Capitals

NFL Capsule: Patriots at Jets

NFL Capsule: Patriots at Jets

NEW ENGLAND (7-3) At NEW YORK JETS (4-6)

Thursday, 8:20 p.m., NBC

OPENING LINE - Patriots by 7

RECORD VS. SPREAD - New England 5-4; New York 5-4

SERIES RECORD - Patriots lead 54-52-1

AP PRO32 RANKING - Patriots No. 7; Jets No. 21

LAST MEETING - Patriots beat Jets 29-26 OT, Oct. 21

LAST WEEK - Patriots beat Colts 59-24; Jets beat Rams 27-13

PATRIOTS OFFENSE - OVERALL (1), RUSH (5), PASS (4)

PATRIOTS DEFENSE - OVERALL (28), RUSH (10), PASS (30)

JETS OFFENSE - OVERALL (29), RUSH (15), PASS (29)

JETS DEFENSE - OVERALL (14), RUSH (30), PASS (4)

STREAKS, STATS AND NOTES - Patriots playing on Thanksgiving for fifth time, going 2-2 in previous appearances. Jets playing on holiday for second time in three years and are 1-3 on Thanksgiving - but were 3-0 from 1960-62 as New York Titans of AFL. ... In last meeting, Patriots LB Rob Ninkovich forced and recovered fumble by Jets QB Mark Sanchez to seal OT victory. ... Since 2010 season, Patriots combined 18-0 in second half of regular season, including 8-0 in both 2010 and `11. ... Bill Belichick needs one victory to become eighth NFL coach to record 200 wins. ... QB Tom Brady 4-0 with 10 TDs and one INT in last four regular-season games against Jets. He's 17-5 overall vs. New York, including New England's playoff loss in 2010 postseason. ... Brady needs one TD pass to extend streak with at least one to 43 straight games - third-longest behind Drew Brees (53 and counting) and Johnny Unitas (47). He has 51 career 300-yard passing games in regular season, and one more would put him into tie for fifth place with Kurt Warner. Needs 86 yards passing to move past Dan Fouts (43,040) for 10th place on NFL's career list. ... WR Wes Welker has caught at least one pass in 104 straight regular-season games, including franchise-record 87 in row with Patriots. Needs one 10-reception game to break tie with Marvin Harrison and Andre Johnson and match Jerry Rice for the most in NFL history with 17. ... K Stephen Gostkowski has two FGs of 50 or more yards this season, and needs one more to tie Adam Vinatieri's Patriots career mark with eight. ... TE Rob Gronkowski first at his position with three straight seasons of 10 or more TDs, but expected to miss at least a month with broken left forearm. ... WR Julian Edelman became first Patriots player to score on a reception (2-yard catch) and return (68-yard punt return) in a game last week since Irving Fryar in 1985. ... Newly signed CB Aqib Talib returned INT for TD vs. Colts in debut with Patriots. ... Jets snapped three-game skid Sunday, putting them 4-6 for first time since 2009 - when they went on late run to AFC title game. ... Sanchez broke out of slump with efficient performance vs. Rams, going 15 of 20 for 178 yards and a TD - and no turnovers. Jets 2-1 this season when Sanchez has no turnovers, and 14-5 in regular season in his four-year career in those situations. ... Since top WR Santonio Holmes was lost for season against San Francisco in Week 4, Jeremy Kerley leads Jets with 30 catches, 393 yards receiving and 13.1 yards per catch. ... Backup QB Tim Tebow has been used only in limited role this season, seeing just three snaps on offense last week. ... Backup RB Bilal Powell, back from concussion, ran for first two TDs of two-year career in win vs. Rams. ... Since joining Jets in 2010, CB Antonio Cromartie has 10 INTs, tying him for second-most in AFC with Bengals' Jason Allen - two behind Patriots' Devin McCourty.

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Caps push Lightning around in Game 6 with physical game plan

Caps push Lightning around in Game 6 with physical game plan

As the NHL continues to focus more on speed and skill, the Capitals took a very old-school approach to Game 6 against the Tampa Bay Lightning. From the moment the puck dropped until the clock hit zero, it was clear Washington came into Monday with a very physical game plan.

"It made a big difference," T.J. Oshie said. "I think in these games, everyone’s bringing energy and you kind of want to control that and direct it towards some positive play, some momentum building for your team, and tonight I think we handled that and did that pretty well."

"We just wanted to throw everything we had at them," Stephenson said. "It was a do or die game and we don't want our season to end."

It worked.

The scoresheet officially credited the Caps with 39 hits for the game. The Lightning had only 19. The physical play seemed to wear down Tampa Bay as the game went on.

After an even first period, Washington took a 1-0 lead in the second. Then, very fittingly, a physical fourth line extended that lead to 2-0 in the third to finish the Lightning off.

"All of a sudden now we turn a puck over, you’re back in your end, they’re feeling it, they’re being physical, crowd’s behind them and we’re spending way too much time in our D zone," Tampa Bay head coach Jon Cooper said. "That’s what hurt us."

What made it so effective was the fact that the entire team bought into it. Alex Ovechkin was certainly the most noticeable player as he threw himself around like a wrecking ball against everyone wearing a white jersey. But it was not just his line. Tom Wilson and Brooks Orpik each led the team with six hits, Devante Smith-Pelly recorded five of his own while Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom both had four.

The Lightning faced a constant barrage from the Caps from every line and defensive pair. There was no respite.

The hits also gave the fans plenty to cheer for.

The Caps were playing an elimination game at home and Tampa Bay goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy was standing on his head. Even with the score locked at 0-0 through the first period, the crowd was still very much into the game. There was no apprehension, there was no quiet tension. There was just a loud crowd cheering on its team.

"[The fans] were loud right from the start, which I think we fed off of and wanted to give them something back," Brooks Orpik said. "We didn't get a goal early. I think some of the physical play kind of helped carry that. They were great for us."

Now in the third round of the playoffs after six intense games between the Caps and Lightning, the hope is that Game 6's physical play will continue to take its toll on Tampa Bay heading into Game 7.

"We need to do that every game," Nicklas Backstrom said. "That's our forecheck. Hopefully, we can keep it going here in Game 7."

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2018 NBA Mock Draft: What's changed after the combine

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2018 NBA Mock Draft: What's changed after the combine

Something that used to be a rare occurrence has now happened four years in a row.

The Phoenix Suns had the best odds of winning the NBA lottery, and they did, landing the number one pick in the 2018 NBA Draft. 

Over the last four years, the team with the NBA's worst record has landed that top spot each year. Before this stretch though, dating back to 1985, only four teams that had the worst record still won the lottery.

Nine teams have also jumped at least five spots to get to No. 1 during that period as well.

Now the order is set (until any trades of course) and teams have had a chance to check out many of the top players at the combine.

CLICK HERE FOR THE LATEST 2018 NBA MOCK DRAFT 

This draft is loaded with big man prospects too, from DeAndre Ayton, Jaren Jackson Jr., Marvin Bagley, and Mohamed Bamba, along with countless others likely going in the top-14. 

There's also the very intriguing Luka Doncic, who most still believe won't go back to Real Madrid, even with him leaving the door open. 

A few names jumped into the first round since the last mock draft, which is something we always see after the combine. 

As for the Wizards, we know they need an athletic big man, and sitting at pick No. 15, they may just get one, although he brings a lot of mystery. 

CLICK HERE FOR THE LATEST 2018 NBA MOCK DRAFT