Redskins

Marshall understands strong comments irked some

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Marshall understands strong comments irked some

LAKE FOREST, Ill. (AP) Brandon Marshall understands he might have offended some people with his demand for accountability following the Bears' loss to Green Bay last weekend.

Chicago's star receiver might have won a few allies, too.

``When you make a comment like that, it's almost guaranteed that you're going to rub some people the wrong way, and then there's some people that might respond to it in a positive way,'' he said. ``It's a little bit of both.''

Marshall clearly was more relaxed Wednesday, just a few days after he went off, but these are still tense times for Chicago.

The Bears (8-6) are freefalling after a promising start for the second straight season and are in danger of missing the playoffs for the fifth time in six years.

Coach Lovie Smith's future is in question. The same goes for injured linebacker Brian Urlacher, given his expiring contract, and with the losses mounting, few would appear to be safe at the moment.

``Once the season is over, I think that this organization will take time to let things settle down and figure out what the necessary steps are going forward,'' quarterback Jay Cutler said. ``But as players, we can't worry about that. That can't be in the back of our mind, can't be anything we're concerned with.''

Things are going so poorly at the moment it's hard to believe the Bears were sailing along not too long ago.

They started 7-1 but have dropped five of six since then, and there's no guarantee they'll reach the postseason even if they close with wins at Arizona and Detroit.

The loss to Green Bay was particularly ugly.

Not only did the Packers clinch the NFC North, Chicago managed just 190 yards, and Marshall simply couldn't hold back afterward.

He had an intense glare as tears welled in his eyes and his voice cracked. He said everyone involved with the offense should be held accountable ``even if that means jobs'' and answered a few more questions before walking out of the interview room.

He appeared to be in a better frame of mind on Wednesday. Asked who should be held accountable, Marshall joked, ``Reporters.''

``We can't keep making the same mistakes,'' he said.

He pointed the finger at himself, saying he needs to do a better job blocking and running routes.

``I think he's looking at what he can do better to help us win,'' offensive coordinator Mike Tice said. ``I'm glad to hear him soul-searching and trying to find a way because it means something to him.''

Marshall was also asked if he was admonished by management or the coaches for his post-game comments, and his answer was vague.

``Well, maybe that was a comment that maybe I should have kept to myself and kept in-house,'' Marshall said. ``And with that being said, any response I got from anybody in the organization, I'll keep that private.''

Marshall said he's trying to be more of a leader than he was with Denver and Miami.

He said he's been reading books on the subject, studying documentaries about Ray Lewis and Michael Jordan, trying to glean what he can from two legendary players.

It's not easy, though, when the losses are mounting and a promising season is slipping away.

Marshall is second to Detroit's Calvin Johnson with 1,398 yards receiving and leads the league with 107 receptions, but Chicago's offense has been out of sync all season.

The Bears rank 29th in that area, and that's not the way they envisioned it.

They've relied so heavily on Marshall, and other than the occasional promising flash by rookie Alshon Jeffery, the other receivers aren't contributing much.

Some of that might be on Cutler and the play-calling, but it's mostly on them, whether they're dropping passes or simply not getting open.

Meanwhile, Marshall said he's trying to lead through his words and his actions.

``It is definitely tough sometimes when things don't go the way you expect them to go,'' he said. ``It gets frustrating, especially when the person that may be in that role is really passionate and really loves this sport. This game has done a lot for me. I remember when I first got here, I told you guys that the NFL saved my life. I look at where I come from, from a boy, the environment. I look at my journey's past six years. If it wasn't for the NFL, I don't know where I'd be. And now, I'm starting to see a difference in my family and my community. People are changing. I'm getting phone calls from around the league, guys asking for counseling as far as how to attack mental illness or different situations. This is a new season for me on and off the field. You just have to stay on the journey.''

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Redskins at Packers Week 14 Inactives: Washington thin at WR in Green Bay

Redskins at Packers Week 14 Inactives: Washington thin at WR in Green Bay

When the Redskins take the field to face the 9-3 Green Bay Packers on Sunday, Washington will be without two of their starting wide receivers.

Both Trey Quinn (concussion) and Paul Richardson (hamstring) were ruled out on Friday and will be inactive. Washington's likely starting wide receivers will be a trio of rookies: Terry McLaurin, Kelvin Harmon and Steven Sims.

Quinn suffered a concussion during the Redskins Week 13 victory over Carolina while attempting to receive a punt. Carolina's DeAndrew White was flagged for an unnecessary roughness penalty on the play and was fined by the league this week for his helmet-to-helmet hit.

Richardson will miss his third game in four weeks. He first injured his hamstring during the Redskins Week 9 loss to Buffalo. He missed the Redskins loss to the Jets in Week 11 but returned the following week. No. 10 re-aggravated the hamstring injury in the Redskins Week 12 victory over Detroit and has yet to return since. 

After missing the first game in his nine-year NFL career last week, Redskins linebacker Ryan Kerrigan returns to the lineup vs. Green Bay. Kerrigan was cleared from the concussion protocol on Wednesday and practiced in full all week.

Redskins right tackle Morgan Moses, who exited early last week with a back injury, is active. Earlier this week, he said he expected to play, and held true to his word. Moses has not missed a game since 2015.

Packers wide receiver Ryan Grant, who spent four years with the Redskins, will be inactive against his former team. Additionally, Green Bay will be without starting cornerback Kevin King.

Here are the full inactives:

Redskins at Packers Week 14 Inactives

Redskins Inactives:

QB Colt McCoy
WR Paul Richardson
WR Trey Quinn
LB Josh Harvey-Clemons
CB Aaron Colvin
LB Chris Odom
OL Ross Pierschbacher

Packers Inactives:

WR Ryan Grant
CB Kevin King
RB Dexter Williams
CB Troy Brown
CB Ka'dar Hallman
OL Adam Pankey
OT Yosh Nijmans

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Nationals sign reliever Kyle Finnegan to major-league deal

Nationals sign reliever Kyle Finnegan to major-league deal

The Nationals announced their first move toward rebuilding their bullpen for the 2020 season Sunday, signing right-hander Kyle Finnegan to a major-league deal.

Finnegan, 28, became a free agent for the first time this winter after seven seasons in the Oakland Athletics’ minor-league system. The A’s drafted him in the sixth round of the 2013 Draft out of Texas State, originally developing him as a starter until converting him into a reliever in 2016.

Oakland granted Finnegan an invite to Spring Training ahead of last season, but he never made his way onto the team’s 40-man roster. His breakout season was in 2019, when the organization asked him to lower his arm slot to generate more movement on his pitches.

Finnegan posted a 2.66 ERA with 14 saves over 42 appearances for AA-Midland and AAA-Las Vegas last year. His fastball has touched triple digits in the past but sits in the mid-to-upper 90s. His newfound success has also seen him rack up more strikeouts, as evidenced by his K/9 that jumped from 9.7 in 2018 to 12.8 in 2019.

Prior to signing with Washington, Finnegan joined the Aguilas Cibaenas of the Dominican Winter League. He has a 2.31 ERA in 14 appearances so far this winter.

The Nationals’ 40-man roster now sits at 30 with the addition of Finnegan following non-tenders of Javy Guerra and Koda Glover. It will move up to 32 once the signings of Yan Gomes and Howie Kendrick are made official. The move comes less than 12 hours before the MLB Winter Meetings are scheduled to begin in San Diego.

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