Press reported. The call would have been overturned to an incomplete pass had the equipment been working, according to the report.

Eagle charged: Eagles wide receiver Josh Huff was charged with possession of a 9 mm handgun without a permit and having a small amount of marijuana after he was pulled over for speeding, according to a court complaint. He was pulled over on the New Jersey side of the Walt Whitman Bridge around 11 a.m. Tuesday. It wasn't immediately clear if Huff had posted his $25,000 bail.

Pro Bowler suspended: Washington left tackle Trent Williams, a four-time Pro Bowl pick, was suspended four games for violating the league's substance abuse policy. It's his second four-game ban; he tested positive multiple times for marijuana during the 2011 season.

Chiefs: Running back Jamaal Charles went back on injured reserve with swelling in his surgically repaired right knee, AP reported.

Jets: They claimed Knile Davis off waivers from the Packers, then made plans to cut him hours later when they reached an agreement with C.J. Spiller. New York plans to sign Spiller today, the Associated Press reported, and will release Davis, the former Chiefs running back released by Green Bay on Monday.

Lions: Defensive end Armonty Bryant was suspended three games for violating the NFL's policy on substances of abuse.

Vikings: Coach Mike Zimmer was recovering from what the team called a "minor medical procedure" the morning after Minnesota's 20-10 loss at Chicago. Zimmer's regular day-after-game news conference was canceled on Tuesday.

Comments
Bucs picked up club option on Jason Lichtís contract for 2018 earlier this year, but GMís future still not clear

Bucs picked up club option on Jason Lichtís contract for 2018 earlier this year, but GMís future still not clear

Bucs general manager Jason Licht did not receive a contract extension after the team went 9-7 last season. Instead, the Glazer family which owns the Bucs decided to pick up a one-year club option on Licht’s contract for 2018. That happened some...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Jim Leavitt isnít coming back to Florida after all

Jim Leavitt isnít coming back to Florida after all

Former USF coach Jim Leavitt isn't coming back to the state after all.Sports Illustrated reported late Sunday evening that Leavitt will remain at Oregon as its defensive coordinator – a position that will earn him a cool $1.7 million annually. ...
Updated: 4 hours ago
The future of Dirk Koetter

The future of Dirk Koetter

Three games. That's how many the Bucs have left. Can the same be said for Dirk Koetter's head coaching career?The answer to that question might be determined by what happens in those three games.If the Bucs lose the rest – and that is more like...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Bulls expected to sign at least 6 (and possibly more) this week

Bulls expected to sign at least 6 (and possibly more) this week

At least a half-dozen high school seniors — and possibly more — are expected to sign with USF when the NCAA's new 72-hour early signing period for football commences Wednesday.Homestead South Dade TE Chris Carter Jr., a three-star prospec...
Updated: 3 hours ago
HomeTeam 25: Girls basketball rankings for Tampa Bay

HomeTeam 25: Girls basketball rankings for Tampa Bay

1. Lakewood (10-0)This week: Friday at OsceolaThe buzz: The Spartans have been blowing teams out, but things will get harder over the winter break when they play in the Florida Prospects tournament in Orlando. Senior forward Toi Smith has missed a fe...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Bucs-Falcons: Predicting tonightís Monday Night Football Game

Bucs-Falcons: Predicting tonightís Monday Night Football Game

MONDAY NIGHT FRIGHTS Tom Jones, @tomwjones: The Falcons are playing for something. The Bucs are playing out the string. And, well, the Falcons are way better than Tampa Bay. On paper, this game won't be close. It won't be on the field either. If the ...
Updated: 3 hours ago
The Falcons blew a 28-3 lead, but so did the Bucs

The Falcons blew a 28-3 lead, but so did the Bucs

The Falcons blew a 28-3 lead in last season's Super Bowl, and no one will let them forget it.Including the Bucs.During a playful exchange on Twitter in May, Tampa Bay trolled its division rivals by posting a photo of Vernon Hargreaves, No. 28, and Ja...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Bucs Ring of Honor: Which current player will make it?

Bucs Ring of Honor: Which current player will make it?

With Jon Gruden becoming the 11th member of the Bucs’ Ring of Honor tonight, what about current members of the Bucs?Bucs roundtable question: What current Bucs player not named Gerald McCoy is most likely to wind up in the Ring of Honor. Member...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Bucs defense vs. Matt Ryan: What to expect tonight

Bucs defense vs. Matt Ryan: What to expect tonight

Atlanta and Matt Ryan are in town to face the Bucs on Monday Night Football, so it's a chance to revisit a quarterback Tampa Bay knows well, with 19 meetings over the past 10 seasons. A couple of talking points for tonight's game and the challenge ah...
Updated: 1 hour ago
ESPN chief Skipper resigns, cites substance abuse problem

ESPN chief Skipper resigns, cites substance abuse problem

NEW YORK ó John Skipper, president of the sprawling ESPN sports network, said Monday that he is resigning to treat a substance abuse problem.Skipperís sudden announcement will force the Walt Disney Co.-owned network to search for new leadership at a ...
Updated: 1 hour ago