Browsing: nfl

Eddie LeBaron, a long-serving NFL quarterback known as “The Littlest General” thanks to his 5-foot-7 frame and stellar military record as a Marine officer during the Korean War, died Wednesday in Stockton, California. He was 85. LeBaron earned his commission in 1950 after graduating from the University of the Pacific, where his two-way play (QB on offense, safety on defense) netted him All-America honors as a senior. The LeBaron-led 1949 team went 11-0 and averaged 52 points per game, according to his online bio hosted by the College Football Hall of Fame, where he was enshrined in 1980. LeBaron signed with the…

To older football fans, Chuck Bednarik was “Concrete Charlie,” the last of the two-way pros who played on two championship teams with the Philadelphia Eagles and hit Frank Gifford so hard in 1960 that the New York Giants’ superstar didn’t play again until 1962. To a younger generation, he was the gruff throwback who once said Deion Sanders, a two-way star in a different era, “couldn’t tackle my wife.” He was a grandfatherly figure who was once approached by a video game maker for permission to use his likeness, which he granted only after the agency “actually had to explain that he would not…

Former Army Black Knight Collin Mooney, the team’s single-season rushing leader, rose from the Tennessee Titans’ practice squad to the game-day roster late last season, playing in his first two NFL games and even making the stat sheet — five carries, 19 yards. Former Air Force Falcon Ben Garland recorded 115 tackles as a collegiate defensive lineman and spent all of 2012 in that same position with the Denver Broncos practice squad, only to transfer to offensive guard in preseason workouts this year in a move designed to improve his chance to make the 53-man game-day roster. Despite Mooney’s game…

Aircraft carriers aren’t strangers to sporting events or to visits from NFL stars. But getting both at once is a bit of a rarity. The San Diego Chargers staged a walk-through practice on the flight deck of the carrier Ronald Reagan on Wednesday, the day before their final preseason game. Crew members and about 70 Navy kids caught passes and got autographs from players and cheerleaders. The team presented the ship’s crew with an autographed helmet. “Everything that they do for our country, it’s great to give back to them,” tight end Ladarius Green told Chargers.com.  “These guys go through…

Receiver. Running back. Quarterback. Kick returner. Long snapper? Trent Steelman was a dual threat for four seasons as Army’s starting quarterback, rushing his way to the most touchdowns in school history (45) while throwing for more than 2,700 career yards. He got a chance to show his rushing skills during the East-West Shrine Game on Saturday in St. Petersburg, Fla., scoring on a 7-yard dash in the third quarter to give the East team its only touchdown. Then, he lined up at long snapper for the extra point. There’s versatility, and then there’s football’s version of a Swiss Army knife.…

The Denver Broncos waived Air Force Academy grad Ben Garland on Friday, but the defensive tackle might not need to pack his bags just yet. Garland, who recorded a sack in Denver’s preseason-ending 16-13 win over Arizona on Thursday, could end up on the Broncos’ practice squad, according to multiple reports. (UPDATE: The Broncos released their practice squad via Twitter, and Garland’s on it.) Denver and the 31 other NFL clubs had to cut their rosters to 53 players by 9 p.m. Eastern on Friday, but at noon Saturday, the teams can begin building practice squads of up to eight…

What would you pay to see college basketball played on an aircraft carrier in Florida? To see two Division I powerhouse programs work out the kinks in their season-opener? To be part of a sporting event so unique … well, rare … well, different … well, look, it’s becoming a fad and we can’t stop it. At this rate, the UFC will hold a pay-per-view from the well deck of an amphib in six months (Free advice: Brian Stann should headline). We digress. How much would you pay? If you answered less than $500 a pop, you’re out of luck,…

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees has trained with Marines. He’s visited service members in the war zone, in his backyard and in places few visitors, much less Super Bowl winners, go to. Even his pregame psych-up chant is based on a Marine cadence. So, when he fired off this tweet in response to the NFL’s handling of his teammates’ suspensions stemming from an investigation into bounties being put on opposing players, some might have seen it as out of character: If NFL fans were told there were “weapons of mass destruction” enough times, they’d believe it. But what happens…

NFL stars are doing more in Hawaii this week than catching rays and suiting up for a defense-optional exhibition game at Aloha Stadium. The Pro Bowlers have a full slate of community outreach activities, including a practice on Thursday at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. The event — open only to military families with base access, according to the base newspaper — will include both the AFC and the NFC squads working out at Earhart Field, which has been undergoing improvements since early December. USAA, which has chipped in for some of the field work, also is providing 1,000 tickets to…

For former Marine and current Tennessee Titans fullback Ahmard Hall, 2011 was a year to forget. Unfortunately for Hall, he literally has trouble remembering the very end of his season because of the concussion he sustained in fourth quarter of the Titans’ final game. Hall, who served in the Corps from 1998-2002, got clocked by Houston linebacker Tim Dobbins on an outside run with less than two minutes to play. Watch the play here. The force caused Hall spin in the air and fumble, with the Texans recovering. Hall told The Tennessean on Monday that he was “clearing up” but…

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