Ideally, the NFL will make a determination whether Hill will face any discipline under the NFL’s personal conduct policy before Chiefs veteran players report to training camp on July 26. Criminal charges are not necessary for Commissioner Roger Goodell to suspend someone under the personal conduct policy. According to Kansas City radio stations, the Chiefs are cautiously optimistic that Hill won’t be suspended. A favorable outcome for Hill could lead to negotiations for a new deal, which were put on hold because of the allegations, resuming since he is in a contract year.
Neither you, nor I, nor any sports talk radio host will ever know definitively what happened between Hill, Espinal, and their young son. Neither will the NFL, although that won’t stop the league from acting like judge and jury. But reporters and fans didn’t learn anything truly new from this latest audio. What they should remember though is, no matter the circumstances, a denial doesn’t equal absolution.
Rick Chapman photographed the portraits of the past ESPYS winners. Randall Slavin photographed the portraits of the new honorees. Above, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes poses with his portrait at the unveiling in Los Angeles.
5. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (121.5 pts)
Travis Kelce, TE, Kansas City Chiefs
By virtue of a ridiculous 103-catch, 1,336-yard, 10-touchdown stat line (on 150 targets), Kelce was fantasy’s No. 1 tight end last year by about a point per game over runner-up Zach Ertz. He outscored third-place finisher George Kittle by almost 40 fantasy points and fifth-place finisher Jared Cook by over 100.
Reid and offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy both have made strong comments in support of Williams, shutting down any speculation about Carlos Hyde or Darwin Thompson pushing for a starting job. Including the playoffs, Williams averaged 12.8 carries, 4.7 catches, 100.4 scrimmage yards and 1.7 touchdowns on 43.3 snaps over his final six games last season.
Some current assistants to keep an eye on: Don Martindale (Ravens D-coordinator), Teryl Austin (Steelers assistant head coach), Dave Toub (Chiefs special teams coordinator), Stump Mitchell (Browns running backs coach), Eric Bieniemy (Kansas City Chiefs offensive coodinator), Dean Pees (Titans defensive coordinator) and Eric Studesville (Dolphins running backs coach/run game coordinator)
Kansas City thus remains a prime destination for fantasy football goodness, and Sammy Watkins has a chance to be the prime beneficiary from Hill’s potential release. The sixth-year receiver hasn’t played 16 games in a season since his rookie year and hasn’t offered much fantasy upside since 2015, but it’s tough to ignore Watkins’ potential status as Mahomes’ No. 1 wide receiver.
Even if Carlos Hyde and/or Darwin Thompson manage to seize a portion of snaps in the Chiefs’ backfield, it would be a surprise if either is able to unseat Williams as the offense’s lead pass-game back. — Ian Hartitz
“I always love coming back here to Midland High. I don’t get to come back to Michigan much, but Coach Methner heard I was home, and he reached out to me,” said Wylie, 24, who will be entering his second year with the Chiefs this fall. “ ... It’s been great just talking to these young kids. I don’t know much, but I like to think I can give one or two pieces of advice to these young kids, and, hopefully, something sticks with them.”
Around the league
The Cards selected defensive back Jalen Thompson out of Washington State in the fifth round of the supplemental draft on Wednesday, NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reported. The team later announced the pick.
Houston has been proceeding as if it won’t hire a GM ahead of the 2019 campaign, NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero reported Wednesday, per sources with knowledge of the situation.
Field judge Nate Jones joins the NFL officiating staff from the Pac-12, following an eight-year pro career as a defensive back. Umpire Terry Killens was a linebacker during his seven NFL seasons before officiating in the American Athletic Conference.
“It’s good, man. It’s good,” Gurley said of his knee. “I’m just like, hey, we’re going to find out in training camp, you know? Once training camp comes, you’ve got the preseason, but you don’t have a lot in preseason.”
Buccaneers cornerback Ryan Smith, who started six games last season for Tampa Bay, has been suspended without pay for the initial four games of the 2019 regular season for violation of the league’s policy on performance-enhancing substances, the NFL announced Wednesday afternoon.
NBA coaches will get one challenge per game and must have a timeout left to use it. Three other calls are subject to challenge: out-of-bounds violations, goaltending and basket interference. At least those calls are based on clearly defined rules that can easily be adjudicated.
Relocation is a (usually unfortunate) part of the sports world. The NFL is no stranger to that with three teams — the Rams, Chargers, and Raiders — all picking new homes in the last few years. SB Nation NFL is looking at the fallout and ramifications of team displacements throughout NFL history, and what moves could be coming next in a relocation-themed week.
In case you missed it at Arrowhead Pride
To absolutely nobody’s surprise, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes won the ESPY (Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly) award for “Best NFL Player.” The fact that ESPN announced the award on the red carpet show rather than the main broadcast was kind of a surprise.
The Kansas City Chiefs’ new show, “The Franchise,” came out with its fourth episode on Wednesday night. You can watch above, on Fox Sports Kansas City, or by using the Chiefs’ Facebook or YouTube channel.
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