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NFL


SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) The San Francisco 49ers circled up in their locker room last Sunday moments before taking the field at Houston and Jimmy Garoppolo spoke up to challenge his teammates. ”Play relentless! Be violent!” he demanded. Eli Harold heard the words and they fueled him. Only later did it dawn on the linebacker …

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THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. (AP) Robert Woods is ready to rejoin the Los Angeles Rams’ playoff push. The veteran receiver plans to return from a three-game absence when the Rams (9-4) visit the Seattle Seahawks (8-5) on Sunday in a game likely to decide the eventual winner of the NFC West. Woods has been sidelined by …

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METAIRIE, La. (AP) Rookie running back Alvin Kamara and several other recently injured Saints returned to practice Wednesday, providing New Orleans hope of getting back several regulars as the club tries to hold on to a slim lead atop the NFC South. Kamara, safety Kenny Vaccaro and utility offensive lineman Senio Kelemete – who were …

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COSTA MESA, Calif. (AP) This was hardly forecast for the Chargers, not after they started their first season back in Los Angeles at 0-4. Yet here they are, on an unexpected roll, winners of seven of their past nine and heading into a Saturday night showdown with the Kansas City Chiefs with the AFC West …

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FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (AP) Bryce Petty is getting another chance to prove to the New York Jets that he can be their quarterback of the future. He’s their man under center right now, at the very least, and will make his fifth NFL start Sunday against the Saints in New Orleans. With Josh McCown out …

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ASHBURN, Va. (AP) Josh Norman spent practice casually riding an exercise bike on the sideline of the Washington Redskins’ indoor facility. Coach Jay Gruden said Norman’s knee was sore. The cornerback insisted nothing was wrong. Nothing better sums up the Redskins’ predicament as they prepare for the final three weeks of the NFL season already …

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PITTSBURGH (AP) Two snaps in, Le’Veon Bell knew he was done, that the groin injury that the Pittsburgh Steelers running back tried to ignore during his team’s run to the AFC championship game last January could be ignored no longer. Bell tried to grind it out. Emphasis on tried. By the middle of the …

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ALAMEDA, Calif. (AP) The anger over a lopsided loss in Kansas City that crushed Oakland’s playoff hopes and raised questions about how a team could come out so flat in such an important game has finally simmered. The Raiders know they can’t do anything to change the result against the Chiefs, which sent them from …

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CINCINNATI (AP) Coach Marvin Lewis couldn’t find words to describe how his team came apart. His players had no problem picking out the adjectives. ”This was pretty bad,” defensive end Carlos Dunlap said. ”It was embarrassing to put that up there and come out like that. It’s not what I expected.” A 33-7 drubbing by …

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Week 15 is another must win situation for season-long fantasy football players in the middle of their playoffs. Continue starting the players who helped you early in the season, but carefully evaluate this week’s NFL matchups to submit your best possible lineup. Here are several players to start and others to avoid this week. …

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