– In an interview with GQ that was published at the magazine’s website moments ago, Eagles’ QB Michael Vick said he didn’t want to play for the Eagles.
“I think I can say this now, because it’s not going to hurt anybody’s feelings, and it’s the truth. . . . I didn’t want to come to Philadelphia. Being the third-team quarterback is nothing to smile about. Cincinnati and Buffalo were better options.”
“They are writing as if everyone feels that way and has the same opinions they do. But when I go out in public, it’s all positive, so that’s obviously not true.”
– Former Ohio State QB Terrelle Pryor has been declared eligible for the NFL’s supplemental draft, but will be ineligible to play in the first five games after he signs. The supplemental draft will take place on Monday, giving Pryor’s camp little time to set up a “Pro Day.” National Scouting service put a 6th or 7th-round grade on Pryor. The Dolphins, Browns and Raiders have been suggested as possible landing spots.
– Tania Ganguli of the Florida Times Union insists that Jaguars’ QB David Garrard is no lock to be the Week 1 starter. Ganguli calls Gabbert vs. Garrard a “very real quarterback competition,” and says Garrard’s lead in the race is “not as definite as it was heading into camp.” Ganguli cites members of the Jags’ organization, her practice observations, and Gabbert’s recent increase in first-team reps. Garrard is the favourite, but should lose the job early in the season unless he lights it up.
– Bears’ WR Roy Williams admitted Wednesday that he’s not yet in game shape after two weeks of Bears camp. Williams has been observed practicing “at less than peak speed,” and Roy E. conceded “my conditioning” has held him back. “Getting my wind right. You have to be able to run in this offense.” Williams began practicing with the Bears on August 4, so he must have been in bad shape before that. QB Jay Cutler said, “hopefully by Monday(‘s preseason game), he’ll be ready to go.”
– Beat writer Jeff Duncan says that regardless of who starts between RBs Mark Ingram and Pierre Thomas, “the final number of reps will likely be similar between the two.” Per Duncan, the two backs have alternated reps with the first team throughout camp. Ingram, however, is locked in as the goal-line back.
– A source tells the Washington Times that Redskins’ TE Chris Cooley (left knee) recently visited Dr. James Andrews for an opinion. Andrews apparently recommended rest and rehab, because Cooley isn’t known to have undergone more surgery and isn’t doing anything in practice. Coach Mike Shanahan recently conceded that he “doesn’t know” whether Cooley will be ready for Week 1.
– According to Ken Berger of CBS Sports, the players and owners are attempting to organize a “high-level bargaining session” next week in New York. Commissioner David Stern, however, is scheduled to be away on vacation. Berger is very reliable when it comes to anything related to the lockout, and it’s very possible that the two sides will indeed meet. Kobe Bryant and Paul Pierce reiterated to the players that it’s important to “remain united” throughout the lockout.
– The Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) has ruled that it will not allow players with current NBA contracts to play in its league. That should put a stop to the Bryant/China talk, as well as any other notable name currently under contract with an NBA club. This ruling was widely expected, but has now become official. Players that are free agents will still be allowed to sign.
– Knicks’ F Ronny Turiaf (left hand) suffered a broken left hand in a warmup game for the Eurobasket and is now doubtful to be available for France in the tournament, which is an Olympic qualifier. Turiaf got tangled up going for a rebound against Great Britain and will see a hand specialist in Paris on Thursday.
– Rockies’ 1B Mike Jacobs has been suspended 50 games for testing positive for HGH. According to Ken Davidoff of NY Newsday, Jacobs is believed to be the first North American athlete to test positive for HGH. The 30-year-old has spent the entire season with Triple-A Colorado Springs in the Rockies’ organization, batting .298/.376/.534 with 23 homers, 97 RBI and a .910 OPS over 495 plate appearances. He has a .253/.313/.475 batting line and 100 home runs over parts of six seasons in the major leagues.
– Yankees’ 3B Alex Rodriguez (knee) will rejoin the Yankees Thursday but will not be activated from the DL. Manager Joe Girardi had hinted that they may wait a day or two to before putting him back in. He’s still expected to return to the lineup over the weekend against the Twins. A-Rod has been on the DL since undergoing knee surgery in mid-July.
– Rangers’ F has been cleared of all charges relating to his Aug. 5 arrest for battery on a police officer after a party at his California home, according to TMZ. Law enforcement sources tell the website that an investigation revealed the cop was never shoved. “We’re told the officer who made the battery report did so after his foot was caught in Avery’s front door,” the source told TMZ. According to initial reports by TMZ on the day of the incident, police were called to his Hollywood Hills, California, home shortly after 1 a.m. PT on Aug.5, responding to a noise complaint from a neighbour. Avery answered the door when police arrived and allegedly pushed the police officer before slamming the door. He was booked on $20K bail and released later that same day.
– It was reported earlier today that a promoter who reached out to former WWE talent Melina Perez to book her for an independent wrestling event was informed by her representative that she is asking for $3K per appearance, as well as first class travel and hotel accommodations. Reigning PWG World Champion Kevin Steen, who has competed on the independent circuit for over ten years, made fun of the former WWE Diva’s reported asking fee.
He wrote on Twitter, “$3000 plus first class air and hotel?! Fuck…I’ve been charging way too little…” A Twitter user then asked Steen, “Is there any real evidence that claim is accurate?” He responded, “Who cares?! I want to make fun of it. So it’s true.”
Ring of Honor talent Colt Cabana also lampooned Melina’s reported demands, writing to Steen on Twitter: “My wrestling fee has now gone from 2 diet cokes and a cupcake to 3 bajillionfajillion dollars… Pay up promoters!”
Steen then wrote a message predicting that John Morrison will follow Melina’s lead out of WWE and work indy shows alongside her. He wrote to Cabana: “I think that once her boyfriend gets released, promoters can save on (transportation) and book both of them. She’ll just ride with him.”
Anarchy Championship Wrestling promoter Darin Childs also gave his take on the matter, writing on the microblogging website, “As a promoter I should never do things like this, buuuut can we all LOL together at Melina’s appearance demands?” Meanwhile, Melina garnered numerous messages today on her Twitter account regarding the claim and privately indicated to some users that it is untrue.
– It was reported last week that former ECW star Axl Rotten was seeking donations on Twitter because he would be evicted from his home if he didn’t come up with $5,000. He caught wind of the report and says it is absolutely untrue. Rotten released the following statement: “Yes, I am having financial issues right now (along with millions of other Americans) I DID NOT EVER post anything asking for fans to give me $5000. I have asked for support from “friends and fans” alike. I want this to be made 100% clear! Yes, times are very tight for me, I’m working hard at going back to school, finding a “9 to 5″ job and seeking as many bookings as I can get.”