Cubs

Marshall among worst contracts in the NFL

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Marshall among worst contracts in the NFL

Ever wonder why the Bears were able to acquire Brandon Marshall from the Dolphins for only a pair of third-round picks? It could have been due to his contract.

CBSSports.com's Jason La Canfora lists the 11 best bargains and the 11 worst contracts currently in the NFL, and Marshall is among the worst. About his contract, La Canfora makes the following comment:

"He obviously was a bust in Miami and has had domestic troubles and fought with teammates. This would seem to be his last, best shot to continue to earn big money in the NFL. The way the deal is structured, Chicago could get out of it in the future without much cap concern, and Marshall needs to make the most of his reunion with Jay Cutler."'

Off the field troubles aside, Marshall still caught 81 passes for 1,214 yards in 2011. And while his six touchdowns don't rank among the top receivers in the NFL, it's important to remember he had Chad Henne, Matt Moore and even J.P. Losman throwing balls to him last season.

Among the best bargains are Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers and Baltimore Ravens QB Joe Flacco.

However, the best bargain might be New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz. For a mere 540,000, the UMass product became Eli Manning's favorite target en route to a Super Bowl win. He hauled in 82 passes for 1,536 yards and nine touchdowns during the regular season then had 10 catches for 142 yards in the NFC Championship before catching a TD in Super Bowl XLVI.

Summer of Sammy: Sosa's 31st homer in 1998

Summer of Sammy: Sosa's 31st homer in 1998

It's the 20th anniversary of the Summer of Sammy, when Sosa and Mark McGwire went toe-to-toe in one of the most exciting seasons in American sports history chasing after Roger Maris' home run record. All year, we're going to go homer-by-homer on Sosa's 66 longballs, with highlights and info about each. Enjoy.

Sosa's 18th homer of June and 31st of the season came off the Tigers in the Cubs' brief 2-game Interleague series in Detroit. 

Sosa connected in the first inning off Tigers starter Seth Greisinger, going back-to-back with Mickey Morandini. 

The Cubs wound up getting out to a 5-0 start in the game but still lost 7-6 on a Gabe Alvarez single in the bottom of the 11th.

The aforementioned Morandini homer was only the 3rd of the season for the Cubs second baseman. He finished with 8 homers on the year and 224 total bases on 172 hits in what was a very good offensive season. Yet it paled in comparison to Sosa, who had nearly 200 more total bases (416) and a slugging percentage nearly 200 points above Morandini's (.647 to .471), a testament to how truly incredible Sosa's season was.

Fun fact: Tony Clark was the Tigers' cleanup hitter that day. Clark is now the head of the MLB Players Union.

Fun fact No. 2: Paul Bako was the Detroit catcher in the game. He later became the Cubs backup catcher in 2003 and 2004, when he posted a .611 OPS in 119 games over the two years.

Mitch Trubisky jersey sales trending in right direction

Mitch Trubisky jersey sales trending in right direction

Positive press about the Chicago Bears' offseason is having a strong impact on the jersey sales for the team's highest-profile player, Mitch Trubisky.

According to Dick's Sporting Goods, Trubisky's No. 10 is the fifth-most popular jersey among offensive players over the last 30 days. He's No. 6 among all players, regardless of position.

The Bears' offseason has been full of superlatives since their aggressive approach to free agency. The signings of Allen Robinson, Trey Burton and Taylor Gabriel put the spotlight on Trubisky and the potentially surging passing game. The second-round selection of Anthony Miller and word of Kevin White's offseason emergence has turned positive momentum into higher-than-anticipated expectations for Trubisky this season.

For Chicago to have any chance at meeting those expectations, Trubisky, who's entering his first full season as a starter with a new head coach and offensive system, has to thrive. Fans must be confident that he will, considering the investment they're making in his jersey.

Trubisky ended his rookie season with four wins in 12 starts, throwing for 2,193 yards with seven touchdowns and seven interceptions. He completed 59.4 percent of his passes. He should have a much more productive season in 2018 with his new arsenal of skill players and an innovative coaching staff, led by coach Matt Nagy and offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich.