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Ex-NFL tight end drove truck that accidentally hit, killed daughter 

Former Baltimore Ravens tight end Todd Heap was behind the wheel of a truck that accidentally struck and killed his 3-year-old daughter Friday, police confirmed.

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The incident occurred about 3:45 p.m. at Heap’s home in Mesa, Arizona, the Arizona Republic reported.

The child was in the driveway of the home when Heap moved a truck forward, striking her, police said. She was taken to a local hospital, where she was pronounced dead, police said.

Heap, 37, was born in Mesa and starred in football at Arizona State University, where he was a two-time All-Pac-10 selection, the Arizona Republic reported. After being selected as a first-round pick in 2001, he played professionally for the Baltimore Ravens until 2010, finishing his career with the Arizona Cardinals in 2011 and 2012. He was an All-Pro selection at tight end in 2003 and was inducted into the Ravens’ Ring of Honor in 2014.

Mesa police said impairment was not a factor, the Arizona Republic reported.

Report: Marshawn Lynch agrees to contract terms with Raiders

Retired Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch has agreed to contract terms with the Raiders, according to a tweet from sports journalist Michael Silver.

The trade with the Seahawks has not yet been completed. 

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Seahawks writer Brady Henderson said on Twitter that the Seahawks still hold Lynch's rights.

"Re-worked deal is presumably a precursor to a trade as his contract includes a $9M base salary for 2017," Henderson wrote.

Earlier this month, Lynch reportedly told the Raiders that he intends to un-retire and play again, according to an NFL insider.

League sources told ESPN in mid-March that the Raiders were trying to acquire Lynch.

Seattle, which has Lynch under contract for another two years, could decide to release Lynch and allow him to sign with Oakland, according to ESPN. The sports network reported that Lynch has considered coming out of retirement, and playing for his hometown team could influence his decision.

Though Lynch himself has yet to publicly announce or deny his intention to return to the NFL, he fueled the rumors that he wants to come out of retirement.

Amid the March ESPN speculation of his return, Lynch retweeted:

Lynch is from Oakland and has said in the past he’d like to play for his home team. Lynch famously announced his retirement with a tweet showing a picture of cleats over a phone wire with a peace out emoji.

Woman receives football scholarship at Division II Colorado college

An Arizona high school student will start her college career in the fall as the first woman to receive a football scholarship at a Division II university.

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On Wednesday, Becca Longo, 18, of Basha High School in Chandler, Arizona, signed a letter of intent to play for Adams State University in Alamosa, Colorado.  Longo will join the university’s football team as a kicker. She’ll also join the women’s basketball team at the school. 

According to ESPN, about a dozen women have played on college football teams, but none have received a scholarship for such a high division NCAA-affiliated program. 

Longo caught the attention of Adams State coaches when she sent highlight videos to the football department at the school. Adams State offensive coordinator Josh Blankenship visited Basha High School to see Longo on the field. He was impressed, and soon after, Longo was offered a scholarship.

Adams State head football coach Timm Rosenbach said he didn’t know that Longo was the first woman to receive an NCAA football scholarship out of high school.

“I don’t look at it that way,” he told the Arizona Republic. “My wife is a former pro athlete. I see (Longo) as a football player who earned it.

“It was like recruiting any other athlete... To me, there is no doubt she can be competitive. She has a strong leg, and she can be very accurate.” 

Longo, who started playing football during her sophomore year of high school, said she was inspired by a female player who played on her older brother’s high school football team.   

“I’m ready to compete,” Longo said. “I don’t really have any expectations beyond that.”

Pro football player finishes chemo treatments, accidentally breaks victory bell

Houston Texans offensive tackle David Quessenberry finished his last round of chemotherapy Tuesday after a 3-year battle with non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

A video shared online shows the NFL star celebrating by ringing a victory bell and accidentally breaking it.

Quessenberry, who was drafted by the Texans in 2013, has been receiving treatment at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.

The hospital has a small bell hanging on a wall for patients to ring after they finish their last round of chemo.

Quessenberry, 26, rang the bell enthusiastically and ended up yanking the whole thing off the wall.

“It has been more than 1,000 days since my fight began. Yesterday, I received my last infusion of chemo therapy. The things I have seen and the things I felt through my fight I could never forget,” Quessenberry wrote on Instagram. “This bell, just like cancer, never stood a chance.”

Quessenberry was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin T lymphoblastic lymphoma in 2014. Doctors discovered a mass in his lungs when the 300-pound player sought treatment for a persistent cough and shortness of breath, the Houston Chronicle reported.

Giants deny Eli Manning involved in fake memorabilia scheme

Quarterback Eli Manning surrendered an email earlier this month in connection with a lawsuit that claims he, along with the New York Giants and a team equipment manager, knowingly provided false game-worn memorabilia to collectors, ESPN reported.

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The email was included in a court filing in Bergen County (N.J.) Superior Court by collectors Eric Inselberg, Michael Jakab and Sean Godown, who filed suit three years ago.

According to the New York Post, which obtained court records, Manning, who has a contract with memorabilia dealer Steiner Sports, instructed equipment manager Joe Skiba to retrieve the equipment so it could be sold off as authentic.

“2 helmets that can pass as game used. That is it. Eli,” Manning wrote to Skiba from a BlackBerry on April 27, 2010, according to court documents.

The email was initiated after Manning was sent a note by Alan Zucker, his marketing agent throughout his career, to come up with some equipment to satisfy his obligation to provide such materials to Steiner Sports, ESPN reported.

The plaintiffs' lawyer, Brian Brook of Clinton, Brook & Peed, told ESPN that the email, included among roughly 200 pages of documents Manning produced as part of legal discovery, was key to specifically linking the quarterback to the lawsuit, which alleges an elaborate scheme to produce, pass off and sell memorabilia as game-used that was not.

The suit also alleges that the Giants were complicit by deleting the email from their accounts.

"The email, taken out of context, was shared with the media by an unscrupulous memorabilia dealer and his counsel who for years has been seeking to leverage a big payday," McCarter & English, the law firm representing the Giants in the case, said in a statement. "The email predates any litigation, and there was no legal obligation to store it on the Giants server. Eli Manning is well known for his integrity and this is just the latest misguided attempt to defame his character."

It is not likely that Manning, the Giants or their employees would be subject to criminal prosecution as the alleged actions in question have passed the federal five-year statute of limitations, ESPN reported.

The trial is scheduled to begin on Sept. 25.


Atlanta Super Bowl date announced

Super Bowl LIII will be held on Feb. 3, 2019, at Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium, the NFL announced Thursday.

Atlanta was named as the site of Super Bowl LIII in May 2016 after the NFL owners meeting in Charlotte, North Carolina.

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Super Bowl LIII will be Atlanta’s third Super Bowl after the Georgia Dome hosted Super Bowl XXVIII on Jan. 30, 1994 (Dallas Cowboys vs. Buffalo Bills) and Super Bowl XXXIV on Jan. 30, 2000 (St. Louis Rams vs. Tennessee Titans).

Super Bowl LII will take place at Minnesota’s U.S. Bank Stadium Feb. 4, 2018.

Washington state teen solved mystery behind Tom Brady's missing jersey

A Kent, Washington, teenager led police to recovering New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s missing Super Bowl jersey.

Brady’s jersey disappeared after the team’s 34-28 victory over the Atlanta Falcons in February. The FBI and NFL security officials announced weeks later the jersey was found in Mexico, along with a second jersey worn by Brady during the Patriots’ 2015 Super Bowl XLI Xvictory against the Seattle Seahawks.

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Dylan Wagner, 19, was recently cleared by the FBI to reveal that he was the one who solved the mystery.

Wagner, a big Patriots fan, said that he collects NFL uniform gear. 

Last year, Wagner sold a jersey to a collector in Mexico through eBay. The two shared photos of their collections.

Related: Tom Brady's missing Super Bowl jersey found in Mexico

Wagner explained items in one of the photos caught his eye -- “a Tom Brady jersey and a Joe Montana game worn jersey, and the Tom Brady one in the Super Bowl 49 jersey when we faced the Seahawks,” he said.

“If he sent me everything else in his collection I would have never questioned it, but just because of that one jersey, you know, I threw off the red flags,” Wagner said.

After the news of Brady’s stolen jersey broke, Wagner said he knew the collector had it.

He called Houston police, the NFL and the Patriots. No one took him seriously, until he sent an email to the Texas Ranger Division.

“Within, you know, that hour, they called me back and they were like, ‘You know, what you have is ... real information,’” he said. 

Wagner gave detectives the Mexico address for Martin Mauricio Ortega, who had an International Media Press Pass for February's Super Bowl. Authorities found Ortega on security cameras carrying what's believed to be Brady's jersey under his arm.

Police raided Ortega’s home, but he has not been arrested. The jerseys were returned to Brady.

Lombardi Trophy safe after being in car crash with deer

Patriots fans can rest easy: The Lombardi Trophy is safe and sound after the car it was being transported in was involved in a collision with a deer in Maine.

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Tpr. Tyler Maloon explained what happened in a post on the Maine State Police Facebook page. He said he gave a couple that had been in a car crash involving a deer a ride, and they told him that "the trophy" had to be at an event by a specific time. When Maloon asked what trophy, they said the Lombardi Trophy.

Maloon proudly posed with the trophy outside of his police car, writing, "My mind was blown, seriously what are the odds! A story for the ages!"

The Patriots engineered an epic comeback victory in Super Bowl LI , beating the Atlanta Falcons in overtime by a score of  34-28.

NFL quarterback falls for golf course snake prank

Sir Hissalot strikes again. The fake rattlesnake used in golf course pranks took on an NFL quarterback this week and the amusing result is making the rounds on social media.

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Brock Osweiler, formerly with the Denver Broncos and  Houston Texans and now a member of the Cleveland Browns, was playing at an Arizona golf course when the fake snake was placed next to his golf cart, according to KHOU. Osweiler showed his speed in escaping threats off the field by hightailing it away from the prop.

The prank was caught on camera and posted on Sir Hissalot's Instagram page.

Brady tells Kraft he's willing to play six or seven more years

Patriots Chairman and CEO Robert Kraft shared a part of his recent conversation with Tom Brady Monday during the owner's meetings in Phoenix. 

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"As recently as two, three days ago, he assured me he'd be willing to play six, seven more years at the level he performed," said Kraft. "There's no one that would be happier than I, and our fan base... There's one player at the age of 40 who had one good year (Brett Favre) for the Vikings but he didn't do so well before. 

"I think Tommy's sustained excellence is just unbelievable and it's a lifestyle. You know, he's in training now. It's not like he's stopped. He works out. I remember after our first Super Bowl in '01, going down in the training room in the old Foxboro Stadium, three days after we won and he's in there with the music blaring working out, so he's really dedicated and the thing that's amazing about him is to this day, he hasn't changed as a human being in terms of how he relates to people but also how he works out, and the only thing that's probably changed is how he eats. I'm not sure avocado ice cream is right for me, but if I could look like him and perform half as well, I guess I'd do it." 

When asked about the future of Brady's backup, Jimmy Garoppolo, Kraft deferred to Bill Belichick's expertise. "I charge him to handle all football matters," said Kraft. "We're privileged to have the greatest quarterback in the history of the game and it looks like he's playing pretty solid and he's off the charts in my opinion and we're lucky to have him.

"That's the most important position on the team, needless to say. I don't think anyone can say, 'You've got too much depth at that position,' and I've charged Bill to make those decisions and I'll leave that with him." 

Malcolm Butler, the center of speculation regarding a possible trade with the Saints, remains an unrestricted free agent who has the option to sign a one-year offer sheet from the Patriots. 

"I hope he's with us and signs his offer sheet and plays for us," said Kraft. "I have a great affection for him and he actually was part of probably the greatest play in the history of our team, but there are a lot of people involved in that, on both sides."

When asked if the intention was to trade Butler, Kraft quickly said, "No," but also made it clear that he didn't want infringe on Butler's rights and re-stated his hope Butler returned with the Patriots in 2017.

As for Commissioner Roger Goodell, and whether he's welcome at the Patriots season opener in September? 

"I think I'll let you all ask him that," said Kraft. "Look, he's commissioner of the league. As we all know, he has the right to go wherever he wishes to go and if he wanted to come he's welcome to come. We're happy that we're celebrating our fifth banner and he can decide whether he wants to be there." 

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