Orioles

Carroll says Sherman, Browner expected vs. Chicago

Carroll says Sherman, Browner expected vs. Chicago

RENTON, Wash. (AP) Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll expects to have his starting cornerbacks available this Sunday in Chicago.

After that is anyone's guess.

Carroll said Monday he plans on Richard Sherman and Brandon Browner playing this week against the Bears, despite the possibility they could be facing four-game suspensions for violating the NFL's policy on performance-enhancing drugs.

Carroll didn't say much regarding the duo at his regularly scheduled media availability, trying not to violate league rules. But his belief is that Sherman and Browner will be able to play in potentially Seattle's most important game of the season.

``As of right now, I'm planning on those guys playing,'' Carroll said.

ESPN.com first reported Sunday afternoon, following the Seahawks' 24-21 loss at Miami, that Browner and Sherman are facing suspensions and are in the process of appealing. The team said Sunday night it was aware of the report and according to the league's collective bargaining agreement, players can continue to play until the appeal is heard and settled.

The team is limited in what it can say regarding the possible suspensions and Carroll eventually said he wouldn't comment further until there is some resolution.

``Because it's so important we do this properly I'm not going to comment on anything about it. That's the best way to do this because these are league issues,'' Carroll said. ``At this point I'm going to keep it there and hope you can respect that this is the way we have to do that, and we can talk about it later on.''

In a phone interview with Seattle reporters after Carroll's press conference finished, Browner's agent Peter Schaffer said that his client only received notice of the failed test last week.

``Brandon Browner has no knowledge of how any illegal substance could have gotten into his system,'' Schaffer said. ``He is an outstanding person and a very good football player. He takes tremendous care of his body and he is very careful with what he puts into it. We're exploring all avenues to try and figure out how any substance out of the ordinary would be in his system.''

Schaffer added that the league typically schedules appeals within 20 days of the notice being received, depending on circumstances. He did not provide specifics on when Browner's appeal would take place.

``It's too early to tell what we're going to need, what witnesses and evidence and experts are going to be required, so there is no way to even guess at this point,'' he said.

Sherman, an active participant in social media, posted on his Twitter account late Sunday night after arriving back in the Northwest, ``This ... issue will be resolved soon and the truth will come out. Not worried.''

If Browner and Sherman are found guilty of violating the league's policy, they would be the fourth and fifth Seahawks players in the last calendar year to be violators. Guard John Moffitt was suspended four games late last season. Reserve offensive lineman Allen Barbre was suspended for the first four games of this season before being released by the team once his suspension was up. And just last week, rookie safety Winston Guy was handed a four-game suspension after taking an over-the-counter product that had a banned substance in the ingredients, according to his agent.

None of those suspensions could have the impact of Browner and Sherman, and it could not come at a much worse time with the Seahawks trying to hold on to the final wild-card spot in the NFC. The Seahawks (6-5) are tied with Tampa Bay and Minnesota, but hold the tiebreakers.

Seattle's defense is predicated on the ability of its cornerbacks to play man coverage and lock up receivers. Sherman and Browner allow strong safety Kam Chancellor to play closer to the line of scrimmage in run support and give free safety Earl Thomas the chance to roam the secondary with his speed.

If the duo does miss time, Seattle would turn to veteran Marcus Trufant and a trio of youngsters - Walter Thurmond, Byron Maxwell and Jeremy Lane - to fill the spots. Trufant was a starter until getting injured during the 2011 season, while Seattle has hoped Thurmond would develop into a key contributor, but he has been slowed by injuries. Thurmond has yet to be active for a game this season after starting the year on the physically unable to perform list.

``They've been special in their effectiveness and a lot of it has to do with the way we ask them to play. It suits them very well. It fits. They've been a big factor for us. We love the way they're playing. ... How it develops in the future with our guys when they get a chance they can play at the level and style that we want,'' Carroll said. ``We still try and tailor our expectation of our play to the athlete and what he can do and what they're capable of doing, and we've always looked at it that way. Some guys play a little different than others and we have a pretty good group of guys to battle and give us versatility, I think.''

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Machado hits 2-run HR in 15th as Orioles beat Braves 10-7

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USA TODAY Sports

Machado hits 2-run HR in 15th as Orioles beat Braves 10-7

ATLANTA -- For Braves manager Brian Snitker, playing the matchups meant pitching to Manny Machado with first base open and a marathon game on the line.

The Orioles slugger made that strategy look foolish.

Machado hit a tiebreaking two-run homer in the 15th inning, lifting Baltimore to a 10-7 win over Atlanta on Friday night after each team staged dramatic ninth-inning rallies.

The Braves surrendered six runs in the ninth, and then scored four times in the bottom of the inning.

Peter Moylan, Atlanta's eighth pitcher, hit Craig Gentry to open the 15th. Gentry moved to second on Austin Wynns' sacrifice.

With first base open, the Braves pitched to Machado and he responded with his 19th homer, a drive into the Orioles' bullpen in left.

Snitker said the right-handed Moylan is tough on right-handed hitters but acknowledged "you hate like hell (Machado) is one of them."

Machado said an intentional walk "crossed my mind at first. I thought they were. In that situation they probably had faith in Moylan out there that he could get some ground balls to the left side of the infield."

Machado hit a 0-2 slider Moylan said was "supposed to be middle in." Moylan said the pitch "slipped out of my hand and ended up middle middle."

Moylan (0-1) gave up another run on singles by Colby Rasmus and Jonathan Schoop.

Mike Wright Jr. (1-0), Baltimore's seventh pitcher, threw two scoreless innings.

The game lasted 5 hours, 21 minutes.

The Orioles trailed 3-1 heading into the ninth, and the Braves rallied against closer Zach Britton in the bottom of the inning. Braves closer Arodys Vizcaino was not used while Dan Winkler allowed four runs while recording only one out.

Snitker said he rested Vizcaino because of shoulder soreness and he might be available on Saturday.

Chris Davis hit a drought-breaking homer and drove in the go-ahead run with a sacrifice fly as Baltimore opened a 7-3 lead.

Britton got one out and was charged with four runs and five hits. He gave up a single to Johan Camargo and a double to Danny Santana before hitting Ender Inciarte to load the bases.

Ozzie Albies' bases-loaded single drove in Camargo. Freddie Freeman's two-run single cut the lead to one before Nick Markakis tied the game with a double to right field.

Atlanta had jumped in front on Charlie Culberson's tiebreaking two-run double in the eighth.

Davis, making his first start since June 11, hit his first homer since May 9 in the fifth. Camargo tied the game with his run-scoring double in the seventh.

Braves left-hander Sean Newcomb allowed five hits in seven innings.

Orioles right-hander Alex Cobb permitted four hits in seven innings

The start of the game was delayed 11 minutes by rain.

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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—Roster competition, Brown vs. Pryor

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Need to Know: The Redskins week that was—Roster competition, Brown vs. Pryor

Here is what you need to know on this Saturday, June 23, 33 days before the Washington Redskins start training camp.  

The Redskins week that was

A look at some of the most popular posts and hottest topics of the week on Real Redskins  and NBC Sports Washington.

Post-minicamp Redskins 53-man roster projection—Defense—NFL coaches and others like to tell you that competition determines who wins roster spots in the league. And that may be true to an extent. But many roster spots are predetermined by a player’s contract situation and/or draft status. It is unlikely that an undrafted player like Fish Smithson will win a roster spot over Troy Apke even if the former outperforms the latter in every way during training camp. Apke was a fourth-round pick and they aren’t going to give up on him in favor of an undrafted player. It would cost $3.2 million in dead cap to cut Stacy McGee and only $150,000 to move on from Ziggy Hood so McGee will win a “competition” that is even remotely close. (Offensive projection here)

Redskins will 'have it out' for Terrelle Pryor at training camp—While this is something that could add a little spice to the Jets’ visit to Richmond, don’t look for much of anything to happen. Zach Brown might give a little extra shove to Pryor here and there but he’s not going to do anything that will draw blood or even cause a deep bruise. If nothing else, a big hit on Pryor would invite retaliation by the Jets on Josh Doctson or Paul Richardson. And that might lead to more retaliation and you end up with a brawl like the Redskins and Texans had a couple of years ago.

Trent Williams very much of approves of Smith and Guice—Williams is going into his ninth NFL season and he has yet to be on the winning side of a playoff game. He thinks that Alex Smith and Derrius Guice can help change that. 

The curious case of Alex Smith and the NFL Top 100 list—I normally greet this list with a big yawn and this year was no exception. But I do find the omission of Smith, who led the NFL in passer rating and was third in adjusted net yards per attempt, odd. In an update to this post, the NFL released the names of the top 10 players and Smith is not on it. He shouldn’t be, but he should be somewhere on the 100, perhaps in the middle of the pack. The only Redskins player to appear on the list was Trent Williams at No. 57.

The Redskins' best players who are 25 or younger—It’s likely that nine players who are 25 or younger will line up as starters for the Redskins this year. I don’t have a rundown of how that compares to the rest of the league but it’s notable that in the last two years six of them have replaced players who were either approaching age 30 or over it. I’ll engage in some speculation here and say that five of the young players—Daron Payne, Derrius Guice, Preston Smith, Jonathan Allen, and Montae Nicholson—are good enough to potentially make a Pro Bowl at some point in their careers. 

Stay up to date on the Redskins. Rich Tandler covers the team 365 days a year. Like his Facebook page, Facebook.com/TandlerNBCSand follow him on Twitter  @TandlerNBCSand on Instagram @RichTandler

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Timeline 

Former Redskins defensive tackle Dave Butz was born on this date in 1950. 

Days until:

—Training camp starts (7/26) 33
—Preseason opener @ Patriots (8/9) 47
—Roster cut to 53 (9/1) 70

The Redskins last played a game 174 days ago. They will open the 2018 NFL season at the Cardinals in 78 days. 

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