He had a forgettable six-second span, missing four straight free throws and committing a foul. … Coach Billy Donovan first watched James play as a high school sophomore, when he stood out more than others. “In seeing him at that age you see a lot of times young kids that are sophomores with his ability — maybe not all of his ability — but you see talented players,” Donovan said.
“They never get better. A lot of times it’s difficult to get better because there’s such a microscope. The thing that’s amazing to me is he’s had a lot of attention on him and a very, very young age and he always got better.”
The Rams are coming off a 24-7 road loss to the NFC North-leading Minnesota Vikings, but Sean McVay is defying expectations in his first year as an NFL head coach. Los Angeles is scoring 2.4 points per drive in 2017, the fourth most this season and a franchise high since 2002, the year the league expanded to 32 teams.
The key has been the emergence of quarterback Jared Goff. Goff was ranked 30 out of 36 passers by Pro Football Focus last season but has risen to No. 19 overall in 2017, completing nearly 70 percent of his passes for a 108.5 passer rating with a clean pocket. That drops to just 77.6 under pressure, higher than the league average and good enough to be No. 8 overall this season. In fact, his overall passer rating under pressure this year is higher than his passer rating in 2016 with a clean pocket.
Then again, Kareem Hunt appears to engage with our friend K.C. Wolf, so maybe I’m way off on this issue. I also like how I refer to it as an “issue,” insinuating that there is anyone else in the world -literally anyone -who has ever given this topic any thought whatsoever. Aw hell, let’s cut back to another live look at CenturyLink Field.
President Trump and some fans have criticized players who have protested during the national anthem before games and the league’s handling of the matter. Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, who began the players’ protest movement last season, filed a grievance accusing teams of colluding to keep him out of the league. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones threatened to sue to block the five-year contract extension for NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. Attendance is down about 1 percent from last season, Goodell said this week, and the league has had to deal with sagging TV viewership.
“Our world is changing dramatically in terms of fans and how they’re receiving our content and the experience they’re having in the stadiums,” Falcons owner Arthur Blank said Wednesday in Dallas. “And obviously player relationships are critical, and player safety is critical. The view of the outside world of the league is very important to us.”