Antonio Brown suspended three games for COVID violation

Buccaneers wideout Antonio Brown and safety Mike Edwards were suspended three games apiece without pay for violating the NFL-NFLPA COVID-19 protocols, the league announced Thursday.

According to a press release from the NFL, the players misrepresented their vaccination status under the NFL-NFLPA COVID-19 protocols. That review supported those allegations and found that the three players violated the protocols.

Here is a joint statement from the league and the NFLPA on the suspensions:

“The health and safety of players and personnel is our top priority. The protocols were jointly developed, working with our respective experts to ensure that we are practicing and playing football as safely as possible during the ongoing pandemic. The NFL-NFLPA jointly reinforce their commitment and further emphasize the importance of strict adherence to the protocols to protect the well-being of everyone associated with the NFL.”

Here is a statement from the Buccaneers on the suspensions:

“We appreciate the League’s timely handling of this matter and recognize the importance of the health and safety protocols that have been established. We will continue to implement all league COVID-19 protocols.”

Both Brown and Edwards are eligible to return on December 26 against Carolina. Due to an ankle injury, Brown has not played since Week 6 against Philadelphia.

In addition, free-agent wideout John Franklin III has also been suspended three games for misrepresenting his vaccination status. If signed by a team, he is also ineligible to play in the next three games.

 

 

Report: Suns’ Chris Paul out indefinitely due to health and safety protocols

Phoenix Suns star point guard Chris Paul is dealing with more bad luck. According to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, Paul is out indefinitely after he entered COVID-19 health and safety protocol. At this point, Paul’s status for the Western Conference finals is uncertain.

According to the report, if Paul is vaccinated for COVID-19, and depending on the medical circumstance, the isolation period could be shorter. No word on if Paul is vaccinated, but according to ESPN’s Jalen Rose, Paul is vaccinated.

The Suns swept the Nuggets on Sunday night.  No word on when the Western Conference finals will begin as the Clippers and Jazz continue to battle it out to determine who will face the Suns. That series is tied at 2.

Paul, 36, battled a shoulder injury in Suns’ first-round victory over the Lakers, and now, he has another obstacle to overcome. Paul was dominant in the series against the Nuggets and averaged 25.5 points and 10.2 assists per game, with only five turnovers.

Clearly, the Suns need Paul to advance to the NBA Finals and win a title, so hopefully, he can get back on the court sooner than later.

Watch below as Suns head coach Monty Williams talks Paul:

Week 16 playoff scenarios in NFL

Two weeks left in the NFL, and at times with COVID-19 out there, many thought the NFL would not get to this point, but they have, and the playoffs are around the corner.

At this point, six out of the 14 playoff spots have been secured. In the AFC, Bills, Steelers, and Chiefs have clinched spots, while in the NFC, the Packers, Saints, and Seahawks have clinched spots. 

Who will join them?

See below the teams that can clinch playoff spots in Week 16:

AFC

CLINCHED:

Buffalo Bills – AFC East division title

Kansas City Chiefs – AFC West division title

Pittsburgh Steelers – playoff berth

CLEVELAND BROWNS (10-4) (at New York Jets (1-13), Sunday, 1:00 PM ET, CBS)​

Cleveland clinches playoff berth with:

  1. CLE win + BAL loss or tie OR

  2. CLE win + MIA loss or tie OR

  3. CLE win + IND loss OR

  4. CLE tie + BAL loss OR

  5. CLE tie + MIA loss

INDIANAPOLIS COLTS (10-4(at Pittsburgh (11-3), Sunday, 1:00 PM ET, CBS)

Indianapolis clinches playoff berth with:

  1. IND win + BAL loss or tie OR

  2. IND win + MIA loss or tie OR

  3. IND tie + BAL loss OR

  4. IND tie + MIA loss

KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (13-1) (vs. Atlanta (4-10), Sunday, 1:00 PM ET, FOX)

Kansas City clinches the first-round bye with:

  1. KC win or tie OR

  2. PIT loss or tie OR

  3. BUF loss or tie OR

  4. KC clinches strength of victory tiebreaker over PIT or BUF AND clinches at least a tie in strength of victory tiebreaker over the other club

PITTSBURGH STEELERS (11-3) (vs. Indianapolis (10-4), Sunday, 1:00 PM ET, CBS)

Pittsburgh clinches AFC North division title with:

  1. PIT win OR

  2. CLE loss OR

  3. PIT tie + CLE tie

TENNESSEE TITANS (10-4) (at Green Bay (11-3), Sunday night, 8:20 PM ET, NBC)

Tennessee clinches AFC South division title with:

  1. TEN win + IND loss​

Tennessee clinches playoff berth with:

  1. TEN win OR

  2. MIA loss OR

  3. BAL loss OR

  4. TEN tie + BAL tie

NFC

CLINCHED:

Green Bay Packers – NFC North division title

New Orleans Saints – playoff berth

Seattle Seahawks – playoff berth

ARIZONA CARDINALS (8-6) (vs. San Francisco (5-9), Saturday, 4:30 PM ET, Amazon)

Arizona clinches playoff berth with:

  1. ARI win + CHI loss or tie OR

  2. ARI tie + CHI loss

GREEN BAY PACKERS (11-3) (vs. Tennessee (10-4), Sunday night, 8:20 PM ET, NBC)

Green Bay clinches the first-round bye with:​

  1. GB win + SEA loss or tie OR

  2. GB tie + NO loss or tie + SEA loss or tie, as long as both NO and SEA don’t tie

LOS ANGELES RAMS (9-5) (at Seattle (10-4), Sunday, 4:25 PM ET, FOX)

Los Angeles clinches playoff berth with:

  1. LAR win or tie OR

  2. CHI loss or tie OR

  3. ARI win or tie

NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (10-4) (vs. Minnesota (6-8), Friday, 4:30 PM ET, FOX/NFLN/Amazon)

New Orleans clinches NFC South division title with:

  1. NO win OR

  2. TB loss OR

  3. NO tie + TB tie

SEATTLE SEAHAWKS (10-4) (vs. Los Angeles Rams (9-5), Sunday, 4:25 PM ET, FOX)

Seattle clinches NFC West division title with:

  1. SEA win

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS (9-5) (at Detroit (5-9), Saturday, 1:00 PM ET, NFLN)​

Tampa Bay clinches playoff berth with:

  1. TB win or tie OR

  2. CHI loss or tie

WASHINGTON FOOTBALL TEAM (6-8) (vs. Carolina (4-10), Sunday, 4:05 PM ET, CBS)

Washington clinches NFC East division title with:

  1. WAS win + NYG loss or tie OR

  2. WAS tie + NYG loss + PHI-DAL tie