Redskins

Iowa State ends No. 15 TCU's 12-game streak, 37-23

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Iowa State ends No. 15 TCU's 12-game streak, 37-23

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) Iowa State linebacker Jake Knott figures at some point people will quit referring to all these big wins by the Cyclones as upsets.

They got another one Saturday, ending the longest winning streak in major college football at 12 games with a 37-23 victory at 15th-ranked TCU.

This is the third season in a row the Cyclones (4-1, 1-1 Big 12) won on the road against a Top 25 team. And don't forget their double-overtime victory at home last year over Oklahoma State that cost the Cowboys a shot at the BCS national championship.

``I don't think they are so much upsets anymore,'' said Knott, the standout senior who had a late interception. ``There's a lot of people now that respect us on a new level. We need to keep winning games like this to do that.''

It was the first Big 12 home game for conference newcomer TCU (4-1, 1-1), which played without suspended quarterback Casey Pachall and had five turnovers.

Jared Barnett made his first start of the season and threw three touchdowns to Josh Lenz, who later had a scoring toss of his own on a trick play. David Irving, the Cyclones' 6-foot-7, 280-pound defensive end, returned an interception 20 yards for a touchdown.

Iowa State, which is home against No. 7 Kansas State next week, won for only the third time in 33 road games against a Top 25 team since 1996. All of those wins have come in the last three years in the state of Texas, including Barnett's first career start last season at Texas Tech.

``It feels great, but it doesn't mean nothing if we don't come back and finish strong the rest of the season,'' said Lenz, who had five catches for 147 yards.

Barnett was 12-of-21 passing for 183 yards and ran nine times for 30 yards. The touchdown throws of 51 and 74 yards in the first quarter put the Cyclones up 16-7, and he threw a 1-yarder to Lenz to start the second half.

The Frogs had won a nation-best 25 conference games in a row, the first 24 while winning the Mountain West championship each of the last three seasons. They won their Big 12 debut at Kansas three weeks ago, and hadn't lost a conference game since Nov. 6, 2008 at Utah.

``You can't give up big plays on defense and you can't turn the ball over on offense,'' coach Gary Patterson said. ``Real simple.''

Dual-threat redshirt freshman Trevone Boykin took over for Pachall, the second-year starter who is suspended indefinitely after his arrest early Thursday on suspicion of driving while intoxicated.

Pachall wasn't on the sideline after Patterson changed his initial decision to have the quarterback in uniform without playing.

The coach is scheduled to meet Sunday with TCU's chancellor to discuss Pachall, who eight months before his arrest this week admitted to police that he smoked marijuana and failed a team-administered drug test.

Boykin was 23 of 40 passing for 270 yards with one score. He had three interceptions, one on his first pass of the game before two more in the fourth quarter.

Freshman B.J. Catalon had 13 carries for 86 yards, but had two fumbles - one inside the Iowa State 5. Senior running back Matthew Tucker didn't play because of a left ankle injury.

Jaden Oberkrom had field goals of 38, 50 and 39 yards for TCU, which lost for only the second time its last 30 home games.

The Cyclones trickery came late in the third quarter when after taking a handoff on a reverse Lenz stopped and threw a 15-yard score to tight end Ernst Brun. That capped a 10-play drive aided by two personal foul penalties, including a late hit by standout end Stansly Maponga that wiped out a fourth-and-9 for Iowa State.

Still, the Cyclones never trailed after the fourth play of the game, when Barnett avoided a near turnover when he made contact with his running back on play action before hitting Lenz in stride for the touchdown.

``The play didn't start the way you wanted it do,'' coach Paul Rhoads said. ``On plays like that, focus tends to heighten a little bit. ... He delivered a very accurate ball to end the play. Where the ball went is where the ball was supposed to go.''

Steele Jantz, the senior quarterback Barnett replaced in the lineup, had one carry for 7 yards.

Despite temperatures in the 50s, Boykin was dealing with leg cramps. He stayed on the ground after rolling right and throwing a 28-yard pass to Brandon Carter early in the fourth quarter.

When Boykin returned for the next series, Irving had his interception after swatting the pass and grabbing it out of the air. The Frogs had the ball one more time, but Knott picked off a pass near the goal line and got to the 36 before running out of bounds into the Iowa State bench area.

``I had intentions of bringing it all the way back,'' Knott said. ``I heard the sideline say get out of bounds. I made the right decision.''

Yep, the Cyclones had another big victory, the kind they are getting used to having.

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Need to Know: The best cornerbacks the Redskins will face in 2018

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Need to Know: The best cornerbacks the Redskins will face in 2018

Here is what you need to know on this Friday, July 20, six days before the Washington Redskins start training camp.  

The five best cornerbacks the Redskins will face in 2018

This week we’ll be looking at the best of what the Redskins will face during the 2018 season. Today the cornerbacks are up. They are roughly ranked by Pro Football Focus’ coverage metrics, although I did some juggling based on interception totals and other factors. Prior to this, we looked at the best teamsreceivers, running backspass rushers, and quarterbacks

1. Patrick Peterson, Cardinals—The athletic Peterson has been All-Pro three times and has been selected to the Pro Bowl in each of his seven years in the league. He hasn’t had a big interception total since he got seven in 2012 but that is mostly because quarterbacks only throw his way about once in every ten snaps he is in coverage. 

2. Jalen Ramsey, Jaguars—I could easily have ranked Ramsey over Peterson. I went with Peterson because he’s been doing it for longer and he’s only 28. Ramsey has justified his No. 5 selection in the 2016 draft. His long arms and ball skills serve him well. He has the size to defend the bigger receivers and the athleticism to be effective against shifty and speedy receivers. 

3. A.J. Bouye, Jaguars—If Alex Smith tries to throw away from Ramsey he will encounter trouble on the other side. It’s been trendy to say that Bouye is underrated for so long he’s in danger of becoming overrated. But he’s not there yet. Bouye was one of four full-time (played at least 60% of snaps) cornerbacks who did not allow a touchdown pass last year and he had by far the most plays in coverage. 

4. Malcolm Butler, Titans—If the Brady-Belichick Patriots don’t win another Super Bowl, the coach’s decision to keep Butler on the bench as Nick Foles shredded the New England secondary will be marked as the end of that era. Maybe Butler isn’t good enough to have made a difference, but it would have been interesting to see. He’s with the Titans now and he will give Smith problems in December. 

5. Marshon Lattimore, Saints—Last year’s defensive rookie of the year plays an aggressive style both in press man coverage and when tackling receivers who have caught the ball. An ankle injury sent him out of the game against the Redskins early, perhaps one of the reasons why Kirk Cousins was able to light them up for 322 yards and three touchdowns. 

Best of the rest: Desmond Trufant, Falcons; Brent Grimes, Bucs; Logan Ryan, Titans;k Jaire Alexander (rookie), Packers

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 

Days until:

—Training camp starts (7/26) 6
—Preseason opener @ Patriots (8/9) 20
—Roster cut to 53 (9/1) 43

The Redskins last played a game 201 days ago. They will open the 2018 NFL season at the Cardinals in 51 days. 

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What exactly did the Orioles get in return for Manny Machado?

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What exactly did the Orioles get in return for Manny Machado?

So, the Orioles made some headlines earlier this week. I’m not sure if you’ve heard, but minor league pitcher Asher Wojciechowski exercised his opt-out clause and is no longer with the organization. Please keep Orioles fans in your thoughts during this trying time.

As everyone reading this is undoubtedly already aware, the Orioles *also* made a trade yesterday, sending 26-year old superstar Manny Machado to the Los Angeles Dodgers. In return for their once-in-a-lifetime talent, the Orioles received a whopping five prospects from the Dodgers’ minor league system.

Yusniel Diaz, OF, 21

It’s fitting that this trade is being compared to the Erik Bedard trade, which was also a five-for-one, because Diaz could be a poor man’s Adam Jones. He’s not the prospect Jones was, but he could end up being a really nice player.

Talent evaluators are split on his ultimate ceiling. Some describe him as a bona fide stud, and others leave him off their top 100 lists. I’ve seen him ranked as high as 31st overall (by Baseball Prospectus), which, if accurate, is a terrific main piece in a package for a star rental. 

Most consider Diaz’s main flaw as a prospect to be his in-game power, though anyone watching the 2018 MLB Futures Game would be confused by that, as he became the second player ever to hit multiple home runs in the game. It’s possible that more power develops as he matures, and he certainly wouldn’t be the first player to hit for more power once reaching the Majors, but for now, it’s not a strength. I wouldn’t expect him to top 20 home runs in most seasons.

His bat-to-ball ability is his clearest strength, as he projects to consistently hit for a high average. His batting eye, while formerly a weakness, has become a strength in 2018, as he’s actually walked more times than he’s struck out (a rarity in this day and age). That will play well with O’s fans who are tired of seeing their players challenge strikeout records.

Dean Kremer, RHP, 22

Kremer isn’t a major name, which is a disappointment for O’s fans and one of the reasons their haul felt so uninspiring. Compared to more highly-touted prospects like Dustin May, Kremer looks like the team settled.

That said, he’s currently sporting the best K/9 ratio in the minors, and could end up being a diamond in the rough. He’s come a long way since being a 14th-round pick two years ago, and you have to wonder if the Orioles’ much-maligned pitching development can pick up where the much more successful Dodgers instructors left off.

Kremer is also notable for being the first Israeli-born player ever drafted in Major League Baseball.

Rylan Bannon, IF, 22

Bannon was an 8th-rounder last year and is having somewhat of a breakout this season. He’s leading the league in home runs, though playing in a notorious band box of a home park is skewing those numbers.

Bannon is undersized, but has a reputation of a good, if not elite, fielder. He’s a third baseman, but will likely spend some time at second as well. If the power breakout is real, he could end up a solid starter for the Orioles down the road. Again, that’s about all you can hope for in trades of this nature.

Zach Pop, RHP, 21

Pop has been described as potentially a future “right-handed Zach Britton,” which every O’s fan would take in a heartbeat. Of course, he’s not ranked like a future All-Star, as even in the weaker Orioles farm system he’s likely no better than around 25th. 

Still, the filler players in big trades like this are just lottery tickets, and considering his lack of pedigree, Pop seems like a relatively “safe” pitcher with projectability. He strikes out a lot of batters and gets a lot of ground balls, and at the very least can likely become a decent middle reliever.

Breyvic Valera, IF, 26

In a best-case scenario, Valera becomes the Orioles’ Ryan Flaherty replacement. If you squint, you can see somewhat decent upside in each of the other returning players, even despite their modest prospect rankings, but Valera is a clear utility player. 

He gets on base and hits for contact well enough to stick around and has proven capable of defending multiple positions, so there actually might be a spot for him at the end of the Orioles bench.

Overall

This trade has been described as anywhere from adequate and somewhat deflating to a great haul O’s fans should be excited about. Four of the five players have decent ceilings, though the chance of all four (or even just two of them) reaching those ceilings is highly unlikely. It’s just the nature of baseball.

Ultimately, this trade will be judged on the success or failure of Yusniel Diaz, who is the clear centerpiece of the package. Whether or not he succeeds will be partially up to him, and partially up to the front office and player development team.

If this trade is the beginning of the core for the next competitive Orioles team, then it’ll have to be considered a success. If these players each bust out of the league, then it was still the correct decision to trade Machado instead of settling for draft pick compensation, but it will still sting all the more for O’s fans seeing Manny soar to new heights elsewhere.