Dallas will have two new starters on defense this week

The guy throwing Garcon the ball figured to be in this position at this time last year, although he took a circuitous route to get here. Beathard was ranked as the top quarterback by some scouts before his senior season at Iowa, but he slid down draft charts as the year progressed.

Instead of going early in the draft, Beathard saw five other quarterbacks picked ahead of him before the 49ers called his name in the third round. He will become the fourth rookie quarterback to start a game this year.

Many demonstrations during the national anthem have taken place since President Donald Trump made comments at an Alabama rally in September. Trump said that NFL players who kneeled for the anthem were sons of bitches that needed to be fired by owners.

Then again, one could make the case that the Cowboys’ defense hasn’t exactly carried its share of the load. Dallas allowed at least 35 points in all three losses, failing to make the game-saving stop in the last two minutes two weeks ago against the Green Bay Packers and Aaron Rodgers.

Dallas will have two new starters on defense this week — one by choice, the other by surprise. After cutting cornerback Nolan Carroll, the Cowboys saw nose tackle Stephen Paea retire.

Here’s part of what Reid wrote:

I approached Colin the Saturday before our next game to discuss how I could get involved with the cause but also how we could make a more powerful and positive impact on the social justice movement. We spoke at length about many of the issues that face our community, including systemic oppression against people of color, police brutality and the criminal justice system. We also discussed how we could use our platform, provided to us by being professional athletes in the N.F.L., to speak for those who are voiceless.

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Mets catcher Travis d’Arnaud spoke with Puig about admiring his homer

There’s also a note from the New York Daily News that said Cespedes and Reyes later had a heated exchange that they wouldn’t make the details of public, and Mets catcher Travis d’Arnaud spoke with Puig about admiring his homer, too.

This is great, because Flores openly admitted what the issue was: The Mets are mad about playing terribly, and Puig checking out how far he could hit a homer off Mets pitching only magnified the level of their awfulness. None of this is Puig’s fault. If you don’t want him watching a homer, maybe don’t throw pitches he can hit to the moon. Trying to coach him on Respecting The Game and Playing The Right Way while he’s rounding the bases is far more offensive than Puig checking out what he can do to a ball with a bat.

Mets manager Terry Collins is the only one involved in the situation on New York’s side who came out looking like his head is in the right place: We’ve got bigger problems than somebody’s home run trot right now. With a 31-40 record, 11.5 games out of a playoff spot in June, and just 3-7 in their last 10, well, Terry isn’t wrong.

At the bottom of this post there’s a table, and some of the teams won’t surprise you at all. With the catchers, for example, the Rangers fared well and, yeah, that’s because they had Ivan Rodriguez for a chunk of the last two decades. The Cardinals had the most MVP-caliber first basemen because Albert Pujols was absurd.

As the Nationals look for the broom and the Dodgers look to hide it, Stephen Strasburg and Clayton Kershaw are set to match up Wednesday afternoon in a pitching battle royale. The Dodgers dropped the first two in a three-game series that began on Monday. Facing a lefty (Dodger Kryptonite) in the form of the Good Gio Gonzalez and Max Scherzer (everyone Kryptonite), the L.A. lineup hasn’t defied any expectations by producing only three runs.

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