Nationals

NFL Capsule: Vikings at Seahawks

NFL Capsule: Vikings at Seahawks

MINNESOTA (5-3) At SEATTLE (4-4)

Sunday, 4:05 p.m., FOX

OPENING LINE - Seahawks by 5

RECORD VS. SPREAD - Minnesota 4-4; Seattle 5-3

SERIES RECORD - Seahawks lead 6-5

AP PRO32 RANKING - Vikings No. 12; Seahawks No. 13

LAST MEETING - Vikings beat Seahawks 35-9, Nov. 22, 2009

LAST WEEK - Vikings lost to Buccaneers 36-17; Seahawks lost to Lions 28-24

VIKINGS OFFENSE - OVERALL (22), RUSH (7), PASS (27)

VIKINGS DEFENSE - OVERALL (11), RUSH (16), PASS (12)

SEAHAWKS OFFENSE - OVERALL (30), RUSH (8), PASS (31)

SEAHAWKS DEFENSE - OVERALL (5), RUSH (5), PASS (13)

STREAKS, STATS AND NOTES - Matchup of top two running backs in NFC. Adrian Peterson leads conference with 775 yards rushing, Marshawn Lynch second at 757 yards. ... Vikings lead NFL with 11 runs of 20 yards or more. ... Vikings 0-2 facing rookie QBs this season, losing to Indianapolis (Andrew Luck) and Washington (Robert Griffin III). ... After playing well for most of the first six weeks, Vikings QB Christian Ponder has completed just 52 percent of his passes and thrown three interceptions past two weeks. ... WR Percy Harvin tied for NFL lead with 60 catches and with Cris Carter for franchise record for most catches through first eight games. ... DE Jared Allen has sack in six straight games. ... Vikings second in NFL allowing 3.44 yards per rush on first down. ... LB Chad Greenway leads NFL with 81 tackles. ... Vikings lost CB Chris Cook to broken right arm. He is expected to be out for six to eight weeks. ... Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell held same position in Minnesota from 2006-10. ... Seahawks play next two games at home before bye week. Seahawks have won five of last six at home dating back to last season, including 3-0 this year. ... QB Russell Wilson coming off season-high of 35 pass attempts and 25 completions vs. Detroit. ... Lynch averaged 8.75 yards per carry last week vs. Detroit, second highest in franchise history (min. 10 carries). Lynch finished with 105 yards on 12 carries, although 77 yards came on longest TD run of career. ... WR Sidney Rice playing first regular season game against former team. Rice spent four seasons with Vikings and was Pro Bowler in 2009. ... TE Zach Miller had first TD reception in two seasons with Seahawks last week vs. Detroit. Miller had five TDs his final season in Oakland in 2010. ... Seahawks have 21 sacks in eight games. Last year, they did not record 21st sack until Game 12. ... Seahawks defense rank 27th in NFL in third-down defense and last at allowing third-down conversions of 10 yards or more - allowing conversions 16 of 37 times.

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Online:http://pro32.ap.org/poll andhttp://twitter.com/AP-NFL

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How to entice Bryce Harper in to re-signing with the Nationals? With food, of course!

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How to entice Bryce Harper in to re-signing with the Nationals? With food, of course!

They say the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach… and if that leads us to Bryce Harper’s potential landing spot, then I present to you the yummiest reasons he should stay with the Washington Nationals.

In a video from TMZ, a paparazzi follows Harper to baggage claim and implores him for any hints toward where he is signing this offseason. The only true answer he got was that Harper likes a place called Steak 48 in Chicago. This surf-and-turf hot spot in the River North neighborhood of downtown Chicago has the audacity to serve “Maryland STYLE lump crab cakes.” Really, Bryce? Will the real thing convince you?!

On that note, let’s start off with the seafood we have to offer. This is the Mid-Atlantic, after all.

How can you work here April-September without eating local crabs in some form? I think that’s impossible. You can choose from hard shell or soft shell, but no shame in either game.

Live Chesapeake blue crabs can be bought at Captain White’s Seafood and other vendors on The Wharf off Maine Avenue. Otherwise, you can sit down and have them steamed for you at Quarterdeck, Ivy City Smokehouse, Bethesda Crab House or Captain Pell’s.

If Harper is more of a soft shell guy, all of those places also serve out-of-the-park crab cakes, but you can’t go wrong with Hank’s Oyster Bar, Old Ebbitt Grill, Chris’ Marketplace, or Clyde’s.

If the star really wants to dive in to local taste, he should eat Chesapeake Bay oysters from the largest estuary in America. My personal favorite selection is at Whaley’s (seafood tower on me, Bryce), but Rapphanock Oyster Bar, The Dabney, Pearl Dive Oyster Palace and Black’s Bar & Kitchen can’t be beat.

I find it hard to believe the team hasn't had an outing at The Salt Line, the lively seafood spot just a short throw from Nats Park where teammate Ryan Zimmerman is an investor and co-owner.

Now that we’ve satisfied Harper’s iron intake, let’s break down his protein. In order to keep the superstar here, I want to make sure he knows that D.C. cares about providing a well-rounded diet.

Barbecued meats in general around here are delectable. Sitting in juxtaposition between the north and south, D.C. restaurants bring a mash-up of styles of smoked and sauced meats. Favorites are Federalist Pig, Hill Country, Fat Pete’s and Hardy’s BBQ truck.

However, if Bryce Harper show he’s as invested in authentic Nationals fans as our season tickets are in him, he should really pick up a half-smoke, the district’s original recipe for a spicy, thicker pork and beef dog that’s aggressively seasoned and sometimes served with chili sauce.

Could you imagine Harper making his announcement to stay over a half-smoke at Ben’s Chili Bowl? I think even the panda statue would cry tears of joy.

Another hyper-local taste is mumbo sauce. While proven not originally from here, D.C. natives are enthusiastic about the special sauce. Yum’s is pretty well-known for carrying it.

Time for dessert! I think we can all agree that in the past 10 years, cupcakes have become iconic in the district with Georgetown Cupcakes, Baked & Wired and Sprinkles all having a home in Georgetown. To settle the debate, Baked & Wired is best. They are ranked #1 on Yelp if you don’t believe my own palette.

But what if it’s game night, you ask? D.C. has it’s hearty share of restaurants that are open even after extra innings. The Diner, Kramerbooks, Mandu, New Big Wong, Old Ebbitt Grill, Oyamel Cocina Mexicana, Amsterdam Falafelshop and Jumbo Slice are all here to keep you warm at night no matter what you’re craving post-victory. Need I go on?

Bryce reassured Nats fans and TMZ that he is “still a National right now.” Better eat these while you can, Bryce, or you’ll be sorry you didn't sign in one of the best food cities in the MLB.

Do you have any local food or restaurants you think will convince Bryce Harper to stay with the Washington Nationals this offseason? Send them to @NBCNationals or @rmhopmayer. Maybe we can throw together a friends-giving or holiday dinner for those that want him to stay our beloved Guest of Honor.

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Josh Norman wants to play 'early Santa,' will give away Redskins tickets

Josh Norman wants to play 'early Santa,' will give away Redskins tickets

Josh Norman caused quite a stir with his comments Sunday about the atmosphere at FedEx Field, and the Redskins cornerback made it clear he plans to do his part in making sure the stadium is packed for Sunday's game against the Texans. 

Norman told reporters Thursday he's going to be giving away "40 or 50" free tickets for the Houston game, online and perhaps even in person.

"Yes, I will be giving out free tickets," he said. "I'll be doing it on my socials as well, I think I'll probably post tonight or something about it."

"Who knows, you may see me coming out and being an early Santa somewhere in the mall or something, just handing out tickets."

And if you are one of the lucky fans who gets a ticket from "Santa Norman," he has specific instructions on how you should behave at Sunday's game:

"Whoever get(s) them, we want them loud and just obnoxious. Just really obnoxious."

Norman joins several Redskins players who have promised to give away tickets to the Texans game.

It may be November, but the Christmas spirit is alive and well at Redskins Park. 

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