Saturday, June 16, 2018
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

NFL news and notes

Browns put up permanent tribute to great Jim Brown

CLEVELAND — In a Browns season filled with uncertainty, one thing is certain: Fans still love Jim Brown and cling to the greatness he brought to the field.

All it took was a glimpse of the 80-year-old former running back making his way to his statue, covered in Browns logoed cloth, some three hours before kickoff to erupt into cheers.

One man yelled "Touchdown Jimmy Brown" while a woman yelled "We love you Jimmy."

With one hand resting on an ornate cane, Brown gave the adoring crowd a quick wave.

Brown's statue is the first of a former Browns player ever put up at FirstEnergy Stadium. The importance was not lost on dozens of former Browns players gathered for the team's home opener and alumni weekend. Even coach Hue Jackson broke from his pregame routine, ducking outside the locker room to see the ceremony.

Looking at the bronze statue, which stands 11 feet and weighs more than 2,000 pounds, Brown joked that it is a fair "representation" of him.

"This is a fantastic moment for me," he said. "It is a great moment because I feel it throughout my body, particularly my heart, my mind."

Rams back for real in Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES — When the Rams poured down the tunnel in their blue-and-yellow-gold vintage uniforms and emerged in the 90-degree California sunshine, a sold-out Coliseum crowd loosed a long-suppressed Sunday scream.

After two decades of fan frustration and a year of anticipation building to this regular-season home opener, Los Angeles really, truly had pro football again — and a win over Seattle to boot.

"That was really, really cool," Rams quarterback Case Keenum said. "I made sure, in the tunnel and as I'm running out, just to look around, to savor that moment and remember it. I'm going to write stuff down, because I want to remember that forever."

The Rams hadn't played a football game that mattered in Southern California since Dec. 24, 1994, when they left Angel Stadium in Anaheim and moved to St. Louis. Few pro sports franchises would choose their first game in a new hometown to wear vintage uniforms, but the Rams aren't the normal new kids on any block.

"Now it's really real," said Dan Walsh, a 47-year-old fan in an old Jim Everett jersey who grew up in Riverside and rooted for the Rams over his brother's Raiders. "The preseason games were fun, but that was exhibition football, which is terrible. This is the real deal. This is what we were all waiting for."

The Rams are still three years from moving into their billion-dollar new home in Inglewood.

More anthem: True to his word, Brandon Marshall of the Broncos took a knee again for the national anthem. Marshall has received plenty of support and criticism over his decision to join 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick and other NFL players in a cry for social change. Marshall, who has lost some endorsements, also met with Denver police Chief Robert White last week to discuss his call for better police training and treatment of minorities. Marshall and Kaepernick were college teammates at Nevada.

Injuries: Dolphins running back Arian Foster, a former league rushing champion with the Texans, left the game in New England with a groin injury and was ruled out for the second half. … Panthers running back Jonathan Stewart left with a hamstring injury in the first quarter against the 49ers. … Broncos linebacker DeMarcus Ware broke his right ulna bone against the Colts. His status was unknown.

Times wires

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Ex-Buc Kellen Winslow pleads not guilty to kidnapping, rape charges

Ex-Buc Kellen Winslow pleads not guilty to kidnapping, rape charges

Times wiresVISTA, Calif. – Former Bucs and Hurricanes tight end Kellen Winslow Jr. was jailed without bail Friday after pleading not guilty to nine counts of kidnapping, rape and other charges.If convicted on all counts, Winslow, 34, could face...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Bucs still don’t know when Jameis Winston will throw another pass that matters

Bucs still don’t know when Jameis Winston will throw another pass that matters

TAMPA — The last pass thrown by Jameis Winston in a regular-season game was his best. The perfectly arced, 39-yard strike to Chris Godwin for a touchdown with nine seconds left gave the Bucs a 31-24 win over New Orleans at Raymond James Stadium...
Published: 06/15/18
Bucs busy on next Ray-Jay renovation with East Stadium Club

Bucs busy on next Ray-Jay renovation with East Stadium Club

The first Bucs home game of the 2018 season is still three months off, but the franchise is busy getting Raymond James Stadium ready with the fourth phase of its $160 million renovation, highlighted by a new East Stadium Club.Construction continues t...
Published: 06/15/18
Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Gerald McCoy sounds off

Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Gerald McCoy sounds off

The Bucs wrap up minicamp as Gerald McCoy sounds off on the team getting help for him, defensive line coach Brentson Buckner yelling at the veteran defensive tackle and advice for the young players who now have five weeks off before training camp.Plu...
Published: 06/15/18
Gerald McCoy: ‘Stop saying Gerald got help. No, the Bucs got help’

Gerald McCoy: ‘Stop saying Gerald got help. No, the Bucs got help’

TAMPA — On the last day of minicamp, DT Gerald McCoy made it clear that the new additions to the defensive line are what the entire team needed, not just himself."It's not about me. It's about the team," McCoy said of the addition of five new l...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/15/18
Bucs hit summer break with optimism, eager for training camp

Bucs hit summer break with optimism, eager for training camp

TAMPA — This week's three-day minicamp was the final push in the Bucs' offseason, with about six weeks now until the team reconvenes in late July for training camp and the real preamble to the 2018 season.So what, if anything, can be gleaned fr...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/15/18
Maybe 2018 is the year the Bucs take that step forward

Maybe 2018 is the year the Bucs take that step forward

TAMPA — The Bucs wrapped up a three-day minicamp on Thursday.“I’m going on vacation,’’ Bucs coach Dirk Koetter said.The next time we see the Bucs will be in five weeks. Just around the corner. That’s when, official...
Published: 06/14/18
Updated: 06/15/18
Ex-Buc Kellen Winslow arrested on suspicion of rape, kidnapping

Ex-Buc Kellen Winslow arrested on suspicion of rape, kidnapping

Times wiresSAN DIEGO – Former Bucs and Hurricanes tight end Kellen Winslow Jr. was arrested Thursday on suspicion of multiple sex-crimes-related charges, including two counts of rape, the San Diego County Sheriff's Department said.The departmen...
Published: 06/14/18
Sealed and delivered: Bucs RB Ronald Jones signs rookie contract

Sealed and delivered: Bucs RB Ronald Jones signs rookie contract

The Bucs' 2018 draft class is now all in the fold, with running back Ronald Jones, second-rounder from USC, signing his rookie deal Thursday.Jones, who won't turn 21 until August after the Bucs go to training camp, was the last of Tampa Bay's eight d...
Published: 06/14/18
Gerald McCoy: Relax, Buckner yelling is just ‘coaching’

Gerald McCoy: Relax, Buckner yelling is just ‘coaching’

A video clip last week showed new Bucs defensive line coach Brentson Buckner yelling at Gerald McCoy after he was drawn offsides during practice, and the Pro Bowl defensive tackle made it clear on Thursday: There's nothing in any way wrong with that....
Published: 06/14/18